HOW THE FAIRY VIOLETLOST AND WONHER WINGS.BY MARIANNE L. B. KER.Author of" Eva's Victory," "Syi Grey," &'c.ILLUSTRATED BY J. A. MARTIN.LONDON: :GRIFFITH AND FARRAN, ST. PAUL'S CHGROCt ARABD.PRICE FOURPENCE.y.
I|The Baldwin LibraryU iversityR 1 1Honda
id ivA/ ""AF-Q 4/c t 47'"-s -F / I* _-y.4I~ii~
HOW THE FAIRY VIOLETLOST AND WONHER WINGS.BY MARIANNE L. B. KER.Author of" Eva's Victory," " Sybil Grey," &'c.ILLUSTRATED BY J. A. MARTIN.LONDON:GRIFFITH AND FARRAN, ST. PAUL'S CHURCH YARD.1872.
This page contains no text.
HOW THE FAIRY VIOLETOST AND > ON fER 7 INGS.HIE Fairy Violet lived in the heart of a beautiful forest, where,through the glad spring months, the sun shone softly, and thebright flowers bloomed, and now and then the gentle rain fellin silver drops that made every green thing on which they restedfresher and more beautiful still. At the foot of a stately oak nestleda clump of violets, and it was there the wee fairy made her home.She wore a robe of deep violet, and her wings, which were of themost delicate gauze, glistened like dew-drops in the sun. All daylong she was busy at work tending her flowers, bathing them in thefresh morning dew, painting them anew with her delicate fairy brush,or loosening the clay when it pressed too heavily upon their fragileroots; and at night she joined the elves in their merry dance uponthe greensward. She was not alone in the great forest; nearher were many of her sister fairies, all old friends and playmates.
4There was the Fairy Primrose in a gown of pale yellow, and Cowslip,who wore a robe of the same colour, but of a deeper shade. Therewas the graceful Bluebell, and the wild Anemone, the delicate Wood-sorrel, and the Yellow Kingcup. The Fairy Bluebell wore a robethe colour of the sky on a calm summer's day, Anemone and Wood-sorrel were clad in pure white, while Kingcup wore a gown ofbright amber. One day, as the Fairy Violet was resting from thenoonday heat on the open leaves of her favourite flower, a noisy troopof boys, just set free from school, came dashing at full speed throughthe forest " Hallo there is a nest in that tree," cried one, and hetrod ruthlessly on the violets as he sprang up the trunk of the ancientoak. The Fairy Violet was thrown to the ground, with a shock thatleft her for a time stunned and motionless. When she recovered,the boys were gone, and the flower in which she had been resting laycrushed and dying on the ground. Filled with tender pity at thesight, Fairy Violet hastened to tend her wounded charge, taking nothought for her own injuries. "Dear Violet, be comforted," shewhispered softly, as she raised the drooping flower from the ground;" I will try to make you well." Then she took her fairy goblet andfetched a few drops of dew from a shady place which the sun had notyet reached, to revive the fainting flower, and bound up the brokenstem with a single thread of her golden hair. But it was all in vain,and the fairy, after wrapping an acorn in soft moss, and placing it fora pillow beneath the head of the fast fading Violet, left it to try her skillon the other flowers. A faint fragrance from the dying flower thankedher, as she turned sadly away to pursue her labour of love. It wasnot till she had raised and comforted all the drooping flowers andbound up their wounds, that the Fairy Violet thought of herself.
"Then she discovered that her delicate gossamer wings were gone!Evidently they had been caught on a crooked stick as she fell to theground and torn violently off, for there the remnants now hung,shrivelled and useless, flapping in the breeze. At this sight the haplessfairy threw herself by the side of the now withered Violet, and weptbitterly. When spring and the spring flowers were gone, and theirwork was ended, Violet and her sister fairies had been wont to spreadtheir wings and fly back to fairy-land, to report to the Queen whatthey had done, and to receive from her reward or blame, according asthey had performed their task well or ill. Now this happy prospectwas over for poor Violet. " I shall never see fairy-land again !" shemurmured, and wept anew at the thought.The violets whom she had tended so lovingly were very sorry forher grief, and shook their heads gently in the breeze, till theirfragrance filled the air, and stole softly round the weeping fairy.But though they comforted, they could not help her. Presently sherose, and glided swiftly through the tall grass, till she reached theflower where the blue robed fairy was resting after her day'swork."Oh, sister Blue Bell," she cried, "I have lost my wings!Where shall I get another pair, that I may fly back to fairy-land withyou and my sisters when our work is done ?" Then Bluebell shookher head sorrowfully, till all her sweet bells chimed-" I am sorry !I am sorry !" but she could not help her sister Violet." Perhaps Cowslip will know," she suggested.But Cowslip bade her try what Woodsorrel would say, and"Woodsorrel thought perhaps Kingcup might know, so Violet
6went about from one to another, till she was ready to cry again withvexation.Then all the fairies gathered round her and tried to comfort her." Let us ask the owl that sits in the hollow oak," said the gentleAnenome, gliding to Violet's side; "he must be very wise, forhe never smiles, and seldom speaks more than three words at atime.".'So that night, when the moon lit her silver lamp in the sky, insteadof dancing, as was their wont, with the elves upon the greensward,they all repaired to the hollow oak to seek an audience of the owl.They had to repeat their errand two or three times before he under-stood it, for the owl was as slow of understanding as he was ofspeech, and then, having nodded his head solemnly for five minutes,and winked and blinked for quite ten, he said solemnly:-" Try the King of the Fire Spirits !"After which he relapsed into silence, and obstinately refused tosay any more. Then the Fairy Violet bade farewell to all her friends,and set out on her journey to the King of the Fire Spirits. She hada long way to go, for the Fire-King held his court in the very centreof the earth, and she might have lost herself in the dark passageshad not the glowworm lent her his lamp. She had saved him oncewhen a hungry bird would have carried him off in her beak, andfrom that time the glowworm had loved the gentle fairy, and alwaysburned brightest when she was by.The Fairy Violet travelled very quickly, scarcely touching her feetto the ground, but passing onward with,a swift gliding motion thatwas very beautiful; still it was three days and three nights before
7she reached the kingdom of the Fire Spirits, for she had four thousandmiles to go.Had she not been a fairy, she must have been scorched to deathas she entered the Fire-King's domain, for the streets were pavedwith molten iron, and flames kept bursting forth in all directions, inwhich she could perceive strange wild figures, some leaping to and froin mad fantastic glee, playing at ball with lumps of burning coal;others manufacturing volcanic fire in their monstrous furnaces.They ceased their employment when they saw Violet, and cameand knelt before her in wondering admiration. She looked sobeautiful as she came floating towards them in her soft violet robe,with her fair hair rippling in golden waves to her very feet, thatthey thought she must be an angel who had strayed down from amongthe bright stars to their gloomy dwelling-place, for they had neverseen a fairy before.They were moved with compassion when they heard her sad tale,and at once led her before their King, who was seated on a throneof molten gold, with red and yellow flames curling up and archingover him for a canopy, and a crown of fire on his head. He lookedrather fierce, but received Violet very graciously, and at once orderedhis head blacksmith to make the little fairy a new pair of wings.Violet was a little startled when she found that these were made offire, and were to be fastened on her shoulders with bands of liquidgold, but the King assured her that they were the very best oftheir kind." There is nothing so powerful as fire," he cried, with a fierceexultant laugh; waving his fiery sceptre in the burning atmosphereso wildly, that though Violet thought he had been very kind to her,
and bade him a very grateful farewell, she was yet not at all sorryto be safely out of his domains.How fresh and green the earth looked as she emerged from thedark caverns that led to the Fire-King's palace, and rested her hotfeet on the cool grass! But when eager to tell her friends of hersuccess, she began to try the Fire-King's present, a general cry ofdismay and terror broke forth." Sister Violet, you are killing our flowers," cried the fairies,reproachfully." Oh, I am burning I am burning !" shrieked the grass." Cruel fairy I you have killed us !" murmured the insects, as, withscorched wings, they fell helpless to the ground." Alas!" said Violet weeping," I am bringing death and destruc-tion wherever I go. I will fly back to fairy-land before I work moremischief."But the birds looked down from their nests wild with terror )atthe thought." You will kill us if you fly up here with your burning wings,"they chirped piteously. "You will scorch us to death," shoutedthe trees, tossing their heads angrily in the breeze." Ah, gentle fairy, have pity on us !" cooed the dove; " did I notcomfort you when your pet violet died ?"" Have I not sung to you at night when you were weary withdancing ?" warbled the nightingale."Have we not sheltered you from the fierce heat of the sun, andthe beating of the pitiless rain " rustled the trees, indignantly." Heartless !" muttered the wind, rushing rudely past her; "toinjure those who love you so much."
" I shall never see fairy-land again " murmured Violet. But shehad too gentle a heart to persist, so she sadly retraced her steps, andbade the Fire-King take back .his fatal gift.That evening, she and her sister fairies went to the owl and toldhim of the ill success of her mission. The owl heard her to the endwith great gravity, and then said, severely : " Of course Anyone withany sense would have known that wings forged by the Fire Spiritsm iit burn everything they touched."Violet would have liked to remind him that it was he who badeher go to the King of the Fire Spirits, but he looked so very severe,as he sat blinking solemnly in the moonlight, that she was afraid, andonly said, humbly-" Please what shall I do now ?"" Go to the King of the Snow Spirits, of course !" said the owl,rather crossly, for he wanted to go to sleep ; "if fire is too hot, youhad better try snow."" Alas! what shall I do ?" said Violet, very sadly. "The Snow-King lives far off by the North Pole, and I have no wings to bear meto him over the seas."Then a gentle fluttering was heard in the trees, and a sea-birdalighted at Violet's feet." Beautiful fairy," he sang, softly, " do you not remember now,three springs ago, when the trees were clothing themselves anew intheir green raiment, and the flowers were springing up among thefresh grass, you bound up my leg, which the hunter had woundedwith his cruel gun; and fed me daily with luscious fruits, and gave meto (dink of sparkling dew till I recovered ? I vowed then that I would
10one day repay you, and now my chance has come. Mount on myback, sweet Violet, and I will carry you to the Snow-King."Then Violet thanked him joyfully, and seated herself on his back;and the sea-bird flew away with her far over the hills and vales, andpleasant fields, and beyond the great ocean till he reached thepalace of the Snow-King.The Palace was built of blocks of ice, filled in with snow, andarched over with a graceful snowdrift for a roof; while lofty colon-nades of snow, supported by pillars of ice, led the way to theaudience chamber, which glistened with diamonds and crystalsof the most sparkling brilliancy. The Snow-King wore on his heada crown of ice-diamonds, while from his shoulders hung gracefullya pure white cloak, fringed with glittering icicles and fastened at theneck with a crystal brooch.Violet shivered a little as she entered this coldly beautiful palace,for she was accustomed to bask all day long in the warm sunshine,and had -never trod on anything colder than the soft grass; but shequickly recovered herself, and gliding with a swift graceful movement tothe foot of the Snow-King's throne, she bent on one knee before him,and told him for what she had come.Then the Snow-King looked kindly upon the little fairy, andraised her gently with his ice-cold hands." Beautiful fairy," he said, " you are the first of your race whoever visited my kingdom, and never have I seen aught so radiantlylovely before. Your wish is granted, I only would it were twice ascostly ;" and, turning to the snow-spirits, who were gathering lovinglyround the bright being who had ventured so boldly into their ice-
bound regions, he bade them mould wings of the purest and mostdelicate snow for their fairy visitant. Then the King lay back onhis throne, and looked at the sweet modest face of the little fairy,and at her graceful form, with the bright hair rippling in sunnywaves over the violet robe, till, moved by some sudden impulse,he came and knelt down at Violet's feet." Sweet fairy," he said, as Violet turned her wondering eyes uponhim, " I have long ruled as monarch among my Snow-Spirits, and Ihave been very proud of the cold splendour of my palace, with itsglittering crystals and pillars of ice, and I have laughed when theFire-King has taunted me from afar with its lack of warmth andcolour, for I cared not for either; but now it seems to me that thebright gleam of your golden hair, and the warm glow of yourviolet robe, are far more beautiful than my ice-diamonds and sparklingcrystals, and that my palace will be very bleak and desolate whenyou have gone. Stay with us, gentle fairy, and be my queen."Then all the Snow-Spirits gathered eagerly round Violet, andcried, "Stay with us, and be our Queen !"Violet shivered as their icy-breath blew upon her, and her handgrew cold in the Snow-King's frozen clasp; but she turned tohim, and said, very gently, for she was sorry to give him pain, " Icannot leave my beautiful fairy-land to become your Queen. Ishould pine away in your beautiful ice-palace, for I love the warmsunshine and the bright flowers, and the soft breath of balmy spring,and this .cold air would kill me. So do not ask me again, nobleKing, for I cannot say yes, and it grieves me to say no."Then the Snow-King urged her no more, but went back to histhrone, and watched her with sIch sad, wistful eyes, that Violet's
12heart ached, and she was glad when they brought her the wingsthat she might fly away.They were very beautiful, made of soft feathery snow, and fastenedto her shoulders with crystal buckles.Violet knelt down and kissed the King's hand, thanking himgratefully for his kindness, and praying him to forgive her anypain she had caused him; and then flew away side by sidewith her faithful bird. The Snow-King watched her till thebright sheen of her hair, and the soft flutter of her wings could nolonger be seen, and then turned back, sad and lonely, to hispalace. /But Violet was very happy; " I shall see fairy-land again ; bright,beautiful fairy-land!" she sang softly to herself over and over.But when the frozen seas were past, and she was hovering oncemore above the land, the sun shone full upon her, the snow-wingsmelted away, and she fell helplessly to the ground."Dear Violet, are you hurt ?" asked the Fairy Anenome, bywhose side she had fallen. But Violet could not speak. She hidher face in Anenome's white robe, and wept bitterly." Dear sister Violet," said Anenome, winding her arms.lovinglyround the weeping fairy, "be comforted. This night we will gotogether and seek an audience of the Owl. Perhaps he will give uswiser counsel this time."" The Owl only mocks me," said Violet; "I will not ask counselfrom him again."Then Anenome was silent, for she knew not what else to advise,"and only tried to show her pity by tender words and caresses. ButFairy Kingcup lifted up her bright face, and said, cheerily :
13" Why not try the Wizard of the Black Rock ? IHe lives a longway off, but he is the wisest magician that ever lived; and if anyone can help our sister Violet, it is he."Violet shook her head sorrowfully."I do not know the way," she said."I will lead you," hummed a bee, from the deep cup of acowslip." And I will sing you my merriest songs to cheer you by the way,"warbled a thrush, circling lovingly round her head."And I," cried the glowworm, "will light you at night with mygolden lamp.""We all love you, Fairy Violet, because you are so gentle andgood," they sang in chorus; and Violet lifted her head, comforted,and smiled a sweet, joyous smile, as she bade farewell to her sisterfairies.It was a long journey that she undertook, for the Wizard of theBlack Rock lived quite at the other end of the earth.Sometimes a benighted traveller, hurrying homewards, fancied hesaw a golden light flash like lightning past his dazzled eyes, or hearda warbling of sweet music, delighting for an instant his bewilderedears; but light and music were gone in a moment, and he neverguessed that it was the Fairy Violet who had passed him as sheglided onward with her three faithful attendants to seek the Wizardof the Black Rock.At length they reached the great Black Rock, which rose up, grimand forbidding, from a wide, desolate plain. The bee sank downhumming cheerfully, at the base, the thrush perched himself on a
projecting ridge, and the glowworm hid himself behind a tuft ofwithered grass.Violet advanced boldly to the small black door, studded with ironnails, which was standing open, guarded only by a black dwarf of preter-natural ugliness. He turned asthe beautiful fairy came floating towardshim, and led the way silently through dark long passages, and upnarrow winding stairs to his master's chamber. It was a small darkroom, lighted only by a silver lamp of great brilliancy, which stoodon a table by the fire-place, where, though the month was May, andthe weather bright and sunny, there burned a dim, smouldering fire.The Wizard, whose silvery locks contrasted strangely with the sur-rounding gloom, bent over a book; its jewelled clasps were rustedwith age, each page was enriched with coloured tracery. He wasvery old. More than a hundred years had elapsed since it wasfirst rumoured that a famous magician had taken up his abode in theBlack Rock, and all that time he had spent in studying the greatblack book of magic spells that lay open before him. No wonderhe was wise and learned!The dwarf shut the door with a sullen resentful clang, and Violetwas left alone with the great magician.She glided to his side, and knelt down meekly before him.But the Wizard, deep in his abstruse studies, did not hear her;and Violet felt a sensation of awe creeping over her as she notedhis abstracted gaze, and looked on the high, arched forehead wrinkledwith centuries of years and study. Suddenly the magician turned,muttering some strange words in an unknown tongue, and, as hedid so, his eyes fell upon Violet.A remembrance of some by-gone spell of grace and beauty seemed
Ji Tt- L L_ -_: __T T-- fil L-- -------- .: ti L I ITT r--_-:,-ZIr:ii rt ; if i s P I HUC nlf I i fTYI&Et S r Ilit irlil'1 a:jC 16 I r ;ii I'-i1I iii:i Ei I., .:I/jjm i- C F;r I%/;2 n-r`ti2jZ i l'ar7 y `YiuZ d- vLjil s c; 1 Y c;rgt?r-x-;/
to stir the Wizard as he looked upon the bright-haired fairy, to whoseupturned face the light of the silver lamp had lent a fairer radiance,for his deep voice softened as he spoke to her, and he laid his handgently on her head while she told her story.When she had finished, he remained musing for some time insilence." I know no spells that will serve where the Spirits of Snow and ofFire have failed," he said at length, with unwonted gentleness. " Noone can help thee here but thine own loving heart. Kind words,gentle deeds, faithful service, patient waiting-from these alone canbe wrought the wings, which will be slight enongh for thy delicateframe to bear, and yet powerful enough to withstand every trial. Goforth then, gentle fairy, to thy daily tasks, and wait patiently till thegreat Mother Nature herself give thee thy reward."" Thanks, kind magician," said Violet, with a bright smile; " youhave given me a pleasant task to do."Then kissing gratefully his withered hand, she went on her way,and the aged Magician thought his silver lamp burned dimly,and his cell grew dark when she had left."Could not the great wizard help you? " cried her threefriends, sorrowfully, as, gliding past the black dwarf that guardedthe entrance, she stepped out into the open air." Could he not help you?" echoed her sister fairies, when shere-entered once more the old forest." Alas! is there no help for you, sweet Violet ?" wept the wind,wandering in and out amongthe lofty trees, rocking and swaying themlike slender bulrushes in his fierce sorrow.But to each and all Violet replied only by a glad quiet smile
16"Patience !" she said, gently; " Mother Nature will help mein her own time."So she returned to her work among the violets; and when theyhad all died, and the spring had gone, and her sister fairies flewaway to fairy-land, she still smiled, though a little sadly, andbade them farewell without a shade of discontent in her brave,gentle voice." Now, I must find some work," she said to herself, when herwistful eyes could no longer discern the flutter of their wings in theazure sky.And she soon found plenty to do.Now it was binding up the wound of some stricken bird, or raisingsome crushed flower, and sprinkling its drooping leaves with coolingdew, and now it was closing the eyelids of a tired child who hadthrown himself down to rest beneath the forest shade, and singingsoftly in his ear a fairy lullaby, till he fell asleep. Sometimes shewould perch herself on the shoulder of some sleeping wayfarer bythe roadside, and whisper in his ear sweet and tender words thatmade him dream of his home, and of the mother sleeping so peace-fully in the churchyard far away, till he started from his sleep andwent on his way with a touched and softened heart. Every dayFairy Violet found some kindly deed to do, and every day MotherNature, looking lovingly on her child, saw the time was drawingnearer when she should receive her reward.One day as she was wandering through one of the by-streets of acrowded city, she was attracted by a plaintive voice that proceeded fromone of the low-roofed, badly built houses.
17"Put the geranium where I can see it, mother," the voice wassaying, " I love to lie back and watch it."A woman came forward at these words and altered the positionof the plant, which Fairy Violet had already noticed as beingrather faded, and in want of her skill to brighten the colours."It is very washy-like," she said regretfully, "I doubt thisstuffy air is killing it."" Will it live as long as I shall ?" asked the plaintive voice.There was no answer, but Violet saw that the mother's handsshook as they busied themselves with the flower."I hope it will," the voice continued, with a sort of wistfuleagerness, " for it is such a pleasure to me to watch it. It seems tocomfort me, when the pain is very bad, and I lie awake throughthe long weary night, to look at it and wonder what the littlegarden is looking like in the old home you have told me of sooften, mother, and whether the moon is shining as sweetly there asover our poor house here. I sometimes wonder, too, whether theflowers there are so very much more beautiful than my poor sicklygeranium, and whether if I saw them I should care for it nolonger; and then I think no, that no flower could ever be so beautifulto me as my flower, and that I love it far better, rearing its prettyhead so bravely in this dull stuffy room, than if it bloomed in theloveliest garden that was ever planted. And many a time when Ihave felt a little downhearted, with being a burden to you, mother,and the pain seeming as if it was more than I could bear, it hasseemed to say; 'Patience! poor little Faith, it will be over soon.'Do you think there will be flowers in heaven, mother ?"" Like enough, child," said the woman, dreamily; " there will be
18everything that is beautiful there, I expect," and she heaved a deepsigh. Poor woman! there was little of beauty in her present life,and the country home of which her child had spoken was but afar off recollection to her now."I should like to have it near me when I die," the sick girl wenton, " I have never had a friend you know, mother, but my flower hasseemed to stand in the place of one to me, and I should like to lookat it just at the last."" Lord love you, child don't talk of dying; unless you want tobreak my heart," said the mother, with a tone of sharp impatience inwhich there was more of grief than of anger.While she was speaking, Fairy Violet glided in at the opendoor.The room was poor, but scrupulously clean, and the scanty furni-ture was as bright as diligent rubbing could make it. On a rudecouch, opposite the open window, lay a girl of about sixteen yearsof age, but with a wan-pinched face that made her look ten yearsolder. Constant pain had blanched all the colour she might once havepossessed, and the blue veins showed clearly through the thin trans-parent skin. She turned her head as Violet entered, and a faintflush of pleasure rose on her pale cheeks." Mother! do you smell the violets ?" she exclaimed, eagerly,"the room seems filled with fragrance.""It must be your fancy, child," said the woman wearily; "Ismell nought.".By this time Violet had settled herself in one of the blossoms ofthe geranium, and was busy at work."Look, look, mother !" cried the sick girl again, " this at least is
19no fancy;" and mother and daughter gazed at the flower in amaze-ment as the faded colour grew bright under the fairy's magic touch." 'Tis the moving it to a sunnier spot, or mayhap 'twas the waterI gave it this morning," said the woman, recovering herself witha start. I'll give it a drop more," and she bustled off to getsome, while her daughter lay back and watched the flower witha quiet, restful smile on her patient lips."There is work for me to do here," said Violet to herself, feelingquite happy as she glided from blossom to blossom, touching andre-touching with her delicate brush. So she stayed, and day by daythe flower grew more radiantly beautiful beneath her loving hands,sweetest fragrance filled the room, and softest murmuring of fairymusic floated on the air, which, though the dull senses of motherand daughter failed to interpret rightly, yet stole into their heartsand gave them comfort. Sometimes a vision would come beforeher of the radiant fairy-land from which she was banished, or of herbeautiful forest-home where fragrant flowers had wrapt her in theirdewy leaves, where birds had sung to her from the leafy bowerabove her head, and the bright sun had shone upon her with"genial warmth. But she would quickly banish such thoughts, .andgliding round the room would touch every dull corner with herfairy wand till it shone and brightened with a magic charm,would cast a spell upon the smouldering fire, so that it burned andcrackled cheerily, would lay her cool hand upon the sick girl'sthrobbing brow till the pain abated, and would cast a fairy hazebefore her languid eyes, so that they saw beautiful visions in thechangeful sky.So day by day passed by, till one morning, bending over a glass
20that stood beneath the flower she was painting, Fairy Violet saw herown reflection in the clear water. But she saw something more !A pair of wings of the most delicate gossamer, tipped with silver andsparkling with a marvellous radiance, had sprung from her shouldersand rose almost on a level with her tiny head! Fairy Violet hadwon her wings at last, and the golden gates of Fairyland, wherethe woods and forests were always green, and the valleys everradiant with beautiful flowers, were open to her once more.Wild with joy, she darted out of the window, and was already farabove the tops of the smoky chimneys, when she remembered thepatient suffering girl whose life was slowly wasting away in the closeconfined atmosphere of her miserable home. Then her wings droopedand her bright face clouded over. *" I must not leave my work unfinished," she said, and with a wistfulglance at the white fleecy clouds that seemed to beckon lovingly to her,she returned to the cottage; and the dying girl's last days werebrightened by the fairy presence of which she was so unconscious.She knew not that it was from Violet the murmuring music camethat delighted her wondering ears, that it was to her she owed thesweet fragrance that filled the air, and the soft fresh colouring ofthe flower at which she loved to gaze; but though the gentle fairygot no thanks, she felt well rewarded for her labour of love whenshe saw the peaceful smile that rested on Faith's wasted face, andthe light that beamed in her dark eyes.At last the end came. One evening as the sun was sinking torest in great waves of crimson and gold, Faith asked for her flowerto be brought to her, smiled faintly as her dim eyes rested on it forthe last time, laid her head on her mother's breast, and died. A low
21wailing cry broke from the mother as she felt that never again wouldthe dark eyes be raised lovingly to hers, or the wan face brightenat her approach; but Violet saw what the mother failed to see, thatwhite-robed angels had gathered round the death-bed, and were nowbearing away the freed spirit with strains of triumphant joy. Soshe framed the glorious vision into a song, which she sang in thewoman's ear, and the mother was comforted, though she knew notwhy." 'Tis better so, my poor lamb," she murmured, while tears droppedslowly 6ne by one down her sunken cheeks. " There is no painwhere thou art gone, nor hunger either, and I will join thee thereby-and-bye."Then Violet knew that her work was done, and she flew out ofthe open window, and up into the clear sky, far above the tops ofthe tall chimneys, and some men, who were looking up from thedusty streets at the sunset, wondering whether the next day wouldbe fine or wet, caught a sudden gleam of her silver-tipped wings,and thought it was a flash of summer lightning, and were consciousat the same moment of a delicious fragrance as of violets, and saidthe wind must be from the west, for it was wafting to them countryscents. Fairy Violet laughed as she heard their blundering guesses,a laugh that rippled out on the still air like the chiming of silverbells, and then flew joyously on to thank the Wizard of the BlackRock for his wise counsel. ,But when she reached the Black Rock, she found the magician,wearied out with a succession of sleepless nights spent in abstrusestudy and deep research, had fallen fast asleep, with his venerablehead resting on the mysterious book, and the black dwarf at his feet
22jealously guarding his slumber. So she trimmed his silver lampfor him afresh, so that it burned with a yet more wonderful brilliance,laid a cluster of sweet flowers beside him, and then gladly flittingfrom the gloomy rock, spread her' glistening wings, and darted upinto the air; up, up, far above the tops of the lofty trees, flashinglike a bright vision through the now darkening night. She passedthe silver moon, which was shining calmly down upon the worldshe had just left; she threaded her way in and out among thegolden stars; on, on she went till she saw the beautiful radiantight that never dims, and heard the soft murmuring of sweet music,and smelled the delicious fragrance of Fairy-land.As she passed through the golden gates she heard a great shout of," 'Tis the Fairy Violet!" and instantly all the bells of Fairy-landbegan to ring, and a gay procession of radiant fairies, all dressed intheir fairest robes, came to meet her, and pressed round her withloving welcome and congratulation. " Come to our Queen, for sheis waiting for you," they cried; and led her in triumph up theshining steps of the Fairy Palace, and into the Hall of Pearl, where"the Queen was seated on her throne dispensing the graceful wreaths,which, woven by her own hand, were the choicest rewards bestowedin Fairy-land. It was easy to adjudge the crowns of merit amongthe fairies, for their beauty increased, or waned, according as theyhad done well or ill.Now, every one looking on the Fairy Violet saw that she was themost beautiful of all, for her face was so radiantly lovely, that nonebut the purest fairies could look on it undazzled. So when the Queen,after greeting Violet with her sweetest smiles, had asked, "To whom
23shall I give the fairest crown?" they all shouted unanimously, " Toour Sister Violet!"But Violet lifted her gentle face with a pleading gesture." May it please your Majesty,".she said, earnestly, "I do not desevreto be so highly honoured; my sisters have all done as well as Ihave.""No, little Violet," said the Queen, smiling, "you have done bestof all. We well know what your work has been.-Listen !"Then Violet listened, and she heard a wondrous song, which, risingand falling with each change of the fitful breeze, now broke into awild strain of piercing sweetness, and anon died away into a softmusical murmur like the rippling of fairy streams."That song, little Violet," said the Queen, " is the record of yourlife on earth.-Listen again."They all listened, while the marvellous strain sang of Violet's gentlelife on earth.Not a loving word she had ever said, not a kind deed she had everdone, not a smile her loving arts had brought to the lips of the dyinggirl, not a blessing uttered by the mother unconscious to whom sheowed the peace and quiet of her daughter's last days; not a fragrantbreath from rescued flower, not a song from grateful bird, but addedits sweet note to that marvellous song.Had there been one unkind word, one selfish thought, one crueldeed, the song would have been broken by jarring discords; but allwas harmony, not one harsh note disturbed the rippling melody.As one by. one Violet's beautiful secrets were brought to light,the fairies looked on her with loving admiration, but Violet was quite
ashamed at being praised so openly, and hid her blushing face onAnenome's shoulder.When the story of Violet's deeds was ended, and the wild myste-rious music had lulled into inarticulate murmuring, the Fairy Queenlooked round upon her subjects, and asked once more, " To whomshall I give the fairest crown ?"And all the fairies cried again, more eagerly than ever-" To Violet! To Violet !"Then Violet could refuse no longer, but bent gracefully on oneknee before the throne, while the Queen placed the crown on hershining hair.The wonderful music died away into silence, and was never heardagain, but the court-minstrel who had listened eagerly to its wild strains,caught the beautiful melody, and repeated it on his harp; and tothis day, at fairy-feast and revel, the favourite legend is that whichtells how the Fairy Violet lost and won her wings.
II .' il:":' :illlll: I ri %i as i ;:il...,.....li..,:I:, i .i;?iris:5: 3 1:1'[ 151 :' ll." i :a E Iil E; Ew i;3 1" "E "; "' PB,ii sp 1 r11,,' " ,. 1o :I;R ,:;Ii :iii;:i;: ; i; c F1 ;.. .. :s Eli:il ::II : .,,:.; :"8?:;: 11::1ili::::II ri lR;5 l;l: : ;; " ,CI1 I 'li ,;. i; n; :lj" Il: ;I 1111 1 C r e*::'':, :i c a:;: n ::I" " I',:' '. .: .. .:.",.: :::#:... n I ..:.,.: #i'i :,:l;:;lll '' ."1 1 X : i t:l .: I; ., i:: I* ii: .,:z ,.. .,111 1 1ii:l:illliiiiiiiil;ii1iiil l1 1 1I 1 ir i il i;iE .er,; : ,. ;,a EIICR';Il i l r,: ::i ;i I;n*i l llli::ia .. liF I : HE i- 'I' ';1: 1:l ."I1;"i : 'l'l::iix:. .11: I:il .:: :::s:;.;i.::::...':: .I, :x...I .: ;i :I llij I.l*llii:ni;C;a i i Eli CI : i r li l :::,L-, " "" 1 111' : iiiiiii'Li ;,ri Z:l IRI "E' :Vll " -: el,:si: i:1:,: :'"1':11. 111111!111.1:.::.. :.:i;i. cli:IF1:Il,, '; :11'1',11;- ; "I ,C: I' i : ;: :I "ii::81 ii sBC 'E' :l". """".1..'". .':"."" .1:: 11 11:iiiii:iii:`;jlall: ,.; iliiPiliiil iill liliii iisi:i jiilli;llll ZEi iii.. i :: I.. ,... .:II:: " : ,' I'::'': ': :':' :II 811:: '''"'"' i..ii;;i:-iii" ''I;'"':'' ::; " "::.:il' : r.:..,::! .:'..:.w ,a;. r :ji:I: :,:.:.:!I ;:; :':1:. 1 : ,1...1 1;: ; ., ,.. : : :a i, : : I :;,,._; :I:i.::: i l r : ::.:.- :;;;;;;;;;;"",c: 1.1::, a, ,; ,la ;i i wi : ri, i I : :.:r E" : ,,: ;"w.'; ,i; Eips F1il:, ll,:i:':': E 'I:I: I: :::: :l:8: 1'Cl,::;,,:, IFllli::il:.i, '1h'l1l"BE''::C: ; 1 1 1 2 ;;'E ''; R I,, ::.i.j.,.I : : s .'.lil8"' ^ IY ..: ::: : g :k: : li lj : .i ,I .r I r.I : : : i. ; 'i: 1 :1 .:;:I I:I'E 1 e: :. r g :i.;Eil :;E Z S iiE, ,i :: 1 11: e.r Ril-.I.I-III :6j;A, :' ,I 1:i:':.I :.1 .:; ,.8,,, ,,": ''j ,a in l C; Ii i l"i: ,I li ..:18.:a,:.,r'i :li. B r:" i ": e .. P " .IIi115i l: 'aiIl'li:i'l::: .. ":I: s: :::. :'1;I;.:.;1li;i..,l:l;l:i ::... I.'.:''..":::. .: I;: s ;: si:ll ,IIIi .s:I,--i; i 'i.:I' ':::' 1."::I " .1 i ""i iii ;r;;i: : : r:rl .rE;l:pl l:I. ,,, E :li l r E'':IE, : E :,a I aE l r8' i' '":'n E E .:.: :rila,rls EICIC I Is i! .:;;:I:..: "11'11'1111'''I'"''''''"!I'';;s, ; ;;?:,.;; : ;i in :lil ii ": ii""a:.:r;i I::II, WI
OFSTORIES FOR .CHILDREN.SBY M. L. B. KER.Author Eva's Victry," &c, &c.ITLUSTRATKU BY J. A. MARTIN.SHOW THE FAIRY VIOLET LOST AND WON HERWINGS.Will shortly be publisked.--H. HANS VOGLER.PRICE FOURPENCE.*~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ ", uhra^ Ea itr^ &^,<^. ** *.