I was sorry to say goodbye to Cranberry and her family yet still eager for Firefly’s tour to commence. She led me near to water’s edge where we drank in the earthy perfume of our surroundings and dazzled as the sun danced across the water.

We were having the loveliest of times till the lake monster appeared. For a monster, he seemed rather contented, but Firefly and I weren’t taking any chances. We scurried along as quickly as possible after I took a picture. (Firefly later reprimanded me for that)

As we finally sat down to catch our breathes, she told me of the monster and his history with the inhabitants.  The lake monsters have long had a residence in Lake Norman State Park, but no one really knows how they got there. Though the accounts differ of their origins, one thing remains the same. They have terrorized society. Dozens of attempts have been tried to capture them, but each one ends in failure. The most infamous plot was to catch one by using a monster sized hook and bait. That night, the citizens were awakened by the sound of thrashing water. Thinking the monster had finally been caught, they rushed towards the trap. All they found was an empty hook. The monster had broken off the barb and swum away with the bait. The hook can still be seen today as pictured above.

When we were ready to move on, Firefly took me around to a few note worthy places. The first was the fairy amphitheater. Her eyes shone when she recounted the numerous nights she spent acting in front of applauding audiences there.

Secondly, she showed me the elven council meeting place. All they had for chairs were three large rocks, but I learned those rocks were of great importance. Only the wisest of all elves had the honor of sitting there.

This I learned was the end of my tour. She led me to the end of the woods where I once again met the horrid gate. Before, I had been hesitant to say hello to this Fairyland. Now I was hesitant to say goodbye. But I knew it was something that had to be said. I whispered promises of return then headed home. I look forward to seeing Firefly again, but for now, I’ll have to be content with my memories.

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Trying to say goodbye
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Back in civilization
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