6th Grade Supernatural (Book 3): Flight of the Fairies Paperback
When Zander and Abigail discover there’s a monster gobbling up the fairies in Plainsbury, they go into action to discover how to defend their tiny winged friends. Will they be able to rid the land of this unseen foe and set the fairies free, even with several non-parallels at their side?
Praise for Flight of the Fairies:
"Fun fast paced family friendly book about the supernatural world. This is the 3rd book in the series and each one is simply delightful. I love the way that family values are encouraged as our characters progress in their adventure. This is a well written and fun book for the kid in all of us. Suitable for the young and old reader alike."
"This is book number three in this awesome series my kids read to me. We loved reading this series very much and I highly recommend this series to everyone."
The fairy buzzed in front of my face, her pulsing light bright in the gathering darkness. She was tiny, even for a fairy, and as she landed on the tip of my nose, I couldn’t help but want to swat her away.
Too close for comfort. The little bugs.
“Oh, look!” Abigail said. She had managed to gather three of them onto her outstretched finger, and their warm, yellow glow lit up her palm. “They’re so pretty!”
I snorted, and the action startled the fairy on my nose. She took flight, making sure to buzz her little behind angrily in my face as she abandoned her perch. Not very nice behavior in my book.
“Since when do you care about pretty?”
Abigail glared at me, but a moment later her smile returned. “Shut up, Zander,” she said dismissively. “They’re beautiful.”
“They are,” Abigail’s mother agreed.
Our two families were all bundled in sleeping bags on the highest hill in Plainsbury as the cold night came on. It would be one of the last big dances for these little critters until spring.
Several times each summer we would witness a gathering of them. “Lightning bugs,” my mom would call them when talking about them with Abigail’s mom, Ms. Stone. Regular people could only see them as such, but a parallel like me, most of my family, and Abigail were, we could see them for what they really were.
“I’m surprised there are so many out at this time of year,” Ms. Stone said.
My mom was pouring out cups of hot chocolate with marshmallows from an insulated container. She passed one to Ms. Stone.
“Oh, I know it,” she said. “They’re native to Plainsbury, though, so they’re adjusted to our climate.”
“Hmm. Well, we didn’t have lightning bugs in California,” Ms. Stone said. “They are pretty … if not … a little—” she swatted at one that had gotten too close to her head.
I made it a point to remember this redeeming behavior of Abigail’s mom.
“Well, they’re a little … aggressive, aren’t they?”
Her next swat made contact, and the fairy went flying.
I laughed, but the next thing we knew, the fairy had assembled a team of her cohorts, and five of them descended on Ms. Stone, buzzing around her head angrily.
“Oh! Oh!” she cried, popping up to her feet. Her sleeping bag fell down around her legs, and she nearly tripped on it while trying to flee. Hot chocolate went everywhere as she hopped out of the bag and ran a few feet away, waving her hands around her head, trying to get them to leave her alone.
“Oh, dear,” Dad said, standing up. “Carolyn, you must stay still. They are somewhat like honey bees; they’re not nasty unless provoked. It’s the only way, my dear. Just stand there for a moment. Let them calm down.”
Ms. Stone looked at Dad like he was insane, but she followed his direction. She held her breath as the fairies gradually forgot her insult. Four of them landed in her hair, the fifth on the tip of her nose, like mine had. Her eyes crossed as she stood stock still, watching the tiny bug as she stared back at her.
Sometimes I wondered if regular people weren’t so blind as they seemed to be. The supernatural surrounded all of us; surely non-parallels could occasionally catch a glimpse of something unusual.
“You should swat them again,” my little brother, and resident trouble maker, Tyler, said. He was giggling as he watched the whole scene. “Come on,” he urged. “Give one of them another slap!”
But she didn’t. She was frozen on the spot.
“Wait, Mom,” Abigail said, getting to her feet.
She stepped from her bag and quietly made her way to her mother, holding out her finger, the three fairies still clinging to it. The one on her mom’s nose hopped on as well, and she withdrew.
“You see?” Abigail said, returning to her sleeping bag. “No big deal, Mom.”
“Aww,” Tyler complained.
I wasn’t entirely sure that Ms. Stone was aware of the four remaining fairies that had settled on top of her head, but perhaps that was for the best.
“Come on, dear,” my mom said, straightening out Ms. Stone’s sleeping bag for her. She held out her hand, and Ms. Stone took it.
“Phew,” she said, shivering a little as she climbed back into the bag. “Glad that’s over. Sorry about the mess.” She indicated the hot chocolate mug, which had spilled all over herself and the bag.
A couple more fairies had joined the four still remaining on her head, though she was oblivious to them as she wiggled deeper into the warmth of the fabric.
Tyler laughed, pointing.
My family knew that fairies tended to be a lot like birds, and the danger of letting them rest on your head was that it was nearly certain you would require a second shampoo once you arrived home.
Not wanting another scene, Dad tried to change the subject.
“So, Carolyn, tell us about your work,” he said.
“Oh, well, you know about that already, don’t you?”
My mom handed me a cup of hot chocolate and nodded toward Abigail, who was carefully stepping back into her sleeping bag. I passed it over to her one empty hand.
“Thanks,” she whispered, taking a tentative sip.
“Well, surely Anne must have told you about the cosmetics I sell,” Ms. Stone went on, indicating my mom. “I’m a top seller in my district, partly due to your beautiful wife here.” She elbowed my mom jovially. Mom smiled a nervous smile.
We all knew that she rarely wore even a hint of makeup. She had been buying Ms. Stone’s cosmetics to keep her coming around. Friends were hard to come by when you lived in a haunted mansion, even if you couldn’t see the ghosts that lived inside.
The adults kept talking, and my attention wandered. The night, though crisp, was clear. The lack of a moon meant that the stars would come out brighter than ever.
“Hey,” I whispered to Abigail. “Wanna go for a walk?”
She shrugged. “Sure.” She took a couple gulps of her hot chocolate and stuffed the big marshmallow floating on top into her mouth. “Let go now, little ladies,” she said thickly.
The fairies popped off her finger one by one and flew back among the trees. The entire population of fairies in this part of the forest must’ve been in the thousands. They floated among the ferns in groups, their lights flickering with each flap of their wings. If you could forget for a minute that they were vengeful little monsters, they almost were beautiful.
I climbed out of my bag and pulled my jacket tight around my shoulders. Abigail did the same.
“Mom, we’re going to—”
“Yes, okay,” she said, waving us away.
Tyler was starting to get sleepy, and he settled in between Mom and Dad, which meant that he wouldn’t be bothering us, either.
I pulled out my pocket flashlight and led the way to the edge of the forest. There weren’t so many fairies this far away from the protection of the trees. It was oddly relieving.
“So,” I began, “how have you been, you know, feeling?”
Abigail snapped her teeth at me playfully, and despite knowing that I wasn’t really in any danger, it still startled me.
“You mean, how am I doing since I survived nearly being turned into a flesh-eating zombie? Just fine, thank you.” She didn’t climb up the rocks behind me, and instead leaned against them and looked out at the town.
“Well, that’s good,” I said, wrapping my arms around my knees. I looked up at the sky. To me, it was way nicer than watching a thousand fairies dancing in the woods. For one thing, we were in no danger of attack out here.
“Yeah,” she went on. “The cops sure are acting weird though, aren’t they?”
It was true. We had seen several officers over the past week driving by our house in their police cruisers. They seemed to be looking for something; maybe they just wanted an explanation for the entire population of the Plainsbury cemetery crawling from their graves last week.
Even in my short twelve years, I had seen what could happen to regular people who brushed elbows with the supernatural. They always seemed to walk around in a sort of daze after, wondering, maybe, if what just happened was real.
Not just a dream, buddy.
I wondered what story they were telling themselves to keep their world making sense. The good thing was that people almost always forgot about these strange encounters, shoved them farther back into their memories until it seemed almost as if nothing had ever happened at all.
“Yeah,” I finally said. “They’ll forget eventually.”
I shivered and looked back into the forest. It was getting late, and I was wishing I’d brought that sleeping bag with me to keep warm.
“Hey, can we walk around? I’m freezing.”
“Yeah, sure,” she said, pushing off the rock.
I jumped down and led the way around the top of the hill, staying on the outskirts so that we could find our way back easily. From deep in the trees, the glowing dance of the fairies continued.
“I don’t know why you don’t like them.” Abigail had been watching me as I looked into the woods.
“Sure, I like them,” I said. “I just like them better when they’re in there and we’re out here.”
“For someone who’s so tough when it comes to ghosts and zombies, you sure are weird about fairies.”
I shrugged. “They’re just, well, they’re sort of smelly.”
“Smelly?” she asked. “What are you—”
But she stopped talking and stared into the woods, looking past me as if I weren’t even there. I waved my hand in front of her face.
She pointed. “Look.”
I turned, but all I saw was a small group of fairies flying around about twenty feet from where we stood.
“I know, I know,” I said. “They’re ‘beautiful,’ right?”
I sighed, but I did as she said. And then I saw it.
The fairies weren’t consistently lit up; they flickered like flames of a fire, just like a normal lightning bug did. That was why we could get away with bringing Ms. Stone with us tonight.
But these fairies were acting strange. They would glow brightly, and then a moment later their lights would extinguish and not reappear.
“Huh,” I said. “That’s weird.”
“Where are they going?” she asked.
“I don’t know. Maybe it’s time for them to … I don’t know … go to bed? Do fairies go to bed?”
She sighed, exasperated, then moved away from me and deeper into the trees.
I could see what she was talking about now, though. These ones were disappearing, and fast.
Pop. Pop. Pop.
With each sound, another fairy light went dark.
Soon, Abigail started crashing through the trees toward them. I lit my flashlight again and followed close behind
“Be careful,” I called. “The last thing we need is to break our necks in here.”
But I was scared, too. Where were the fairies disappearing to?
Then, just as quickly as it had begun, the sounds ended, and the forest went black.
The disappearing fairies were gone entirely.