Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Secret Worlds and Fantastic Creatures: The Key

A lonely little key was lying on the bank of a quiet little stream.
The key was plated with real gold and inlaid with real jewels, and carved in an intricate manner that indicated whoever had made it had worked with extreme care and consideration. Clearly, the key was intended to serve some very special purpose. This was a very important key, but it could not serve its purpose lying on the bank of a stream, with nobody around to take it and find its use. 
The key was found by a little bluebird strolling along the bank of the stream. “What a lovely addition to my nest!” she exclaimed. “I’ll weave it in, and I will have the most beautiful nest in the tree!”
She took the key, brought it to her nest, and weaved it in among the leaves and twigs. But it did not make the nest look as decorative as she thought it would; it was overshadowed by the leaves and twigs, and all it did was provide a glare when it caught the light of the sun. The glare was very annoying for the bluebird, and she felt that such a beautiful key really did not belong among leaves and twigs, so she took the key out of her nest and left it on the bank of the stream where she had found it. Decorating a bird’s nest was not the key’s purpose.
The next day, the key was discovered by a nereid swimming along the bank. “Oh my! What a treasure!” exclaimed the nereid. “I am going to keep it with all my other treasures!”
She took the key, brought it to her den, and set it on top of her pile of treasures. But though the key was very beautiful, it looked out of place among the pearls, jewels, and gold coins that the nereid kept. The nereid’s jewels were the size of soccer balls, and the tiny jewels that decorated the key looked very insignificant in comparison. The nereid decided that the key did not belong in her pile of treasures, and she brought it back to the bank of the stream. Becoming a nereid’s treasure was not the key’s purpose.
The next day, the key was found by a big green frog out for a morning stroll. “I will wear this around my neck,” said the frog, “and it will look so beautiful on me that nobody will ever call me an ugly wartface!”
            He took the key, brought it to his swamp, and threaded the stem of a flower through the intricate loops. He tied the stem and slipped it over his head. The key was cold and heavy against his chest, and he found it very hard to walk with it weighing him down. “It’s very beautiful,” the frog mused, “but perhaps it wasn’t meant to be worn around the necks of frogs! Oh well, I suppose it wouldn’t make a difference; I’m such an ugly wartface anyway!” So the frog took the key from around his neck, untied the flower stem, and set the key back on the bank of the stream. But nobody called him an ugly wartface—in fact, he was rather beautiful for a frog. Being worn as a necklace by a frog was not the key’s purpose.
            For the next few days, the key was passed by. Nobody noticed it. Nobody picked it up or tried to find a use for it. It seemed as if the wonderful key would be forgotten. But finally, the key was noticed—not by a bird, a frog, a nereid, or any other creature of the forest, but by a human being from the village nearby. He was walking along the bank of the stream on his way home from a hike, and he nearly tread on the key. He picked it up and examined it. “This is an odd little key,” he mused. “I wonder what it’s for. I’ll hold on to it and find out.” He placed the key in his pants pocket and continued on his way.
         It is unknown what happened to the man or the key, but perhaps he finally found the key’s purpose. 

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