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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Sad (07/26/07)

TITLE: Midnight and Morning, A Fairy Tail
By Teri Wilson


There once lived two dogs on the coast of Dalmatia. One was as black as the smooth ebony stones scattered on the shore. The other as white as the crying gulls who rode on the whispering wind.

The black hound was Midnight and he belonged to the Night. He moved in the darkness, a shifting shadow under the velvet sky. His coat glistened beneath the pale glow of the moon and he wore the starlight as his crown.

The white dog was called Morning, for she belonged to the Sun. Daylight danced on her back and she frolicked in the faint pink blush of the sunrise. She chased flitting fish and scurrying crabs, leaving a trail of paw prints in her wake. When dusk approached and the sun climbed into bed, Morning did the same.

As was his custom, Midnight rose with the beams of the moon. Night watched him as he rolled in the surf, his body disappearing into the cool water. Then he noticed the paw prints on the water’s edge. The black dog walked over to investigate the indentions in the shore. He cocked his head and wondered where they had come from. Gingerly, he lifted his own paw and placed it in one of the prints. It was a perfect match.

He lowered his nose and inhaled the scent of Morning, her soft pink toe pads and slender white legs. Her fragrance moved inside him and he felt a strange stirring from deep within. Each grain of sand spoke to him of Morning. In her footprints, he saw her goodness and light. And though he had never met her, he began to love her.

Day after day, Morning spread her warmth over the beach. Midnight treasured each paw print she left behind as if it were made of gold. At daybreak, Midnight held his breath as the moon retreated from its dark cushion. He dreamed one day Night and Sun would kiss in the sky and he would at long last see his treasured Morning face to face. It seemed impossible, but he yearned to love Morning in the light of day.

At long last Midnight could no longer stand the agony and he howled to the moon as it hung in the twilight. It was the deep, mournful howl of unrequited love. He beseeched the moon, the stars and the black sky. “Please let me walk in the light. Just once.”

The Night thundered with anger. Midnight crouched and tucked his tail between his legs as jagged lightning cursed the sky. In the booming clouds he heard the voice of Night itself speaking to him.

“Midnight, you are a creature of Night. You belong to the darkness.”

The fury of Night whipped all around him, but Midnight refused to give up. “Please, I beg of you. Just let me see her, if only for a moment.”

Night answered from the thundering storm. “What you ask is against nature. Moon and Sun do not dance together in the sky. If you stay on this beach when Sun comes up, you will surely die.”

In this chastisement, Midnight saw a promise. As he understood it, he could choose to stay and see Morning. He could watch Sun peek over the dunes in all her radiance. He could at long last look into Morning’s sweet and perfect eyes. Surely a moment in the light would be worth turning his back on the darkness.

So, he stayed. He kept his vigil and waited on the shore. Moon crept downward and just before she spilled into the vast sea, Sun’s rays shimmered on the horizon. And Midnight saw Morning coming over the dunes.

They looked at one another. In Morning’s eyes, Midnight saw the promise of the Sun and he chose to stay.

They had only one day together before Night reclaimed Midnight and he was gone forever. But his memory lived on in the litter of puppies Morning bore sixty days after Midnight perished. When Night saw the puppies, she mourned the loss of her Midnight and cried big black tears of darkness which fell in inky black spots on the puppies’ pearly coats.

This is the story of how Midnight chose to walk out of the darkness and bask in the glory of the Sun, even if just for a moment. It is also the story of how all Dalmatians came to bear the mournful mark of the black tears of Night and Mistress Moon.

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This article has been read 1188 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Elizabeth Burton08/02/07
Aww...what a darling story! I think you've found another niche for your writing, lol! You really ought to send this to a kid's magazine.

Poor little Midnight, though. :(
Verna Cole Mitchell 08/02/07
This prose reads like beautiful poetry. This is a delightful story.
Catrina Bradley 08/02/07
Captivating! The mood you set with your descriptions and writing style reminded me of the dark undertones in Grimm's Fairy Tales. This is a very creative, and stirring, "tail".
Joanne Sher 08/03/07
This is absolutely EXCELLENT in every way. I just love everything about this story - the characterization, the setting of the scene, the emotion, EVERYTHING. Every word is exactly as it should be. I really hope this does well!
Lynda Schultz 08/03/07
Boy, how do you do this? — it is sooooo imaginative, creative, visual, beautiful, and every other adjective possible. Love it!
Dee Yoder 08/04/07
This reads like a beautiful Greek or Roman mythology story. Great descriptions.
Jan Ackerson 08/05/07
Absolutely lovely "tail." You've got the "voice" of fairy tales and fables down pat.

This is really nit-picky of me, but I just know there are kids (I would have been one of them) who will point out that there are many days in the month when the moon is actually seen in the daylight. Not sure how to get around that...

I was delighted to read about how the dalmatian got its spots, and when I saw that unfolding, it made me grin.
william price08/05/07
My, My!! I'm impressed. Very smooth, poetic writing with great images. I love a writer who gives me a visual. Superb job, once again. God bless.
Betty Castleberry08/05/07
I'm particularly fond of this story. My granddaughter loves Dalmations. She would absolutely adore this story, as do I. Thank you for sharing it.
Dara Sorensen08/06/07
What a wonderful legend! I loved every word ^_^
Marty Wellington 08/07/07
Wow, I'm speechless . . . or nearly so. This was enchanting; a delightful & enjoyable read.
Sara Harricharan 08/07/07
Oh I do so hope this does well! It is so beautiful. The sad is a haunting, heart-breaking kind of sad, with a light touch of humor as to how dalamations came about. Good job-excellent! ^_^ One of my favorites for this week!
Loren T. Lowery08/07/07
Beautifully told. Wanted to hold on to each magical moment and make it last.
Janice Fitzpatrick08/08/07
Oh hon, my how beautiful a tale,(tail),hehe. This is so prescious! I have to read this to our 6 year old daughter-she will love it but probably tear up when Midnight is gone. She is my lil' doggie lover, every animal lover at that and will certainly like this story. Well done!!!!
Caitlynn Lowe08/08/07
I'm so sad about what happened to Midnight! But an absolutely wonderful story. Dogs and fairy tales...how could things get any better than that?
Kristen Hester08/08/07
This is so unique and original. It is a great fairy tale/legend. You are so talented.
Sara Harricharan 08/09/07
***Congrats on your highly commended!***