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“Fable is a literary genre: a succinct fictional story, in prose or verse, that features animals, mythical creatures, plants, inanimate objects, or forces of nature that are anthropomorphized (given human qualities, such as the ability to speak human language) and that illustrates or leads to a particular moral lesson (a “moral”), which may at the end be added explicitly as a pithy maxim.”

The following is evidence as to what occurs if the Satyr unwittingly becomes trapped in an airport (or aviation pen as they shall now be known) with only a book on aboriginal folklore for company. Highly interesting stuff.

This story’s theme and narrative derives from that similar style, nothing classical or typical in the least. They were camp fire stories told by a teller or an elder of the village and follow no set guidelines. Most of the listeners to the tale will be neighbours from the same village who know each other pretty well and know any usual characters and their traits told by a particular teller. The teller would also do well to incorporate parts of village life and its inhabitants into these tales.

 

The Fable of [Insert your loved ones’ name here], The One Star

For Lumpus the Panda

 

There once was a star called [insert your loved ones’ name here]. And she was the brightest star in the inky blue. However, she found the heavens a lonely place. Sure there were angels. But they were all cock sure and holier than thou. And sure, there were clouds. But they were all usually gloomy and on their way else where. Of course, there were other stars, but they all had their own cliquey, constellations. Either old boys clubs or too-cool-for-school brand-new just-discovered ones.

 

Alone, as such she was referred to as, The One Star. [Insert your loved ones’ name here] was always busy but still made time for every fussing, ill-tempered cloud and every terminally hyperactive comet that passed by. She always respected the older stars and helped them out as best she could. She would often stop by and make them a cup of Horlicks or sit and read to them a while. She helped newborn stars get on their feet and show them how to hide during the day. All this hard work made her shine like no other star in the whole galaxy.

 

Now, the Moon was a moody bastard who didn’t like anyone stealing his glory. One fateful day, he turned on [insert your loved ones’ name here] and tried to bad mouth her to the wind and the hills. However all the constellations stood by [insert your loved ones’ name here], old and newborn, and the clouds tumbling by hollered her name.

 

So moody Moon tried a different tack. ‘I am the Moon. I am King of the Night Sky. Surely all stars should live in groups to form an attractive cow or mythological being or something. A star cannot be a constellation on its own, and we’re pretty full up here already.  Even the Day King, who is my personal friend, has said this and agrees.’

 

At this latter remark the old clouds and the young clouds drifting by and the hills and the lakes all whispered ‘the Day King, the Day King, the Day King’

Even though only Moody Moon had ever met the Day King, they had to agree with him.

 

The miserable Moon continued ‘You must go down and live on the land and be a land star.’

 

So, [insert your loved ones’ name here] the One Star was cast down to the land where she found herself in old Cambridge town on a chilly winters night. She fell among some land stars who all lived in a row.

 

[Inset your loved ones’ name here] realised very early on that she was not at all like the land stars. However, she kept busy as before. She made time for the pigeons and lit the way home for drunks and she kept tramps company during the long, chilled nights. She also helped some of the land stars to reach the skies. However, she knew deep inside that she wasn’t happy.

 

One night, [insert your loved ones’ name here] was teaching Eric the monotone sewer rat to tap dance, when a Gowal happened upon them unannounced. Gowals are half owl and half goat and three 28ths lynx. So, as you can understand, Eric was out of their like a shot. ‘Bye [insert your loved ones’ name here]’, droned Eric as he vanished into the night.

 

Anyway, the Gowal was quite a gentleman and apologised for his intrusion. [Insert your loved ones’ name here] shared her nettle soup with him and after that they chatted and got on really well (they both had a passion for pesto, Terence Trent D’Arby and both thought the moon wasn’t all that).

 

The Gowal with the lynx teeth and goaty beard didn’t talk too much about himself, nor was he intrusive, but in a short space of time he realised what an amazing and brilliant star [insert your loved ones’ name here] was and completely understood why the moon had turned so green.

 

After a few nights of meeting with [insert your loved ones’ name here] (and after promising not to pounce on poor Eric the monotone sewer Rat) the Gowal had made up his mind: he was going to go and confront the morose Moon and sort this out.

 

So, that night, after he left [insert your loved ones’ name here] to teach a friendly pigeon how to bake gluten free dumplings, he flew up into the night sky on his mighty pinions to confront the envious moon.

 

Before the charismatic creature could even say his piece, the moon began grumbling and moaning about this and that, over the top of the Gowal. ‘How come only half the world can ever see me at any one time?’ moaned the Moon. ‘Why is it always so cold out here? How come I can never find shoes that fit me?’ so the poor Gowal couldn’t get a word in edge ways.

 

However, he was not about to be undone. The Gowal beat his mighty wings and made feathery, soaring circles of eight which mesmerised and distracted the po-faced misery guts. This gave the Gowal just enough time to ask why the Moon had banished [insert your loved ones’ name here] to Earth, ‘She is not a land star, she belongs in the night sky not along a road’.

 

The Moon just shrugged, said ‘huh’, and turned his back on the Gowal. By this time it was almost dawn. The Gowal was so angry he could barely breath fire attractively or throw his magic javelin straight. Exhausted but intent on perusing his mission the Gowal soared across the horizon to the west cursing the moon and his negative outlooks.

 

Just above Jao Lin’s House in the lesser known china district of old Cambridge town, the Day King was just commencing his morning stretch routine. The Gowal hurled himself at the sun, ranting of the moons callousness and inadequacies and begging the sun for his help.

 

The Day King was still only just coming too and didn’t notice the speeding fantastical creature until it was too late.

 

The poor Gowal got far too close far too fast to the sleepy if not radiant Day King and was scorched. The smouldering ball of singed fur, feathers and magic javelins tumbled back down to earth. The trailing plumb of black smoke could be seen from anywhere throughout little china.

 

The Day King did not feel much like shinning after that and spent the rest of his day hiding behind clouds, hop scotching between the blotchier bow legged ones. If anyone could have looked at the sun for long enough they would have noticed that he was weeping quietly. When his day was done he quickly and quietly set off towards the horizon in the west right over near Derricks’ place.

 

The morbid Moon reluctantly climbed into the air and whined about everything under the sun. He moaned about this and he moaned about that. About the sound crickets make on summer evenings and about the laziness of his member of parliament. Satisfied that he’d done a good night’s work he rolled away again to chase the woeful Day King from his fitful slumber.

 

The Sun rose once more, although he did not bother with his stretch routine. Nor did he hum to the song birds in the trees. Nor did he doff his cap to the milkman. Instead his tears veiled the horizons of old Cambridge town and he prayed for his stint to be over with quickly.

***

 

The Gowal lifted one eye lid. ‘Oh, he thought. For a minute there I thought I wasn’t dead. But clearly I am as all I can see is white. This must, therefore, be limbo’

 

The Gowals’ ears gradually accustomed to the sounds of limbo. It sounded curiously similar to a busy high street in old Cambridge town. Then, limbo produced a sound not unlike that of a slow motion car crash with shouting and much foul language. And then, limbo made the sound of a monotone squeaking. And finally, limbo made the sound of a star that was really pleased to see him.

 

The Gowal felt himself being helped to sit upright. He groggily rattled his head and tried to say ‘where am I?’ and of course, ‘What happened?’

 

But the excitable sound of the star was telling him to relax and to take it easy and that he’d had a brush with the Day King. Apparently the Day King was very sad about it.

 

‘Eric the monotone rat lives in little china and saw you plummeting to the ground’ said the One Star. ‘He’s the one that organised a safety net erected. Just in time too. He came and told me, I came and fixed you up.’

 

‘Ah’, said the Gowal, that’s why I can’t see, because I flew into the sun’

 

‘No no,’ said [insert your loved ones’ name here], ‘you have a patch and bandage over one eye. But the other one is fine.’ [Insert you loved ones’ name here] continued,

 

‘I got to meet with the Day King! He told me what you were trying to do. He stayed out longer and yelled at the moon for me. I kissed you and that’s when you came round. Now here we are.’

 

The Gowal blinked again and shook his head. An idea had struck him. He held up his paw down the centre of his face. Just as he suspected. Through his good eye he saw a twitching nose and some lengthy whiskers: A rat wearing cool shades, shrouded in the most unbelievable light. When he took his hand away there was only light and no rat.

 

The Gowal laughed harder than he had ever done before whilst Eric and [insert your loved ones’ name here] looked on bemused.

 

‘It appears, My Dear [insert your loved ones’ name here]’ he began to explain, ‘that for all the good you have done as a night star, and indeed as a land star, you now shine so brightly you can be seen clearly even by day!’

 

The star looked at the rat, the rat squinted back at the star and shrugged. They both looked back to the Gowal.

 

‘Do you not understand, O’ One Star?’ roared the Gowal, tears streaming down his gills’ that you are now brighter than the moon will ever be, by day and by night! What’s more is, wherever you go and whomever you meet you will always have an entourage of bright and shiny people around you who you have helped and befriended along the way. You make your own constellation! Every star is a friend, therefore every constellation is yours!’

 

The One Star considered this. Eric the monotone sewer rat scratched at a flee. As the thought gingerly seeped into the One Stars conscious, she grew even brighter and brighter. There was another bang, crash and subsequent outburst of swearing from a small lane just off Drummer Street.

 

‘But, but,’ stammered the One Star. ‘The Moon, I’m stilled banished…’ Eric and his flee both nodded their agreement.

 

‘Clearly the envious Night King has no power over you [insert your loved ones’ name here]’ declared the Gowal, ‘otherwise he would never have let this happen. Just because somebody is important, doesn’t mean they are always right. Furthermore, you now have the blessing of the Day King-you are free to go about being yourself, for ever. Now go, go and be the best constellation you can be!’

 

With that, [Insert your loved ones’ name here] hugged the Gowal, Eric and indeed his flee and began rising back into the sky from whence she came, safe and happy in the knowledge that’s she was the happiest, brightest, kindest and much loved thing in the sky.

 

Epilogue

 

Eric the Monotone Sewer rat went on to have a highly lucrative and creative career on the Westend doing tap dancing shows. Although he has now retired from that highly prestigious circuit he still hosts Ted Talks concerning confident public speaking even with a speech impediment.

 

The Gowal and his whereabouts are currently unknown. But for a short time he did have a highly successful chain of take away restaurants in the lesser known China District of Old Cambridge Town. I’m sure he’ll drop in again in the near future.

 

The Morose Moon has left the One Star well alone ever since her re-ascension. He now has to attend Miserable Buggers Anonymous bi-monthly on behest of the Day King. He’s making good progress.

 

The Day King is just as happy and jovial as he ever was and always will be.

 

As for the One Star and her constellation…well, why not just take a look up at the night sky and see for yourself.

 

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