Thursday, October 08, 2009

The Fairy Queen 4

on Vineland past the candle shrine that burns on every night
for someone
she lets herself go
like an angel in the snow
she lays down on her back
down on her back - she goes

take me over when I'm gone
take me over make me strong
take me over when I'm gone
will they burn for me

~Candleburn by Dishwalla

It is very cold and wintry. She wears a coat, hat and jacket, a scarf wrapped around her neck. Her cheeks are bright pink. She looks up at God at last. She has finally found the ability to look within herself, if not to totally admit her own flaws.

"But could my friend possibly have thought I would not give everything, everything to ensure that they were happy?" she questions.

"Did you never give your friend reason to think so?" God answers her calmly.

"No!" she wishes to respond, the reply instantaneous, her anger rising within her. She has done nothing, nothing to deserve this treatment. Her friend should have been able to trust her, to tell her everything. But is that really true? Has she always responded and thought only for her companion, never once thinking of what she wants, what she desires? Of course it is not so. She has only to think about the girl in the service of the nation and it is clear that she has been possessive, even jealous.

"Still!" she states, arguing with God. "I would never, never have hurt my friend."

"Never deliberately have hurt your friend," God corrects her.

"You cannot possibly be defending-" she states, tears coming to her eyes. "My friend knows me better than that! My friend knows I would have given anything, done everything to ensure their happiness."

"Is that really so?" God questions.

She hangs her head. It is hard for her to admit she is at fault, perhaps the hardest thing she has ever done. "No," she states, a single syllable that slips from her lips. "I have at times been jealous, possessive. There was reasonable doubt-" She chokes, unable to finish the sentence. She starts again. "There was reasonable doubt to think I would have been irrational, lost my head. I would have been angry. I would have said things, convinced myself it was for their benefit. No," she says again, and it is the hardest thing she has ever said, because she is admitting her own flaws to herself. She is seeing herself as her friend must have seen her. "No, I cannot say I never gave any reason for my friend to doubt me."

"Ah," God states quietly.

"But- what- one? Two? incidents in the whole time that we've known each other!" the Fairy Queen protests angrily. "My friend knows me; my friend should have known better. My friend should have realized I could be trusted, that I would never, never take anything they desired from them. What bauble, what trinket could I long for should my friend desire it?" Tears come to her eyes. "My friend should have known I would never have done that. How could they think me so cruel and so selfish? I am not that selfish. I refuse to be thought of in such a way."

"Perhaps you know that," God tells her as he folds her into her embrace, "but your friend is only human. Humans must do the best with what they know. And you had proven that you could not handle everything that came your way; you had shown that there were some things to which you responded emotionally, irrationally, where you did things you regret."

"So it's all my fault?" the Fairy Queen throws back in God's face defiantly. "I'm to blame for all of it? For everything?"

God smiles at her. "What do you think?"

"I understand how my friend could have thought this of me," she admits. "But I know myself and I know that is not what I would have done. And I am angry that my friend would not have seen that in me, would not have known me enough to know I would have done anything required of me. But," and her voice is a whisper, very low, "perhaps I was not entirely deserving. After all, which mortal can read the mind of a fairy? And I had offered cause."

God nods. "What now?" he asks her.

"I still think I'm being punished far too harshly for a very small character flaw," the Fairy Queen shouts at him, resisting the urge to throw snowballs in his general direction.

God nods. "An acceptable point of view," he tells her.

"And I think my friend should have known better."

"Okay," God says.

"And I'm still very mad."

"That's fine," God agrees.

"But I have to work on forgiveness." The Fairy Queen takes off her cap and shakes out her hair, which is long and black. "After all, I did offer cause. I can see where they were coming from, even if I don't think that's how I would have reacted or what I would have done. I think they should have trusted me. But I understand why they didn't. It's just very hard to forgive, you know, God?"

"Do you think so?" God questions her.

"Right now I do," the Fairy Queen responds, forming a snowball with her mittens, which are made of black wool shot through with silver. "Perhaps one day I won't. It just hurts me that they would think that of me, that I would take something away from them so that they could never have it. I don't think I deserve to be thought of that way. But I see how my own actions could have caused it. It's just...I guess...I wish....I wish they would have trusted me."

"You will know for next time," God says. "You will make sure that there is no reason for anyone to doubt you."

The Fairy Queen is dubious. "How shall I do that?"

"You must only give," God explains. "You must take nothing for yourself. You cannot think of yourself; you must only think of what would be best for others. You cannot afford two instances of acting otherwise; you cannot even afford one. You must only do what is best for the other, always and consistently. And in that way all may trust you without fear."

"Isn't that to be inhuman?" the Fairy Queen questions.

"My dear one," God replies, "you are a fairy queen, you know. You exist beyond the limits of humanity. It is your job to work to transcend their frail bonds."

"I see," the queen sighs, wishing there were some other, easier way. It is a hard thing God requires of her.

"You have come a long way," He says, "in simply admitting you were at fault. That is the first step."

"Well, I'm still working on that one," she confides in Him.

"I have faith in you," He says. She gives Him a smile. This is true. This is one thing she knows must be true.

"If God has faith in me," she laughs, "how can I not have faith in myself?" She tumbles into the snow, running and falling and laughing simultaneously. She can't help that there are tears in her eyes as well. It isn't easy.

But it's not impossible.

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