Posted by: Kathryn Hulick | April 8, 2011

Mr. Weintrub’s Trouble

April 8, 2011 Free Fall Friday Prompt from Kathy Temean & Betsy Devany

by Katia Wish

Tee-hee. I love to see mischief afoot… it sends quivers to my wingtips and tingles to my twelve toes. All pixies love trouble, and we especially love trouble when it happens to our people.

My people are Mr. Weintrub and his roly-poly wife Corine, two of the plain-est, boring-est, trouble-free-est people in the entire world. And I’m stuck living in the back of their kitchen cupboard, grudgingly accepting the bowl of milk they leave for me every evening, unable to play even the slightest little baby trick because of the stupid pixie code. Milk means no trouble.

But look! See the teeny-tiny fish? Just an hour ago there were two four pound trout in that basket: one for the supper table and one to sell. Usually Mr. Weintrub catches five or six, but the weather’s cooling and the fish are sluggish. He was happy with the two and so was Corine.

Their backs were turned when the change happened, but I saw everything. I saw it all through the crack in the cupboard, and it was all I could do not to shower the whole room in sparkles of pixie laughter.

“Mr. Weintrub?” a voice inquired from the doorway. A high-pitched, hungry, pleading voice.

“Yes?” Corine went to the door, her huge hands balanced on her even huger hips.

It was a girl-child, all ragged and shivering. She looked normal enough, but I’m a pixie. I know trouble when I see it. It’s in the eyes. Hers seemed to be unassuming blue, but I could see the sparks of red and orange sneaking out around the edges.

“No. I need to talk to Mr. Weintrub.”

“You can speak to me, sweetie. What is it?”

The red orange grew brighter, and I wondered where Mr. Weintrub had gone fishing today. He hadn’t crossed the sound to the forbidden islands, had he? He couldn’t have been that stupid?

Then I saw the drops of water trailing off behind the child, the way the water reflected all sorts of lights and flame that weren’t really there.

Oh, yes, he’d been fishing in the wrong place… tee hee!

“It’s important.” The child frowned in the way normal children do, with her lip stuck out and quivering, but really she was fuming. Small plumes of smoke–the kind only other magical creatures can see–rose from her ears.

Corine called for her husband, and he left the fish unattended on the table. He even stopped by my cupboard to grab a crust of bread for the girl. He wasn’t planning to give her one of those prize fish, oh no.

When the girl saw the bread, I knew exactly what was coming!

“Oh. Thank you sir,” she said. “Your boat has a leak. That’s all I meant to say.”

A leak? I thought. More like a gaping hole, I’m sure. Then…

POOF – those two big, beautiful fish are no longer in the basket. Instead, two tiny minnows.

I leapt and jumped and did somersaults in the air, and yes, a few pixie laughter-sparks escaped and showered the inside of the cupboard.

Ah, it was beautiful!

Unsuspecting Mr. Weintrub returned to the kitchen, concerned about his boat, but thinking he’d done a poor child a good turn. Corine was all proud, too. “Did you see her face, dear? I bet no one’s been so kind to that child in weeks. Perhaps we should set aside a basket of… oh!”

Corine lifted one of the tiny minnows by the tail and stared. She may be fat but she’s not stupid.

“Where did you get these fish?”

Mr. Weintrub sputtered and spouted, he grumbled and grumped. He didn’t want to admit where he’d gone.

Oh, I couldn’t bear it any longer!

I flew from the cupboard and hovered just behind Mr. Weintrub’s head, where I could steal his voice and say what he was trying not to.

“The forbidden islands,” we said together. Ah, the troubled look on both their faces washed over me like a cloudy-rainy day!

Finally, a bit of trouble in the lives of my too-normal people. And from the look of it, there will be more to come. It’s high time for my dish of milk, and the Weintrub’s seem to have completely forgotten…

No milk means… trouble time!



  1. This is wonderful! The pixie has a great voice, and I love how she refers to the couple as ‘her people.’
    Thanks so much for sharing this!!!

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