The Very Small Fairy
by Ivy Walker
Once upon a time, there was a sweet little fairy named Glenna. She had little pink curls that framed her tiny face, little red rosebud lips, and two pointy little ears on either side of her head. Everything about Glenna was little.
It was to be expected, of course. Fairies are naturally tiny. But not only was Glenna tiny, she was small even for a fairy.
Oh how Glenna longed to be bigger. If she were bigger, she could play catch the snowball with the other fairies. When she tried to catch the snowball, the huge white flower almost knocked her out of the air.
If she were bigger, she could do special assignments for the Fairy Queen. As it was, when she lined up to volunteer to serve the Queen, she was just passed over without being seen.
Glenna knew that if she were bigger, she could make a difference. She could do something great for Fairy Kingdom. Maybe even for the whole world.
So each morning, she would measure herself, hoping against hope that she had grown during the night. But every morning she was just the same size as she had always been. Small.
But one day, as Glenna was standing in line to volunteer for special assignments from the Queen, her luck changed. The guard looked her over, and then looked again. A smile spread across his face. “You’re perfect!” he said, and before Glenna knew it, she was standing in front of the Fairy Queen awaiting her special instructions.
The Fairy Queen saw Glenna and smiled. “What’s your name, little one?”
“Glenna, Your Majesty.”
“Glenna, I have a very important job for you. Are you willing to help me?”
She was so happy it was hard to stand still. “Oh, yes, Your Majesty.” She had waited so long for this day.
“Our people need something stronger to build their houses out of than dirt, sticks, and flowers. When the rains come, many houses are ruined, and fairies have to rush to build new houses before the winter comes.”
Glenna nodded. It was a great chore, and sometimes fairies didn’t get new homes built before the winter. It made for long, hard winters.
“The good news is that we have found something new to use, but it is rather difficult to get. We need a very small fairy so she will not be seen. Will you help us?”
Glenna nodded, and the Fairy Queen leaned forward to tell her their plans.
That night, Glenna slowly tiptoed into a little boy’s bedroom and stared up at the giant bed. She was scared, but she knew the fairies were depending on her.
She flew up to get a closer look, and sure enough, right inside the little boy’s mouth, right where the Fairy Queen had said it would be, was a loose tooth, just hanging on by a thread.
She gathered up her courage, and flew close to the large mouth and yanked the tooth out. It gave a little pop and Glenna almost fell out of the air. But she held on to the tooth, and she held her breath. The little boy rubbed his face and rolled over, still sleeping.
Glenna smiled. This was going to work! She gently lifted a shiny quarter out of her little knapsack and placed it under the boy’s pillow. Fairies weren’t thieves, after all.
They would pay every child for every tooth they gathered.
Glenna almost giggled with joy when she imagined the little boy’s delight in the morning as he found the hole where his tooth used to be and the shiny new quarter under his pillow.
Glenna returned to the Fairy Palace, and the Fairy Queen was overjoyed at her success. The fairies would now have something stronger to build their homes out of…human teeth! They celebrated with a large feast, and Glenna herself was the guest of honor.
Over time, word began to spread that loose teeth soon turned into quarters while children slept. Children began to anticipate Glenna coming. They tried to wiggle their teeth out as soon as possible and place them under their pillows, so that they too would receive a shiny new quarter.
Glenna was very good at her job. No child ever saw her. Some guessed that the mysterious quarters appearing could only be the work of fairies. They even went so far as to give her a name. They called her the Tooth Fairy.
And Glenna was happy. She didn’t mind being so small anymore. She was doing something important, and she hadn’t had to grow bigger to do it after all.
1. What did Glenna long for most?
2. What special job did the Fairy Queen give Glenna?
3. What did Glenna leave under the boy’s pillow?
4. What did the fairies build their homes with?