Character Blog

Niamh’s Blog

As soon as Tara went off shopping with Mum, I crept back upstairs to have another look at the photos. I took them out of the album and stared at them.

We’d found them that morning, the pictures of the strange baby. The baby with strawberry-blonde hair just like Tara’s. Tara was on the picture. I wasn’t. She was about three years old and the baby about one year old. I was on later family photos, but not on earlier ones. I knew straight away, something wasn’t right.

Tara thought the baby with strawberry-blonde hair – her little sister – must have died and I was adopted. I knew that wasn’t right, mainly because of the story Uncle Fergus kept telling us, about two babies, a fae baby and a human baby. In the story, one night – the night of Halloween – a creature from the fae world, the land of faery, came to the house and taking the human baby, left the fae baby in its place. The human baby’s father had chased the creature through a magical gateway and was never seen again.

I was that fae baby. I am a child of the fae.

It’s all I’ve been able to think about since. I don’t belong here in this world. I belong in another. Deep down inside me I always knew I was different. Mum says I’m hyperactive and won’t let me have any coloured sweets or too much sugar. I don’t care, I don’t like them much anyway. Uncle Fergus says I’m just active, like lots of exercise, like being outdoors. I think it’s because I’m a fae child, a changeling. I’ve read about them in books.

I do like being outside and hate being cooped up in the house, it’s so boring. That’s why I like Lucy. She likes to go off to Salisbury Plain with me, and we make up adventures. I’m always the princess of course, but I do let Lucy be my handmaiden.

We can’t go too far away from the house though as Lucy’s mum would go mad. Just because one day Lucy wandered off, but that was years ago, and she was found right near the house anyway. Still it’s a nuisance as sometimes we have to drag Tara along or even Lucy’s brother Jared. We’re not babies!

But now we’re going to have a real adventure. We just need to find out how to open the gateway to the Otherworld, the land of the fae. It’s somewhere in the burial mound, in the field at the bottom of the garden. Then we’re going to look for the missing baby, who must be my age, almost eleven, and also look for our dad…well it’s Tara’s dad really, but I’ve always thought of him as mine even though I don’t remember him, just like Mum is my mum, even if I have another mum somewhere else.

I’m not sure if Tara believes it, but I know Lucy does, I am a child of the fae and I’m in the wrong world. I really need to  find my real family…my own family. Tara’s not the only one with a missing parent – I’m missing two! I might even have more brothers and sisters for all I know. I wonder if they have magical powers… I think all fae folk have magical powers; they always seem to have in Uncle Fergus’s stories anyway.

I wonder if I can grow wings and fly…

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