Thursday, 13 February 2020

The Fairy Godmother Part 25

I was all in when I went up to bed, it had been a long and difficult day, Rosie was having problems readjusting to being back in the orphanage and I was finding it hard doing what I was told to do. I am used to being my own boss, following protocols and filling in paper work wasn’t easy, especially when it went against what I thought was the right thing to do. Enid would have been amazed to see me do what I was told, without too many questions. I think you are allowed to ask why things are done that way, but if it comes to “that’s the way we do them”, you just have to live with it. Then again, Enid may have been watching me and having a laugh at my expense, I wouldn’t put it past her.
Anyway, when I went up to my room the only thought had been to sleep, earlier I had had visions of soaking in a nice hot bath, easing all the aches and pains away, but by the end of the day all I could think of was crashing out. Then Enid gave me Rosie/Ella’s file and all thoughts of sleep went from my head. I read every single word of the file, backwards, forwards and upside down, which ever way I looked at it, it didn’t make good reading.
There was no work in the town Ella’s parents lived in, so they had to look further afield. There was nothing within a suitable commuting distance, so they had to look further afield. Eventually Ella’s Father got a job, he travelled down to the work and stayed in a guest house during the week, then came home for the weekend. It wasn’t easy, but eventually they saved up the money for a deposit on a rental house, which meant that the family could be together. Then Ella’s Mum started looking for child care and a part time job that would fit in with family life. Things were looking up, until Ella’s Father had an accident, fell off a ladder or something, the tooth fairy was strangely vague on that. He was rushed to hospital and his wife was informed, she grabbed Ella and headed to the hospital. She was in a panic, probably not paying a great deal of attention to where she was going or what was around her. A van veered of the road, she had time just enough time to push Ella out of the way before the van hit her and then drove off down the road as if nothing had happened. A crowd quickly gathered round Ella’s mother, but none of them noticed little Ella. She stood and watched her mother being taken away in an ambulance and then waited and waited, till someone finally asked where her parents were, but by that time she had stopped talking, so they took her into care.
When her Father finally got out of hospital and went home he found the landlord busy emptying their things from the house in preparation for another tenant to move in. No one knew where his wife and child were. He contacted his wife’s parents, they didn’t know where she was, so he went to the Police and reported them missing. He arranged a removal van for their things and went back home to his parents.
No one knew whose van had run Ella’s Mum over. No one knew who Ella’s Mum was and that included Ella’s Mum when she came out of the comma. Meanwhile, Ella was now Rosie and not talking to anyone.
“What a mess,” I muttered as I sat back on my bed. “But solvable for all that. A walk in the park for your average Fairy Godmother.”

It was a week after Enid had given me the file. The anniversary of the day things all went wrong for Ella’s family. I was taking Rosie/Ella to the hospital for a check up.
Meanwhile someone, a student on a media course, had heard about Ella’s Father’s accident and wanted to do a programme about his miraculous recovery and his return to health. He persuaded Ella’s Father to go back to the hospital and thank the people who had worked so hard to get him well again. The hospital was happy for the positive publicity. Just took a few words in the right ears, it didn’t take much organising.
Ella’s Mum was in a hostel, they had called her Carol for want of something to call her. She was sue a check-up at the hospital.
Everything was lined up for a chance meeting that would reunite the family.
“Come on Rosie, you don’t want to miss your appointment,” I said when Rosie refused to get out of bed. She pulled the duvet over her head. This was going to be difficult.
“I generally find that children are quiet open to bribery,” said Enid from the other side of the bed.
“I don’t want to start down that road,” I hissed.
“Why? Should everything go to plan you wont have to worry about it setting up a bad president,” she replied. “And you do want her to be there, don’t you?”
“Of course I do,” I hissed at Enid.
“Rosie,” I said. “We could get an ice-cream on the way back, if you are good.”
The duvet was pulled back.
“Would you like an ice-cream?” I asked.
She nodded vigorously.
“Right,” I said. “I am going to brush my hair. I shall be back in five minutes, if you aren’t ready to go downstairs for breakfast, there will be no ice-cream for you. Do you understand?”
Again she nodded her head.
As I walked out of the room I heard her jump out of bed.
“Told you bribery works,” Enid said when I nearly bumped into her on the other side of the door.
“Thank-you,” I said. “And to what do I owe the pleasure?”
“I found your plan interesting and I just wanted to make sure it didn’t fall at the first hurdle,” she replied.
“So, are you going to hang around all day or leave me to it?” I asked.
“I’m going to make sure the other two get to the hospital on time,” she smiled. “I’ll see you there.” With that she slowly merged into the back-ground, the last thing to vanish was her smile, which passed on the impression that things were going to go wrong and she wanted to be there to see it happen.
There was a tug on my sleeve and I turned to find Rosie smiling up at me.
“Breakfast,” I said. “We don’t want the Doctor to say we are starving you now do we?”

I could see the student busy filming as soon as we arrived at the reception. I didn’t know what they were saying, the student had co-opted someone to do the talking whilst he did the filming. Rosie was fascinated, her eyes glued to the scene.
Then her Mum walked in and for a moment she was lit up by a stray shaft of sun light.
“Mummy!” yelled Rosie/Ella, pulling away from me and running across the reception towards her.
“My baby!” she yelled and ran to meet Ella.
“Jessie! Ella!” he yelled joining in a mass hug in the middle of the reception.
I was pleased that the student managed to stay calm and carry on filming the whole thing.
“Could you explain?” he asked.
“Before the accident, I was a happily married Father of one daughter. Then the accident happened and I couldn’t remember who I was, but seeing them here, it all came back,” he smiled, totally unwilling to let either of them go. “The staff at this hospital healed my body, without them I would be dead, but I always felt that there was something missing, something that I couldn’t remember. Now I can.”
“I was told that you’d had an accident,” said Jessie. “I took Ella and dashed here, I didn’t know if you were dead or alive.”
“It must have been terrible,” he said, hugging her. “But I don’t remember seeing you here.”
“I was crossing a road and a van came speeding down it, I didn’t see it till the last minute, I pushed Ella out of the way and then nothing. I woke up in hospital, in bed and I couldn’t remember who I was or anything. I’ve been living in limbo ever since,” said Jessie.
“It’s time to leave,” said Enid.
“I have a job to do, looking after Rosie,” I reminded her. “Along with several other children. I can’t just vanish.”
“Of course not,” said Enid.
“And they aren’t going to just hand her over to two people just because they say they are her parents. They will have to prove it,” I said.
“That can be done,” said Enid.
“A DNA check should provide prof,” I replied.
“And when that’s done?” asked Enid.
“I’ll ring you,” I said.
“I’ll be waiting,” she smiled.

by Janice Nye © 2020

Saturday, 1 February 2020

The Fairy Godmother Part 24

“You still here?” said a voice just behind me. I turned around to see Enid standing behind me in the queue for the supermarket checkout.
“Enid!” I squeaked.
“That’s me,” she smiled as the cashier finished with the customer in front of me and started passing my purchases through the till.
“What are you doing here?” I hissed as she vanished.
“Helping you put the shopping in your bags,” she said, suddenly the other side of me and filling bags with the things that I had bought for the orphanage.
“That may be what you are doing now, but we both know that isn’t why you are here,” I snapped as Enid put the last thing into a bag and put the bag into the trolley.
“I think you need to pay for them,” she smiled in an infuriating way. I put the orphanage credit card into the reader, typed in the four digits and then accepted the piece of till roll the cashier was proffering to me.
“Thank-you,” I said smiling at the cashier.
“Where’s your car?” asked Enid. “I assume you have one.”
“It’s in the car park,” I smiled.
“There wouldn’t be much point in having a driving licence without one,” Enid said smugly as I pushed the trolley towards it. “Aren’t you going to ask me how I know about it?”
“You know everything,” I replied smiling back. “Stands to reason that you’d know about the driving licence.”
“And all the other documentation you’ve been after,” Enid added.
“It’s a given,” I said.
“What are you still doing in that place?” Enid asked as we arrived at the car. It was a classic, a mark one mini, I had the idea that it would be unobtrusive, it being so small. Nice idea, it didn’t work, sometimes when I got back to it there would be crowds of admirers standing round talking about it and the Mark I’s they had had.
“She is alone in the world, she doesn’t know her real name and so is in no position to find her family, if they are still alive,” I replied.
“So you don’t think your job is done,” Enid sighed.
“Not by a long chalk,” I replied, putting the last of the groceries into the car and heading back to the trolley stand with the trolley.
“So what have you done to find them?” Enid asked.
“I have been through her file looking for clues,” I replied. There was a surprising lack of information in them.
“What do they say?” Enid asked.
“They tell me where she was found and when,” I said.
“And that’s all?” she asked.
“It isn’t much to go on, but it’s all I have,” I sighed.
“Have they checked out the missing persons?” Enid asked.
“They did, at the time but didn’t come up with any answers,” I replied.
“I could ask at the Tooth Fairy Office, if you’d like me to,” Enid said.
“How can they help?” I asked.
“As a small child she will have had a file, all the teeth she leaves for the Tooth Fairy will be registered on it,” Enid explained.
“I know that,” I snapped. “I was a tooth fairy.”
“When the child disappeared from her original home, did she stop loosing teeth?” Enid asked.
“No,” I replied.
“So when an unnamed child in an orphanage looses a tooth?” asked Enid.
“The tooth is matched with an open file and the name changed to co-inside with the name they are calling the child by,” I said. “But the original details are kept on file,” I added. The way, the truth and everything was in that file.
“Exactly,” said Enid. “The answer is there, do you want me to get it for you?”
“I would go myself, but,” I smiled.
“It would be hard for you to get the time off and they may not give you the answers you want, whereas they would have to tell me,” said Enid.
“I would be ever so grateful,” I smiled.
“Grateful enough to come back?” she asked. “Never mind, don’t answer that one, not till we know who she is.”
“I am just trying to be a good Fairy Godmother,” I said.
“I know,” Enid smiled and slowly started to disappear, from her feet up, the last thing to go was the smile.
I started the car, put it into gear and headed back to the orphanage.

It was the end of a long and difficult day, I opened the door of my room to find Enid sitting on my bed.
“I was beginning to wonder when you were going to go to bed,” she said, looking up from reading my diary.
“That’s private,” I said snatching it from her hands.
“It’s OK, I’d finished reading it,” she said. “Though I would put it somewhere a bit safer if I was you.”
“I thought at the back of my wardrobe would have been safe enough, especially as you are the first person to have found it,” I replied.
“If you say so,” she said, but I could tell that she didn’t think that.
“Why are you here?” I asked.
“I have that information you wanted,” she said.
“Information?” I asked.
“Rosie,” Enid replied. “Only Rosie isn’t her name.”
“I know that,” I snapped.
“Her real name, the one given to her by her parents, is Ella,” said Enid, picking a file out of an invisibility bag and handing it to me. “You’d better keep the bag,” she added handing that to me as well. “Keep your diary in it.”
With that she vanished, slowly again. I sat on my bed and read the file. I knew the tooth fairy had more information than Father Christmas, but I didn’t know how much. The problem I had was how to use this information to bring about a family reunion.

By Janice Nye © 2020

Sunday, 26 January 2020

The Fairy Godmother Part 23

There is usually a low time after Christmas, there is less to do and so everyone can rest up in time for the next big rush. So I thought it was safe to stay with the little girl and keep an eye on her progress, after all, Fairy Godmothers usually stick with someone for life all this dashing from one person to another didn’t seem right. It felt a bit like there was too much work to go round and we were dashing in when things got too bad. Which wasn’t good for us, we were always looking for a quick fix, and wasn’t good for our ward, they couldn’t rely on their Fairy Godmother to be there when they needed them. Chances are the help would arrive late and would probably be someone they didn’t know. I always thought continuity was a key part in the whole system, but somehow it seemed to have got lost in the rush. So, I stayed put and kept an eye on the little girl and started to learn things about her.
First of all, her name was Rosie, when I found this out I realised that this was the first person who’s name I had know. Hard to be personal when you don’t know the person’s name.
Rosie was in the orphanage because no one knew who she was. She was found wandering around in the town, no one did anything until she was found unconscious one morning, in the market square. She spent a short time in hospital, but, as she didn’t speak and no one knew who she was, she ended up in the orphanage. This got me interested, somewhere out there, this little girl could have family and I, as her Fairy Godmother was determined to find them. It was a reason to hang around, at least that is what I told myself. The fact was, I couldn’t think of anywhere that I would rather be.

Nearly three weeks later Rosie was well enough to go back to the orphanage and I had got myself a job there as a live-in helper. I had to hide the wings, or not fly when anyone was about, but it gave me a reason to be there and no one questioned me working in the office, searching through the files to see if there were any clues as to who she was, not that there were likely to be. Rosie Sinclair was a name given to her because they had to call her something.
I went with the girl who had gone with her to the hospital to collect Rosie, it was my first day in the job and I was both nervous and excited. I’d never had an actual job job before, not one with a pay packet and pension scheme. I had to lie about my age, didn’t think they’d go for 345 years, I am one of the younger Fairy Godmothers, didn’t want them to think I was too young for the job. Also, things like National Insurance number and references took a bit of sorting, but I knew a few people in the right places and they sorted them.
“Do you often have to collect children from the hospital?” I asked as I got into the taxi.
“No,” she said. “It’s the first time I have done it and I’ve worked here for nearly three years. Why do you ask?”
“I was just wondering,” I said shuffling along the seat so that she could get in. I don’t know why she didn’t just use the other door. “My name is Daisy,” I added. She smiled. Well, she did her best not to laugh out loud.
“My name is Mary,” she said.
“That’s a nice name, a kind name,” I replied. “Better than a cow’s name,” I smiled.
“It could have been worse,” Mary replied. “They could have called you Buttercup.”
“Yes,” I said. “I like the flower, but the name is too associated with cows.”
“Mind you, some people choose such odd names now-a-days, Autumn, Rain and probably quite a few more,” Mary replied, though I got the strange impression she was just talking to fill the silence.
“What do you know about the little girl we are going to collect?” I asked.
“She was given the name Rosie Sinclair when she was found and taken to hospital about three years ago,” Mary said. “There has been a nasty bug going round just before Christmas, we thought she was getting better, but on 12th night she took a turn for the worst, it was a miracle that we got her here OK and it was touch and go for a while. The Doctors really thought we were going to loose her.”
“They must have been working very hard,” I said, trying to think of something to say.
“They were, but, you’ll probably think I’m silly, but it felt as if there was magic in the air that night. I felt as if someone up there, her Fairy Godmother or something, was watching over her and that she would pull through,” Mary laughed self-consciously.
“May-be you are right,” I smiled. “After all, we are here to collect her.”
“You wont tell anyone I said that?” she asked.
“Of course not,” I said as the taxi drew up outside the hospital.
“Shall I wait for you?” the driver asked.
“Yes,” said Mary. “We shouldn’t be long. Just some paperwork to sign.”

Rosie and a nurse were waiting for us in the reception. Rosie gave me a long look as if she recognised me but couldn’t work out why.
“The papers,” said the nurse handing a clip board to Mary.
“Where do I sign?” she asked.
The nurse pointed the places out, handed a bag of medicines to Mary and we headed for the doors, I brought up the rear carrying Rosie’s bags.
“You’ll be home soon,” said Mary. “Will you like that?”
Rosie said nothing.
“She doesn’t talk,” Mary said, talking over her head. “But you’ve got to keep trying.” I saw Rosie’s eyes roll.
“She may not talk, but she can certainly hear,” I thought. “And she doesn’t like being talked about like that.”
I smiled at her and she looked confused.
“Hello,” I said. “My name is Daisy,” I added holding out my hand to her. She took it and we shook hands.
“Don’t expect her to remember your name,” Mary said. “I don’t think she knows mine yet and I’ve known her for three years, she arrived on the same day as me.”
“And now you are coming back on my first day,” I said to her. She looked puzzled, probably because most people talked over her.
“Put the seat belt on her,” Mary said, sitting down and looking away from us. I did as I was told and we headed back to the orphanage.
“Look, there are some horses,” I told Rosie as we passed a field full of them all running around and enjoying the day. She said nothing, but looked over to the horses and her eyes seemed to follow them for as long as she could see them. There was almost a smile on her face.
“Humph,” Mary muttered under her breath. “There’s the orphanage,” she added pointing it out to Rosie. Rosie sat back in the seat, put her hands on her lap and lowered her gaze to her hands. Something didn’t seem right about it, but I couldn’t say what.

By Janice Nye © 2020

Sunday, 5 January 2020

The Fairy Godmother Part 22

It was 12th Night and apart for a persistent cough I was pretty much over my cold or whatever it was that I had and was beginning to feel board.
“You’ll get bed sores lying around like that,” said Enid. I looked up and she was standing at the foot of my bed. I didn’t remember hearing anyone come in, but then she is the Head Fairy.
“I was told to stay here and get better,” I said.
“You’ve done as much of that as you’re going to do here,” she said. “There’s work to do and it’s time to get on with it.”
“That’s the first I’ve heard of it,” I said.
“Well you’re hearing about it now,” she replied. “You’ve got five minutes to get up and ready.”
“Or else?” I asked.
“You’ll go as you are,” she said. “I’ll be waiting for you outside.” With a wave of her wand she was gone.
“When am I going to get my wand back,” I asked.
“When you deserve it,” the words echoed back to me.

Five minutes later I opened the door of my room to find myself on a snowy lane in the middle of nowhere, the sun was setting and I was glad that I had wrapped up warm.
“The Christmas decorations in the orphanage have to be down by midnight,” Enid said. “But most of the children are ill and the staff are too busy looking after them.”
“Couldn’t they just turn the lights off or something?” I asked.
“It’s a simple job,” said Enid. “But if it’s beneath you.”
“No,” I said quickly. I thought it was the sort of thing an apprentice got given, but then, there was probably more to it than met the eye.
“Right then, we need to get on with it,” said Enid. “This isn’t the only job we have to do before midnight.”
“After you,” I said following Enid to a small out house.
“We’ll start with the garden lights,” she said looking at a large box that all the leads seemed to be heading towards.
“Do we need to take those lights down?” I asked.
“Why?” asked Enid.
“Turning the lights out will be simple. Taking the lights down, that could take more time than we have,” I said.
“I think some of these are left up all year, they just turn them on for Christmas,” she admitted. “But I’m not sure how to get into the box to turn them off.”
“You don’t get into that box,” I said. “You follow this cable to the socket that all this lot is plugged into and turn that one off.”
“And that does what?” asked Enid as I followed the cable to an external socket, lifted the waterproof cover and flicked the switch.
“It does that,” I replied as the garden was plunged into darkness.
“Now we can get into the main building unobserved,” Enid replied, no thanks for making the job quicker.
“Should we start at the top and work down or start at the bottom and work up?” I asked.
“Start in the quieter parts,” said Enid. “There will be a lot of people wandering around, we can’t let them see us.”
“That’s going to be a bit difficult,” I said.
“It has to be this way,” she replied. “And everything needs boxing up and putting away in the attic.”
“Just the two of us?” I asked.
“If it’s too much for you I’ll do it myself,” she said.
“No,” I said, following her up to the top floor. With one word the tinsel unwrapped itself from the bed frames and picked itself up from the shelves and other surfaces and snaked it’s way across the room to a box which had taken itself out of a cupboard. Then the decorations on the tree jumped off and headed towards another box, whilst the tree made it’s way to the stairs.
“This is a lot simpler than I thought,” I said. “You don’t really need me.”
“Your job is to put a present next to each person, just a little extra,” said Enid. “Your work as a tooth fairy should make that easy.”
“I don’t have to put them under their pillows?” I asked, taking the small sack she handed to me.
“On the bedside cabinets,” said Enid smiling and checking the floor for stray bits of tinsel and pine needles.
The last room to clear was sick bay.
“This is going to be difficult,” said Enid as we stood by the door. “A variety of coughs were coming from inside the room, but one of them was slightly more worrying than the others.
“Someone is in a bad way,” I said looking through the glass panel in the door, there were curtains around one of the beds and people talking in hushed tones.
“We can’t interfere,” said Enid.
“You don’t believe that,” I replied.
“We are told,” she started.
“As a Fairy Godmother, I go to people, interfere in their lives and make them better people, it’s what I do, why is this any different?” I asked.
“I don’t know,” said Enid. “It just is.”
“She’s burning up,” said someone. “We need to reduce her temperature.”
“But how?” asked another person.
“She should be in a hospital,” said a third person.
“The phones are down and there is no way to get a message through,” said the first.
“If we had ice cubes,” the second person said.
“The fridge and freezer have both died,” said the first person.
“So we either get ice cubes or an ambulance,” said Enid.
“I’d say both,” I replied. “Ice cubes now to start the cooling whilst they are waiting for the ambulance to get here.”
“And how do you propose to do that?” Enid asked.
“There is a van delivering ice cubes, along the main road that goes past the end of this road,” I said.
“So?” asked Enid.
“Have his sat nav send him down here and then pack in just by the end of the drive. He’s on his way back to base, which is next door to the hospital,” I replied.
“Are you suggesting he takes her, on the ice, to the hospital?” Enid asked.
“It would work,” I said.
“And we could deny any responsibility,” Enid said with a wave of her wand.
“Who’s ringing the door bell at this time of night?” asked the first person.
“I’ll go and see,” said the second.
“Hello,” said the person at the door. “I deliver ice and I’ve got lost on my way back to base.”
“And where is base?” he was asked.
“Across the road from the hospital,” he said.
“Do you have any ice left?” he was asked.”
“A few bags,” he replied. “Someone over ordered.”
“We have a sick child, she has a fever,” he was told. “She should be in the hospital.”
“I couldn’t take her by herself, but if you’d like to come with her,” he said looking hopefully. “Then we just have to find our way there.”
“I know the way,” she replied. “Come in, I’ll have to talk to my superiors.”

Ten minutes later the little girl was on her way and all was quiet in the last room.
“Now we can get the decs down,” I said.
“Don’t forget a present next to her bed,” said Enid.
“Of course not,” I said, standing next to her bed, present in hand. “Will she be OK?
Enid sighed and waved her wand and we were in the back of the ice van.
“How is she?” the driver asked.
“She seems a little more settled,” he was told. “Her temperature has stabilised.”
“That has to be a good thing?” he asked.
“Very,” he was told. “We should be at the hospital soon. This is very good of you to help out.”
“It’s OK, you knew the way back and I’m hopeless at following directions,” he replied.
“Take a right here,” she said.
“That’s an example, left to myself I’d have gone straight on, then again I probably wouldn’t have got here in the first place,” he said turning right as directed.
“The entrance to the hospital is on the right near here,” she said mopping her patients forehead.
“I see it,” he said, pulling off the road and stopping next to the entrance.
“This is for emergencies,” said someone stepping out of the shadows.
“We have a very sick little girl in the back,” said the driver hopping out to open the doors.
“I’ll get a trolley,” said someone.
It all happened so quickly, the girl and her carer were rushed away into the hospital and the man took his van back to the base.
“Our work is done,” said Enid.
“No it isn’t,” I said holding out the present.
“We shall follow,” said Enid and with a wave of her wand we were sitting next to the girl’s bed in a high dependency ward with machines bleeping away all around her.
“How are we going to get it to her?” I asked. The room is packed and the lights are so bright.
“We’ll just have to wait our moment,” said Enid. “Or rather you will. I have a few more jobs to do. I’ll be back when I’ve finished.” And with that she vanished.
“Do you mind if I stay with her?” asked the carer.
“Wouldn’t you rather be off home?” the nurse asked.
“There’s no one there and I’d not rest if I didn’t know how she was,” she added looking at the girl.
“It’s OK by me,” said the nurse. “If anything changes ring the bell, I’ll be here.”
“Will she be OK?” the carer asked quietly.
“If she gets through tonight, maybe,” said the nurse.

That was the longest night in my whole life. I was beginning to think that it would go on forever, but gradually the world outside began to get lighter and the sun rose, not exactly bright, rather cloudy in fact, but it rose. The little girl opened her eyes and looked around.
“Where am I?” she asked her carer.
“You are very sick, so we took you to the hospital,” she was told.
Then the Doctor came in to check up on her.
“You are a very lucky little girl,” he said when he saw her sitting up.
“Will she be OK?” asked the carer.
“She’s over the worst,” the Doctor said. “Though we will have to keep her here for a while, just in case.”
“So,” said Enid, sitting beside me on the curtain rail. “Have you delivered her present?”
“I did that a while back,” I said, pointing to the parcel on the bedside cabinet.
“So how come you are still here?” Enid asked.
I wanted to know that she was over the worst and that she had her present,” I replied.
“The Doctor said she was over the worst,” Enid said.
“But they are keeping her in for a few days, just in case,” I reminded her.
“Fine!” Enid sniffed. “Ring me when you you’ve finished, but you can explain the delay to the Head of the Fairy Council.” And with that she was gone.

By Janice Nye © 2020

Tuesday, 24 December 2019

The Fairy Godmother Part 21

“She wasn’t exactly sleeping on the job,” Enid explained to the Head of the Fairy Council. “She had a bad cold, the hot chocolate she was given made her sleepy.”
“He didn’t give it to her did he?” the Head Fairy asked.
“Yes,” said Enid.
“He was trying to help,” I butted in.
“Did you sort it?” the Head Fairy asked Enid.
“Yes,” Enid smiled.
“Well, Christmas is almost upon us,” the Head Fairy replied. “There is plenty of work to be done, assuming she can stay awake.”
“I’ll see to it,” said Enid guiding me out of the room in such a way that I didn’t feel I had any option but to leave.
“How did you sort him?” I asked.
“I used your idea about the adaption of the Scrooge story,” said Enid. “By the time I finished with him, he was a changed person.”
“I was getting there,” I said.
“Of course you were, I just hurried things up a bit,” Enid said, hurrying me down a corridor that seemed to go on for miles.
“Where are we going?” I asked.
“The Christmas elves need a hand with the wrapping. I don’t think you can go wrong with that,” Enid smiled.
“I try, I really do, but nothing goes right,” I started sobbing. Enid paused.
“You must stop that, you can’t cry whilst wrapping presents,” Enid said. “The paper gets soggy and the sellotape doesn’t stick.”
I howled and Enid looked confused. An elderly Fairy walked up to us.
“You never did get emotion did you Enid,” she smiled patting me on the shoulder. “You go and do what you need to do and I’ll look after this little one.”
“If you’re sure Mum,” said Enid.
“I’m sure,” Enid’s mum said.
“Enid’s got a Mum and I haven’t,” I howled.
“Mum,” said Enid, looking furtive. “The last person she was Fairy Godmother for gave her a drink of hot chocolate, it might have had alcohol in it.”
“Going by her behaviour,” Enid’s mum replied. “It most definitely did have, which is all the more reason that I should watch over her till it wares off.”
“OK,” said Enid. “Just so as you know.”
“I think we are needed in the kitchen,” Enid’s mum smiled. “There is plenty to do in there. It wont matter if you sob your heart out whilst peeling the potatoes.”
“Is it wise, letting her loose with a knife?” Enid asked.
“Potatoes, dear we use potato peelers,” her mum smiled. “I know what I’m doing.”
“Of course Mum,” she said and dashed off.
“Why don’t I know who my Mum is?” I asked.
“There are many reasons,” she smiled. “But now is not the time to go into them.”
“What is it the time for?” I asked.
“Peeling potatoes,” she said. “There are lots of elves here working every hour that they can. It is important to feed them.”
“That’s if you can drag them away from their work,” said someone dashing past.
“That is why we are peeling potatoes to make chips,” Enid’s mum replied.
“Chips! Did someone say Chips, I could murder a chip butty,” someone said pausing in his rushing.
“They will be along shortly,” Enid’s mum replied, ushering me towards the kitchen and a large pile of potatoes.
After a short while, it seemed like I had spent all my life peeling potatoes and yet the pile of potatoes to be peeled didn’t seem to be getting any smaller. Enid’s mum walked across to me with a plate of chips.
“You need to eat as well,” she said. “The elves thank you for your work.”
“How many more potatoes do I need to peel?” I asked.
“Just that lot,” she said.
“It’s taking forever,” I sighed.
“Eat your chips and I’ll give you a hand, we’ll soon have them finished,” she laughed siting down with a peeler whilst I ate.
“Who are all these chips for?” I asked.
“First the are the elves who have been filling the bottomless sacks on Santa’s sleigh, they turned up as soon as Santa headed off,” Enid’s mum said. “The rest are for Santa and his helpers when he comes back.”
“What happens after that?” I asked.
“We do the washing,” she laughed. “Don’t look so worried, we have dishwashers, it’s just, they need loading and unloading when they’ve finished.
“Then what happens?” I asked.
“That’s a good question,” said Enid suddenly appearing at her Mother’s side.
“I think someone needs to sleep,” said Enid’s mum with a rather determined look on her face.
“Probably a good idea,” said the Head of the Fairy Council who had also appeared out of nowhere, I was beginning to wonder who else was going to turn up when Enid’s mum suddenly said.
“That’s the last of the potatoes peeled. I’ll find you somewhere to sleep,” and guided me off out of the kitchen.
“Do you really think that she is Fairy Godmother material?” the Head of the Fairy Council asked Enid.
“She finds solutions to problems, not necessarily your standard solutions, but then if we only used those, we wouldn’t have to put any thought into would we,” Enid replied.
“OK,” said the Head of the Fairy Council. “I will look through the current list of work after we’ve all had a rest and let you know.”

by Janice Nye © 2019

Monday, 23 December 2019

The Fairy Godmother Part 20

I didn’t think it was polite to comment on the flavour of the hot chocolate. Something seemed a little off, but it was very smooth and soothing for my throat and it did shut that annoying cough up, soon I was fast asleep. Perhaps I have misjudged him and he does have at least one redeeming feature.
“Right,” said Enid to him. “No more miss nice fairy godmother.”
“What do you mean?” he asked.
“You know the good fairy, bad fairy routine,” said Enid. “Well she’s the good fairy.”
“But she’s been threatening me with a laser canon!” he replied. “How can she be the good fairy.”
“Because I am far worse than she could ever be,” Enid smiled. “She was thinking of something along the lines of the old Scrooge story to shake you out of your current state of being.”
“You mean the ghosts of Christmases past, present and future?” he asked nervously.
“Something along that line,” said Enid. “Personally I was thinking of something along the lines of Girlfriends past, present and future.”
“I don’t understand,” he said looking worried his gaze turning to the door and the rather odd sound of someone banging on it.
“Better go and see who it is?” Enid smiled. “You don’t want to keep them waiting.”
“Is this Girlfriends past?” he asked.
“You wont find out stand here,” Enid said. “And one of them may still have a key,” she added, laughing as he ran to the door. He opened it cautiously and the small crowd pushed past him and made their way to the kitchen.
“Is this the latest victim?” the first one asked, seeing his Fairy Godmother asleep on the sofa.
“She is my Fairy Godmother and she’s got a cold,” he muttered, trying to make his way into the kitchen.
“Fairy Godmother,” someone laughed.
“Did you give her some hot chocolate?” another asked.
“You had the hot chocolate as well?” the first one in asked.
“We’d better hang around till she wakes up,” said the last one through the kitchen door.
“I wouldn’t,” he shouted.
“Changed have you,” one of them asked.
“She isn’t human, she’s a fairy godmother,” he muttered.
“That wouldn’t have stopped you before,” one of them replied and the rest of them laughed.
“Nothing would have stopped you,” one said bitterly.
“Just part of the plan to get someone to look after you,” said a voice which he didn’t recognise.
“Who said that?” he asked.
“Why are you interested?” they asked.
“Because I don’t remember you, I recognise everyone else, can’t put a name to all of you, but you I don’t remember at all,” he said as the person changed back into Enid.
“It’s nice to know you remember us to some extent,” said one of them.
“Tina,” he said looking at her.
“I’m Lisa,” she said.
“I thought you were Tina?” he mumbled.
“I’m Tina,” said someone else who looked remarkably similar.
“Of course you are,” he said. “I don’t know how I could have mistaken you and I don’t know why I left you.”
“I left you,” she snapped. “You were a swine. You expected me to take time off work when you had a bit of a cold and expected me to go in to work when I was nearly delirious, I had a fervour, even the kiddie thermometer said, go to the hospital.”
“You did work at the hospital,” he said.
“I worked at a dentists,” she snapped.
“Easy mistake to make,” he muttered.
“Shows how much interest you took in my work,” Tina said.
“OK, I’m not perfect,” he replied. “But I tried.”
“That’s the problem,” said Lisa. “You didn’t try. I worked nights.”
“I never complained about it,” he said quickly.
“You never did the shopping,” she snapped. “The shops were shut when I came home from work, I’d have to get up early to go out and get everything. You wouldn’t even tell me what we needed, I had to guess and if I got it wrong, you’d go on about how I couldn’t even sort that out.”
“You went past the shops,” he muttered.
“When they were shut,” she shouted.
“Oh!” he said. “I didn’t realise.”
“You just sat around all day, I had to go out in the afternoon and get everything,” she snapped. “It would have been nice having you there telling me what we needed and helping with the carrying.”
“He wasn’t much good at that,” said another and everyone turned to look at her. “He used to come with me to the shops. All he ever wanted was crisps and booze.”
“Typical,” was the general reply.
“It wasn’t all I wanted,” he replied. “I suggested tissues one time.”
“You are right,” she agreed. “He was coming down with a cold,” she told the crowd. “I was picking the soggy masses up from all round the flat for the next month!”
“I didn’t think it was a good idea to put them in the bin,” he said. “It might have spread the infection.”
“You could have put them in a plastic bag or something anything other than leave a trail of them round the place,” she told him.
“I thought you liked living here, with me,” he said looking confused.
“We didn’t move in to be your career,” said one girl.
“We thought it would be an equal partnership,” said another.
“Not us getting a job and then coming home to wait on you,” said Tina.
“That is why we left, you were too much like hard work,” said Lisa. He sat down, shaking his head and one by one all his ex-girlfriends left, except for one, standing in the shadows.
“That is girlfriends past,” said Enid.
“I haven’t got a girlfriend at the moment,” he said. “So how do you plan to do that?”
“Did you think for one moment that I would come back to this tip?” the last of his ex-girlfriends asked him, moving our from he shadows.
“I’ve tidied up a bit,” he started.
“Only because sleepy head here made you and look what’s happened to her, she’s picked up some bug or other that was lying in the dust,” she said heading towards the door.
“I’m no good without you,” he said. “I fell to pieces when you left me.”
“It looks like it,” she said pausing for a second. “But no one likes to be the support person, the one without whom nothing happens, the cook, cleaner and all round dogs body.”
“But,” he said.
“There were things I wanted to do, but after working all night and spending all day looking after you, I didn’t have any energy left,” she replied.
“I didn’t know,” he sighed.
“You never asked,” she said walking out of the flat door and letting it slam shut behind her.
“Girlfriends future?” he asked slowly.
“Come with me,” said Enid holding out her hand to him. He took it and they sailed through the window together, to a dance club where he spent the evening talking to any girl he saw. As the dancers began to thin out and people went home he found himself talking to a girl at the bar.
“So where are you going to now,” he asked as the music stopped and the man behind the bar refused to sell any more drinks.
“Good question,” she sighed. “I’d go home, but I’m not welcome there any more.”
“You could come home with me,” he said. Next thing they were in her car speeding along the road to his block of flats.
“Are you sure you live round here?” she asked as people scurried into the shadows when they pulled up in front of the block.
“I live on the 15th floor,” he said pointing towards the block and people started coming out of the shadows towards them.
“I’m not that desperate,” she muttered, opened the door, pushed him out and then drove off at high speed. He looked around at the people walking towards him and started running towards the flats. There was an “Out of order” sign on the lift door and he headed for the stairs, running as fast as he could in the hope that they would give up whilst he could still run. He had the key to his flat in his hand two floors before he got there and as he opened his door an avalanche of rubbish fell on him.
He woke up to find himself lying on the kitchen floor fighting with the kitchen bin, Enid was watching him.
“Do you see what needs changing?” she asked.
“So much,” he said. “Not just me and I can’t do it all, I’m just one person.”
“What time of year is it?” Enid asked.
“Christmas,” he said.
“And what do we celebrate?” she asked.
“The birth of Jesus,” he said.
“And he was one person,” Enid replied.
“I am not him,” he said.
“This is one block of flats, not the world,” said Enid. “Start by changing yourself and this flat, then get to know your neighbours, give them a hand with things and work form there. This place needs a bit of community spirit, people helping each other.”
“Is that what she was doing when she got the dealers arrested?” he asked.
“You noticed?” Enid said.
“I hear things,” he smiled.
“That was bringing the place down, making people not want to go out after dark, the residents need to reclaim the night and get things in this place working properly, you got the lift sorted,” Enid said.
“And that will change the Christmas yet to come?” he asked.
“Of course it will,” Enid replied. “The past is history, we can learn from it. The present is where we start from and the future is ours to create.”
“I’d better get cleaning,” he said as I yawned and stretched.
“Your work is done here,” Enid told me, time to go.
“But,” I muttered as the flat disappeared and we stood once more in the Hall of the Fairy Council.
“Sleeping on the job again,” said the Head of the Fairy Council. “We have Christmas to sort. There is work to do, get out of my sight the both of you!”

by Janice Nye © 2019

Wednesday, 18 December 2019

The Fairy Godmother Part 19

“Shouldn’t you use a tissue?” he asked. I had sneezed a zillion times with hardly time to draw breath and when that ended my poor nose was dripping and my hands were covered with slime.
“I don’t have one,” I replied looking at my hands. He proffered me some kitchen roll which looked as if it had been sitting in a pool of something, but it had to be better than nothing.
“Now there is the problem of what to do with that,” he said looking at it as if it contained all the worst known germs in the world, plus a few unknown ones.
“Do you have a plastic bag that I can put it in?” I asked.
“The ex didn’t like plastic bags, said they were smothering the planet, polluting the oceans and strangling the wildlife,” he replied.
“Very worthy,” I replied, thinking of the problems I’d had with plastic bags as a tooth fairy. A tooth is relatively small, a tooth in a plastic bag can be quite a problem, the whole package is so much bigger and the bags rustle very loudly.
“You can’t just leave it lying about,” he said. “Think of the germs.”
“I shall take it to the bin,” I sighed and headed out of the window.
“Why don’t you use the door, like everyone else?” he asked as I flew down to the bins.
“It’s you again,” said the man who, as always, was hanging round the bins.
“I could say the same,” I replied hovering over the correct bin and managing to deposit the soggy mess that had been kitchen paper, into it.
“Do you fly everywhere?” he asked.
“Saves ware and tare on my shoes,” I replied.
“No one comes here any more because of you,” he said. “You’ve chased all my customers away.”
“Then I suggest you find alternative employment,” I replied.
“There are people wanting money from me,” he said. “Because of you, I haven’t got it.”
“Give them back what you didn’t sell,” I suggested.
“They don’t want it back, they want their money and they are getting rather angry,” he said.
“Very,” said a voice from the shadows.
“You are both being very stupid,” said Enid. I think my ears are rather gummed up, that’s the second time I haven’t heard her coming.
“And what’s it to do with you?” the man by the bins asked.
“I am the Head Fairy, the well being of all the fairy’s is my business,” Enid snapped.
“Get you,” muttered the voice from the shadows. Enid waved her wand and he was dragged out into the beam from the street light. He didn’t look half as menacing as he sounded, but he still didn’t look like someone you would want to meet in a dark ally or by the bins.
“Nice to see who I’m talking to,” said Enid.
“This is between, me, him and possibly her,” he said waving in my direction. “It’s got nothing to do with you.”
“It has everything to do with me,” said Enid. “Do not presume to tell me what my business is.”
“Do you know who I am?” he asked.
“Of course we do,” said one of the two Policemen who were busily hand cuffing him and the man by the bins. “You are the two who are going to accompany us to the station to answer some questions about all this,” he added holding up a bag which seemed rather heavy.
“And what about them?” they asked him.
“Who?” asked one of the Policemen. “You two are the only ones here.”
“But there were two Fairies, flying about, above the bins,” the man from the shadows insisted.
“You been sampling the wares have you?” he was asked as he was helped into the back of the Police car.
“What were you going to do with those two?” Enid asked.
“I don’t know,” I admitted. “But I don’t think it would be a problem if I had my wand back.”
“The more you keep saying that, the longer it will be before you get it back,” Enid replied. “You know how the Head of the Fairy Council works.”
“I think she sent me this cold or whatever it is,” I said sneezing violently and covering at least ten of the bins in slime.
“You may be right, but it’s nothing compared with what the Fairies she had getting rid of the cobwebs have and as for the ones who had to clean the snot off the council table, chairs and floor, you don’t want to know how ill they are,” said Enid.
“And you want me to wrap up this job quickly and head back there?” I replied.
“OK, that isn’t much of an incentive, but Christmas is coming and there is a growing backlog of things to do, we need all the help we can get,” Enid replied.
“A wave of a wand would sort all that out,” I replied. “But I don’t have my wand, so the Head of the Fairy Council will just have to sort it out herself.”
“That isn’t going to endear you with her,” said Enid.
“At this moment, I have a splitting headache, my throat is red raw and my nose is running like a tap which is odd because it feels blocked,” I replied. “So forgive me for not feeling sorry for her, but I don’t,” I added and started coughing uncontrollably, which was extremely annoying as I had just got level with the kitchen window of his flat and the coughing had shot me backwards, several yards and up a few floors. I waved and smiled at the children in the flat three floors up from the one I was aiming at and made a second attempt at getting back to the kitchen.
“And don’t you dare laugh at me,” I snapped.
“Was that for my benefit or hers?” he asked as I climbed into the window.
“Yes,” I snapped.
“You are in a bad way,” he said. “You should go to bed.”
“A Fairy Godmother doesn’t sleep on the job,” Enid said sharply.
“I have also been told that they don’t catch colds,” he said looking at me. Enid handed me a handkerchief just in time to catch the next bout of sneezing.
“You’d better keep it,” said Enid when I’d finished. Got to say one thing about fairy handkerchiefs, doesn’t matter how much snot you aim at them, they always look clean and freshly ironed.
“Perhaps a rest might improve her efficiency,” Enid admitted.
“So should I head back to the Fairy dormitory?” I asked.
“Not really possible,” said Enid.
“Why not?” I asked.
“Well, for one,” said Enid. “You may not have the same bug as everyone else.”
“And the other reason?” I asked.
“Your bed has been reallocated,” Enid added. “They had to segregate the sick and the healthy.”
“So the Head of the Fairy Council wouldn’t be able to accommodate me even if I was well enough to go back,” I said.
“Not at the moment,” said Enid. “Though I’m sure, when you are well enough, we will find somewhere for you.”
“She can always sleep here,” he said.
“It is a one bedroomed flat,” Enid and I said together.
“I don’t mind sharing,” he smiled.
“I do,” I snapped.
“There’s a sofa,” said Enid. “You’ll just have to sleep there, for the time being.”
“This is impossible,” I snapped, but she was fading away even as I said that.
“It’s a comfy sofa,” he smiled.
“You had better not get any ideas,” I said.
“I’ll get you a clean duvet and some pillows and make you a mug of hot chocolate,” he said. “My exs all used to love that when they weren’t well.”
“Thank-you,” I replied. “At this moment I can’t think of anything nicer,” probably because at that moment I was struggling to think straight.

By Janice Nye © 2019