Disclaimer: Mine!

***

I am not me.

I look like Kristina Anne Danielles, 16 year old girl from America. I am typical teenager in looks; medium height, medium weight, grey-blue eyes, strawberry blond hair cut shoulder length... But that isn't me.

I may be the daughter of Sam and Christa Danielles, but that isn't me.

I walk down the street right now. It is cold out, but I have a warm coat. I am still cold... because of Lucia. Oh, how I hate Lucia. I hear cruel laughter in my head, and she brings on a flashback.

Oh, Lucia, how I wish you were gone...

~~~~ I am seven years old, and mad at my mom and my dad. They are fighting, and fighting, and finally I scream at them and run outside, to my treehouse. Why are they divorcing? They used to love each other, but then they stopped... and, well, they fight.

Kicking the toes of my white tennis shoes in the sandbox my daddy had put up by the window, I watch it slip off the side. A splash, and then another, as tears drop from my eyes. Then I hear something... a tiny voice piping from the trees.

::So,:: says the voice ::You'd like to be happy, am I right?::

I look around, but I can't see anybody. "Of course I wan't to be happy," I answer.

::Would you be happy if your parents were in love again? And you had a better friend, not like Maria?::

"Yes!" I says "Yes! I wish that were true."

::I can make it true:: says the voice, purring.

"Y-You can?" I ask.

::On one condition:: says the voice mischeviously, coyly.

"Anything," I answer eagerly, "Please?"

::You have to let me be you:: says the voice.

"Who are you?" I ask, suddenly on my guard. But a little fluting laugh comes, and something flits from behind a clump of white blossoms.

"A fairy?" I say in awe. The tiny, glowing blue person smiles, flicking her hair back.

::A pixie, actually. Lucia the pixie:: she says, making a little bow. I giggle.

::Now, about our deal?::

"I don't get it," I say "What do you mean, be me?"

::I'd just be inside you:: says Lucia.

"Like always having a friend?" I ask "A good friend who won't kick sand at me like stupid Maria did? Who's always there?"

::Kind of:: says Lucia, smooth as satin, sweet as sugar.

"Okay, then." I say.

::All you have to do is this...::

I wait.

::Take one of those flowers from the tree::

I do that.

::Get a bucket of water now::

I grab my sand pail from the corner, climb down the treehouse and fill it with the hose, then climb back in the treehouse.

::Now a ring... Why not that one on your finger?::

"But I got that one from the cheerios. Mommy PROMISED me I could have it if I ate the cereal."

::Isn't it a fair enough price for being happy? For a friend?::

"I-I guess..."

::Now, put the flowers one by one in the pail, while saying this...

***elttil lrig os elbillug ruoy rednu ym lleps uoy era os bmud dna keem tub taht lliw noos eb delleuq***

"I can't remember all that!" I say, lip trembling.

::I'll say it, and then you reapeat after me.::

She says each word, and then I repeat it, dropping the flowers in the pail.

::Now take the ring, and drop it in the pail and say ***tel ti eb enod!**::

"What does that mean?" I ask.

::It is pixish, the language the pixies speak:: says Lucia.

I drop it in.

"Tell ty eeb eenod." I say, dropping it in.

::Put the ring on::

I pull it on.

Suddenly everything turns blue and green, and grey, and smoke fills everything... My mouth, my eyes, my ears. I can't breathe. I can't hear. I feel like I' drowning in smoke. I try to pull the ring off, but it won't go off.

It won't go off.

Then it is all purple, and Lucia turns into a child's worst nightmare. A big, sickly looking women with bat wings and coal black hair. A cruel smile is on her thin, coal black lips as she is sucked inside me. I try to scream, but nothing comes.

Then it is all calm and I feel so happy. So happy! I dance around. Lucia is my best friend in the whole wide world!

But it stops as suddenly as it was there, and I am frightened and sad. I begin to tremble.

::Foolish child!:: comes Lucia's voice. It is no longer fluting, but cold as ice and cruel as all that is cruel in the world. ::You never make deals with a pixie!::

"You said I would be happy! You said you'd be my friend!" I say tearfully.

::I never said for how long:: comes the amused voice. Then as I dissolve into tears, Lucia dissolves into laughter. I see now how I was tricked... I cry and cry and cry...

~~~~

Lucia, I say to the pixie inside me, How could you trick innocent children?

::An innocent child, not more than one.:: says Lucia.

That does not matter, Lucia, I say to her, You ruined my life.

::I kept my part of the deal:: says Lucia ::Your parents are in love now, you were happy, and I was your friend::

You tricked me, I accuse her, They are so much in love they do not notice me anymore, and I was only happy and your friend for 5 seconds.

::I never said for how long:: says Lucia again.

I trusted you, I accuse her again, How was I to know that you would trick me? I did what any seven year old would have done!

::Huh:: is all she says.

I hate you, Lucia, I think to her, scowling.

::The feeling is mutual:: says Lucia dryly.

We're YOU ever a child?, I demand of her. She gives a dry laugh that sounds like somebody who's been smoking.

::Of course, foolish child:: she says ::Everything begins as some kind of infant and then grows. Magical beings are no different::

I am not a child! I think angrily, I am sixteen.

::Well, you are not an adult, certainly, to have been tricked so easily::

In my place, you would have been tricked too, I says to her, You ruined everything!

::Everything?:: says Lucia in an amused tone ::At least you are never bored:: she cackles evily and I fume, crossing my arms. A man stares at me across the street. I stare back and he looks away embarassed.

God, Lucia, I think, Can't you just go away? People think I'm crazy!

::Look at it this way:: says Lucia ::Things aren't that bad::

That bad?! I says to her in disbelief, Things aren't THAT BAD?! Nobody else has stupid pixies in them!

::Compared to other people, maybe:: says Lucia ::But-::

I cut her off. Well then, I think to her, How could it be worse?

::I could have control of your body and your moves, and everything you do. I could make you do things and not just be able to talk to you.::

Tears fill my eyes, and I have to sit on a park bench to stop from sobbing in the middle of the street.

Why did you do it? I ask her, Why?

::Why? Tricky question.::

How so? I says to her angrily.

::There are a few reasons, that's why::

So, spit it out, I says to her.

::First:: says Lucia ::It is hard to be a pixie. Staying forever out of view of humans, for fear of capture... do you know what they woukd do to a pixie? Cut me open, kill me... so we were told as young'uns that we could use a spell of some kind to get inside a human. Children are the easiest target::

What else? I ask, shifting my legs. I feel defeated.

::I wanted to see the world from a humans view. Oh, to do what a human does... shop in those malls, eat at those restaurants... It is lovely...::

What would you know of loveliness? I accuse her, It is not lovely to corrupt a child.

::Oh? and how would you kn-::

I cut her off again.

Just leave me alone, I say.

Strangely enough, Lucia listens. I shove my hands in my pockets and wander down the cold and icy street, wishing with all my heart that I was as dead as the tulips in our garden, frozen and icy, but blissfully dead...

***

I arrive home to the lights almost all turned off, except for the christmas tree, and the candles on the dining room table where my parents are, staring all gooey eyed at each other. Mistletoe hangs above them, and I turn away as they kiss. All Lucia's fault.

"Hello," I say to them. They don't notice me. I start crying again, and run to my room. I leap on the computer.

I've had it.

::Hey, what are you doing?:: she says.

"Shut up, Lucia." I say out loud. "None of your business."

::Why should I?::

But she does. She waits for me to do something. I close my eyes, take a big breath, and type "How to get rid of pixie's"

Nothing comes up. Just a few wepages people have made to talk about their pet hamster Pixie, or 'Pixie's Dream Site', and basically nothing at all useful. I pound my fist on the computer desk, making my hand tingle.

::Smart:: says Lucia sarcastically.

"Go away!" I scream.

My parents don't even say anything, or ask if I'm allright. I don't know what I'm doing, but I clasp my hand.

"Please, oh please let me find a way out of this..." I whisper.

Then I stumble to my bed and fall into blessed sleep.

***

I wake up to a cold blue light coming through my window. I open one eye and see flakes of snow coming through the window.

::Good morning:: sneers Lucia.

"Shut your trap, pixie." I say nastily. I've had it with her.

I dress quickly and race outside, glad that it is Saturday. Not all that happy... just glad I don't have to face anybody at school. The faces of the teachers, asking if I feel sick. My schoolmates, calling me weird, saying my eyes look funny.

::So, where do you think you're going?:: asks Lucia, and I can feel her sneer.

Mind your own business, I says to her.

:: I have to go where you go:: she says.

Well that isn't my problem, is it? I says to her nastily.

I begin to jog down the street, my breath coming in puffs of steam, glad for my fuzzy blue earmuffs with the silver snowflakes on them.

I stop to catch my breath, and I see something from the corner of my eye.

::Weakling::

Shut up! I says to her. Then I turn to look at the sign that caght my attention.

"AGATHA THE SORCERESS!" it exclaims in bold navy letters trimmed with gold. I lean closer and continue reading.

"Dealer in all sorts of magic, hexes, spells and incantations, go to Agatha the Sorceress for all magic troubles! No charges above 20$ Just call 126 - 56"

The rest of the number is blurred. I look and see and address. It is nearby. Why not? I have twenty dollars in my pocket.

::You aren't thinking of going to that quack, are you?:: Lucia exclaims rudely.

Mind your own business, I say to her again.

She makes an angry sound, like a grunt. I smirk and contiue walking, ignoring her voice until I come to the house. It is not old and run down like I thought it would be, but is new and a light sky blue color trimmed with white. Icycles hang off the veranda, and a navy sign almost identical to the one on the telephone post hangs in the middle of the veranda's roof, above the white staricases. It is friendly, and the sign seems to becon me.

::You don't seriously believe this woman will help you?:: says Lucia. ::She isn't even a real sorceress::

How do you know? I says to her, Pixie's can exist, why not soreceress'?

::Because any real sorceress is not stupid enough to reveal her magic to stupid people like you who come and look for these things! If she was real, she would be doing something like collecting magical herbs and stuff in magical places::

I'll try anyway, I tell her stubbornly, It can't hurt, can it? Besides, it looks like fun.

She just sighs, and I go up the steps and knock on the door with the gold gargoyl knocker. It isn't a creepy gargoyle. It's a friendly one, and it smiles down at me like saying "Don't be afraid."

I hear footsteps and the door opens. A tall women, skin the color of a coffee bean, with friendly eyes stands there. She smiles down at me. Her skirt and shirt, and the hankerchief holding her hair back are colorful, bright, and exotic. Dangling parrot earrings dangle from her ears. Friendly brown eyes crinkle at the corner when she smiles. She is young and, like her house, not what I expected.

"Come in," she says "I have been waiting for you."

It would sound creepy if anyone else said it, but I believe her. I believe that she really did know I was coming and was waiting to welcome me. She ushers me in and closes the door. Light poors in through the stained glass windows, and pretty lamps she has all around. A sweet smelling insense burns in a clear glass.

I sit gingerly down on one of the sofas and she sits across from me.

"My name is not Agatha. That is just to make it sound more mystical and stuff." she laughs. "My real name is Calla. Like the lilly?"

She leans forward and stares at me.

"Now, what are your troubles, Kristina?"

I get the feeling she knows exactly what my troubles are, but is just making sure that she is right. That might be because she knows my name even though I never told her.

"There is an evil pixie in me called Lucia," say, feeling silly "How can I get her out?"

Lucia snorts and I feel even more silly.

"It's quite simple actually," says Calla "All you need is one of these." she holds up a pendant that had been behind her. On it was a half-moon.

"And what do I do?" I ask.

"Put it on." says Calla. "Put it on and say; odnu."

"Is...that...all?" ask.

"That's all."

Hands trembling, I reach for the pendant. I feel a ripple of fear through me, and it takes a moment for me to figure out that it is from Lucia.

::Dont' do that!:: she hisses.

But I do it, and out it on.

"Odnu."

I feel a weird ripple through me, but not of fear. I choke, and close my eyes. Then I feel like something is being torn out of me, but it isn't a bad feeling.

Then I look, and blue thing is flitting around. ::NO!:: she screams ::That isn't supposed to happen!::

But I'm not listening. I'm smiling my first real smile since the day Lucia had done what she had done. I am smiling because, at last, I am free.

I give Calla my twenty dollar bill, but she hands it back and says; "No, Kristina. I needed to do that too... You can keep the pendant too. It will protect you from bad magic. Now go home..."

And I do go home, but before I go I leap up and hug her, then dance down the steps, out into the street, and all the way to the porch, where my parents wait with open arms.

I am me.

***

I watch the girl dance down the street and out of sight. I watch her smile, and I can feel my heart I turn to Lucia.

"Ah... If it isn't my old friend Lucia." I say. She sneers at me and tries to get out. I grab a net and with one swipe she is trapped.

::Fine:: she says ::You freed me from Kristina. Now let me go!::

"Oh no, Lucia," I say, "I'm not making the same mistake twice. I can't let you ruin more lives."

She screams in frustration, but I grab her and then she is in a jar. She screams at me, but you can't hear it. I am glad pixies do not need to eat, drink, or breathe.

"You'll make a nice blue lamp," I say. I put a light cloth over the jar and leave the room. I go to a small room and sit at my computer, where I begin my website."How to get rid of Pixies"

And maybe a girl like Kristina will stumble apon it one day, and I will be able to free her. Or maybe a boy will one day see a sign on a telephone post, and be freed too.

For now, I'll just have to wait.

*************

Author's Notes:

"Let me be me, let me be free" is my second short story, and one of the only ones where I write in present tense. I think that it is my favourite so far :) As for the ending, I wanted to make an ending that was simple, but happy ^_^

(PS: This is one of the stories in "The::Faerie::Library::", a collection of short stories I did. :)