Chapter 2


The Purple One and the human grew closer with each passing hour, day, and night. A week had gone by and Kee was noticeably older and bigger. “Soon, it can help me with bigger tasks,” thought the human. Until then, the human took it upon himself to explore the boundaries beyond their small nook in the woods. Food was sparse, so the human decided to leave his part of the woods, momentarily, to find fruitful pastures.

Off he went, leaving Kee to fend for itself. Quickly, it grew bored. There was no one to play with. The squirrels had moved on to other trees in the forest. The hummingbirds had no open petals to feed off of. The Purple One spun around in the air just a few times, but stopped with a furrowed brow, for being dizzy and alone was not as fun as it promised to be.

Impatient, Kee decided to set forth in the direction that the human headed toward, but it could not remember if he had gone north, south, east, or west. Kee chose randomly (as it turned out, east) and walked along a dirt path with jagged rocks beneath its feet.

As night was approaching, the Purple One grew scared and fretful. It was lost, in a part of the woods that did not look familiar. Never had it been alone in the dark before. Or even alone, for that matter. Turning back was no less daunting, for darkness draped the path from whence it came. With no voice of its own, it could not call out for help. It found a large oak tree and huddled along its girthy trunk, shivering in the dankness of the approaching night.

It was hungry and cold, and wondered how or if it could survive the night. Fear suddenly dwindled and sluggishness took hold. The Purple One was sleepy, but not tired enough to rest. Every simple move it made took twice as long as it had before. Then three times as long. Then four times as long …

Just as Kee was about to give up hope, a voice called to it from afar. It was morning, and the early light traced a path from the outskirts of the woods to the oak tree. The human followed it to the Purple One, who had nestled against the tree’s serpentine grooves. He snatched up his friend into a warm embrace, cooed it with calming melodies, and pivoted left and right and back again until the Purple One felt safe and secure.

While the Peridot stared at the human lovingly, sluggishness weighed heavily upon it still. The human offered it kelp and prickly beets he picked up along his journey, but Kee would not eat. The human rubbed its belly a few times, and although it smiled and ate a few more berries, the Peridot appeared uninterested, listless.

The human snuggled Kee close to his chest and hustled to the campsite, where he tended to the Peridot day and night. He fed it everything it desired, pet its head in between gulps, and never left its side. A companion for life – this is what the Purple One saw in the human. A companion, a caretaker, a keeper. A friend.

The sounds of rustling thrust the human from his slumber one morning. On guard he was, ready for a wolf or bear or beast to emerge from the brush. But it was Kee, plucky and vital, restored in happiness. In its hand lay a spring onion that he offered to his friend. The human dared not eat it alone, for his Peridot friend was likely as hungry as he was. The human split it into halves, offered one to his friend, and ate the one left over.

The bitterness of the vegetable sparked a few tears from his eyes, but he assured the Purple One they were tears of joy and onions.

Quill Driver’s Note:

Neither the Peridot nor its human friend could figure out why the Purple One reacted the way that it did. But other Peridots, over time, in the rarest of occasions, fell listless too. The common strand, as it was discovered, was the neglect of a Peridot’s human friend. To stop tending to one’s Peridot is to send them on a lifeless path, with consequences far worse should the human give up on them altogether.

As the Peridot Elders of the Tyrionic Era determined (circa 700 b.c.), it is necessary to preserve whimsy in abundance, for the Peridots cannot reproduce or diversify the species without it. Whimsy is a mysterious magical force that keeps the Peridot world in balance. It makes the world happy, and the people in it happier. It disappears during challenging times of far-reaching human neglect, and reappears when the world has overcome its greatest of challenges. The great thinkers believe whimsy is a collective spirit that humans give off. The more generous they are to others – human or otherwise – the faster these others can progress as a species.

This collective spirit is also known to yield opposing effects. If humans give up tending to their Peridots altogether, over time, the Peridot species will go into a mass hibernation that could endure for centuries! Such sensitive creatures we have before us. We must care for them wisely.

Whimsy, dear reader, eludes me as I write this. I neither agree nor disagree with the Peridot Elders. But my knowledge of the metaphysical is just as limited as the physical. As of now, science cannot explain whimsy, yet I believe in it all the same. Just as I believe in Peridots. Their presence confounds me. But what I cannot explain, I find great delight in. I will let the mysteries remain mysteries. My joy knows no bounds for these creatures.


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