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rain fairy.

From The suns babies by Edith Howes.
Age Rating 2 to 4.

Start of Story

A rain-fairy sat up from her sleep in a pink poppy, stretched herself, and yawned. "Oh, dear!" she said. "It is morning again, and I have to work. The same old work, day after day, on the same old earth. How tired I am of it! I think I will go up to the blue sky and play with the sunbeams and clouds. It must be lovely up there." She flew up to the sky. For some time she wandered about admiring the strange and beautiful things in this new land. When she grew tired of that she went to the Sunbeams and said: "May I play with you?" "We are not playing," said one of the Sunbeams politely. "We all have our day's work to do. I am just going to ripen the early strawberries, and my little sisters are coming to help me. Our cousins over there have to look after the roses. Indeed, we are all too busy to play." She flew off. The Fairy went to the white morning clouds. "Play with me, please," she begged. "We really have no time just now," said the Little Clouds. "We have a shower and a rainbow to prepare before noon." "Dear me! Everybody seems to be as busy here as we are down on the earth," thought the Fairy. She wandered about again till the afternoon. Then she went to the Afternoon Clouds and asked them to play with her. [Illustration: "She went to the Afternoon Clouds and asked them to play with her"] "We are far too busy," said the Afternoon Clouds. "We have to shade two hills and a valley from the heat of the Sun, and make a crown for the mountains you see below you." The Rain-Fairy could not find anyone who had time to play, so she had to spend the day by herself. It was dull and lonely, but she would not go down to the earth. "They surely must play some time. I will wait and see," she thought. Sunset came, and the Clouds and Sunbeams all passed in turn before the great Sun to report to him on their day's work. The Rain-Fairy went with them, for she saw that each one passed on from the Sun to a great cloud-hall, where a star-dance was to be held that night. Soon she herself stood before the Sun. "A Rain-Fairy in the sky!" said the Sun in surprise. "What have you done to-day, little Rain-Fairy?" The Rain-Fairy hung her head. "I have done no work," she said. "I was tired of working on the earth, so I came up here to play." The Sun's kindly smile changed to a frown, "Then you may not go to the star-dance," he said. "Go back to your work on the earth. We have no time for play here till our day's work is done." The Fairy returned sadly to the earth, but she had learned her lesson; she took up her work again and did everything well. She closed the dainty flower-cups that the rain might not wash their colours out, and dried the soft petals again when the shower had passed. She hid the butterflies and moths in dry hiding places when it rained hard, and she covered the wee birds in their nests. Day after day she worked patiently, remembering how the Sunbeams and Clouds found no time for play. One day the Sunbeams came to her with a message. "The great Sun has watched your work," they said, "and he is well pleased. He bids us say that as a reward you are invited to the star-dance to-night."

       



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