The Wellspring - Casting Thread

In my dorm room, I have a shoe mat. I know for a lot of people, that might seem like an oddly specific thing to start off a story with, but here we are. I’ve wanted one ever since I moved to Wisconsin my freshman year, so I finally bought one at the beginning of this year. Since the moment I brought it back, it’s been the home to (most) of my shoes, and I’ve really appreciated how it keeps my room clean (and the carpet less water damaged).

But for the last month, another pair of shoes has made their home there, too: a pair of blue flip-flops. At the end of last semester, my fiancee graduated and gave them to me after I told her not to throw them away: they’re pretty nice quality, plus I just felt it was wrong to throw them away. But since we left for the semester, they’ve just been sitting there, as if waiting for something to happen. So this morning, I decided to wash them up (they’d been shower shoes, so I didn’t want to give someone dirty shoes), dry them, and take them down to one of the Give n’ Take boxes in my dorm. I know that a lot of people will probably pass them by, but as long as they’re helpful to someone, I’ll be happy.


Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

21 Likes

I was in a low patch. One of those streaks of depression and anxiety where your aspirations seem far away and you fear you won’t amount to anything.

It was my first team building event for my new job. The graphic design team went to a renaissance festival together, and most of them had never been, so it was a delightful time. I didn’t know anyone especially well yet, and it was a nice opportunity to take my thoughts off my depression and onto colorful garb, bawdy shows, and beautifully crafted things.

One of my coworkers saw me admiring hand crafted metal necklaces, particularly one with knotted dragons and symbols meant to bring courage and creativity. I’d spent most of my allotted festival budget on games with coworkers and more than a little mead… it made me sad to leave it behind, but you can’t have everything.

A couple hours later, I was watching a show when my coworker sat down next to me. She’d been gone a while, but she tended to wander and reappear, so I hadn’t thought much of it. She smiled mischievously and handed me a small velvet bag. Inside was the necklace I’d been admiring. “It just seemed like too good a fit for you. I couldn’t help myself.”

The necklace isn’t magic. There were dozens just like it in that shop, and the symbols meanings very well be made up by the artist. But there’s a lot if generosity, compassion, and kindness associated with this object after years of wear. Perhaps it will be capable of magic today.

Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

21 Likes

The Quite Full Bottle

Once, there was an old man who lived alone in run-down cottage on the outskirts of a large town. He had lived there nearly his entire life, but nonetheless, the townspeople thought him quite strange and kept their distance from him.

One morning a young, scruffy-looking beggar came through the town seeking something to eat. But everywhere he knocked, the townspeople shuttered their windows and turned him away, each with a terse chorus of “I can’t give you anything,” or “We’ve not enough to spare.” Whispers followed him throughout the town Finally he came to the old man’s cottage and knocked on the door. The old man answered.

“Please, sir, have you any food to share?” The beggar asked.

The man’s eyes gleamed, and he gestured for the beggar to enter his house. The beggar did so, sitting down by the fire at the old man’s invitation. The old man then picked up a small glass bottle from his windowsill, showing it to the man.

“What do you think is in this bottle?”

The beggar, suspicious that the man seemed to be playing a trick on him, growled out, “Nothing. There’s nothing in that bottle.”

The man, his eyes gleaming, tipped the bottle upside down into a bowl, and suddenly, a stream of warm, hearty soup poured out of it. When he tilted it up again, it was empty.

“Most people would look at this bottle and call it empty. The truth is, they are wrong. This bottle is always quite full, no matter how it looks. The real challenge is knowing how to share what you have within.”

Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

22 Likes

My story is nothing too special, just a simple act of kindness. It was my first time ever investing in fandom stuffs, and I decided to invest in this really cool bundle of LOTR elf jewelry. When they arrived, I found a message from the person saying that she’d included some other stuff as well, just as a little thank you. I always remember that, and as Gandalf would say ( I know, I’m very LOTR obsessed…) “I have found that it is the small everyday deed of ordinary folks that keep the darkness at bay. Small acts of kindness and love.” Well, I left one of those extra pieces in the park today after training.

Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

23 Likes

Now, see. Im no stranger to travel. I used to be terrified of it, never going unless i had a safety net, a way to get home easily, safely, with zero risk involved.

In the last few years i made a friend who changed my entire outlook on that. Ever since he started taking me out, ive gotten back a little of the light i lost the day i left the forest of the valley, with it millions of shining stars and the drum circles and chanting that accompanied it long into the night.

This being said, whether it was sitting in a circle of krishna worshippers, climbing a mountain, or sitting on the beach of mexico, one constant has stayed with me: my guitar.

Its been with me through breakups and dates, time and space. Its watched me graduate, fall into depression and pull myself out again. Its watched me go from being a confused teenager to a man whos finally, FINALLY finding himself in this insane, terrifying, horrible world.

Theres a poem, i once read, by a man named vian izak. Well, more a song. Its called “The Navigator.”

When the queen of shadow strikes
The navigator sets right
The lost who fell into night
The lonely in their plight.

The queen never holds her tongue
Hunting you since you were young.
All the while loves constant shield
Kept you safe as you healed.

The captain knows your true name
And never runs from your shame
He sent up stars as your guide
And drives the darkness from your side

So face the beast of life
Stand, dont take flight
You arent alone in this fight.

I like to think of my guitar as my captain, my navigator. Its my one constant, so what else would i even dare to use in this?

Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

22 Likes

I was at the mall with my best friend, maybe a year or two ago. I didn’t bring money with me that day, as shopping was sort of a spur of the moment decision, and so she bought me lunch at the food court and offered to pay for anything I saw that I wanted. I’m the sort that feels guilty about asking people to buy things for me though, and so I just accompanied her to the stores she wanted, enjoying her presence and helping her choose her items.

I’d mentioned I needed to use the bathroom, and on the way there, we spotted a Hot Topic. We decided to make a quick detour there to pick out a shirt for her boyfriend. We made the rounds in the store a few times, picked out a T-shirt, and then got distracted and tried on some jewelry. She asked if I wanted any of the pieces I tried on, and I said no, I couldn’t make her do that. She’d already bought my lunch, and I didn’t want to be a burden on her.

There was a long line at the counter, so she told me to hand her my purse and head to the bathroom, she would catch up later. I did what I needed to, we met back up again, and we carried on with our shopping. We were out for several more hours, visiting every thrift store and trying on clothes we never intended to keep. It was a really good day.

A few weeks later, I was emptying my purse of random junk - receipts, candy wrappers, earrings I’d given up on halfway through the day - when I found something unfamiliar. A flat circle of stainless steel, with skeletal hands reaching towards eachother. I had tried that necklace on at the shop, but put it back when my friend said she was ready to check out. She must have been really determined to get me a gift, and so bought it while I was in the bathroom, slipping it into my purse before I could object. It’s just a small thing, but I was really touched by her gesture. Since then, the necklace has become a favourite of mine, and I’ve broken and soldered several of the fingers back on as I refused to let it wear out. I never properly thanked her, but she looks real proud any time she sees me wearing it, and seeing that look on her face is a much bigger gift than she knows.


Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

22 Likes

An increasing number of years ago, I found myself in Japan, visiting a friend who was teaching there. I spent a month up in the mountains in a small village. It rained most of the time, and was extremely cold, indoors and out. But for a city person, it was an awe inspiring experience. An old lady lent me her bike for the time that I was there, and I rode around on my own during the day while my friend was working, and took in the sights. Rode through a rice field and through the unusual, bright, gardened walking alleys that twist between the houses - there didn’t seem to be any rhyme or reason to the buildings, like they all grew out of the ground, fully architecturally sound and pretty, and every one of them different. I explored family shops and rode to the corner store, passing students walking home. Through the whole village you could hear the school bell letting them in and out. When the garbage truck went by, it would sing a little tune. I know people tend to be caught up in the magic of a new place, but it really did have a charm to it. And the things you can buy for just a dollar were incredible!

One day, my friend and I went to a restaurant for lunch. We ate and sat and talked for a really long time. The place was empty, so it was a while before we thought maybe we should get out of there. As we started to leave, both owners came out to meet us and gave our meal for free. I was surprised and embarrassed, feeling like it was just us looking special or something like that. Simple hospitality that a business doesn’t have to give as if it was someone’s home! It didn’t quite feel right.
But then, they offered to take us up the mountain that rose up out of the sea and stretched out across the whole south side of the town. Generally, where I’m from, you don’t jump into a car with strangers. But my friend and I felt too horrified by the implication of distrust to say no, so we didn’t.

They did, indeed, take us to the mountain. They told us a bit about it, in broken but determined English. They showed us where eggs were cooking in a hotspring bath (not one for people). We ate the random abandoned eggs. They were pretty good. All the eggs I ate there were really good - with bright orange centres… But the hot springs have extra minerals, and the eggs were particularly hot and pleasant.

We walked up the rest of the way. There were so many stairs. Rocks really, broken up and weedsy. We all struggled to climb them. It was funny, and we laughed about it, the special way you do with people you can’t speak to very well to - it’s hard to be glib or make jokes after all. It has to be straight feelings of amusement, shared with others without much of a filter. Just laughing about it, about whatever happens. Sharing, rather than conversing or trying to be clever.

We took pictures to rest. And finally at the top, we found a shrine. I don’t know what else I was expecting, other than that any of my fears about the couple were gone after the delicious eggs (it’s what they say about sharing food), and my friend and I were both curious and a bit shy.

I think the couple were amused that we were trying to be respectful. The stone and wood shrine was in a bit of rough shape, but was large enough to withstand quite a long time more. A shrine box for offers sat in front of it. A pretty old, sturdy box. To one side was a frame with bells hanging from it.

The couple then showed us how to ring the bells what to say and then pray to the fox spirit that lived there. Fox shrines I’d thought always had fox statues - many of these statues wear little cloth bibs and its all very cute. This was an abandoned shrine way up a mountain. We would have never found it. You have to want to drive up for the view and the eggs, and still be curious to make your way up the stairs tucked away.

I made a wish, it was something about protecting this place, or perhaps the couple that helped us all the way up here, and gave the fox some of the coins still hanging out in my pocket. It wasn’t enough, I’m not used to carrying change. I think it was 60 yen. Not even a dollar. But sometimes animals just want more shinies, so I hoped it wasn’t insulting. Just in case there were spirits. I’d always kind of believed in ghostly spirits, collections of energies or thoughts, or passed things. Not sure, just that I’ve always had a passion for such ideas, even if it didn’t exist. There’s not a lot of representations of this in North America, so perhaps it shook me a bit to be confronted with a possibility to engage when you get used to not believing. Even if other people believe, that’s enough, to me, I think. There’s something to that, and it’s important in a way I can’t really articulate.

Anyway, I ended up with the coins again. The couple said that the fox gave them back. I presume they opened the box and took them out, which probably horrified me so much I honestly can’t remember it actually happening. Maybe it happened literally and I can’t remember. But the former is more likely.
I also can’t remember where the keychain came from. It was on the same trip. I don’t think I bought it. I do remember thinking that it would be appropriate to put the coins with it, so I’m pretty sure it was found. I wouldn’t have bought something like that just to do that. I don’t remember a lot of small things about that trip anymore. It’s been a long time.

Since, I carry it around. Somehow, I never lost it in all that time. I’ve taken it off now. My life is totally different. So I think that’s okay. I never thought to remove it before. So I’ve taken it off, and I have a feeling I’m going to know exactly when I need to give it away. It would be convenient to do that right now, maybe randomly - and though that’s how I got the fox figure, that’s not how I got the coins. But I think it’s important to do it deliberately. It’s just a feeling I get. Maybe it knows something is up. Maybe it has a bit more will than that. I don’t know. It’s best to follow your feelings for these things, I think.

Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

24 Likes

I met my best friend on the first day of preschool. She was the first friend I ever made and we still are inseparable…if it wasn’t for the long distance that has always kept us apart.

When I was little, she lived about fifteen minutes away from me. If I could go back in time, I would spend every second with her because this was the closest to me she has ever lived. In high school, she moved the be thirty minutes away, where we had to brave the dangers of our biggest enemy at the time: the highway. We still sacrificed our fear just to see each other because every second I spent away from her was painful. Most of the time texting and FaceTime became our solace when we couldn’t drive to the others’ home. Then, college decision time rolled around and she told me she was going to a school in Vermont. Internally, my heart shattered to pieces because she would be over a thousand miles away from me. Not fifteen or thirty minutes, but a plane ride away. This meant I could only see my best friend on holidays and summer vacation, if she chose to come back to our home state.

You would think I would get used to it but sometimes I talk to her like she still lives in the same state as me, then she reminds me, and my heart breaks all over again. I’ve spent many nights alone my first year of college wishing that she was here. I missed her kind heart and her contagious laughter. I missed talking for hours with her about things only we were interested in. I missed planning things we could do the following week, knowing she was only a drive away.

I miss her.

Then one day I received a letter from her; something different than our usual texts. I didn’t waste a moment opening it to find a small handwritten letter and an orange and red bracelet tucked inside.

“For my wonderful friend whom I think of this fall season…
This bracelet is for you! I know how much you love the fall and how much you wish you could see the colors change, so I am sending you a piece of fall from Vermont!
I hope you like it and think of me when you use it! I miss you very much, and I want you to know that I love you!!”

I started weeping on the sidewalk outside of the UPS. My best friend had sent me a beautiful handmade friendship bracelet, not only with my school colors, but infused with the essence of autumn. She was blessed to be in a state where she could witness my favorite season change the leaves into bursts of sunset orange, apple red and golden yellow. But her kind heart couldn’t keep it all to herself. She decided to share a piece of it with me.

And now I share that piece with you. A simple item of woven yarn that connects our everlasting friendship miles away.

Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

22 Likes

When I was in middle school, I had a weekend school teacher that was a bit…out there. Definitely taught some lessons that weren’t on the syllabus, but were formative nonetheless. For one of these lessons, he gave everyone in class a dollar. Most of us rarely carried cash - partly because we were literal children and partly because most of us (once we had money to our names) would favor a debit card over cash…a fact I’m sure our teacher knew. Had that been the extent of the lesson that would have been generous enough…but it wasn’t. See, this wasn’t an arbitrary dollar - it was an emergency dollar. The idea was that we should keep it on us at all times, until the right moment came to spend it. Maybe the emergency would be that one day we would desperately need something to eat, and the dollar would go into a vending machine. But he charged us to be more picky - save it for someone else’s emergency. Maybe someone we know is having a very bad day, and that dollar buys their favorite chocolate bar. Maybe we’re out somewhere and we see a stranger that could use that dollar more than we could. And the most important part - once we found our emergency, we were to replace the dollar as soon as possible so we were always prepared to give a little kindness.

It’s been many years since that class, and I don’t always have a dollar on me, but that was the first thing I thought of for this spell. One man teaching a room full of kids to always be ready to be kind.

My object for this is unrelated - it’s one of a set of notebooks I made for friends as (belated) holiday presents. Most are already packaged to be mailed out, but I haven’t scrounged up an envelope for this one yet. May they all help spread the magiq!

Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

21 Likes

In a world full of whimsy, all strung on one note,
There’s a tale of the past, of the old lost one’s boat,
T’was a craft cold and empty, but tall stood the mast,
And the sails rose a plenty, when out they were cast

In a valley of oceans, of waves upon waves,
When a child cried in terror, water rose in the caves,
As she screamed for a saviour, the boat just appeared,
As empty as the caverns, her doubts were not cleared

But the cold water scared her far more than the boat,
So she climbed up inside it, her heart all afloat,
The water was violent, and rough with her fear,
Yet the boat stayed a-steady, didn’t quiver nor veer

As she lifted her hand, touched the wood of the mast,
She heard singing of sailors who’d long since moved past,
In their song she found courage, in the boat she found peace,
And when land came to view, all her fears did release

Upon reaching the sand, she stepped out and began,
Her journey of telling her tales, for her plan,
T’was as simple as air and as solid as ground,
She let everyone know that the lost would be found.

My object used to be my favourite necklace when I was very, very young, and is probably the oldest piece of jewelry that I have… it hasn’t fit me for many, many years. It’s about time for it to find a new child to fascinate

Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

22 Likes

During the summer, I got to teach close to kids how to ride horse. During this time, I usually worked as an assistant instructor, being able to spot things that were wrong better then most of the others. Because of this, I had alot more time on my hands then an instructor would and I was required to arrive a bit earlier to the stables.
Well one day, mid-July, I arrived to find one of the barn managers crying. I went to see what was wrong and looking into the stall, found a horse on it’s side groaning. Tinkerbell, a gorgeous plaomino mare, had coliced during the night.
Now, I sadly have a bigger then normal amount of experience with horses colicing, so I was allowed to stay and help out with her. The Manager was in tears, so I did everything that I could to help reassure her that everything would be all right. We talked and helped Tinkerbell for about 3 hours before we both had to leave.
Sadly enough, Tinkerbell passed away the next morning. As I later found out, me being there helped the manager get through that day, giving her the strength to continue.


Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

20 Likes

Time, is a precious commodity. Most of the common phrases that you read are that time is ‘spent’, ‘lost’ or ‘wasted’, but never ‘gained’. I used to believe this to be true until around a month ago.

I had a patient the other day, tell me that time was never wasted in the context of a conversation. I laughed, and politely disagreed. My patient shook their head, and told me “Time is never wasted. You can only spend time doing thing that you must”

I asked my pt about losing time- like when you read a book and miss out on other opportunities bc you were so sucked into it.

They looked at me with a bewildered look, “You can’t lose time doing things you love. You only gain it.” They told me that I gained time reading. That I didn’t lose anything by making a choice- I only gained the knowledge that I still wanted to do it.

This patients small act of kindness to teach me a new way of thinking has changed much of the way I think about things. I will never forget their lesson.


This is the watch I offer. It is in no-way magical, but it has been with me for a long, long time. I don’t know who I will give it to (most likely a new EMT), but when they arrive, my old friend will get some new straps, and be passed on.

Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

22 Likes

I said goodbye to a close friend yesterday. We met almost exactly a year ago, and never would have guessed then what the year would hold. Our friendship has never been conventional, and it has been an ever evolving experience as our relationship has grown and changed. We have always lived in different states, so sometimes we would trade off making the 3-hour drive, sometimes we would meet at the city halfway between. But regardless of the individual challenges we have dealt with, we have consistently been there to support and encourage each other.

One of my favorite memories together is from a time I had gone up to visit her for a weekend last summer, and we decided to drive out to a brewery that was the home to one of her favorite local beers. The brewery was situated high atop a steep hill, where a set of old stone building used to stand. Instead of removing the old buildings, the brewery was built around them, preserving the ruins and turning them in to areas with seating and natural gardens. It was an amazing afternoon, spent wandering through the ruins and enjoying the views overlooking the countryside, often without even needing to talk but instead just enjoying the time together. Now, she’s moving across the country, and while I know we will stay in touch and am excited for the opportunities this move will open up, there will still be a hole in my life with her gone.

When I got home from the going-away party last night, I started my usual routine of tidying up my space and getting things ready for the next day, trying to keep busy to stave off the sadness of saying goodbye. As I cleared off my desk and made sure I had everything together for work in the morning I noticed a coin I didn’t recognize, resting against one of my candles. When I picked it up, I discovered that it was actually the metal token my friend had been given at the brewery last summer, good for a free drink at any of the surrounding restaurants that had their brews on tap. She had never redeemed the coin, instead holding onto it as a memento of the visit, and leaving it for me to find after we said our goodbyes. Finding the token and remembering that afternoon so many months ago, I was struck not by the sadness I expected at her leaving, but by gratitude for all of the things we got to experience in just the year we have known each other. One chapter of our friendship might be ending, but another is beginning. And while it may not be the same, it is still full of possibility and potential.

This token may hold memory, but it also holds hope for the future. Now, may it hold magiq as well, and spread that hope and light as we enter a new age. Here’s to new beginnings, new adventures, and all of the people who make them special.

Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

22 Likes

This requires some backstory and may seem pretty out there so bear with me.

The item I chose is a photocard of BTS. They’re quite popular items you get with albums in KPop, and it becomes a thing of collecting them or what have you.

I’m very fond of BTS, and quite a fan of their music. I discovered their music and fell down a pretty deep whole, while suddenly learning to navigate a massive fan base.

Now fanbases can be tricky, and there’s always extremes and bad sides to things, but the majority of fan interactions I’ve had have been pretty great. One of the things I love the most about their fan base is the diversity of it (despite what the media tries to tell people.) While exploring that diversity and trying to find a common connection among fans we’ve all found that the link is music. That music is universal and it transcends language, and age, and race, and so on.

One day I ran into another fan, some random strange. I saw this photocard and immediately struck up a conversation with them. It began as a wonderful conversation on how we felt about them and their music. This person spoke Korean, while I didn’t. So they asked what my process was for listening to their music, something I had never been asked before. I responded with a realization I had in that moment - that initially I didn’t listen to their music I felt it. That’s the thing about music, knowing what the lyrics are only add more meaning to a song, but they aren’t the entirety of it. It’s the same with anyone’s favourite band or musician - they help them to feel some type of way.
My response lead to a long conversation about how despite how talented they are you can tell they really love music. In the way they talk about it, in the way they adore their fans, in the way they portray emotion on stage or on a track. Their love is the same, and you can feel it and hear it.
And that lead to this person I had just met saying one of the most profound things I’ve heard in quite some time:

If only we all spoke love instead of languages.

In a world where empathy and compassion feel like rare commodities, that statement hit me like a truck.
After talking some more that person decided they were gifting me that photocard. I wasn’t allowed to decline, they had others, and it was something they wanted to do.
So I have it in my phone case now (and always get questions) and with that profound thought in mind I like to carry it around as a reminder to be unafraid to love openly regardless of the outcome, and as a reminder that compassion and kindness do not cost me anything so I should constantly be striving to sow it. A chance encounter and single conversation lead to a daily reminder of positivity and warmth.

So although it’s nerdy and may seem entirely out of place, it felt extremely fitting to use for this spell and as a seed to spread more light into the world.

Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

20 Likes

Long ago, though not so long as you might imagine, a sea dragon left his home in the Far Seas, where all the Old creatures dwell. He was a young and dashing beastie, with shining pearl-pink scales and proud coral horns and great green eyes that gleamed in the dark, dark waters. He was happy in his home with his family and his shark-friends and whale-friends, but he had a curious nature and often he would watch the sun sink below the edge of his endless sea and wonder what might lie beyond it.

One day as the sea dragon basked on the surface, a great white bird perched itself in the fronds of his horns.

“Hello, flying friend!” said the sea dragon.

“Hello, deep friend,” said the bird. “I have been flying very far, thank you for letting me rest in your lovely horns. I will tell you stories of my travels to show my gratitude.”

This was the way of birds, and the sea dragon was very excited by his first visit from one of the feather-folk. The bird told him of many wonderful things–tales of sky dragons who danced in the clouds and firebirds who chased lightning–but the most wondrous were the stories the bird told of a place called Land and the two-legged creatures who lived on it.

“Oh, I would very much like to see this Land!” said the sea dragon. “Tell me, feather-friend, how can I find it?”

“Follow the sun towards Her rest in the day and the red Pole star at night until the waters become green and warm. There you will find Land,” said the bird, and took flight again.

So the sea dragon told the elders of his pod of his journey and he began to swim, following the sun and the red Pole as the bird had told him. He swam for many days and many nights. The waters grew warmer and greener as the bird had said they would, and at last at the edge of the sea he saw dark mounds rising like the coils of the Great Serpent. But these coils did not move. The sea dragon dove onward, splashing his long tail in excitement. He had found Land!

When he next came up from the water, the sea dragon saw a strange pod floating on the surface, filled with the two-leg creatures the bird had described. These were fisherfolk at work in their boats, though the sea dragon did not know to call them that.

I should sink and swim closer,’ the sea dragon thought. ‘It is rude to frighten new friends.

As he swam closer below the surface, the sea dragon spotted a delicious shiny fish, flashing silver in the green water. The sea dragon was very hungry after his long, long journey and he gobbled up the fish. He chomped on his snack and a horrible sharp pain stabbed deep into his tongue. Frightened, he tried to swim away but the pain became worse. Something pulled on the sharp thing in his tongue and he followed it up, hoping it would stop. His gleaming pink head with its proud coral horns broke through the surface with a great splash.

“Ow ow ow!” he roared. “Help me!”

The fisherfolk in their little boats down below his head were not cruel people, but they had never seen a sea dragon before. The roaring beast that surged up from the deep was surprising and strange. They screamed and sped away. They did not know his roars were words, and were too afraid to see that the creature needed help.

“Please come back, Land-friends!” the sea dragon cried after them, but the two-legs only skimmed away faster.

The sea dragon’s horns drooped in despair. His tongue was hurting terribly and he had frightened his new friends! With his head bowed, he swam sadly away to look for a place to rest.

He swam along the edge of Land and found a quiet cove where the water was calm and shallow. As he rested he heard a sound coming from somewhere on Land. It sounded like a bird, but not a bird, and when the sea dragon looked around he spied a two-leg behind a rock. It was smaller than the other ones, and it was curled up on itself like a snail shell. The not-bird sound was coming from it. The sea dragon did not know what crying was, but he knew was sadness was and because sea dragons are friendly beasts he knew he had to help.

The sharp thing in his tongue was still hurting, but he flexed his flippers and wriggled up onto the soft Land to get closer. He bent his long neck down and nuzzled the small two-leg.

“Don’t be sad, small-friend,” he crooned. Sea dragons can make very pleasant sounds.

The two-leg jumped when it felt his nose on its head and it squeaked, but it did not run away. They looked at each other, the young sea dragon and the young human, and the sea dragon smiled.

“Oh. Hello,” said the small human and she put a tiny hand on the sea dragon’s snout. He huffed a ‘hello’ back and the little two-leg laughed.

“Little Land-friend, will you help me?” said the sea dragon.

The human girl did not know the meaning of the creature’s crooning noises. So it is when two beings of different kinds meet for the first time. But she saw how the great beast’s long neck was tensed and the purple blood that dripped onto the sand. When the creature gently opened its mouth, she did not fear the sharp and shining teeth. She looked into the mouth that could have swallowed her whole and spied the trouble straightaway: a fish hook stuck through the poor creature’s tongue! She reached inside, grasped the metal tight, and yanked.

“Ouch!” said the sea dragon and the little two-leg jumped back. His tongue was sore, but the sharp thing was gone!

“Thank you, little Land-friend,” he said and the two-leg smiled. The sea dragon curled his long neck around the little human, cuddling her against his pearly scales, and the two taught each other how to speak. They became fast and dear friends, and even now that the sea dragon’s scales are worn with age and the little human’s hair is white, they still sit together in the cove. For that is the way of sea dragons–where they are welcomed, compassion grows.

Seed to be planted
Filled with potential
Waiting for spring to come
With love and with light
Refract through our hearts
Gleam bold strong and true
Go out into the world
To shine forth anew

Making friends with a sea monster was one of my favorite childhood daydreams. I’m going to write out this story and attach it to this beastie that I made, then leave it somewhere to be found by whoever may need him.

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“No one remembered the books but her. That was the first sentence in The Book of Briars.”

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Oh my goodness !!!

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Who else clicked the link? Is your PDF blank too?

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For those having trouble with the link, maybe this version will work? TheBookofBriars.pdf (109.5 KB)

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Thanks @Viviane, but I’m still getting a blank book with an error. I’ll see what happens tomorrow.

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