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Me and My Shadow

Trust Me!

Settling near the back of the bus, away from most of the passengers, Gerard stared at the tiny fairy, now resting on the back of the seat in front of him.

“Why do I have a fairy godfather?” Gerard whispered.
“Why are you whispering?” Frank replied quietly in return, even though he had no need to. “Have you even noticed that if someone whispers, the reply will always be a whisper too, even when no one knows why?”

Gerard shook his head; this guy was far too upbeat.

“I’m whispering so I don’t get locked up in an institution for talking to myself!”
“Well, get your phone out,” Frank suggested – a well-used strategy for engaging with humans: Fairy 101. “Pretend you’re talking to someone else.”
“Yeah, I’m going to ask someone on the phone why I have a fairy godfather!” Gerard hissed with a frown.
“Wow, you’re really grumpy for someone who just hit the preternatural jackpot.”
“The what?”

Gerard heaved a heavy sigh. He’d had the surprise of his life, followed by the belief that he was losing his mind, topped off with a beating. All that and still no job. He just wanted to sleep.

“You have a fairy godfather!” Frank stated with his arms outstretched, as if the comment explained everything. “Don’t you understand what that means?”

Gerard lowered his head until his nose almost touched Frank’s chest.

“No.” He replied flatly before sitting back up.

Looking around, he noticed people were starting to cast furtive glances and muffled chuckles in his direction. Sighing he got his phone out and pretended to dial.

“Hi,” he began. “What’s going on?” he added, looking meaningfully at the fairy.

Frank shrugged and looked away with a slight mischievous smirk on his face.

“Frankie, this was your idea, talk to me!”

The fairy looked up at Gerard, at first giving nothing away, but guilt began to take over as he saw his charge’s shoulders sag and the bleak, tired expression wash over him once more. Fluttering his wings, Frank showered Gerard in glistening sparkles of light the effect of which was to draw a smile to the man’s face, as a warm, peaceful glow seemed to settle over him.

“I’m sorry, Gerard,” Frank replied. “I shouldn’t tease you, you’re special.”
“What?” Gerard’s eyes opened wide.
Frank frowned. “Sorry, I probably shouldn’t have mentioned that. I don’t want to freak you out.”

It was Frank’s turn to be shocked as Gerard threw his head back, laughing loudly; drawing glares and sounds of disapproval from the few remaining passengers on the bus. Gerard didn’t care, it was the first time he’d laughed in… he wasn’t sure how long. He was going to enjoy it, no, he was going to revel in it!

“What?” Frank pouted, looking almost hurt. “What did I say? Gerard?”

Fluttering up to hover in front of Gerard’s face, Frank balled up a fist and knocked twice on the bridge of his nose.


Still smiling, Gerard began to bring his laughter under control and took a deep calming breath.

“Sorry,” he chuckled, “but you do know that you’ve done very little but freak me out, don’t you?”
“No,” Frank frowned. In fact, he looked a little hurt.

Gerard stopped laughing completely and stared guiltily at Frank.

“This must happen all the time,” Gerard tried to justify his reaction, growing more uncomfortable with each second.
“You’re my first client,” Frank mumbled, looking down, distractedly examining his fingers.
“Excuse me?” Gerard asked, surprised at the words.
“I’m still in training,” Frank admitted looking up. “I’m in placement. My supervisor told me not to tell you, but, I think it’s better you know.”
“Why did he tell you not to tell me?” Gerard had moved from disbelief, firmly into fascinated.
“It’s not just me,” Frank shrugged. “He said humans are skittish and we shouldn’t say we’re not qualified yet so we don’t frighten them.”

Frank was once again hovering in mid-air, twisting his foot as if putting out a cigarette, his hands behind his back and his head hung low. He looked awkward, embarrassed and somehow as if he had failed. Gerard swallowed hard; even though it was entirely unintentional, he felt that he had somehow caused this.

“Can we start over?” he finally asked quietly.

Frank looked up, a smile appearing on his boyishly handsome face. His pink wings suddenly sparkled at the words.

“You’d do that?” he asked, biting his lip with uncertainty.
“Well, you did say I was special,” Gerard beamed a dazzling smile at the trainee fairy godfather.
“Indeed you are! And I’m going to show you how much!” Frank kicked his heels and fluttered upwards. Briefly glancing out of the window, he nodded cheerfully. “Come on, this is your stop!”

Gerard’s brow creased and he followed the fairy’s line of sight – he lived nowhere near this part of town.

“What? No… I… this…”
“Come on!” Frank waved at him urgently. “You’re going to miss it!”

Scrambling to gather his belongings, Gerard glanced back at the seat to make sure he had everything. The main thing, of course, was his portfolio but he had not let that out of his sight for a moment – he was always terrified of leaving it behind somewhere. He had never done it before, never even come close, but neither did he ever intend to. Certain that he had everything, Gerard headed to the door and waited for three others to get off first before following them out. The glistening of pink sparkles just slightly out of his eye line told him that Frankie had successfully followed.

They had left the bus in a largely residential district, but the area was dominated by a large park. It was a lovely place, with green lawns, trees, flowers, a lake, even a couple of bridges. Yes, the park was beautiful but also dangerous and Gerard was acutely aware of the failing light and the dropping temperature.

“Now what?” he asked.
“This is where it’s going to happen?”
“Where what’s going to happen?” Gerard asked, more confused than ever.
“Follow me!”

Gerard rolled his eyes; it was impossible to be annoyed with Frankie. He was mischievous and fun, overexcited and determined. Gerard smiled – some of the things he would like to be.

“Oh, Gerard! You are! Don’t you understand?” Frank flew up to hover in front of Gerard’s face, causing him to pull up sharply to avoid colliding with him.
“I am what?” he asked. “I didn’t say anything.”
“No, but you thought it,” Frank explained, shaking his head exasperated.
“Hey!” he pouted, thankful that there were very few people around. “They’re private!”
“Well, don’t think so loud then!” Frank retorted. “It’s not my fault I can hear you.”

Frank flew up to the gates of the park and urgently beckoned to Gerard.

“I’m not going in there!” Gerard laughed. “I may be a bit down, but I still value my life!”
“I’ll be with you,” Frank reassured him, although it did little to settle Gerard’s concerns.
“Look, I’m sure you’ll make a great fairy godfather,” Gerard sighed sadly, “but I’m tired, cold and hungry. I just want to go home and get some sleep.”
“I’m trying to help you!” Frank whined as Gerard turned away from the park.
“I didn’t ask for your help!” he snapped back, immediately wishing he hadn’t sounded quite so harsh.
“Well, I’m sorry, but you did! Two weeks ago.” Frank folded his arms across his chest once more and scowled. “I mean, seriously, none of the other fairies have had so much trouble convincing their clients.”

Frank flew to a bench just inside the park gates and settled on the arm, resting his elbows on his knees and cupping his face in his hands. Heaving a sigh, he didn’t even watch to see if Gerard followed him or left.

Gerard didn’t move his eyes from his tiny form. There was something highly likeable about the fairy. He could already tell that he was passionate about his work, he was enthusiastic, upbeat but unfortunately, right now, he seemed sad. Gerard was overtaken by guilt. He couldn’t help but feel responsible. He hadn’t intended to upset him. Exhaling deeply, Gerard followed the tiny fairy into the park.

“Are you okay?” he asked quietly.
“This job’s more difficult than I expected,” Frank sighed.
“I’m sure you’ll make a great fairy godfather,” Gerard offered, uncertain what else to say.

Frank lifted his eyes first then his head. Sitting upright once more and resting his hands in his lap, he cocked his head to one side.

“I am a great fairy godfather!” he grumbled. “It’s you that’s difficult!”
“Thanks!” Gerard smirked, taking a seat on the bench. “Okay, I’m in here now, against my better judgement. You know they found two bodies in that lake, don’t you?”
“Well, they didn’t look very hard,” Frank shrugged. “There are two more, you know.”
“Not feeling better about being in the park, Frankie.”
“Hmm, sorry,” Frank looked up. “Okay, this time, if… er… anything happens, you have to ask me for help. I can do the occasional freebie, but there are rules and… well, I’ll just say I can’t break this one.”
“Why? What happens if you do?” Gerard asked with interest.
“Let’s just say I’d be looking for a new career,” Frank nodded to emphasise how serious he was.
“Harsh!” Gerard shook his head. “So, what do I get three wishes or something?”

Frank chuckled, taking to the air once again and allowing himself some playful aerobatics.

“How many terrible books have you been reading?” he laughed, holding himself upside down briefly. “I’m not a genie! And you should be glad about that, you know. They’re really not that nice; always trying to outdo each other whether it’s what you need or not.”
“Okay so, what happens?”
“Well!” Frank began excitedly. “If you’re in danger, you can ask me for help as much as you need and…”
“Why am I going to be in danger?” Gerard’s expression became uncertain and he pulled back slightly.
“No reason,” Frank beamed, waving a hand dismissively. “Just a precaution.”

Gerard remained unconvinced.

“Otherwise,” Frank continued undeterred, “one wish.”
“Oh!” Gerard smiled.
“But I get to choose it,” Frank interrupted his thoughts.
“You?” Gerard’s mouth hung open slightly in surprise “Why you?”
“Who else?”
“Er… me?”
“What? In your state of mind? You’d probably just wish for a sandwich!” Frank raised an eyebrow, unimpressed by even the suggestion.
“Well, what’s your big idea then?”
“I’m going to merge you with your shadow.”
“Oh well, thank goodness this is your choice!” Gerard scowled. “That idea nearly slipped right by me!”
“Do I detect sarcasm?” Frank raised an eyebrow. “Trust me.”

Gerard shook his head lightly. Something had to happen in his life. He had convinced himself, almost, that he was okay, but he knew he wasn’t. Maybe his fairy godfather would make the change he so desperately needed. Frankie was certainly odd, with an even stranger idea to match, but what did he have to lose?

“Okay,” Gerard finally conceded. “But don’t make me regret this.”
“Trust me!”



Frank could turn into anything and I'd still love him!! :D Hehe, glad you're enjoying this. It's a bit of a departure for me and I'm way out of my comfort zone with it. I've nearly abandoned it twice. I have serious doubts about my writing ability and am easily convinced that I should stop, so this one's a struggle for me. But I'm staying with it :D

Thanks for the comment, I really appreciate it!
Sas xx

SaskiaK SaskiaK

Ayyyyy, followed you here from The Collector! I’m loving this one too! It’s really good, really funny! Cant wait to read more!

Oh and did you enjoy Frank? Not sure about down in London, but at the Newcastle show he didn’t turn into an eight foot demon. Or a unicorn.

Oh, sorry! I didn't realise. A combination of self-doubt and that I'm really so far out of my comfort zone with this story - it's nothing like the sort of thing I usually write, - I think I just assumed the worst.
I'm glad you're still enjoying it :)
Sas xx

SaskiaK SaskiaK

By bad I meant what shadow Gerard was doing!!

domebedward domebedward

Oh no. I'm worried about real Gerard and tiny Frankie

domebedward domebedward