Chapter 10: Who lives inside of Missy's strange garden?

"Mermaids, Unicorns, and what's hiding in the rose sundial?" Sunny asked Mellissa, then exclaimed with laughter, "Spidercats!"

Melissa smiled as she knelt down to the ornamental flower pot and explained, "It's going to be my "family tree".

"So…" Sunny looked up at Rainbow and asked Mellissa, "What's a unicorn eat?"

"I don't know-," Melissa sighed exasperatingly and asked, "What does MY unicorn eat?" then she took a willow flower from her pocket and handed it to Sunny, "These are the only thing he will eat…"

She remembered when a car crashed into the old willow tree, and how she picked up all of the branches and sorted out the flowers from the mess, then she tried to smile at Rainbow and thought, 'Because those are all you eat.'

"I don't know how he can even survive on just a few flowers a day, but," She smiled at Sunny and told her, "it's been like this for almost a month."

Randy looked around the interior of the secret garden and saw spider webs, but he didn't think anything of it until he watched a strange kitten hop onto Sunny's shoulder, then he looked at the kitten he was cradling and gasped, "Eight legs?"

"Eight legs!" Sunny smiled at Randy and the spider-cat that he was petting. "Yup, eight cute, little, hairy paws!"

"Don't worry," Melissa explained as more tiny, crawling kittens came over to rub against them, "they aren't poisonous."

"There so cute!" Sunny exclaimed as she bent down and let the spider cats crawl all over her and spin webs in her hair, then she asked Melissa, "and they're yours?"

"Well…" Melissa started to explain to Randy and Sunny, "They aren't mine, I only feed them and talk with them, though they don't speak English," then scratched behind Rainbows ear and asked him, "do you?"

Melissa rubbed her cheek against Rainbows face, then told Sunny and Randy, "People hear him neighed and ask me to join they're horse club… HaHaHa," she laughed, "I don't think they would understand."

'They might…' Sunny thought, then she looked at Randy and remembered what he had told her about his own simple, strange dragonfly, and knew they probably wouldn't, especially when she looked up at Rainbows multi colored horn.

"They'll think I glued a horn on him," Melissa explained, "and probably lose this house," she looked at the house she's always wanted and sighed, "the one that I made for us," then turned around and smiled at the kittens Sunny and Randy were holding and added, "for… You."

'She just said "us."' Sunny thought as she looked at her uncle Randy and smiled, 'Aunt Missy would be really fun and good for you.'

'She built this fence for you..?' Randy silently asked the kitten that he was holding as Felix came by to show him something, then he put the kitten down onto a grape vine and told it, "But this was finished years ago and you can't be more than a few months old."

Randy followed Felix to the edge of the water to where a dragonfly had landed then waved to Bubble and muttered, "I wonder if Missy really did run away to a fairy tale with mermaids and unicorns, or..."

He looked at Rainbow and fantastically thought about how the Willow flowers were the only thing that Rainbow would eat, and imagined a connection with the lightning that had struck it around the same time that his sister, Amethyst rode her own dragon in front of his window., "Or maybe you just got stuck here…"

Randy looked at Melissa's mysterious garden and muttered, "Maybe it's all just a fantasy that she cooked up," then he sat down into a garden chair, smiled at Sunny and told himself, "it doesn't matter, it's really quite wonderful here."

Melissa watched Rainbow lead Sunny out of the secret garden and confessed, "The only visitor I ever have is Dad, and although he tries to keep in touch, he's always on the road."

'Always on the road?' Sunny thought about retired people who travel across the country in a camper, and then looked at Mellissa and guessed how old she was, 'But he can't be that old?'

'Or maybe he's in a circus!' She giggled, then she asked Mellissa, "What's he do?"

"Oh," Melissa answered Sunny with slight surprise, "Randy knows him, he a photographer."

Sunny wondered why that might mean something to her, because Randy draws kids comic books, then she looked at Melissa and excitingly thought, 'If Uncle Randy already is friends with your dad, then maybe you really will be my Aunt, and I can come here every single day!'

"Yup," Randy told Sunny, "Missy's dad sends me photographs that I request, and then I draw over the details to go in my books, that's why the animals look so realistic."

"Because they are," Melissa smiled at Randy, "at least the animals really did do those things in the photos, I sometimes look side by side at the originals and they're nearly Identical."

'She even reads his books?' Sunny thought, then added to the conversation by saying. "It probably makes it easier to illustrate them too."

"Yeah," Randy mumbled as he looked around at the unicorn, fairies, dragons, and other strange creatures and started to accept that of the things that his sister had tried to tell him were make believe.

He coughed to stop himself from thinking about it all, and explained that, "It doesn't seem to make anything else easier though, like writing an interesting story that people want to read."