Dangers of Pixie Hollow
Disclaimer: Disturb not the mouse.
Summary: A drabble look at Prilla's exposure to some of the dangers of Pixie Hollow. Mild Vidia/Prilla.
There are hawks in Pixie Hollow, and they eat fairies. Prilla's never seen it happen, although she's come close to being caught once. The talons swiped around her, the heavy wings beat terrible winds that had her spinning, and the beak came down around her before a purple blur streaked by and grabbed its tail feathers, yanking hard. A startled squawk, a pause in the chase that let Prilla hide within a rose, and the hawk spun around and around trying to see what had plucked a feather. It saw nothing but the rustle of leaves.
That night, Prilla found the hawk's feather bent gently over her window as a decoration.
There are dragonflies in Pixie Hollow, quick and belligerant things that will fly directly in a fairy's path and face her down, moving to block her if she tries to dodge to the side. The animal talents warn her that they're especially bad this year, but Prilla's talent doesn't always let her see where she's going. She cartwheels back from the clumsy world right into a dragonfly that then turns on her, buzzing loudly around her head. She bends and shields herself with her hands, then yelps as it knocks her out of the air with its powerful wings. Landing sideways in the dirt, she looks up and screams as it dives at her, mandibles ready to bite. And then the dragonfly veers hard to one side, its face dripping with blinding berry juice, and someone has grabbed Prilla's wrist, yanking her painfully into the air. Prilla tries to call for Vidia to stop, but the wind whips her breath away. When she's dropped a moment later into soft grass, her half-wrenched shoulder aches. The air is quiet and she makes her way on foot back to the Home Tree, stopping by the infirmary first for joint ache ointment and then up to her room.
She finds a note on her bed. "Dragonflies don't like fairies stumbling into their burial grounds." Accompanying the note are two dragonfly wings, both so old and ancient that they had developed a bronze sheen. She sets them over the window like curtains.
There are fairies in Pixie Hollow, thousands of them, all grouped into talents at the dinner tables. Their idle chitchat, once welcome to lonely Prilla, now cut her like knives, although they don't mean to. In between gossip and conversation, she catches snippets of conversation about Vidia, how the fast flying fairy flew whirlwinds around bothersome butterflies or set little tornados into ponds to tease the fish inside. They repeated the rumors of Vidia's feather collection, gorgeous colored feathers from exotic birds that decorated her sour plum tree. It was a lie, Prilla knew, but to tell them that would be to admit she had been inside Vidia's home, and Vidia had made her swear never to reveal that. "Too many questions they would ask," Vidia had said.
After dinner, Prilla heads to her room and finds Vidia stretched sideways over her bed staring at the ceiling. She glances languidly at Prilla, dark eyes half lidded. She's tired from flying all day, and her wings look more tattered than usual. It may take a cup full of fresh dust to mend them again.
"Did you like your gifts?" Vidia purrs.
"I think I like this one best," she says, sitting beside her.
Vidia smiles in return and, with a summoned breeze, she blows away the last grains of pixie dust from the light.