The Other World

by The Cowl Editor on September 15, 2019


Photo courtesy of

by Erin Venuti ’20

In the third grade, your world is very small. There’s the house, the grocery store, the dance studio. Most importantly, there’s that brick building with the linoleum floors and the bright fluorescent lights to which you’re transported each morning in your mom’s trusted minivan. This is the elementary school.

This was Fay’s world. But unlike most, Fay wasn’t satisfied with the size of her world. Fay wanted her world to be bigger. So, she discovered the fairies.

Well, she wanted to believe that she discovered the fairies, though she was sure the fairies had been the ones to discover her — fairies had a very distinctive ability to hide.

Their first encounter was during recess, after a particularly grueling math class. While most of her class took off towards the soccer field, Fay made her way towards the playground, claiming one of the metal swings by the edge of the woods.

She began to pump her feet, smiling in satisfaction as she rose, as if by magic. The field in the distance, populated by her screeching peers, zoomed in and out of view. When her feet could reach no higher, Fay let go of the swing and launched herself into flight.

Too soon, her feet connected with the ground. Then her knees and her hands. Dust clouded her vision. When she regained herself, she rolled over, so she was sitting on the ground, and inspected herself for injuries which, thankfully, she seemed to be lacking.

Everything was quiet, as if the playground had been transported to someplace miles away. The only sound, aside from Fay’s steadying heartbeat, was of the whisper of wind drifting lazily towards the woods, towards the opening of the path she hadn’t noticed earlier.

Fay stood, without struggle, and stepped cautiously towards the entrance. She did not hear the sound of the bell, or of her peers stampeding the door, or of the teacher shouting her name, half an hour later, when it was discovered she had not returned to class…

But if she had heard, Fay wouldn’t have cared. Her world was bigger now.