Outside, heavy clouds had gathered over the city, but State Street was still bustling with life. People huddled under umbrellas or hurried from store to store with their faces hidden under their hoods.

Kayla bowed her head into the wind and rain. She should’ve taken an umbrella. By the time she reached Harold Washington Library, her wet hair was stuck to her face and neck. Without lifting her head, she continued her way up to the seventh floor. She walked through the long rows of bookshelves, occasionally stopping to take out a book, and when she was balancing a stack of six books on her arms, she sought out a table at the back.

She dropped her backpack on it and it toppled over. Her cellphone slipped out of the bag and Kayla caught a glimpse of the screen.

Her Mom had texted. Again.

Kayla shoved the phone back into the bag. She flipped open a book titled A Treasury of Irish Fairy and Folk Tales and leafed through it until one section caught her eye. The first line of it read: Faeries are deenee shee or fairy people. Who are they?

Great. That wasn’t very helpful.

Kayla tucked a strand of wet hair behind her ear and flipped through the pages again. One headline read “T’yeer-na-n-oge”. Kayla leaned in.

There is a country called Tír-na-n-Og, it read, which means the Country of the Young, for age and death have not found it. Further down it read: According to many stories, Tír-na-n-Og is the favorite dwelling of the faeries.

Yet none of those stories mentioned where to find such a place.

Kayla slammed the book shut and opened another one. Her eyes flitted across the pages, until the letters began to blur. Nothing she’d already known.

She leaned back, rubbing her eyes. This was not going to work. She needed coffee. She got up, shouldered her backpack, and gathered all the books in her arms. Head down again, she hurried back towards the shelves.

And knocked right into someone.

If you want to find out more about The Seelie Princess, check out this post.


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