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Bob the Tooth Fairy
a Land of Myth story for children
by T.S. Bryan
Bob squashed into the tiny room. The horns on his head scratched the ceiling and his knees ached after bending to get through the door. His hands dragged along the carpet because his arms were too long, and his black, motorbike jacket, which was unzipped and wide open, knocked all the silver ornaments off a fancy table onto the floor.
It would have been much easier if his mum came to see him but no, she was the tooth fairy, the queen of all fairies. She expected everyone to come to her – even her oversized son, and it was something Bob found very annoying.
It amazed him to think how his dad, a crankyplank, had fallen in love with a fairy. A fairy was a tiny, happy and generous creature; but a crankyplank – well, they were big, strong hairy beasts, often grumpy and three times taller than a fairy. The only thing that set Bob and his brother Rex apart from all the other cranyplanks in the land of Myth was that they had wings.
Bob was kind and considerate and, unlike Rex, he had never eaten anyone in his life. He would squeeze people he didn’t like every now and then, but that was just to let everyone know that he wasn’t a big softy. He couldn’t have anyone thinking he was nice all the time – that would be terrible for the reputation of a true crankyplank.
His mum sat on a throne like a queen, dressed in her finest lace dress with her wings folded neatly away.
“Yes, mother?” Bob grumbled. “You wanted to see me?”
She smiled and spoke softly; she even sounded like the queen. “Yes, Son. Sit down, and do hurry, you are making me feel rather uncomfortable just looking at you trying to fit into the room.”
Bob frowned as she waved her wand at an armchair next to her throne. A sparkle of magic left its tip and the soft and squishy piece of furniture grew to twice its size.
The arm rests groaned and bulged out sideways as Bob squashed his bottom into it. He knew she could have made the chair just a little bigger or, she could have made him smaller; but he knew it amused her to see him struggle which made him realise why Rex had left home.
“I have summoned you because I want to talk to you about something very important. As you know, I’m getting old and my joints aren’t what they used to be. I’ve got to the point were even my magic can’t stop all my aches and pains any more. So, you will be pleased to know, that I am going to retire and now, it gives me great pleasure to pass the role of tooth fairy to you.”
Bob’s jaw dropped open like a broken letterbox. “But...”
“There’s no need to thank me, Son; I am quite sure you will be thrilled by taking on such a responsible role, and I will be able to put my feet up and relax after a thousand years of collecting teeth.”
Bob felt like he was going to hurl up his breakfast at the very idea. “But I can’t be a tooth fairy… I’m a big, ugly monster! I can’t be nice to humans when I should be eating them like my brother.”
She pointed a cross finger at him. “Don’t you talk to me in that tone of voice. You are next in line and it is your duty to take over.”
“But I’m three hundred and twenty years old!” objected Bob.
“Exactly, you’re only young, so you’ve got plenty of years left to do the job. If you find yourself someone nice and get married, then you can pass the job to your children but, until then, it’s down to you.” She eyed him sternly. “You don’t want to let down the children of Earth do you?”
Bob boomed louder than before. “Yes! They can eat their rotten teeth as far as I’m concerned.”
A bolt of lightening left her wand and zapped him full in the chest.
“That’s for being ungrateful, you horrid child.”
“But I don’t want to be tooth fairy, Mum. What about Rex? Why me?”
“Because your big, stupid brother isn’t here, that’s why. I’ve tried to find him when I visit Earth but I have no idea where he is. So, my dear boy, it’s all down to you.”
“But the girl fairies never stop talking; all they do is giggle and talk about elves all the time. And besides, I don’t even look like a fairy.”
She sighed. “I’m not asking you to dress like one, you idiot! I just want you to do the job. The fairies will be your helpers that’s all. It will be their job to collect the teeth, leave the money, and give away dental floss for those who are not cleaning their teeth properly. You will be the one in charge of getting them there on your bike.”
“Dental floss? I didn’t know you gave children that.”
“It’s a new thing; we have to keep up with modern times so, the more they look after their teeth, the less we have to collect.”
Bob sulked. “I’m not doing it. I build motor bikes and roar into villages on my mean machine to encourage discipline and keep law and order. If I have to go to earth then I’ll follow the example of my brother and eat anything that leaves a tooth under a pillow.”
Mum shook her head sadly. “Oh dear, son, that’s the wrong answer. It looks like I’m going to have to turn you into a proper fairy after all. I think I’ll make you a girl so you can join in with all the things they like.” She stroked her wand and smiled wickedly. “I think everyone would like to see that, don’t you?”
Bob knew she would do just that and, once again, like many times before, he decided his mum must be a witch – not a tooth fairy.
“Okay, I’ll give it a try,” he mumbled.
“Sorry, Son? I could not hear that.”
“I’ll give it a try!” he boomed, nearly blowing the walls out.
“Ah… now that’s the right answer.”
Bob’s motor bike, fitted with two, extra wide side cars and a very long trailer with two hundred tiny seats, roared into the village square. He slammed on the brakes and spun it around, swirling up the dust and deafening everyone with loud, rock music pounding out of its loudspeakers.
Buttercup clapped her hands excitedly. “I’ll be in charge of the music!”
“And I’ll be in charge of the sat-nav,” stated Yasmin with an air of authority.
April fluttered up from the tank and looked Bob in the eye. “And what can I do to help, Bob?”
“Nothing!” he boomed, his breath causing her to somersault in the air. “I don’t care. I’m not interested, okay?” He pointed a finger at Buttercup. “Only rock music gets played on this bike. None of your fairy, smoochy stuff; you understand?”
“You’re very grumpy today,” said April, smiling sweetly.
“So what if I am? Get used to it.”
Everyone looked at him before bursting out in laughter. Bob let out a big sigh and, no sooner had he placed his foot on the bike’s kick-start, two hundred fairies descended from above, laughing and giggling, tugging at his jacket and ruffling his hair.
In less than a minute they were all seated and ready to go. April raised an eyebrow and winked at him. “I’ll be in charge of this then, shall I?” She wafted a sheet of paper with the names of hundreds of towns and cities on it. “I’ve put them all in order with the postcode alongside every one of them.”
Bob gave another grunt and, out of the corner of his eye, he noticed his mum standing in the window with a big smile on her face. That was when he realised that all of this fairy niceness was all her doing.
He thumped the music button and stamped down on the kick-start. The bike roared to life and, with loud rock music and pounding engine cylinders shaking windows everywhere, he thundered along the road, opened up the bike’s wings, and took to the sky.
A few minutes later they entered the portal that separated the Land of Myth from Earth where his bike, and everyone on board, became a thousand times smaller. Not only that, they sped up a hundred times too. Nobody on Earth would see them now, not while they were so small and fast.
As they went from town to town collecting teeth and leaving money, the fairies took turns to hang onto his hair, ears, biker jacket and any other parts of the bike. So much for William, Ethan and James keeping everyone in their seats.
Yasmin and April navigated perfectly, Buttercup played more ear-pounding rock music and everyone else, using their wands, magically created the money and shrank hundreds of teeth which all went into their bags. By the time they made their last stop, which was a farmhouse on the outskirts of an old, disused fairground in the middle of nowhere, Bob was having the time of his life. He never knew he could have so much fun.
He landed the bike on a stone in the garden and Buttercup switched off the music. “There is only this house to do on this stop, Bob,” she said. “It’s this little girl’s first ever visit by the tooth fairy so why don’t you collect her tooth and leave the money?”
“Oooo… I don’t think so. You’re so good at it and I won’t be able to get in without smashing the window. Also, if she woke up and saw my big, ugly face, she would have nightmares for the rest of her life.”
“Don’t be silly,” snapped Yasmin. “We are all in fast time and a thousand times smaller than any human. You are chief tooth fairy now so you have to do a collection sometime.”
Bob sighed. “You’re so bossy, Yasmin, do you know that?”
She smiled. “Somebody has to keep you under control. Come on, I’ll make an opening in the window for you.”
Everyone began to chant. “Bob… Bob… Bob… Bob… Bob… Bob...”
“Okay! Okay, I’ll do it.” He spread his wings and wafted them with such force that every fairy was blown out of their seats.
Yasmin was about to use her wand to make a tiny hole in the glass, but then she noticed that the window was open anyway. She smiled sweetly. “After you, Bob.”
Everyone followed them into a room where a little girl lay fast asleep. In the light of their wands, her mouth was slightly open and, as she inhaled in slow motion, Bob, being far too close to her and only two millimetres tall, was nearly sucked into her lungs. He had to flap his wings fiercely to escape and everyone laughed at him.
“That’s the first rule of teeth collecting,” said Buttercup, “never get too close to a nose or a mouth or you will be sucked in… even if you are in fast time.”
“That’s right,” added James, “and then you will cause a tickle in her throat and you will be coughed out with your wings all sticky and gooey.”
The girl’s pillow looked dirty, as though someone had touched it with a big, mucky hand. But with a sparkle from Yasmin’s wand, the pillow gently lifted, and she gave Bob a wink which said it was time for him to collect his first tooth.
“It’s rather dark under there,” grumbled Bob.
Yasmin gave him her sparkling wand and every one watched with big smiles as Bob clumsily fluttered beneath the pillow and searched through all the creases. He could not see a tooth, but he did find a spot of blood where the tooth had been and piece of paper with a note on it.
He reappeared, holding the note for everyone to see. “There’s no tooth… just this note.” He read it out loud.
“Looking for a tooth? Try the helter-skelter.”
He sniffed the note and his face turned very serious indeed. “Something is not right here. There was a tooth there because I saw a spot of blood under the pillow.”
Ethan shouted. “Look! There’s a big, dirty, footprint on the carpet… and it looks like yours, Bob!”
Bob flew down and landed on the thick, woollen, fibres. He sniffed the dirt while everyone fluttered around him.
“What is it, Bob?” asked William.
Bob shook his head. “I don’t know. But one thing is certain… it’s not my footprint. I suggest we leave some money under the girl’s pillow and go back to Myth.”
“But we can’t go back without all the teeth, Bob,” said William. “Every one of them has to be accounted for otherwise the guardian of the tooth bank will send us back to find it.”
Bob raised a big bushy eyebrow. “There’s a tooth bank… with a guardian?”
“Of course there is, everyone knows that.”
April fluttered down and said, “can we stop talking about what happens to the teeth and just find where this one has gone? We flew over a fairground to get here so let’s go and find it. Bob, you can deal with the thief.”
“You’re a crankyplank with attitude, so yes, of course you can.”
Bob gave a big sigh. “You’re even more bossy than Yasmin.”
After a short flight to the old fairground, Bob brought the bike down in front of the rusty remains of a roller coaster. To the left was a go-cart track and, straight ahead, next to a castle, was an old, wooden, helter-skelter.
Bob sniffed the air and pointed to it. “Definitely in there,” he said.
Large pieces of wood had fallen off the sides and a metal door leading inside was locked with a big, rusty padlock. But that was no problem when you were only two millimetres tall.
Everyone flew under the gap at the bottom and, in the light from their wands, a dark and damp room full of huge, hairy and scary spiders greeted them. Cobwebs, stiff and unmoving, were everywhere; there was no sign of anyone living in such a horrible place.
In a corner, steps disappeared up into darkness. The fairies went up first, using their wands to light the way and cut a path through all the cobwebs. Bob expanded his wings and followed them up and out into the night time sky at the top of the helter-skelter.
Everyone looked at the start of the wooden slide. “Where does it go?” asked James. “The end of it wasn’t in the room where we came in.”
“It will go to another room below ground,” grumbled Bob. “Our missing tooth must be there. I have a very bad feeling about this so I’ll go down first.”
April fluttered up into the air and took a deep breath. “No you won’t. We’re all in this together. You may have your strength, Bob, but we have the magic.”
With every fairy surrounding him, they began their descent down the slide with the light from their wands making them look like a rolling fireball.
As they turned the final bend at the bottom, a large, transparent bubble surrounded the exit. It opened up and wrapped around them, trapping them inside. A sudden sound of wind howled down the slide behind them.
“Oh no!” shouted James, “if we can hear the sounds of Earth it means we’ve lost our speed spell… we are in normal time!”
The wind blew the bubble across a dirty floor. It rolled through a tunnel into a dungeon where flaming torches on the walls lit the way.
A huge pair of hands with dirty nails as long as talons, reached down and lifted the bubble into the air and, in the light of the flickering flames, the green eyes of an ogre-like monster just like Bob, stared at them.
Its massive mouth opened, revealing five rotten teeth like gravestones. A fat, pointed tongue licked rubbery lips, and its voice boomed and echoed off the damp walls.
“Yum yum! Fairies in my tum!”
He brought the bubble to his open mouth and everyone could see tonsils dangling at the back of its throat.
Bob took a huge breath and shouted. “No!” His voice was so loud the bubble burst, causing the fairies to explode out in every direction. Bob cast away his shrinking spell and quickly grew to normal size. He pounced on his evil brother, but he was no match for Rex who was taller and twice as powerful.
Rex grabbed him and laughed loudly. “Well, look at you!” he boomed. “Mummy’s made you a tooth fairy… ha ha ha! You should have left home with me… the huuu-mans are delicious and the best part is sucking their bones clean before crunching them all up. Come and join me, Bob. We’ll start by gobbling up all these lovely and tasty fairies.”
Bob shook his head and wriggled out of his brother’s grip. “No, Rex. Let me take you home.. you’re not well, the witches will make you better!”
“No? Did you say no? Oh dear, little brother, that’s the wrong thing to say; now I’m going to have to eat you too!” He roared with laughter so much that he didn't realise that he and Bob were shrinking under the spell of over two hundred fairy wands.
Bob could see Ethan, April, and William, swirling around Rex’s chest and arms. They wrapped him up in strong, dental floss. Buttercup, James and Yasmin wrapped up his legs until he was cocooned like a caterpillar. Rex’s voice squeaked higher and higher as he and Bob continued to shrink until everybody was two millimetres tall again, including Rex.
“Well done, everyone!” shouted Bob. “That was incredible! I’m so glad you brought dental floss with you, it has saved the day!”
Buttercup separated from all the others and fluttered down in front of him. “Shall we tell him now?” she asked everyone.
“Tell me what?” questioned Bob, looking very confused.
“We don’t normally carry dental floss at all. It was your mum’s idea. She said that if you came with us that Rex would try to find you… which he did. Our job was to wrap him up in dental floss and bring him home so he can go to prison.”
“What!” bellowed Bob. “Are you saying that I’ve just been part of a plan just to find my brother?”
“That’s right,” chipped in April with a big grin on her face. “And it worked! You were marvellous, Bob. We couldn’t have done it without you… although I have to say, you make a rubbish tooth fairy.”
“Look!” shouted Buttercup. “I’ve found the tooth!”
Everyone cheered and, leaving Bob to fume over the fact that his mother had used him to do something she couldn’t do, all the fairies dragged Rex out of the cave.
When Bob finally made his way outside, Rex had been tied to the back of the trailer and every fairy sat waiting in their seats.
Bob let out a big sigh. Just as he was getting to like working with the fairies, it was time to go home. Maybe his mum would let him do it again, only this time, he would not object.