Snow Elf


An unseasonable snow fell that day and covered the three day old chickpeas. Malena watched them freeze from inside the cabin she shared with her mother and sister. Her mother wept on the bed behind her, hands pressed against her lips. Malena tightened her lamb's wool shawl and slipped out into the snow.

She didn't look at the freezing crop as she crossed to the empty stable. Malena pulled out their two horse blankets. Caked dirt fell to the ground and coarse horse hairs stuck in the blanket's weave prickled her arms.


Malena shuffled back into the snow, sliding her feet along the ground until she kicked one of the stones surrounding their field. She clenched her teeth together and tugged open a blanket. A gust of wind grabbed it, but her fingers on the cloth were like icicles clinging to a roof. Slow as Widow Grimme, she knelt to cover the crops. When she dug in the snow for a stone to secure the blanket, she couldn't feel the cold at all.

A warm hand closed over her shoulder. Malena turned, a smile on her face for her mother, but a stranger stood there. He was willowy with skin as pale as the first frost of the season. His lips were the blueish-gray of a corpse. She felt her throat close in terror, but he smiled.

The man knelt beside her and picked another stone to place on the blanket. Too cold to say anything, Malena scooped up another stone and did the same.

"What is it you do here?" the man asked.

Malena shivered beside him and reached for the next blanket. Heat rushed through her veins when his warm hand grasped her shoulder again. She turned to him in surprise and found him studying her.

"Our plants are dying," she said.

"You wish the snow gone?"

"I love snow," Malena said, "but it's come too early this year."

The stranger raised his fist. The falling snow thinned before stopping altogether. He pulled his hand from Malena's shoulder, but the air seemed warmer than before and she didn't shiver. He shook his head. "Too early. Yes, you're right."

Then Malena saw a delicate point poke from beneath his hair and she remembered the tales her mother told of wicked elves. Her heart pounded, but she wasn't afraid.

"What do you grow?" the elf asked. He lifted a corner of the blanket, brushing away the snow until the new shoots were visible.

"Chickpeas."

"Southerners use them in cakes. Falafel. Have you made any?" His pale eyes were hopeful.

She bit her lip. "No."

He handed her a red jar from a pouch on his belt. "Drizzle this over your next cake and think well of the snow."

Malena wrapped her hands around the warm jar. Stories ended badly for girls who thanked elves. She bowed her head in a nod.

The elf pulled back the blanket. With a wave of his hand the snow on the ground danced to life. It drifted back up into the sky.

"Warmer weather confuses me." The elf watched the snow rise with solemn eyes. "When does the snow fall?"

"Once the plants have grown," Malena said. She glanced back toward the cabin. "You could stay here."

He laughed, a sound like sleigh bells chiming. "I am as the snow. Where it is, so am I."

He stood and Malena grabbed his hand. Her cheeks burned. "When you return, I'll have a falafel for you."

The elf pulled his hand from her grip, but caressed her cheek. "Once the plants have grown," he said.

The elf stepped away from her. When she blinked, both he and the snow ere gone. Malena held the little jar close and walked back to the cabin. A happy illusion.



Wordage: falafel drizzle
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Wordcount: 632

1 comment:

  1. What memories. Serious good times. If a touch long. ;)

    ReplyDelete

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