But I Remember


There was a grinding in the forest accompanied by a suffocating, thick smoke and the smell of burning trees. At once Luna's pace quickened, her steps swifter, more urgent. There was an energy that surged through her. She could sense the source of the disturbance.

A moment later, she found herself standing still, the sky blue lace of her robes waving in the wind. A man and his son were preparing another tree for removal from its place in the woods.

"You could have just asked," she said softly. She blinked several times before the man with the saw turned, looking at the boy at his side. He turned to face Luna; his expression conveyed clearly his confusion. He closed his eyes and took a deep breath. He stepped toward her slowly, slinging the chainsaw over his shoulder; its chain shook a little as the base collided with his bare skin.

"I'm sorry," the man said. His voice was deep and gruff; a scar traced nearly every wrinkle of his face. "What did you say?"

In her soft and distant voice, Luna repeated herself. Her smile seemed to annoy the man even more.

"You could have just asked it to move." She motioned toward all the trees before them and sighed. "It's so terrible to cut it down." She placed her hand on the tree before her. Its bark was coarse and dry against her soft skin; the morning sunlight reflected in her eyes – there was a shimmer that emanated from within her. Neither the man nor his son could feel any anger toward her.

Her eyes trailed toward the large bonfire a few hundred meters from where they were standing, surrounded by a large clearing. There were several stumps visible from where she stood, the rest of their natural selves long lost to fire and wind.

"Look, love," said the boy, chuckling, "you can't just ask a tree to move." He crouched-down, looking her in the eyes as he patted her head.

"Sure you can." The smile on Luna's face grew wider.

"No, you can't." The boy laughed.

"Have you tried?" Her head tilted just a little as the words left her mouth. She was an adorable nine-year-old.

"Of course not," he said, laughter beginning to overtake him. "It's just ridiculous."

"Try."

"No."

Rather than argue with him, she merely stared in his direction. After what was likely several minutes, he grumbled and turned.

"Fine," he huffed. "Move, you stupid tree!"

"Oh, that would never work," Luna blurted, a little annoyed. Could Muggles really be so ignorant of the workings of nature? "Trees are very fickle. You have to ask nicely."

"I'm not going to." That he felt like a fool already was very evident—that he did not want to look anymore foolish in front of her even more so. His father lowered the chainsaw from his shoulder and began to pull on the cord to start the machine.

"Well, little girl, it looks like asking isn't enough for this tree," he said as once again a terrible grinding sound echoed around them. "Now, is it?" He snorted and raised his loud machine. "It would take magic to move those trees."

"Not magic," Luna said, "just a little bit of asking—"

Luna turned toward the tree.

"Oh, please, trees," she said, her voice barely audible over the sound of the saw. "I know you love this soil, the sun that pours down on you in the afternoon, and the rain that moistens your leaves, but this man and his son wish to share this space with you." She ran her hand down the trunk of the tree. "They have forgotten how to speak with you, but I remember."

As she finished her words, the ground shook. The forest was moving; roots slowly pulled themselves free from the ground beneath them. A herd of trees began to make its way to safety, leaving large piles of dirt and holes scattered throughout the area.

"Well, I'll be," said the man, turning the saw off with the flip of a switch. "I'll be."