Her tears salted the earth of this so-called Garden of Paradise. They mixed in with the rain that began to fall again from the sky.
Those guards who had come to their queen’s aid were forced to take shelter on the porch of the cottage that Elisa so loved. They stood around the still sobbing queen, uncertain of what must be done.
They were good-natured souls who could fight well under almost any situation. Ironically, however, their inexperience with human feelings and emotions rendered them insecure as how to helpher.
It was the child who acted. He roused from his slumber, turning his ears towards the sound of someone suffering. His eyes widened at the sight of his beloved friend in pain. The child crawled over and began to cling to her legs.
But his attempts to offer comfort backfired. The poor child stared at Elisa for one moment before his lips began to quiver. Conn proved not patient enough for the task at hand. He could not do much save wail alongside the woman.
Azul’s mouth twisted at such failed attempts at sympathy. He went to reach for the boy, only to be stopped by Hahn.
“Wait,” the red-haired lad shook his head.
The prince offered his fellow elf a dark look. Conn’s cries were messy and loud. “I can make him stop.”
Hahn, to Azul’s annoyance, did not let go of his arm. “No,” he said gently. “It will be alright.”
The roosterhead’s intuition proved correct. Elisa was not so inconsolable as to not respond in some shape or form. When she raised her head she found the little boy dribbling all over her skirts. She quickly forgot her own tears and picked up the boy.
But it would seem that his cries stirred something in the air.
Strong breezes began to tumble through the meadow, setting the fairies who had nested on the porch eaves and bannisters all flying.
The pitiable sight silenced the boy. And both the queen and child were soon busy rescuing the fairies clinging to her skirts and sleeves and taking them inside the home.
Her guards immediately followed, gathering fairies up in hats and blankets. The sight of her fairies somersaulting about mid-air could have been an entertaining one under other circumstances. However, the mistress of the garden did not smile.
This fruitless game of catch the fairies was mercifully halted by a blast of wind from the sky.
In the silence that followed, the queen and her companions reemerged from the cottage, expecting for either East or West’s minions to appear with some message.
Instead they saw shards of frozen rain suspended in mid-air and shining brilliantly in the setting sun.
It was a startling and yet beautiful sight.
The fairies emerged from their safe spaces under the porch and from inside the house. They grabbed at the crystals greedily, tasting and eating them with great pleasure.
They were too busy to notice the being that floated down from above. But the queen and her guards watched him — a being both pale and fair — come towards them.
He would appear first to be elven in shape but as he drew close to the ground, they could see he lacked a true body of flesh and blood.
“I heard you were looking for me,” is what the unexpected guest said. “I am the north wind. And I bear news.”