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My name is Ellie, which is short for Ellyandra, but I don’t really like that name. Today is my 14th birthday. To you that may not seem like a very big accomplishment but in my village turning 14 is the entrance to adulthood. I personally think its funny how young we enter adulthood, especially since we’re immortal. I am an elf and I live in a village of only elves. When you turn fourteen you are allowed to leave the village and go into the forest, but you can’t go too far or you’ll run into the human world. I have been told ever since I was a child that the human world is full of scary things that make too much noise and ugly mean people. For some reason I never really believed my parents when they told me that, I always thought that there has to some nice humans, even if there is only one. The last week couldn’t have gone any slower, every night I would dream of the forest that our village opened up to and everyday I would get up early so I could walk past the gate on my way to school. It was about an hour or so before I would be able to travel into the forest by myself and my mom was checking to make sure I had everything for the tenth time. When she finally finished asking me if I had everything she got serious and told me that she needed to tell me some very important information. She started of saying that our village full of magic and that there was so much that it just floated around in the air, which I already knew. But what she said next is what really surprised me.
“Ellyandra dear, when you walk through the gate at the front of our village you will grow to human height. Right now the magic in our village shrinks everything and contains it within the village once it enters the gate. So when you go through the gate you will be in the forest and if you turn around the tree in front of you will have a gap at the bottom of it that is about six inches tall. That is the outside entrance to our village.” She said in her worried mother tone.
I was so confused I hardly knew what to say. I ended up asking her what she meant because I didn’t feel like I was shrunken at all. She replied that was the cool thing about the magic; it always felt real. Then I asked why our village was shrunk and we didn’t live with the humans, with a growing curiosity. She told me that it was to keep us safe from the humans. She also told me about how we tried to live with the humans a long time ago but it didn’t work because they would shun us and they would treat us differently so we moved here into our current village to hide from them. She said that it took ten young elves to give up all of their magic to shrink the village, and their magic is the magic that floats around in the air.
Finally it was time. The ceremony had started and I was standing next to my mom. She was crying because she was so happy for me. I was so excited I wanted to just run right through the gate before the ceremony had even finished because I wanted to see the forest so bad. It felt like the ceremony went on for an eternity. Finally it was over and I was practically jumping up and down. I stepped into the magic shield and my body got a funny tingly feeling and it was so bright I had to close my eyes. I had a time limit of one hour in the forest since it was my first time there and I could get lost or injured or lost or something like that. To be honest though I think you would have to be a pretty stupid elf to get lost or injured because we can use magic to get us out of those types of situations. When I opened my eyes again I was standing in a dense forest. I turned around and looked down to the bottom of the tree I was standing in front of, and there it was a small whole just like my mom told me. I don’t know why I wanted to meet a human so bad maybe it’s just to prove my mom wrong. Within a few minutes I wasn’t to far from the edge of the forest and I was taking the banana out of my back pack so just incase I ran into a human they couldn’t see my ears. Just as I finished putting it on I heard a twig break behind me. I turned around and just caught a glimpse of something running behind a tree. I was hoping that it was a human, since it was too tall to be any animal I had ever seen before.
“Hello, is someone there?” I asked in a gentle voice.
I waited for a few seconds, and just as I was about to turn around again a boy came out from behind the tree. We looked each other down then stared into each others eyes intently. I was thinking how beautiful his eyes were, for I had never seen an elf with those gray-green eyes before. I just couldn’t stop focusing on the color of them.
“You have the most beautiful eyes I have ever seen.” I said in a daze and without the knowing that I was actually talking.
“I don’t know about my eyes but yours are true beauty, their so rich and kind, they are more beautiful than gems.” He said in such a lovely voice it made me go week in the knees. That one sentence right there proved my mom wrong.
“My name is Ellie, what’s your name?” I asked
“Dakotah, where did you come from I don’t think I’ve ever seen you around here before.” He questioned me with a funny look on his face.
“I’m not from around here I just was passing by and decided to take a walk through the woods.” I said desperately hoping that didn’t sound suspicious at all.
“Oh ok.” He said and his face softened again. Then out of no where he got a giant ear to ear grin on his face. At first it kind of scared me but then it made me smile too. He then asked me if I wanted to come to his house but I told that I couldn’t today. The reason I couldn’t was because I only had fifteen minutes left in my hour. I told him that I would come back another day. Of course he asked when that time would be and I told a week from today at about noon. His smile came back again and his eyes shimmered.
“You won’t forget me will you?” he asked in such a caring but worried voice that it shocked me.
“Of course I won’t.” I replied “you won’t forget me either will you?” I asked worried that he might actually forget me.
“No I won’t I will think of you everyday and dream of your beautiful eyes every night until we meet again.” He answered in a voice that was so intense with emotion that my heart felt like it skipped a beat. We then said our goodbyes and promised to meet each other in this spot a week from now at noon, and to make it official we shook on it. I walked back to my village tree slowly. I was thinking about Dakotah’s beautiful eyes and loving voice. Suddenly the alarm on my watch went off, almost giving me a heart attack, telling me that I had five minutes left to get back in time. I choose to use magic to bring me back so I didn’t have to walk the whole way. When I got there I used the remaining time I had to clear my head so I would be in a Dakotah daze when I went through the gate. I walked back through the gate and everyone was still there. They all cheered and I heard voices from all over asking me if I saw any animals or other questions like that. I answered everyone’s questions and by the time I was done and back home I was exhausted.
“Mom what happens if one of us were to meet a human in the forest and fall an love with them?” I tried to ask with the tone of random curiosity so she didn’t know I met Dakotah.
“Well they would be banished from our village and all of their magic would be removed if they insisted on staying with the human. But if they would be willing to give up there love for the human they can live in our village and their story will not be kept quite, for the most part anyway because everyone loves a little gossip.” She answered calmly.
“Why is that? Why can’t they just accept that persons love for the human and let them be together in the village?” I asked sounding slightly more agitated than I would have liked to.
“Well honey if they accept one situation like that they have to accept them all and we can’t trust that many humans with the secret of our life and our village. And besides honey if we did accept that and allow it to happen, we elves would constantly be falling in love with humans because they are mysterious and different to us so we are naturally attracted to them.” She replied in a tired voice.
“Oh, yeah, I guess I never thought of it that way” I said sadly. “When is the next time I can go into the forest?” I asked trying to switch the topic.
“If you really wanted to you could go back tomorrow since you’ve been out there once and you made it back safely in your time limit. You are now free to go into the forest whenever your little heart may desire, as long as you have your homework done.” She said while looking at me with a puzzled look on her face.
“Well I think I’ll do that then, if it’s ok with you.” I said nervously.
“Like I said before as long as you have your homework done that’s fine.” She answered in the same previous tired voice.
The next day came and I finished all of my homework before noon so that I would have plenty of time to be in the forest. When I went into the forest I planned to concentrate more on the scenery and the wild life, since I wasn’t scheduled to meet Dakota for another six days. I noticed today how beautiful the trees and bird’s songs were. For a whole hour I just sat leaning against a tree listening and watching. A little bunny came bouncing by and it looked up at me, then went right on it’s way again. After it was far enough away that I shouldn’t scare it I want back into the village. For the rest of the week I went to school like I normally did and waited for Saturday to roll around. When Saturday did finally come I woke up extra early to finish my homework so my mom would have to let me go. I got out to our meeting spot a little early so I decided to sit down and wait. I started thinking about how it was kind of chilly outside and before I knew it I was dozing off. When I started waking up I felt quite a bit warmer and I thought I felt someone holding my hand. I opened my eyes and saw Dakotah right next to me facing me. I looked down and saw a sweatshirt lying on top of me and then I looked back up at Dakota.
“I thought you looked cold so I my sweatshirt on you and your hand was down on the ground and it was freezing so I was trying to warm it up by holding it.” He said fast and in a slightly embarrassed tone.
“Oh thank you that’s so kind of you, and I apologize for falling asleep I didn’t mean to.” I replied.
“No that’s fine I haven’t been here for very long,” he paused, “and you look really cute when your asleep.” He answered kind of quietly and while blushing a little. “So do you want to come to my house now? It’s warmer there.” He asked changing the subject masterfully.
“I’d love to, thank you.” I said giggling.
We walked to his house together. He held my hand as he led, but he still managed to stay by my side, which made me happy. His house was pretty large and was made out of wood. It was way more beautiful than any of the houses in the elf world; most of our houses are made out of sod. There was a little girl playing in the front yard.
“Lindsay,” Dakotah called. “Come meet Ellie.” The little spun around and came running towards us at the sound of his voice.
“Hi Ellie, I’m Lindsay, I’m Dakotah’s little sister, I’m Seven.” She announced proudly.
“Hello Lindsay it’s nice to meet you.” I replied.
For the next half hour the three of us played a variety of games ranging from house to soccer. I had so much fun that I never wanted to leave but I knew I would have to eventually. After I had been there for an hour I thought it was probably time to get back to the village.
“Dakotah, Lindsay I have to go now.” I said.
“Do you really have to go Ellie I don’t’ want you to I want you to stay here forever with Dakotah and me.” Lindsay whined.
“I know Lindsay I want to stay too, but I’ll be back ok?” I tried to say in a loving and reassuring voice so she’d forgive me.
“Ellie I’ll walk with you to our meting spot.” Dakotah said freeing me from Lindsay.
“Thank you, I’d really appreciate that.” I replied. Then I Bent down and gave Lindsay a big hug and said goodbye to her. We walked to our meeting spot holding hands once again. We stopped and I took off his sweatshirt and gave it back to him.
“You can keep it if you want to, it’s ok with me.” He said in his beautiful voice.
“I would love to but I would get in more trouble than you could ever imagine if I did.” I said
“Oh ok I understand. You will come back right?” he asked with hope in his voice.
“Yeah, I promise I will, I don’t know if I could stay away.” I told him with a sad giggle. I walked all the way back to the tree without looking back because I knew that if I looked back I would have to turn around. When I got home I moped around the house until my mom got back, and when she did I asked her about dad. She told me about how after was born he gave up all of his magic to help restore the magic wall shrinking the village. She also told me about how they met and everything like that. I asked if he was her first love, she paused for a minute then said no. Of course then I asked who it was, she paused again then said he was a human. I was in so much shock that my mouth fell open.
“You fell in love with a human!” I almost yelled.
“I’d prefer if you wouldn’t shout I so the whole village can hear you, but yea I did and it was a very long time ago.” She said calmly.
“Don’t they have the most beautiful eyes ever mom?” I asked before I realized how much trouble that question would get me into.
“Yes they do, they are so much different then elf eyes, they come in so many different colors unlike us.” She said dreamily. “Wait a second, Ellyandra Ann Smith how do you know what human eyes look like?” She asked sharply.
“I don’t know, I’m just guessing.” I lied pathetically.
“No please don’t tell me you met a human, honey please tell me you didn’t.” She said sounding completely desperate.
“I can’t lie to you mom. I met a human and I think I have fallen in love with him. He’s just so kind mom and he has the most beautiful eyes” I said almost in tears.
“I know the story honey, it did happen to me too.” She replied reassuringly.
For the rest of the day we talked about our human love stories and about what I could do. At the end of that long day I had decided that I would leave him a note in our meeting spot telling him the truth about me. When I woke up the next morning I felt horrible and it only got worse as I tried to write a note for him. I finally decided on what it would say.
“My dearest Dakota,
We have only met a few times now and we are still learning abut each other, but I already feel a strong love for you. I have to tell you the truth now though. I am truly an elf and to have a relationship with a human is highly forbidden. I wish I could be with you at least one last time but I know that would only make it harder to say goodbye. I will think of you and Lindsay daily, and always miss the fun we shared.
Your eternal love,
Ellyandra Ann Smith”.