I have been surviving alone on this island for months. Winter has come, and I’ve collected all the driftwood I can. I’m standing on the shore and looking out towards the mainland, thinking of Christmas Eve last year and the fun I had celebrating with my friends. They’re not my friends anymore. They left me here to die on this island.
The night is still and cold. With the help of the Northern Lights, I can almost see across to the opposite coast. Wait a moment. What is that? It appears to be a ship sailing straight for the island. Rescue! I whoop and holler, but then, as the vessel draws near to shore, I see that it is not like any ship I have ever seen. Strange people are disembarking. They are finely dressed, but they are not people from this world. I hide behind the woodstack so they won’t see me with their sharp eyes.
The Abandoned Youth in The Elf Maiden, Brown Fairy Book. Painting by N.C. Wyeth.