Clockwork Fairy

Writing Prompt: “You found her on your doorstep, a fairy shivering from the cold and the pain, her delicate wings broken and torn. You take her into your workshop, and she tells her story as you craft her a new pair of clockwork wings.”

Outside the wind howled as heavy sheets of rain came down. An autumn storm powerful enough to topple trees full of colorful leaves was raging while I sat in my workshop. I was in the middle of fixing a watch for one of my clients when I heard the littlest call for help.

For a second I looked up from my work and looked around. No one was in sight which was good because I lived all alone and did not have any pets. I strained my hearing to focus in on where this sound came from, but heard nothing but the strong winds and the tapping of branches on my window. I turned back to the watch when I heard it again. A call for help, barely audible.

At first I thought I might have imagined it, but this time I was sure. Someone was calling for help. I stood up from the stool I was sitting on and made my way into the kitchen. I quickly threw on a heavy raincoat, slipped on my waterproof boots, and grabbed a flashlight.

I opened my front door and immediately, I was hit with a wall of rain and wind. The strong gust almost knocked me backwards, but I pushed my front door opened and closed it behind me.

I examined the area with my flashlight, doing my best to keep the water out of my face.

“Hello? Is there anyone there?” I asked out loud, trying to yell over the storm.

“Help!” I heard a voice yell out.

I looked all around but I couldn’t see anyone. Just rain and blowing leaves.

“Where are you?” I yelled out.

“Down here,” The voice replied.

Instead of looking out, I started looking down. I used my flashlight to scan the ground and the light bounced off of something very small, beside my downspout.

I knelt down to get a better look and at first I thought it was some sort of butterfly or moth. As my vision narrowed; however, I saw what looked like a small person with butterfly wings along her back.

“Please help me,” The small creature said, it’s voice tremblying with fear.

I nodded and offered my hand. The small creature climbed into my palm and I walked her inside. I made sure not to crush her as I walked and I was extra careful to keep my hand steady.

I took her into my workshop and placed her down on my workbench. I removed my boots and raincoat, hanging the later so it could dry. Then I sat down at my workbench at examined the creature.

“Thank….thank you,” The small creature said.

I could tell that they were in a poor condition, soaking wet from the storm and shivering.

“Be right back,” I said as I left the workshop.

I grabbed a spare scarf I had lying around and returned to my workshop. I sat down on the stool and balled up the scarf.

“Sit here and warm up,” I said.

The creature nodded and sat on the scarf pulling some of it up on herself to use as a blanket.

“Thank you,” The creature said.

“You are very welcome,” I said. “Now, I have to ask. What are you? I’ve never seen something like you before.”

The creature hid part of her face behind the scarf.

“I’m a fairy,” She said.

“A fairy. Wow. That’s definitely something I’ve never seen before,” I said. “How did you find yourself here?”

“I…I was flying about trying to get home before the storm, but I got a bit distracted. Before I knew it dark clouds were overhead and I got caught in the storm,” She explained.

She stood up for a second and tried her best to flap her wings, but they refused to move.

“My wings were damaged by the strong winds,” The fairy said. “Now I don’t think I’ll be able to get back home.”

The fairy began to cry as she brought her hands up to her face.

“Now, now. No need to worry. There might be something I can do,” I said. “Why don’t you wait here for a second and warm up. Just rest and I’ll bring some hot tea.”

I stood up and went to the kitchen to put on a kettle to warm up some water. I pulled out two tea bags and two mugs. I poured the water and brought back two steaming mugs of tea.

“Here you go,” I said as I sat down the mug beside the fairy. “Now be careful because it is very warm.”

The fairy nodded.

“Can you bring me up?” She asked.

I extended my hand and she climbed up on my hand. I lifted her up to the cup and sat her on the edge of the mug. The steam from the cup seemed to warm her up.

“Thank you,” The fairy said.

“You are very welcome,” I said. “Now about your wings. I think there might be something I can do about it.”

The fairy looked up at me, her eyes full of hope.

“Really?” She asked.

“Well you are very lucky to find me here,” I said. “I am a bit of a tinkerer and I work on fixing watches in my spare time. I think I might be able to make some sort of wings so you can fly.”

Her eyes lit up.

“You can make me wings?” She asked.

“Well I can certainty try. All of this fairy stuff is very new to me and I’ve never made wings before, but for you I’d give it my best shot.”

The fairy clapped her hands with glee.

“Thank you so much,” She said.

I pulled out a scarp of paper and a pencil and began making my design. After a bit of time the fairy began sipping the warm tea while watching me work.

I made a quick sketch of clockwork wings that would attach to her current, broken wings and allow her to fly.

As she watched me sketch, she began to tell me her story.

“I come from a land of fairy and fae full of people like me. We live in small villages alongside nature in places people don’t usually look. Underneath logs, inside of trees, and close to babbling brooks. Usually we stay by ourselves, not interacting with humans, but I had to travel this way.”

“Why were you traveling?” I asked.

“My mother lives in a forest half a days flight from where I live. I was visiting her to make sure she had enough supplies to ride out the storm. I was on my way back from visiting her.”

“You told me you got distracted on your way back home.”

She nodded.

“Your next door neighbor has a tone of pretty flowers. I like to smell them whenever I travel by here. I knew I had to get back home before the storm, but the flowers were just too tempting,” The fairy said. “I was going to stop for just a minute, but lost track of time.”

“Then the storm hit.”

The fairy nodded again.

“The strong winds were too much for me. I was knocked out of the air and soaked by the rain. I was almost flushed away by the water, but managed to grab hold of your…your…”

“My downspout.”

“I managed to grab hold to your downspout and pull my self to relevant safety. But I figured I’d die out there without some help. You helped save my life.”

“That’s very kind of you to say, but you were just lucky that I heard your calls while I was working here in my workshop. If I was in my bedroom or in my living room watching TV, I wouldn’t have heard you.”

“Very lucky,” The fairy said.

We continued to chat with one another while I finished putting together her clockwork wings. The entire thing took the entire night and by the time I was finished, the storm had rolled through and the clouds began to break.

By the time the sun was beginning to rise I had finished making her clockwork wings.

“Hopefully these work for you,” I said as I wiped sweat and grease from my forehead.

“They look wonderful,” The fairy said as she examined my work. “Can I try them on?”

“Of course,” I said.

I picked up the wings and helped her attach the clockwork wings to her own wings. The wings then hooked a small vest which she wore.

“Try them out,” I said.

The fairy nodded and began to move her wings. The clockwork wings allowed her to make up for her regular wings and she began to float off the ground.

“It’s working! It’s working!” She said as she flew through the air.

I let out a sigh of relief as I watched her fly around the room.

“I’m so glad they work,” I said with a big smile on my face.

The fairy flew over to me and hovered in the air.

“Thank you! Thank you! Without these wings, I would surely perish. You have given me a second chance at life and I will not forget it.”

“That’s very kind,” I said. “I’m just glad they work.”

“You must allow me to repay you for these wonderful wings and your hospitality.”

“I am just happy to help. I do not need anything in return,” I said.

“I insist,” The fairy said.

“How about this. I enjoyed your company this evening and the wonderful stories you told me. Whenever you go visit your mother or come by this area, why don’t you stop in and chat with me. I can work on improving your wings and you can tell me more stories about your world,” I said.

“Oh that sounds wonderful,” The fairy said.

“Then it’s a deal,” I said. “Now if you don’t mind, I need to get some rest and you need to get home.”

“Of course. Of course,” The fairy nodded. “Thank you again.”

“You’re very welcome,” I said before leading the fairy out of my home.

She flew around my front yard before disappearing into nature.

I let out a large yawn before turning around and heading off to bed hoping that I would see the clockwork fairy again.

Header Photo Credit to Hebel Design

Writing Prompt submitted to r/WritingPrompts by u/AnselaJonla

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