So my school just did this show, and I fell in love with it. And such is the spirit of a fanfiction writer :D. I don't quite know where this story is going yet, but...whatever! Please read&review!


Chapter 1

It was dark outside, the rain pounding on the roofs of the peasants' huts. Lighting flashed nearly every minute, thunder crashing at almost the same time, terrifying all the peasants, even the adults. Many were desperately praying to Agwe, begging him to stop the storm, not to send Papa Ge to them this time.

All the children had been sent to one hut to stay, a hut on top of the hill, out of the way of the rising waters of the river. They huddled together, shivering in fear, as the wooden walls were blown back and forth around them. All the younger ones were sobbing, and even the older ones had a few tears streaking their brown cheeks.

"Please, Agwe!" one little boy cried out after a particularly loud crack of thunder drew shrieks from the children. "Please spare us!"

"We're only children! Have mercy!" a teenage girl joined in the plea.

"Mercy! Mercy!" the children cried in unison. "Have mercy on us!"

But the wind remained strong, the rain kept beating down, and the lightning kept flashing. The little boy who had started the plea to Agwe buried his head in his knees, quavering in fear. "Please," he whispered. "Please."

"If Agwe hasn't heard us by now, he won't hear us," the oldest boy said. "It's no use. The gods don't have any mercy anyway."

"Michel! You'll kill us all!" one of the girls gasped.

"But he's right," the little boy piped up, raising his head. "Why have the gods done this to us? Why don't they think about us, about our feelings?"

"Erzulie does," voiced the girl. "She gives us love."

"At our expense," Michel replied bitterly. "She just does it for her own enjoyment."

"How can you say that?" The girl glared at Michel. "Erzulie is kind and loving! She lets us be happy! Without her, our lives would be empty."

"What about the Ti Moune story, Ariane? Have you forgotten it?" Michel was nearly shouting now. "None of the gods showed any compassion! And they won't now!"

"They cried, Michel. The gods cried when Ti Moune died!" Ariane cried. "They realized that they had been wrong and they felt bad for Ti Moune!"

"That doesn't change the story," Michel snapped. "She was a toy to them. They found her, played with her for a while, cried a bit when they broke her, then buried her in a tree and went on with their lives. She meant NOTHING to them!" he shouted.

Ariane didn't reply, simply staring at him in sadness and slight fear. Her expression was mirrored on the faces of the other children, who had halted their sobbing at Michel's outburst.

Michel sighed and fell silent. But he knew he was right. The gods didn't show restraint, and they didn't care about humans, no matter how much everyone else wanted to believe it. There was no use trying to convince the children of that. Michel pulled his knees to his chest and stared out at the storm, refusing to look at anyone.

"Michel?" the little boy tentatively asked after a long while.

"What?" Michel sighed.

"How do you know that the gods are like that?" the boy continued. "The story is just a story, isn't it? It never really happened, did it?"

"I suppose not," Michel allowed. "But-"

"Then how do you know? Have you seen the gods?" The boy said this with such a trustful, earnest tone that it brought Michel up short.

"Well...no," Michel finally admitted. Then, "What?" he snapped when he saw Ariane's slightly smug smile.

"Oh, nothing," she said innocently.

Michel scoffed and moodily stared out the window again. "I'm sick of this," he muttered, quietly enough so that no one could hear him. "Damn storm, damn kids, damn gods, damn Ariane." All Michel wanted was to go back to his own hut, out of the way of questions and children and girls, and read. Read and study. He was one of the few literate peasants on the island, and he intended to do something with his skills.

"Michel," came a low voice. Ariane's.

"Leave me alone, okay?" Michel didn't look away from the window.

"Michel, if you're wanting to read-"

"How did you know that?" This time, he did look at Ariane, albeit suspiciously.

"You always want to read," she shrugged. That was true enough, Michel knew. "But why don't you tell a story?" Ariane went on. "You know plenty, and you're good at telling them."

"Why would I want to?"

Ariane gave him a look. "Gee, Michel, maybe because you're bored and annoyed and because everyone else here is bored and scared and would like some entertainment and distraction!"

Michel sighed. She was right. "Fine," he said.

Ariane smiled at him, then clapped her hands together, catching the rest of the children's attention. "Michel's going to tell a story, everyone," she announced. "What would you like to hear?"

There was a brief pause, and then every child decided, "Ti Moune!"

Michel groaned inwardly. He really didn't care for the story-it was too sappy for him-and after he had just ranted on the role the gods played, he felt awkward talking about them in the context of the tale. He was about to refuse when he noticed Ariane giving him a look that said, "If you don't tell them the story, or if you alter it in any way, I will call Pape Ge on you."

So, sighing, Michel began, his voice becoming slightly deeper as the words spun out of his mouth. "Once on this island, the gods sent a storm, even worse than this one..."

And the rain kept pounding down on the hut, and the wind outside intensified, but the storm seemed to disappear as Michel led the children through the journey of Ti Moune, through her bargain with Papa Ge, through her affair with Daniel (here he left out a select few details), and then through her death and rebirth as the Tall Palm, as the tree had come to be called.

After hearing Ti Moune's story, the peasants, even the children, always expected to look outside and see the sun shining over the storm's devastation. But when Michel's voice stopped, having finished the story, the children once again heard the claps of thunder and the roaring of wind outside the hut. The storm was still going strong.

A few of the little ones sniffled, preparing to burst back into sobs. Ariane looked at Michel again, and he quickly began a different story, one he'd read, successfully distracting the children from fear.

On it went, for hours, the storm never halting or changing its intensity. By the time Michel ran out of stories, his throat was parched, and a great amount of the children had fallen asleep, the rest seconds away from dropping off. Michel himself was exhausted from keeping up the storytelling for as long as he had, and gratefully closed his eyes, leaning against the wall of the hut.

Ariane was the only one awake to see the storm end.