Wind in the Willows

Submitted into Contest #248 in response to: Write a story titled 'The Wind in the Willows'.... view prompt


Romance Fantasy Lesbian

Rania is running, and she’s running hard. Her legs ache, and her stomach keeps twisting, but she doesn’t stop. She has to make it to the willows.

 Long, wavy blonde hair runs behind her, blowing furiously in the wind of her speed. The dirt is cold and hard beneath her feet, twigs sleeping in the dirt occasionally scratching at her legs. She’s surprised that she hasn’t gotten her hair tangled into any of the low hanging trees and branches..

Rania’s a gasping mess, her green eyes sparkled with determination. She just has to find the willow trees. She wasn’t sure she would ever forgive herself if she didn’t.. All the whispers that spread through the trees made it fast to her hometown, Ilyndell. There were new rumors as spring made its way ‘round, given the pixies and elves have nothing better to do than to gossip about what the forest may hold. But Rania never cares for what they all have to share, she never bothers with the lies and fantasy stories that the forest shares. 

So why is she running? 

The willows. She needs to find the willows. There were so many, so large. But they’re hidden deep in the forest, so deep and so secret; it was rare for any to make the travel to find the willow trees. Which is why so many stories are easily made about the lake that rested in their wake. It’s quite easy to make fantasy of what most have never seen.

The willow trees, right in the center of them, rests a huge and gorgeous lake. Rania has never before with her own two eyes seen it; she never before did bother. All the stories were simply little hoaxes that pixy children made out of amusement.. But it was this one story in particular that really caught Rania’s attention.. It was a mere poem, or a riddle one might say, that ever gave her the mind of running so deep through the woods.

When new flowers bloom

And sleep blinks awake,

Find the willow tree

And peak in the lake.

Such a pretty poem, Rania thought when she had first heard it. It wasn’t until recently that she found what it meant, the motives to the writing; Find the lake that rests with the willows, and in that reflection your true love will show. 

True love. Such a silly idea, really.

So.. Why is such a young girl so fixated on this? On love? Well, she wasn’t that young. Why, Rania is turning sixteen in just a few months. She was old enough to crave the solace of a warm embrace, old enough to know that love was a thing she wanted. And here in the little hidden place of Ilyndell, love was but impossible to find. 

Which is why Rania is hoping that the stories being told this spring, of the willows and the lake, are anything but false. She craves for them to be true. So, to discover whether this was all just a silly lie or not, Rania quickly left her home and made a run for the trees. With such a pretty poem, the story must be true! Why, it must be! The girl thinks as her running spree continues, the ache in her legs so easily ignorable as the fluttering in her chest increased the closer she got.

Rania could tell she was getting close, the grass beneath her feet slowly getting wet and mushy. She could feel her heart pumping in a wild manner, begging her aching legs to just halt for a while. But she mustn’t. Rania needed to know if the stories, the story, wasn’t just some work of fiction. If her soulmate really did appear in that reflection, then maybe it would go to prove that she wasn’t unloveable. 

The young girl has always struggled with her worth and imaging. She still isn’t quite sure as to why she’s felt the way she’s felt, but being loved is one thing she feels she never is. Hence the reason she has been craving the feeling of love, true love, ever since she was but a mere child. So Rania wouldn’t stop running, not yet. Even when she found it growing difficult for her to keep track of just where she was heading, Rania couldn’t stop. She isn’t bothering to think about her lack of planning, the lack of a map at her side or some pixie magic lent. Rania’s too focused on finding the willows. 

An unfortunate truth, however, is that Rania’s grit and will alone isn’t enough to keep her going. Her whole body quivers with an intense aching, her gasps for air burning her throat as she tries to force her body forward. She feels as though she’s about to collapse, when suddenly, there it is. The first spotting of a willow tree. Her green eyes flicker around her, and there are more. Oh so many more, all hugging together in different shapes and sizes, forming one giant, forcefield of a circle.

And just a little deeper into the trees, there lies the lake. 

Rania’s heart jumped into her throat as she halted suddenly to a stop, her breath heavy and her body wet with a thin layer of sweat. Slowly, she approached the pool of water, collecting her breath and pressing a hand to her wild chest; Her heart might literally jump out of her chest, if not for the harsh running then for her crazed mix of anxiety and anticipation.

There’s a strong, earthy smell all around, fresh and damp and absolutely relieving to breathe in. Soft chirps of birds and crickets are all around, some fluttering here and there as creatures scamper away from the crunching leaves Rania creates with every slow step. Oh, it’s more magnificent than anything the girl has ever dreamed! All the little pink blossoms just barely sprouting from the ground, purple lilacs and dark green lily pads floating about in the almost glowing waters. 

Rania takes in deep breaths of the earthy scent, staring at the waters in utter shock as she inches closer with every hesitant step. She’s slow, scared. What if this was all a silly little dream? And what if, the moment she touches that lake, she wakes up?

But as the young girl reaches out, extends a hand to the water and brushes lightly over it, she doesn’t wake up. Her fingertips are wet and cold, and she can’t help but let out a little laugh of relief. Because this is real. The lake, so beautifully breathtaking, was real, and right beneath her very hand. The water is so smooth, and as she continues to graze her fingers against the wetness, a chill runs up her arm from the cold. 

Rania’s in absolute awe, crouching over against the lake and just barely leaning in, biting her lower lip as the wetness indulges her fingers.

Find the willow trees

And peak in the lake…

The girl thought that verse to herself and pauses, a sharp pain against her lip as her sharp tooth keeps pressed nervously against it. Rania’s just about to lean in, finally getting up all the courage to determine if she really is unlovable, but a sudden snap from ahead causes her to jolt back and raise her gaze. 

Is that..? Can it be??!

Rania feels as though her lunch, and maybe even her heart, might force its way up her throat and spill from her lips. Her stomach twists more rapidly than before, and she’s stuck simply staring, a baffled expression glued to her face. 

There’s a tall girl standing there, just across the lake. And she’s staring back.

Rania could recognize that long, brown hair anywhere… And those piercing brown eyes, confusion conflicting her gaze as she stares Rania down. Both girls were silent, not sure how to speak up. 


The name pops into Rania’s mind too quickly to be ignored, and her chest gets all tight and her breath is cut short. Holy pixie.. Rania thought, staring at the girl who was once her best friend. It was Syndra.. After all of these years apart, the girl barely looked any different. But what were the chances..?

Find the willows

And peak in the lake.

Rania never did peak in the lake. But there, physically right in front of her, was Syndra. 

The girl she thought she could never have.

Just a few years ago, Rania and Syndra were absolutely inseparable. They swore to each other they would be together forever, two friends against the world. But those silly little promises were cut short, the scissors placed in the hands of both their mothers. The girls were then forbidden to see each other since…

But Syndra was here, wasn’t she?

It takes a moment, but Rania finally catches her breath. It’s a little shaky, but she has it. And with that, her courage returns to. Rania knew why she came here, and after what felt like hours of short breath and aching legs, her question finally has an answer.

The two girls are just there, staring silently into each other’s deepening gaze, and Rania’s wondering.. 

Fate. Is such a thing really true? How could it.. Is there really such thing as the right person, one made specially for a specific person’s heart? Rania couldn’t believe it. She never once has. But underneath the willows, her fingertips still cold and wet, she starts to think differently.

And Syndra never says a word. But… her delicate pink lips curve up, a soft smile taking over her peachy pale skin. Rania can feel herself smiling, too. She’s all flushed and her entire body is flittering and fluttering with nerves, but she smiles. Because she knows. 

And Syndra knows too..

"When I saw you I fell in love, and you smiled because you knew."


April 29, 2024 04:11

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Myranda Marie
18:57 May 04, 2024

Creative take on the prompt! Nice!


K1tty Williams
19:13 May 04, 2024

Thank you! ♡


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