The little different one
Once upon a time when the forests were deep and every river was clean, in a land far far away was a village. The village was small with one large road stretching through it, and a deep forest surrounding it. The was a pond and a river with fish, there was a small meadow where wild flowers grew. There were birds and rabbits and a hill by the river on the outer edge of the village. Just a few steps from the forest.
On the hill was a mill that ground grain and a little house beside it.
Because the village was small everyone knew everyone and everyone worked together to put food on the table. Some would fish, some would hunt, and some grew and harvested grain for bread. However there was only one person who knew how to ground the grain into flower, and they were a little different.
From the way they moved to the things they said, no one else knew what to make of it. Every one knew every one but no one wanted to be near the little different one.
Whenever the little different one finished their daily work they would go out in to the village and try to play with every one else. But when ever the little different one came by every one just said they were about to go home. So the little different one would leave promising to ask again the next day.
And they did after they took care of the mill grinding the others' grain in to flower they would go out and ask, but no one was "able" to play.
"They must think I'm boring." They said one day after the little different one left the meadow where everyone else was playing and still playing.
"Maybe that's why they don't want to play."
So the next day the little different one decided to through a party to show everyone how fun they were. So after they finished their work at the mill, they invited everyone to come.
The little different one set up games made food decorations and hung lanterns. After all the preparations were complete the little different one waited. And waited, and waited. But no one came.
"Maybe they forgot or became busy." The little different one thought. So the next day the little different one decided to through another party.
They set up more decorations made more food made more games and put out more lanterns and invited everyone. Then they waited, and, waited and waited and waited.
But no one came. But the little different one decided to through another party the next day, again inviting everyone.
…But once the little different one left to prepare for the party the other villagers gathered together.
"Why don't they get it?" everyone asked one another "we never went to any of their parties on purpose are they that thick? Can't they see no one wants them?"
So then everyone then decided to play a trick on the little different one.
So that night every one in the village went to the little different one's house on the hill for the party.
When everyone came the little different one was so happy that everyone came. They were especially happy when someone suggested they play a game together.
"Why don't we play hide and seek, in the woods" the little different one shifted uncomfortably.
"In the woods?" the little different one asked, "what if some one gets lost?"
Everyone just smiled "oh don't worry," they said "no one will get lost. You did such a good job setting up for the party you made so many lanterns that no one could possibly get lost while they' re lit."
Everyone went into the woods and chose the little different one to be it.
The little different one closed their eyes and plugged their ears and began counting, while everyone else got to work.
"One, two," the little different one called,
As the others left the woods.
"Three, four," the little different one continued,
And the others quickly ate all the food.
"Five, six," the little different one was starting to think of all the places in the woods,
As everyone destroyed the decorations that the little different one worked so hard to make.
"Seven, eight," the little different one was almost finished counting,
As every one took down the lanterns and put them out.
"Nine, ten! Ready or not here I come!" the little different one shouted not knowing that everyone had already gone home.
So all-night the little different one searched and searched but he couldn't find anyone.
But the little different one continued to search and eventually got lost.
When morning came the next day everyone got up and did their work. Every thing seemed normal surely. But something was different in the village, not quite right.
The people who brought the grain to the mill were the first to notice. The mill was empty there was no one inside to grind the grain into flower.
At first everyone didn't think it was important, maybe the little different one got up late after searching the woods for them. But the next day they still didn't come to the mil, it was the same with the next day and the next day and the next.
Eventually everyone got angry; the little different one had to be playing a trick to get back at them.
So they all went to the little different one's house, but no one was there. The people however didn't think for a moment that the little different one was lost in the woods still looking for them.
Eventually all the fish in the river and pond were gone, soon there were no birds or rabbits to be found and the flowers were all dug up. Every one was starving and angry and it was the entire little different one's fault for not going to work and grinding the grain in to flower at the mill like they were supposed to.
One day however the little different one came back, they looked hungry and weak with scratches and torn clothes.
The little different one just smiled at everyone.
"Wow," they said "I got lost for a little bit but I found you all, I would have never thought to look for all of you in the village!"
But everyone wasn't smiling back they were angry and insulted thinking that the little different one was lying.
"Go away!" everyone shouted, " no one here wants you! Leave!" they all turned away from the little different one who was stunned.
"Is that why you didn't come to my parties or never played with me?" the little different one asked
Everyone turned back around "you want us to admit it fine we will! We never liked you, you are not wanted and no one cares!" and with that everyone went home.
Everyone but the little different one who went back in to the woods feeling unwanted, unloved, and unneeded.
The little different one wandered through the woods until they could walk no more. So they lay there for a very long time.
Then one day a figure came walking through the woods, they were tall with a black cloak covering them a deep hood covering their face in shadow.
They walk up to the little different one who never made any attempt to move.
"I'm sorry," said the little different one "I am afraid I am too weak to get out of your way. Please forgive me dear traveler I hope I didn't make you angry with me."
The hooded figure just stood there looking at the little different one for a while. Then the hooded figure knelt down and picked them up.
"I'm so sorry," a voice came from under the hood.
The little different one saw only the figures mouth, which was smiling. "I'm sorry that no one realized how important you were and treated you this way." They said with tears starting to run down their shadowed face.
"But you don't have to worry anymore, because I've decided to invite you to a party where you can meet other people and make friends." And so the hooded figure took the little different one away to their party in the west.