This story is about Adrian and his daughter Samantha, a couple of characters from a much longer work that I am editing now.
The fireflies winked and danced in the dusk, and Samantha giggled and jumped trying to catch them. It would have been easy for her grab one, but she was enjoying the game more than anything else. Adrian sat with the little glass jar on the cool grass in front of him. The park was almost empty this evening and he could hear the hiss of Buckingham Fountain over the horns and rush of traffic. He preferred it that way. For just a few moments he could forget that they were in the heart of the city.
“I got one daddy!” Samantha came running up to him, little hands cupped together around her prize.
“Quick, put it in the jar so we can see,” he smiled at her excitement. At eight, Samantha was not like most children. She was too serious, too adult. Of course she was not like most children, and he had no idea what was normal for a child of a demon and a human. Maybe she was normal. If that was possible. Either way, was good to see her smile and act like a kid.
Samantha carefully placed her hands over the mouth of the jar and released the blinking little bug into it. Adrian quickly covered it with the lid while she stood wide eyed and grinning in front of him. The little yellow green light winked on and off inside.
“Samantha!” Adrian grinned back at her, letting a little of his magic seep into the container. “I think you caught a fairy!” The little girl gasped and clapped her hands happily.
“Really, Daddy?” He never knew who was humoring who most of the time, but right now her delight seemed genuine. He held the jar up higher for his daughter to get a better look into it. It was now filled with sparkles and blinking lights swirling like snow in the wind, and in the very center, a tiny winged creature fluttered.
“It is a fairy,” Samantha breathed in awe. “I didn’t know there were any fairies here in Chicago.”
“Of course there are,” Adrian assured her. He wasn’t lying, there were plenty of fey creatures in the city, even fairies. It just wasn’t very likely most people would ever come across one.
“She is very pretty,” Samantha’s green eyes were wide, in the gathering dark. “Will I be that pretty when I grow up?”
“You will be much prettier,” Adrian felt a brief stab of sadness. If she got the chance to grow up, he was sure she would be, much like her mother.
“I bet her family misses her,” Samantha took the jar from his hand, probably feeling the shift in his mood. “I should let her go home to them.”
“Good idea, sweetheart,” Adrian agreed. “We will take the lid off and let her go home.” He stood up, pulling Samantha onto his hip, letting her unscrew the metal lid before he set the jar back into the grass. The sparkling lights and the blinking creature sailed off into the dark to blend in with all the others.
“Thank you, Daddy.” Samantha threw her arms around his neck. He was not sure what she was thanking him for, he just returned the hug before setting her down.
“Let’s go home too,” he said, taking her hand. We can come check on your fairy again tomorrow.