How does one become a butterfly?

Tink' Tink' Tink'

A petite girl - dressed in a cutesy blue and white dress - looked up from the book she was so interested in. Her look of joy and contentment faded and slowly turned into a look of unfortunate sorrow. It was raining outside. She had been looking forward to gathering bugs that very same afternoon. With a small sigh she stood up and made a small sound as she stretched her arms above her head.

She walked over and placed the butterfly identification book she was reading back on the bookshelf in the corner, then walked to the window, that was close beside the door leading outside, and was surprised to see that the rain was coming down hard. She shook her head with disgust.

The girl closed the blinds and made her way up the only staircase in the tiny house. Once she reached her destination she eyed a large box with several flower and butterfly stickers stuck on the side. She opened the lid and stared into the colorful box. Inside were several jars, a butterfly net, and a pair of brown gardening boots.

The petite girl stripped out of her brown dress shoes and slipped on the brown gardening boots. She picked up a couple of jars and her butterfly net and made her way back down the spiral staircase. She placed the jars inside of a large basket along with her bug identification book and her butterfly net.

There. That should do it. She glanced towards the door and heard the rain coming down just as hard as it had been. She couldn't delay catching the pretty little bugs. She had promised herself to do it yesterday, but she was so tired from working in the garden. Today it was raining, but she had no choice. She wanted some new faces in her collection.

The girl noticed how hard the rain was coming down so she decided that her umbrella would be best for this kind of situation. She picked up the pink and white umbrella - that was setting beside the door conveniently - and her large basket that contained her bug catching items.

The girl opened the door a crack but soon forced herself to give the door a good push shut. She looked back and her eyes widened when she spotted her sister jumping up and down in the next room.

"Poppy! Come here this instant!" Poppy hurried to the room where her sister was screaming dramatically for her, to see a golden brown haired girl jump onto the ruby red cushion of her favorite reclining chair, and shaking her hands wildly. Poppy followed her sister's gaze to find a small brown praying mantis cleaning its face with its tiny arms on the brown colored rug. Poppy did her best to hide the obvious smile making its way to her face.

"Oh come on Blaise. You're really making that much of a fuss over that little guy?" Poppy set her basket and her umbrella down then made her way towards the brown rug. She bent down and placed her hand in front of the small brown creature.

"Little or not, that thing could bite me and give me some kind of foreign disease or something. Worst, it might have rabies!" Once the praying mantis jumped onto Poppy's hand, she turned around and faced her sister, who had concern written all over her face.

"Blaise. I seriously doubt that he has rabies. I don't even think bugs can get rabies. He couldn't possibly give you a foreign disease either. I raised this one since he was a baby. He's never been out of the house, much less the country." Poppy waited for a response from her sister, but soon realized that she was getting the silent treatment from her. She shrugged her shoulders and entered a few rooms away from the one her sister was currently in. Poppy stood in front of a large bird cage full of assorted insects. She unhooked the few hooks that were on the door and opened up the busy cage. She placed her little brown friend in the cage and hooked it back shut.

"Hm. Sometimes I wonder to myself how in the world you guys manage to escape." Poppy left the room and went back to the one her sister had a small fit in to find Blaise sitting down in her red chair and peacefully reading a book. Poppy picked up her basket and umbrella then focused her attention on Blaise.

"I'm going out for awhile. I'll be back around seven." Poppy turned to leave once her sister continued to ignore her.

Poppy didn't wait for her sister to respond, and opened the door to be greeted by a soaked black and white cat standing at the door step, obviously trying to get out of the rain. Poppy made a sour face. Who would leave their kitty outside? And in the RAIN too! Poppy bent over and picked up the pitiful creature and placed it on the windowsill of her tiny house. The windowsill had a small roof overlapping - which was good for the cat. It would be out of the rain and could easily leave when the rain died down.

Poppy gently patted the cat on the head and opened up her umbrella. After closing the door - she made her way to the meadow that was very near the town her and her sister resided in. She had no clue if she would see a butterfly in the rain or not. She also didn't know how long she really would be gone. She shrugged her shoulders on the matter, then, wanting to hurry up and catch her butterfly, she picked up her pace. Barely a minute had passed when Poppy stepped into a slick puddle and fell backwards causing her basket to go flying backwards as well and over her head. She heard a shatter of glass and fearfully looked behind her. She gasped with a worried expression plastered on her frail face. Her jars didn't last the fall and were shattered, making quite a mess for her to clean up. Sighing, Poppy stood up and started picking up the glass shards, cutting herself three times in the process. Once they were all picked up, she placed them into her basket so she could throw them away at a later date.

Once Poppy reached the meadow, the rain slowly began to die down, and then eventually stopped. She put her umbrella down and placed it in her basket. She took out her butterfly net and looked around the soaked and muddy meadow. After half an hour had passed, Poppy began to give up hope of ever finding a butterfly out in that area. She put down her net and stretched her arms above her head. Bending over to pick up the net again, she felt something fly past her ear and stood back up. Looking around she didn't see anything. She shrugged her shoulders and figured that it was wishful thinking on her part, but was proved wrong when a bright purple butterfly flew around her head. She didn't get a good look at it, but did know that it was purple. In her sixteen years, she had never seen a butterfly of such extraordinary color.

It took Poppy a good ten minutes to at least catch up to the butterfly. Poppy swung her net towards the graceful creature and caught it. Just when she was going to admire the pretty colors of the small insect, she became alarmed when something fell over her. Poppy shut her eyes so tight that she seen a mixture of reds and blues on inside of her eyelids. When her eyes came back open she gasped out loud. She was in a giant birdcage. Poppy, who was a little more than confused, scratched her head and spoke out loud.

"Either I am dreaming of getting my bigger cage for my bug collection . . . or I am having a nightmare where an ogre is going to appear any minute and poke at me through the cage wires with a stick and tell me how he is going to gnaw on my bones and use my feet for cheese." Poppy walked up to the side of the cage and touched one of the wires. It felt so real to her, which meant one thing. She wasn't dreaming at all. Poppy remembered catching the butterfly then the big cage falling on her, so maybe the butterfly had something to do with it.

What am I doing? A butterfly can't throw a cage on every person who tries to catch it!

Poppy looked down at the butterfly net in her hands and surprised herself to see the butterfly was nowhere in sight. She was going to go on and on about how the butterfly was so sneaky and how she didn't catch any kind of insect that day after going through the rain and breaking her jars, but she remembered something a little more important than some bug. She had to get out of this cage. Poppy placed a finger under the bottom of the cage and felt the grass outside of it. She tried to fit her hand under it to lift it up, but was unsuccessful. She growled out of aggravation and tried it from a different angle. She failed again. Instead of trying to lift it from the bottom, she placed her hands underneath one of the horizontal bars going across and tried to lift it there. It wasn't any use. The cage was too heavy for one mere girl to lift on her own. As Poppy tried to lift it once more, she heard a small flutter noise. She looked around but there was nothing there. When she turned her attention back towards the part of the cage that she was trying to lift, she had to blink several times to get the image to place itself in her head.

Floating on the outside of the cage, just a few inches from Poppy's nose stood a glittering fairy. The fairy had long multicolored hair that was curled from top to bottom, sparkling green eyes, a pair of glittering purple wings that twinkled when the sun shone on them, and was wearing a flowing white dress decorated with flowers, leaves, and ribbons.

"Need help?" The fairy flew a mere inch from Poppy's nose.

"It talks!?" Poppy reached out and poked the fairy in the stomach. The small winged creature smacked Poppy's curious hand away and floated away from her and placed her hands on her hips.

"Well you are very rude indeed! What kind of person goes up to someone and pokes them so hard that they almost fall over?" The fairies face turned red with anger as she spoke every word through clenched teeth.

"Oh, I'm sorry. I didn't mean to. . ." The fairy cut her off and flicked poor Poppy on the nose.

"Don't give me your sorry and I didn't mean to excuses. I hear it from every human that happens to catch me with one of those nets."

"Well I said I didn't mean it! If you don't believe me then you can stop harassing me about it! Oh! And unless you have, even the faintest idea, of how to get me out of this cage then I suggest you leave. After all this is just a dream right? I'm going to wake up any minute now." Poppy turned her back on the slightly annoyed fairy, and counted to ten slowly.

"And the counting does what exactly?" The fairy flew in the cage and in front of the closed eyed girl. Poppy continued counting to ten and continued ignoring the fairy. Once she was finished counting, she opened her eyes to see the fairy looming over her.

"What do you want from me? Why won't you leave me alone? And why am I stuck in this stupid cage? I could be back home with a few new arrivals in my bug jars!" Poppy left out the part where she broke her jars, but she wanted the fairy to feel bad.

"What do I want from you? Easy! You have an extraordinary talent. A talent that most other humans do not possess. For the cage part, well you tried to catch me and I panicked. But hey who wouldn't? I thought for sure you were one of those horrible humans who captured bugs only to enjoy killing them soon after." Poppy couldn't believe anything she was hearing.

"Wait, so you're the butterfly I was trying to catch? And I didn't think that there were such things as fairies."

"And I didn't think that there were such things as rude human girls such as you. I guess we were both proved wrong today. Hm?" The fairy smiled at Poppy.

"I didn't mean to be rude. Hey, wait a minute. How do I have an amazing talent? I'm just a normal human girl." Poppy thought of something rather important soon afterwards. "And how the heck did you get that huge cage to fall on me?" She looked up at the big bulky cage that she was in.

"Oh that? Easy. I'm a fairy. I can control things a little bit better than humans can. I conjured up an image in my head and that certain image turned out to be a bird cage. A giant one at that." The fairy nodded her head. "I will tell you in a moment what amazing talent you possess, but first let me introduce myself." The little fairy cleared her throat. "My name is Fauna. Fauna the fairy. And you are?"

"My name is Poppy. Poppy . . . the human." Poppy smiled at how polite the fairy became in just a short time span.

"Pleased to meet you Poppy. Poppies are a wonderful flower. You must be considered a lovely and kind person to everyone in your village."

"Lovely and kind? I don't think so. I rarely tour the city. Too many people with too many problems. I prefer visiting the forest near here and the meadow. It's always so peaceful and full of happy little bugs and critters. The only people I talk to are my sister Blaise and my mother. I rarely speak to my father. He is always away on business trips, but my sister Blaise doesn't think too kindly of me. She hates bugs and I love them. She likes to read stories of romance and mystery when I like to read insect and bird identification books. We are so different, her and I. It's almost like we are not even sisters." Fauna became interested and so caught up in the short story that Poppy told, that she forgot to speak as she finished.

"Oh dear. That would be an awful burden to bear with, but I do not have any brothers or sisters. I don't have any mothers or fathers either." Poppy leaned against the edge of the cage, curiosity getting the better of her.

"How is it that you cannot have any family?" Poppy asked who was very interested.

"Why no fairy has a mother or father or anything else that you humans have. We are born from the trees, the water, the flowers, and other sorts." Fauna shook her head up and down as she explained some more about what it is like to be born as a fairy.

"Where were you born?"

"I was born at a florist shop in a village very near yours. As soon as my flower bloomed, I woke up in the middle between all of the petals."

"That's almost like the tale of Thumbelina." Commented Poppy. It was truly remarkable what existed in the world. Just think of all the things she had missed out on. She began to wonder what other sort of fairy tale creatures were out there.

"Thumbelina? Who's that?" Fauna furrowed her brows together not liking that fact that she was comparing her unique birth to someone else's.

"Why it's a story about a small girl. She was born from a seed or something. Anyway, when the flower bloomed there she was! Very small and resting between all the pretty red petals." Fauna laughed.

"You were comparing me to some silly story you heard? Oh please. Who ever heard of a person that small before? There is no such thing." Poppy scratched behind her ear defensively as she listened to the fairies comment on Thumbelina.

"Well you are kind of small you know." Poppy made a gesture with her hands to show how small Fauna really was.

"And I'm not a human. Now am I? I am a fairy. Something real and not pretend. You humans make up these silly stories about people smaller then a thumb, but in reality there is no such thing as any of that rubbish!" Poppy backed up and hit the other side of the cage when she realized that she had made the fairy angry once again. If there were such things as fairies, Poppy thought that they would have been a little more kind to others and not be such a temper tantrum expert.

"They may be rubbish, but they are entertaining." Poppy commented.

"Enough gibberish. I have had quite enough of this small talk." The small fairy cleared her throat. "Stand in the center of the cage. Hold still and you shall be free." The fairy waited for Poppy to stand in the middle of the cage before continuing her instructions. "When I let you free, I expect you to stay here. I don't want you wandering off to find out that you're not the chosen one after all! Bad luck of mine that you would go and tell everyone about meeting a fairy." Fauna made a slight motion with her hands and the cage disappeared. Poppy held her hand out in front of her to make sure the cage was truly gone. She would hate to have run into the cage and injured herself over something so stupid.

"Chosen one you say?" Poppy walked up to the fairy to get a much better understanding of what she was talking about.

"Yes, chosen one. Haven't I already spoken of this?" Fauna placed her hands on her hips and furrowed her brows together.

"Well no. You only said that I have an amazing talent of some sort. Then you kind of went on another subject before you could continue your discussion."

"Ah. Then I suppose I should tell you. For starters, I know of your good deeds."

"Good deeds? I don't do that many good deeds. Wait a minute! How do you know about my good deeds? Have you been following me or something?" Asked the puzzled Poppy.

"Following you? Yes I have." Fauna nodded her head causing her curls to go flying in every direction. "Oh, and the good deeds that you have committed? Who actually prevents a small praying mantis from a larger being among your kind? Not many." Fauna shook her head left and right causing the curls to bounce in the opposite direction.

"Well I don't see why anyone would want to harm a praying mantis or even a small ant, but I guess that makes me unique. I don't see how that is an extraordinary talent though." Poppy paused to think things over for a mere second. "How long exactly have you been following me?"

"Well you know how your smaller critters have been escaping from their little bird cage?" Poppy nodded her head yes. "Well since they started escaping. I needed you to go bug hunting so that you could see me, so I just turned them loose."

"Your the one who was turning them loose? How is it that nobody seen a fairy wandering around town though?" Asked Poppy.

"When my kind doesn't want to be seen, we take the shape of any kind of insect or creature. For example, that praying mantis that you saved from your horrid sister, was a fairy. He changed form when you caught him. Apparently when I talked to him, he said he was taking a nap. You must have caught him by surprise. When I don't want to be seen, I take the shape of a butterfly. Isn't that what you thought I was when you first caught me?"

"Wait a minute though!" Poppy became annoyed at how confusing the small fairy was making things. "I raised that praying mantis from a baby! He couldn't have been a fairy."

"That is where your wrong. You might think that you raised him, but in reality you did nothing of the sort. He merely let the other praying mantis escape. He was trying to save them from the death that you were afflicting upon them. That's why almost half of your insects have gone missing." Fauna frowned as she glared at poppy through her now stormy blue eyes.

"I have done no such thing to any of the bugs! Why would I destroy them? I love them!" Poppy stared open-mouthed at the fairy. How could she even accuse me of such a thing!

"You may love them, Poppy, but your harming them. Remember the cage I just trapped you in? Well how would you feel being shut up in their for the remainder of your life? Wouldn't be fun would it?" Poppy didn't speak. She knew what the fairy said was true. How could someone be as heartless as her?

"I never thought of it that way." Poppy let her shoulders sag for a mere minute before speaking again. "Apparently I'm not the chosen one then. I mean, who ever heard of someone killing bugs by trapping them in some cage. It makes me sick now that I think of it. I might as well be one of those annoying little mean boys that live next door, and enjoy setting the poor creatures on fire or poking them with sticks or something." Poppy put her hands over her face. She couldn't bare to look at the fairy knowing what she did.

"Oh but you are still the chosen one. Obviously you were just too simple to know any better." Fauna flew above the shaken up girl and patted her head. "Now you saved that cat from the rain just a few hours ago. I'm sure he is happy to get out of that awful weather." When Poppy didn't move or speak, Fauna went on. "And what about the praying mantis? Hm? After all you did save a fairy! Know how many people have done that before? Not many. Especially when they look like insects. You have done many good deeds." Poppy lifted her head up and tilted her head up towards the fairy.

"What I don't understand though, is that you had the power to throw a cage over me, but the small fairy I caught can't even escape a small bird cage. I'm sure he could fit through the bars." Fauna shook her head no.

"Whenever a human catches a fairy, their magic will disappear for as long as that human has them, which means that your praying mantis will remain a praying mantis until you free him. For example, I almost failed my simple task today. You came very close to catching me. If you would have succeeded then I would have remained a butterfly until you chose to release me."

"I did catch you though. I remember having you in my net."

"No. You didn't have the net completely around me. In your hurry to capture me, you left part of my wing on the outside. As long as that happens, I am immune to the human." Poppy felt a frown appear on her frail face.

"I am so sorry! I could have broken your wing." Poppy brows furrowed together.

"It is alright. Fairies are made of sterner stuff then normal butterflies, but enough talking. I have one simple question for you. If I were to leave you alone and never speak or have you see me again, what would you do this very minute?" Poppy didn't take long to figure it out.

"I would release all of my insects so that they could live out life to the fullest." Poppy smiled and hoped that was what the small fairy wanted to hear.

"Then you have passed my small test." Fauna smiled back then took a strand of Poppy's hair and started pulling her in the direction of her home town. "Come then! Let us release your little friends!"

Poppy looked around the large meadow, but eventually spotted her big basket containing her precious bug catching items. Once she had her basket in her hand, she headed in the direction of the small town.

Poppy entered the house expecting Blaise to throw a fit seeing how Poppy came home after curfew. Instead she was startled to see Blaise with her nose still stuck in the same book she was reading before Poppy left. Apparently it was a good book, since she didn't even seem to notice Poppy's entrance. Poppy left the room and entered the one where her bird cage sat. She looked at all of her precious bugs before reaching up to open the cage.

"Well what are you waiting for? Let them be free!" Poppy gasped and placed a hand over Fauna's head. "Y-your killing me!" Poppy released her hand from Fauna's head. She forgot how small the fairy was.

"I'm sorry. Why are you here? Blaise will see you!" Poppy peeked out the door to see Blaise raise her head for just a second then placed her nose back into the book. Poppy sighed with relief as she pulled the door towards her until it clicked.

"Impossible. She might hear me, but I look like a mere butterfly to her." Fauna said as she sat on the table beside of the bird cage.

"Well still. Don't talk so loud. I don't want her to get suspicious and find you."

"What? Like she is going to believe that fairies are real? She would only think that you were a little bit nutty." Fauna shrugged her shoulders as she told nothing but the truth to Poppy.

"Oh yes. Everyones dream. Being thrown in a looney bin because some fairy couldn't keep her mouth shut." Poppy glared at the small fairy before reaching up to open the cage. Once the door was open, she placed a hand inside. A few assorted insects jumped onto her hand.

"What are you going to do with them? Walk through the house with about twenty bugs sitting on your hand? Won't your sister think that's suspicious?" Asked Fauna as she floated back up towards Poppy's ear.

"No. I'm going to open the window. Most of them can fly. If they can't, well it's not far down from here. They should be all right." Poppy unlatched the window with her free hand then placed her very busy hand out the window. She watched as the majority of them fly away. Once they were off she took a few more out. She at last placed the praying mantis on her hand. When she held her hand out the window, she was blinded by a rather bright light.

When she opened her eyes, there was a fairy standing right before her. He had bright green eyes, a childish face surrounded by blond locks, instead of four butterfly style wings like Fauna, he had wings that were brown and hung down, and he was wearing a plain green tunic decorated with vines and leaves. The thing that had Poppy confused, was that he was the same size as she was. Poppy looked back at Fauna and was startled to see that Fauna was the same size as her now.

"Let me introduce you to Vinal. He is the praying mantis you saved from your sister!" Exclaimed Fauna happily as she flew up to Poppy.

"Y-your my size. B-both of you!" Once Poppy spoke, Fauna laughed and pointed at her.

"You might want to look again, but your actually my size now." Poppy looked down and seen that she was flying.

"I-I'm flying!" Poppy looked over at a small hand mirror that was lying on the table very near the now very large bird cage. She tried to fly over to see if she still looked the same, but was startled when she started falling. Just when she thought she would fall to her death, she felt two hands grab each one of her arms and pulling her back up. Vinal was pulling on her left arm while Fauna was pulling on her right.

"It takes practice. Almost like riding a bike among your kind." Commented Vinal as they both placed her beside the mirror. Poppy took a quick peek at herself and was surprised at what she found. Her hair was still the same golden brown color, but was a bit longer and styled with a twisted green headband. She also kept her sparkling blue eyes, but instead of wearing her usual blue and white dress, she was wearing a light and dark green dress decorated with clovers. Her wings also matched her dress. They were a pale green with yellow running along the sides of them. They were also in the shape of clovers. Two petals for each wing.

"Well what do you think Poppy?" Asked Fauna as she flew up to where Poppy was standing.

"Interesting, but why am I one of your kind?"

"That is what the chosen one does Poppy. You saved many lives today and you needed to be rewarded in some way." Fauna frowned at Poppy. "Do you not want to be one of out kind?"

"Oh no! I want to!" Poppy took a good look at Fauna and smiled big. "This is amazing. First I encounter a fairy then I get turned into one. Thank you for finding me Fauna!" Poppy ran up and gave Fauna a friendly and happy hug.

Fauna smiled down at Poppy. "Why your very welcome." Poppy pulled away from Fauna and looked over towards Vinal.

"I am truly sorry for capturing you. I wish there were some way I could make it up to you." Poppy didn't know it was a fairy that she was catching.

"You can. Come to the Great Fairy Tree with Fauna and me. You will be surrounded by others of our kind and you will be welcomed among them." He smiled at Poppy hoping that she would agree to coming with them.

"I would love to go." She turned to Fauna. "You know that, but what am I going to say to my sister? Worst, my parents?"

"Do not worry so much Poppy! I will handle it. I am magic after all." Commented Fauna.

"But how will you do it? You can't just go up and explain to my sister that I've turned into a fairy and I'm going to go to the Great Fairy Tree to live." Poppy spoke the truth.

"No, but I do have the ability to write." Fauna flew into the air causing a bright sparkling light to appear. When she returned, she was holding a small letter about half the size of a fairy.

"This explains how you are moving in with your aunt. Your parents and your sister should believe you. If not, then there really isn't much we can do." Said Fauna as she laid the envelope on the desk beside of the cage.

"I don't have an aunt though." Commented Poppy.

"Well now you do." Said Fauna. So fairies can also create random people? There was so many questions that Poppy was wanting to ask them. With a burst of excitement she flew up a little ways in the air and spoke.

"Lets go then! I want to see all of the fairies, tour the new spots, see what kind of large bugs I get to meet, and more!" Fauna and the Vinal laughed at Poppy's sudden eagerness. With one quick movement, Poppy found herself between the two fairies and heading back towards the meadow. She didn't know what she expected out of life now. All she knew was that she could truly be happy knowing that she had friends that would always be there with her.

--- End ---

A/N: I wrote this at the beginning of the school year for Creative Writing. I think it's fairy good, but my ending is really rushed. Sorry about that. Other then that - how did I do?

Note: All characters are my own creation :-)