River’s Tale

by Kaia, age 14
River’s Tale Kaia is not usually a writer. She usually sticks to art and photography. Although, she did have a great time writing this. If you do not like this story, maybe you will like Kaia's art. Check it out on @growingrainbows on Instagram!

“My name is River. My mother named me. Throughout my fifth year, I have traveled across what felt like the world. I used to live by the ocean in a tribe called Mist. Since the time I was adopted to Amethyst by Mrs. Moonstone, I felt like a part of something.”

My name is River. My mother named me. Throughout my fifth year, I have traveled across what felt like the world. I used to live by the ocean in a tribe called Mist. Since the time I was adopted to Amethyst by Mrs. Moonstone, I felt like a part of something. But in order to understand that, you must know my horrible introduction.

I lived with my parents, who appeared to be stable at the time. What I did not know was that my parents were bonded by drugs. My father was like fire, and my mother was water. I guess my mom didn’t have it in her to put him out before it was too late. I tried very hard to block out my father’s actions. He joined the nearest tribe after my mom split the leaf. Tribes like to be bitter and competitive towards one another. One of the more offensive and humiliating practices that rival tribes commit is a wing skinning. They will rip the first layer of feathers and flesh off your wings. My father used to take me in a wagon around the town and show me off to his lumber partners when he still shared a leaf with my mom. During the splitting, he moved to an enemy tribe, and reflected his anger at my mother by committing crimes. He took extreme measures from the very beginning. He began with wing skinning. Later on, he started murdering the tribe’s decision makers and peacekeepers.

My mother was hoping to save the conversation of death for a year or two. When we would wake up to bodies hanging from the clothesline in the heart of our tribe, she needed to push the conversation immediately. Everyone was fearful for their lives for the first time in years.

His last action was intended to make my mother kill herself. He broke into our house in the middle of the night, tied her to a chair, and pinned me down as he ripped out my wings that were firmly attached to my back, as they were supposed to remain.

My mother burned down our house the next day. The whole tribe would think we died that night. We sprinted through months of forest in days. All I can remember is the upside-down trees, as I was tossed over her shoulder for most of the time. Everything was fine, until we both came down with the flu after a week of travel. I was extra weak, since I was still recovering from two gashes in my back from my fucking father. My mother lay in the grass, and begged the Earth to take her away. I begged her not to leave, but the flowers and trees answered her prayers.

I avoided religion. After my mom’s death, I concluded that it was too powerful. I seemed to magically recover when I accepted my mother’s death. I traveled through trees and brush for weeks, walking and walking. I was found near a tribe called Amethyst. Mrs. Moonstone found me napping in a patch of grass near her fishing spot, and brought me back to the tribe. From there, I was adopted by her. I loved her rose-gold colored hair, her dark green eyes, and her freckles. She spoiled me. Everytime she was mad at me for disobeying the codes, she could not remain upset for more than a few moments.

I met my true family in my caterpillar age of school. Fallie was my first friend and, later, she became a sister. During my first day of school, we learned how to weave baskets. I was so anxious that I hid inside my finished basket. When everyone started to laugh at me, Fallie put her basket over her head, and sat down right next to me. She was always there when fairies would laugh at me for being wingless and call me an elf. Mrs. Moonstone had also adopted a young fairy named Rexel when he was an infant. I was five, and he was almost two years old during my first year living with Mrs. Moonstone. As Rexel grew up, we became great friends. I helped settle his problems at school, because I vividly remember mine from the same age.

When Rexel was in his tenth year and I was in my fourteenth, Candy Brom Star rolled into town. His body and clothes were so detailed. His hair was bright, salmon pink, and puffy. His face reflected indigo in certain lights. He had rosy lips, big, round sunglasses, and he wore outfits that screamed, “Who the fuck are you?” He was rather large for a child as well. Everyday, Candy Brom Star did himself up to look different than the day before. Candy Brom Star’s unique style distanced him from many fairies in Amethyst, but Rexel was drawn to him. At first, I was skeptical about Candy Brom Star. I found it peculiar that Rexel was playing with what looked to be an adult fairy after school everyday. I found out later that Candy Brom Star was one year behind Rexel.

Everything was going pretty well until Mrs. Moonstone became very forgetful. Over time, she forgot our names. Eventually, she could not even leave her bed. I stayed home with her, while Rexel and Candy Brom Star would go out and do who knows what. Candy Brom Star and Rexel were out the day Mrs. Moonstone died. I wanted to find Rexel, but I was afraid that if I left her for a second, I would not be able to say my final goodbye. Rexel is still upset about missing her death to this day. Mrs. Moonstone gave the house to Rexel, but I was supposed to save it for him until he was old enough to legally inherit it. I was fourteen years old, the minimum age to own property.

Candy Brom Star moved in with us because his home was too dangerous. His mother was always selling drugs to fairies and, occasionally, a goblin. She would sell her own spit, which made her a major target. Goblins love their fairy saliva. Goblins are usually nasty creatures with no negotiation skills. It is rare to live near goblins, but the founder of Amethyst must have been unaware of their presence.

We didn’t live by any tribes, which is good and bad. I would know. Tribes cause nothing but tension. There is already plenty of tension within our tribe between the rich and poor. Though, with our goblin problem, it would be helpful to have double the fairies alongside us to fight. The community leaders have decided to stay friendly but distant with goblins. They had posters up on trees all around Amethyst that state the Goblin Trade And Affairs Act. We traded plenty of supplies with goblins, almost half of what we create. But we were not allowed to give them saliva. If any fairies were caught dealing saliva, they were thrown in jail “for the safety of the town.”

It had nothing to do with safety. Those upper class rats don’t want people desperate to make a living walking their streets. I suspected that Candy Brom Star’s mother had a good relationship with a community leader. It’s hard to believe that no one had grown suspicious about goblins showing up at her door, especially since goblin communication is only available during an entire community town hall. In summary, the town was afraid of goblins. They will overpower us. They will kill us. It was an unhealthy relationship, and whenever they come close to declaring war, we basically give them everything we have. They run the town, even if no one will admit it.

Ever since I became our house’s authority, I insisted that Candy Brom Star move in with us for his own safety. After a few months, he accepted that his living situation was too dangerous, and set up his new room in our attic. I knew that taking in Candy Brom Star would come with more responsibilities. I knew that he was trouble, but it didn’t matter what he was as long as his mother was dealing with goblins.

After a few weeks of living with him, I was on the verge of kicking him out. Whenever I would yell at him for making a mess, or bringing rats into the house with his stupid candy stash, he would shrug and grin at me. If I kicked him out, he would be homeless due to the goblins permanently staying with his mom. I wanted to slap her.

Rexel loved Candy Brom Star, but he was also getting very irritated by his habits. He was constantly puffing nutmeg all over the house. Our nutmeg, from our kitchen. The house smelled, and we were both ready to let him go homeless.

And finally, we did. He was actually fine. He found places to stay, but I was still always worried about him. He was family.

***

Today was Rexel’s birthday. We actually had no clue when his real birthday is, but we celebrated on November 3rd. That was the day that Mrs. Moonstone adopted him, and the day he was found under the Forgiving Tree. Its the tree that you leave things you don’t want. It really takes an asshole to leave a baby there. Fallie stopped by with a present for Rexel, but had to leave. Candy Brom Star had arrived an hour ago in a black suit, rainbow colored shoes, and a rainbow tie. He gave Rexel an orange bandana. Rexel thought it was hilarious, but I threw it out because orange was the color of the goblin flag. I bought the biggest cake in the bakery because Rexel had managed to stay out of trouble this year, and he deserved a big ass cake for that.

Rexel and Candy Brom Star were rolling around on the wooden floor when one of the floorboards cracked. Rexel’s leg was stuck in the hole where the floorboard had been. When we managed to pry his foot from the hole, we noticed it was wet. I grabbed a lantern, and we went underneath the house to investigate.

Candy Brom Star shouted, “Holy shit, it’s a pool!”

Rexel firmly held his hand over Candy Brom Star’s mouth until he bit it.

Rexel said through gritted teeth, “You better shut the fuck up. It’s 11:30 at night. You’re going to wake everyone in Amethyst up, and who fucking knows if this thing is legal? We could get kicked out of our own home for this.”

I shone my lantern over it. “Guys, it is. It is a pool.”

Candy Brom Star whispered, “See you on the other side,” and jumped in.

Rexel rolled his eyes. “He’s a moron.”

I stepped in, and Rexel did after me.

“I think Mrs. Moonstone had her share of secrets,” said Rexel.

“I agree.”

We swam all night. At one point, I questioned whether Candy Brom Star actually was on some kind of drug because he tried to kiss me. I slapped him. I had no clue how this thing was still down here.I wonder if Mrs. Moonstone knew about this. Did she create it herself? She was a very mysterious woman.

I went to bed, and Rexel and Candy Brom Star stayed in the pool a while longer. As I lay in bed, I gazed at the ceiling. As I continued to wait for sleep to come, I saw a timeline appear on the ceiling, memories flashing by. I saw my mother’s face as she watched my father rip my wings out of my back. I saw my mother’s last few smiles before she died. I saw Mrs. Moonstone hand me her winter hat when I was freezing. I saw Rexel for the first time, and as the the timeline came to an end, I saw how much happier I am now. My biggest worries are my two younger brothers and if they are safe. With completely a blissful mindset, I closed my eyes.    

 

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