My hand ran along the trunk of the old oak. The feel of the trunk against the pads of my fingers was as rough as a cat's tongue. Nature's sweet scents filled my nostrils as I inhaled deeply and memories years old filled my mind. I learned of my destiny here at this tree many years ago at the age of eighteen.
The day of my eighteenth birthday started out like any other. I woke up, dressed, and gave my parents a quick hello before disappearing here, to this very forest. I created this forest in two years, beginning at the age of sixteen. At that age, I found I held the talent to grow trees, flowers, even rivers and creeks by imagining them in my mind. I found this forest one day after hearing stories about the sixty-two thousand men and women who lost their lives in the war of 2008. I decided then and there to work to bring the wasteland to its full potential.
That day, however, did not end as the others have. My destiny finally came to face me. Whispers of it had come to me in dreams throughout my life, but on my eighteenth birthday, it decided to cower no more and present itself to me.
My destiny appeared to me in a very tall, well built man with hair the color of a raven and eyes the color of the green, green grass. He came to me on my eighteenth birthday after I created this same tall oak. A knowing smile filled his eyes as he announced my birthright as Princess Callassandra Bridgette Carlianna May of the faerie realm.
Of course I didn't believe what he told me. As he persisted, I attempted to run away, but the sound of wings fluttering nearby stopped me. When I gazed over my shoulder, I almost fainted at the sight of my best friend Holly Belle hovering in the air like a butterfly, a pair of delicate, pale yellow wings behind her and a man next to her with hair the color of the moon that rose in the night and a pair of strong wings the color of the trees trunk.
The three told me a tale so outrageous it could only be believable. A prophecy long before my birth told the tale of the good faerie King and Queen would give birth to the most powerful faery seen since the days of Lady Roisin. The day of my birth my parents ruled for me to live my life with human parents until my eighteenth birthday and I could return only if my gifts had come into good use. Holly had been sent to watch over me along my way.
Holly took my hand at the end of their story and went to the trunk of the tall oak. She created a gaping hole in trunk of the tree, revealing a single room. The feeling of being swallowed over came me when we entered the room.
When Holly and I emerged from the tree some time later, I had been prepped for my reentrance to the faerie kingdom. She dressed my shoulder length auburn hair in white baby roses and I wore a white dress that fell to my knees in front but continued in the back. Holly informed me all royalty wore their dresses so. When I asked her about my wings, she told me that I needed to meet with my parents and they would help in bringing them out.
Cade the dark haired faery with a pair of dark green wings, created his own tree while Holly and I were in my oak. Once Holly and I stepped out of the oak, he placed his hands on the new tree. A gaping hole identical to the one Holly made earlier appeared in the giant oak. Cade and Holly stepped in first. Ardeth, the light haired faery, and I followed right behind them. I again had the feeling of being swallowed.
I remember the roar that filled my ears of a crowd of as we stepped fully inside the tree and the hundreds of colors that greeted my eyes. Faeries crowded around to the left, right, above, and even below where I stood. The couple that sat in front of me was regal, absolutely regal. The man looked to be in his late forties with a head of silver hair and a pair of dark red wings behind him. The woman looked like an older version of me with auburn hair pulled up in a tight bun and hazel eyes. The only difference there could be was the pair of burgundy wings behind her.
The couple stood, their feet, I noticed, were bare. Everyone's feet here were bare. The couple, King Rupert and Queen Marion greeted me. Marion began to cry as she studied me. And Rupert (It took me some time to call them Mom and Dad) smothered me in a bear hug. And, while I know you may hear this all the time, I felt as though I was actually home for the first time. Before, I seemed to have earned the title of the hippie nature girl. Now I knew why.
But when I pulled away, thousands of gasps filled the room. My eyes roamed the room, wondering what had happened. When my eyes meet Rupert and Marion, their gazes were on my back. Because I didn't want to act like a canine on my first day here, I didn't act on my first impulse to go round and round to find out what was wrong.
My wings, it turned out, hadn't appeared. When faeries were reinitiated into the kingdom after many years in the human world, their wings would appear. Apparently, mine didn't.
Cade took the situation into his own hands, "Just because the princess does not have her wings does not mean she is not one of us. I have witnessed her powers and trust me they are strong. She may need a bit of time to grow. I will make it my full responsibility to help bring out her wings."
So, my first two months in the faery kingdom were full of Cade. In that time I learned everything possible to learn in this realm. My parents and I spoke every night, reacquainting with each other. Cade encouraged that. He told me I needed to loosen up and not be so nervous. When I do my wings will come out.
Cade, taking the role as my tutor, taught me of the faery ways. When he tried to show me the difference between herbs, roots, flowers, and plants, he learned I already knew everything there was to know about nature and plants and the like. So he told me about the faery folk and their roles in the kingdom.
Before I knew it, I found myself extremely comfortable in this kingdom. It felt as though I lived there my entire life. I no longer needed Holly to walk with me to the river that ran behind the castle I now resided in. People in town knew me and I in turn knew them and would visit. But my wings still hadn't appeared. Marion and Rupert began to worry about that and I must say I myself started to worry. What if my wings never came? Did this come in the prophecy? I once asked myself. Was the powerful faerie princess born without wings? Rupert and Marion assured me I had been born with wings and Cade told me that no faeries had left the kingdom for as long I as have.
In those months, my feelings for Cade changed. I no longer thought of him as my tutor, but as a friend. He turned into someone I found I could talk with. Cade turned out to be half-fae, half-human. Thankfully, his faery side broke through more than his human side ever could have. He seemed to understand my problems with coming into this different world, though problems were few. I loved it here. The only problem I had here was the fact my wings wouldn't come.
After my sixth month here, my wings still did not appear. By this time my hope and the hopes of Marion and Rupert were now crushed. My gifts were the only things to show for my uniqueness in this world. What would I do if my wings never came? With pensive thoughts running through my head, I decided to take a walk by the river.
Someone already occupied the river once I got there. Cade. He stood, staring at his reflection in the water. At least I would have someone to speak to about my problems. When I stepped next to him, he jumped in surprise. I thought nothing of it and continued to tell him that I decided to leave the kingdom. With no wings, no one needed me here. What use was I of?
I remember Cade's stuttering that day. It made everything that came out of his mouth incoherent. Words blended with other words. I finally stopped him and asked whatever was the matter. He then confessed that the world would not be the same without me. The grass would not grow as green, the river would not run as smoothly and the sun and moon would not shine as bright.
"And," He told me. "Love would not be as strong as it is without you. The love between any too people would falter without you. And I would most likely falter without you."
A single white rose appeared in his hand. The stem grew as I took it. This, I knew, in the faerie kingdom represented a declaration of love. Should the second party take it, the love is returned. I remember my hands moving without a second of hesitation.
A look of pure happiness came over Cade's eyes. I'm sure my eyes reflection his. Suddenly, his eyes widened. His gaze fell on something behind me. I turned, but saw nothing. When I asked him what could be wrong with him now, he whispered something about my wings. That's when I noticed we were in the air, but Cade's wings weren't fluttering. Slowly, I turned to inspect my back. A pair of strong, white wings fluttered behind me. Out of shock, they stopped and we would have fallen had it not been for Cade's quick thinking to begin fluttering his own wings.
Every year I come back to this place in the human world. Here, I found Cade. I found my destiny here. I now am the strongest ruler of the faerie kingdom with Cade at my side. And I'll never forget that because of his professed love I received my wings. Nothing more could ever tell me that love can manage amazing things.