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by Angel
Rated: E · Short Story · Folklore · #2092860
Lost in Mushrooms
There were too many mushrooms; Poppy couldn't see her way across Carters Way, the name of the large mushroom field between grandmother's house and her own. There had never been so many and it was easy for a small elf to become turned around here. Grandma had trusted her to find her way home by herself, 'you're old enough now to go back alone'. Poppy, of course, was excited by this idea, she knew the way, she'd walked it with her mother and her grandmother many times; now, however, it all looked different.

The trees stood tall and it felt to Poppy as if they were leaning over her, taunting her 'you don't know the way' they seemed to say. 'I do, I do' she cried out, quietly to them, quietly only because she wasn't sure now. Shadows moved around her, noises began making her jump as she made her way down what looked like the right path. The mushrooms looked different now, in twilight's gleam, and with the slant of a young elf's fear. There were several forks in the pathway along the way, taking the right-hand path, then the left, knowing in her heart it was the right way.

Grandma said to look for the gnarled old tree where the owl lived; then she would know that home was close; it seemed to Poppy she would never find it, feared she was lost, that her parents would have to send out a search party and never find her. Just as she'd convinced herself of this the sound of an old owl echoed over the mushroom fields, his voice close. Looking up, Poppy saw him fly from the top of a twisted Oak tree, the same one that had grown close to her family's home for generations. She'd made it home, and more surprisingly for Poppy, in time for tea.

(Writer's Cramp contest 9th Aug)
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