Sep. 14, 2017
‘Perhaps I should say hello,’ he thought to himself, but then decided to continue flying for just a bit longer. Mr. Toad took a sharp turn and followed the creek for a short way. He could hear the toad he was searching for’s call echoing down the creek bed up ahead and his heart began to race with anticipation. ‘There he or she is! She’s right up ahead here!’ As his excitement began to mount in his head he remembered the terms the fairy had declared when she gave him his wings. He was to see his new toad friend then return home and the wings would disappear. ‘But I do not want my wings to disappear, the world is so big and marvelous!’ he thought to himself as he approached. Suddenly Mr. Toad banked hard to his left and dove into he forest, zipping away from the bend in the creek as quickly as he could. ‘I will just explore a bit more,’ he said to himself, trying to stay convinced that it was ok.
The leaves slapped his face and ran across his belly as he zipped through the branches far above the forest floor. He dove towards the ground and swiftly ducked under a log, zooming past a few squirrels that were collecting seeds. As he rocketed back towards the canopy his heart filled with joy at this newfound freedom. Mr. Toad explored the forest around the creek, showing off with loops and circles above the forest creatures below and swelling with pride at their envious stares. As Mr. Toad burst from the leaves and returned to the creek he could see the toad that he had wanted to visit perched on a rock up ahead. ‘Well, I really have no need to talk with a toad on the ground,’ he said to himself as he passed overhead. ‘Let me find a creature that can share my love for flying.’
As he turned a corner and the toad disappeared behind him Mr. Toad saw a flurry of gold dust materialize over the creek straight ahead. Mr. Toad dove towards the creek and prepared to bank to the left to dive into the woods, away from the fairy but the dust surrounded him and he could feel his wings begin to shrink. “No! No, Bartholemeu, please!” Mr. Toad pleaded as he slowed and plopped down onto the hard ground. “You promised I could meet that Toad and return home!”
The fairy materialized in front of him on the ground, arms crossed, tapping his foot on the ground impatiently. “I’m disappointed, sir.” Bartholemeu scolded, walking towards him, hovering just above the ground as gold dust flittered off of his body. “You said you would meet this toad and head straight home, but I clearly saw you pass said Toad as if you were too good for ground creatures.”
“I just did not think he would have much to say to a magnificent creature such as myself,” Bartholemeu cut him off with an angry stare and a wave of his hand.
“Enough. It is clear that without the labors of a hard journey you don’t appreciate the destination!”
“But…” Mr. Toad tried to protest but it would seem that the fairy had had enough of the conversation. With a blinding flurry of gold dust Mr. Toad found himself perched on a roach in his bend in the creek just as he had been the day before. As the dust fell into the water and floated away like pollen on the current, he sighed, filled with sadness for what he had lost. The creek babbled quietly to him and the loneliness was almost too much to bear until he heard the familiar croak in the distance. He puffed his chest and hollered back, listening intently to the echo that resounded through the forest. The return croak was no closer, just as before, so Mr. Toad hopped forward again, heading into the woods one slow hop at a time. ‘I will do it right, this time,’ he told himself. ‘No cheating, I will find my friend.’