THE KEY TO THE FAIRY KINGDOM
The older and wiser fairies whispered
among themselves in their little groups of
They said, "The King has finally returned to
the fairy rainforest. So what's he going to do
about the Fairy Empress Dowager? Does he
think she'll just hand him back the key to the
Next day in this well hidden corner of the
rainforest, the morning sun sparkled bright
on a trembling of gossamer wings swaying
back and forth in time to the gentle tinkling
of faraway, fairy bells.
Here and there, little fairies fluttered up and
down as they jostled ever-so-gently for the
best spots in the magic tree. All the while,
the unseen bells rang out. Over and over
again, they intoned the ancient call to
assembly, "Gather at the Magic Tree where
all the fairies come to plea."
The littlest fairy blushed red and hid behind
a bush when her tiny friends heard what she
was singing along with the bells. "It's not
where all the fairies come to pee," they
In the morning sky, the sun lit the old Fairy
King from behind. Everyone strained to see
if he was showing any sign of weakness. He
was a nice old character and well liked.
However, not even his closest fairy friends
thought he would be a match for the Fairy
The King settled into a good spot, high in
the magic tree. One of the fairies who was
closest, whispered that he looked like he was
holding onto the tree rather more tightly than
was necessary. After all, he could still fly
quite well, considering he was little more
than five hundred years old.
As they waited for the arrival of the Fairy
Empress Dowager, a gentle murmuring of
fairy voices rose and fell. Some of the fairies
said quietly that the old Dowager enjoys her
temporary powers rather too much. They
would be glad to see when the Fairy
Kingdom was safely back in the hands of the
Everyone fell silent when the Fairy Empress
Dowager finally arrived with a great
whooshing of sound and fairy-dust all about
"What a dreadful old show-off," a voice at
the back called out and a twittering laugh
ran through all the fairy ranks.
"Who said that?" demanded the Fairy
Empress Dowager. But the fairies at the
back said nothing. They just looked around
and at each other, fluttering and rearranging
their gossamer wings.
"We'll see about that one later," said the
Dowager. She nodded to her two favourite
Fairies in Waiting, the ones who spy on the
The Fairy Empress Dowager carefully
adjusted herself on the tree until she was just
a little higher than the Fairy King himself.
The senior fairies, who knew about such
things, raised their elegant eyebrows at this
little flight of fairy fantasy. However, what
happened next saw all the fairies stirring into
a very great fluttering.
"Look at you," she said in her grandest voice
pointing down at the Fairy King. "You're not
fit to rule. We all know you would much
rather spend your time anywhere else than
looking after the Fairy Kingdom. As long as
I hold the magic key, the kingdom is mine
and I shall be keeping it for now."
With this, she raised the Key to the Fairy
Kingdom high above her head where it
sparkled with its special powers. None dared
look up, not even the Fairy King himself.
No one spoke or moved for what seemed a
very long time. Then brave little Fairy
Farndale took a deep breath and fluttered up.
"What key?" Fairy Farndale spoke out in a
voice that sounded very clear and firm for
such a small fairy. "I see no key."
At first the other fairies looked around in
surprise. Then they understood, and another
and another spoke up.
Soon all the fairies were chanting together,
"What key? I see no key."
"Oh yes, we'll soon see about that." Ever-so-
cross, the old Fairy Empress Dowager fairly
snorted her words out. However, she was
now spreading far too much fairy-dust all
over the Magic Tree. This did not go
unnoticed in the fairy-ranks.
"What key? I see no key," the chant was
getting louder and louder.
Little by little, the sparkle was leaving the
Even as the key itself was trying to slip out
of her hand the Fairy Empress Dowager
shouted and shouted.But on this day, the
fairies had remembered that in the rainforest
the power to rule might be given, but not
The Dowager had now become just another
old fairy that no one liked.
And all the little fairies laughed, and
laughed, and laughed.
The Key to the Fairy Kingdom
was published in Stinkwaves,
Issue 3, April 2014.
Copyright Colin W Campbell
A Sarawak based writer.
from a sarawak based writer