Ch 18: In the Flying Machine

Ch 18: In the Flying Machine

Susan the Troll, Timothy the Pixie, and Kempt the Human met early in the morning to building the flying machine.

It ended up taking ten minutes instead of five.

It turned out that the material latterly invented by the trolls was not quite light enough, or strong enough. The machine, which looks like a big spandex butterfly with two seats in the front and two in the back, flapped and flapped on the rocky, dusty, grass-spotted slope outside Susan’s family cave. But no discernable flight occurred.

Timothy, an A-level faery, and thus privy to powers and knowledges beyond the kens of us mortals who actually die, knew what the problem was, but he didn’t want to throw his weight (about half an ounce) around. But when Kempt finally sat down dejected on the sand, his head tucked between his knees, behind his arms crossed over his kneecaps, and Susan patted him uncertainly with the cup of her small, light-green hand; Timothy broke down and said, “I can fix this, but I’ll have to use magic. I’m sorry. There is not another option. Let me show you the physics.”

Kempt and Susan looked up at the hovering wight and then found themselves on their feet, their minds full of a sketches, equations, and understanding. How? How could they instantaneously grasp the physics of butterfly flight and the impossibility of enlisting the same engineering principles on troll/human scales? But magic isn’t fair, and pixies don’t brag, nor do they follow the same rules of other mortals, who bruise tear slash their souls when they sin but are still able to sin.

Pixies don’t have the free choice to harm another creature. When you and I are tempted to greeds prides cruelties and such, we feel within a NO that we then either heed or not; if we don’t heed our inner daemon, then we damage our soul/heart/mind and slip further from the Light with which all is OK and without which nothing is OK. But when a pixie is likewise tempted, his or her soul/mind/body simply shuts down until they turn away from folly. This is divine wisdom. Nothing with as much knowledge and power as a pixie should be allowed to turn away from the Light.

God’s no different. Except that God is even more constrained: God cannot even be tempted away from the Light. This follows mathematically from God’s Nature. Because God is Light; and nothing, especially not True Goodness, can be anything except what it is.

Kempt and Susan sit in the front seat of the mechanical dragonfly (Timothy loves dragonflies – they are an ancient insect, and though limited in understanding, in time their collective soul has learned much about life and the joy of motion) while Timothy alternatively reclines in the back seat; hovers (his little pixie wings laughing in the fresh spring air) around their heads or a little ahead, behind, or off to one side; or sits on their shoulders, or on the dashboard or on the top of a door or wherever.

“Will your magic hold when we leave the Realm of the Mountain Folk?” asks Kempt with a tiny nervous warble in his generally mellow and by all accounts valiant voice. “Oh for sure!” squeaks Timothy. “Outside of the Realm, everything I do becomes a dream wrapped up and influenced by and commenting upon reality, but not actually participating in reality. There will come a time when the dream must end and you and your friends will have to act for real, but acting before you’ve gathered sufficient wisdom, goodness, insight is folly anyway.”

“And Susan?” asked Kempt with a panicked glance towards his new friend, her long dark hair waving behind her, her delicate button nose pointed determinedly towards the future.

Susan and Timothy just laughed, hers light like the dawn, his gossamer as a beam of light.
“Trolls aren’t like pixies! Trolls are just creatures, like bears, lions, dragons, minotaurs, ants, cats, people, griffins … Only pixies are 100% faey. It’s true that everything loses its magic when it leaves the Realm of the Mountain Folk. But magicalness belongs to the essential nature of pixies, so we cannot really even enter any realm: pixies live always in good dreams; pixies are good dreams. This machine is safe within the dream I live and am.”

Kempt nods slowly, biting his lower lip. “Must be nice.”

Timothy laughs his bright, airy, millenia-old pixie-dust-emanating giggle. “Yes! Very nice!”

Author: Bartleby
Editor: Ambergris
Copyright Andrew Mackenzie Watson

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