Summer on the Withywindle by Zdenka

Story Notes:

Written for the Picture Prompt Fun Dreamwidth community for this image (a river or pond lined with trees and greenery, including a willow tree. The trees and the blue sky are reflected in the water.)

Chapter 1 by Zdenka

Goldberry lies cradled in the river water, drifting among the reflections of sky and trees. Her loose hair twines among the reflected willow-branches. It is a lazy summer day, hot and still, and even Old Man Willow is asleep.

Most of the wild creatures are hiding in burrows or shady places to escape the heat, but the birds are twittering to each other in the river-reeds on the bank. Goldberry thinks of going to join their conversation, but she is not certain she wants to leave the coolness of the river.

There! Something lands on the river, shattering the reflections. It is a duck, who quacks and waggles his tail with a self-satisfied air. His webbed feet move rapidly beneath the surface as he paddles back and forth. Goldberry cannot resist a mischievous impulse: diving down, she glides silently through the river water and grabs his foot.

Startled, the duck bursts away and settles down again a few feet away, quacking indignantly. Goldberry breaks the surface, laughing, so the duck will see there is nothing to fear.

A feather is left drifting on the water. Goldberry captures it, admiring the blue-green iridescence. Perhaps Tom will want it for his hat.

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