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Heart of Clear Springs (IV)
A legendary tale passed down by Springvale hunters that recounts a bitter ending finally faced by a boy who was no longer young and a spring fairy who had not grown old.
By and by, the young boy grew up, made new friends, and had new experiences.
And the spring fairy, as she had in his youth, sang him her quiet elegies each one.
Till the day came at last, when she left, and gazed no more upon the boy.
Never again did words flow forth from the trickling sound of the spring. Never again would the fractured moon become whole. The spring fairy suddenly realized that though she had found a place to belong, and though she had experienced fleeting happiness, she was still alone.
The boy, now no longer a boy, could not perceive her flight, and blamed himself for his own solitude.
“Perhaps she was merely a childish fantasy.” He would think this to himself as he listened to the gurgling of the spring.
But that cool kiss was real, as was the wind that once played with her hair. Suddenly, he realized that though he had met and parted with countless new friends, and though he had adventured and returned more times than he could remember, he was still alone in the end.
So, as they had done many years ago, the boy’s tears fell into the pure pond, soaked into the fractured moon. But this time, the spring fairy did not come as promised. Stubbornly she turned her back, willing to be the object of an innocent childhood dream, to be a fleeting guest wandering from a foreign land, but unwilling to allow her near-eternal life to break her lover’s promise.
Legend has it that whenever the rain pours down, the raindrops that fall into the pond mix with the tears of the spring fairy. To his dying day, the boy believed wholeheartedly in this groundless superstition.
But sadly, the spring fairy who fled from her true feelings could never believe it herself.