Snerds and Candy (a fairytale for Julien)

The Snerd loved candy.  Oh, yes he did.  Now it’s true that all Snerds love candy, but this Snerd, was the snerdiest of them all and loved candy so much that he hoarded it depriving other Snerds of their opportunities to acquire candy.  This Snerd would cackle with glee at his bounty all stored in his cottage.

Now Snerds don’t eat candy.  Oh no.  They use it as bait for unsuspecting children.  If you study Snerd lore, you already know that a Snerd would never harm a child.  But they are big and scary looking and find it hard to make friends with the little beings they are so enchanted by.  Your average Snerd looks just like the monsters you think you see under your bed and are sometimes drawn in books.  They have big eyes and big teeth and lots of hair and fur. 

Photo by Katarzyna Pracuch on Unsplash

They don’t mean to frighten children, but they do.  And so for years and years, the Snerds have been studying ways to befriend children because Snerds like children the way we like puppies – with abounding love and lots of giggles

Our Snerd, the hoarder, would race to the store after payday every week and spend his earnings on candy to entice children.  He was frugal in all other areas of his life, so he sometimes bought all the candy which made the other Snerds mad for it hadn’t yet occurred to any of the Snerds that there might be another way to get a child’s attention.  Throughout the history of Snerds, candy was used.  Snerds experimented with different kinds and different ways of getting it to the children, but it was always candy. 

Our Snerd would scatter candy around his cottages like driftwood on the beach and wait for the children to come.  He would peek out shyly from behind his curtain and wave to the children – keeping his claws curled into his fist so the children wouldn’t be frightened. One big brown eye and one furry paw weren’t that scary, and the children would come closer to get the candy.  The Snerd would smile and watch them frolic from his window while they enjoyed the candy. It was the highlight of his day.

Sometimes, a Snerd would also offer a child a cup of cocoa, but most children had been taught not to take things from strangers and were scared away.  But if our Snerd stood absolutely still behind the curtain, he could watch all he wanted until the parents began calling the children home.

The children, of course, told stories of the cottage in the wood with the candy growing in the yard, because that was the only thing they could figure was happening.  Who would just leave Snickers and M&Ms and candy canes and Pop Rocks and Tootsie Rolls and Reese’s cups and Kit-Kats lying about their yard?  Oh no.  This is where candy grew and the children were happy to find it.

They chattered to their parents about the candy growing and the parents smiled and thought what active little imaginations their children had without questioning why they were never hungry at dinner time. 

But something interesting happened when the children got older.  When all their teeth came in, they forgot about the cottage and the candy and the big soft brown eye behind the curtain.  Just forgot.  Like it had never happened. 

This might have been so the younger children never had to compete with older kids to get the candy or maybe older children just stop believing in monsters and creatures and cottages in the forest.  We don’t know. 

But in the forest, our Snerd uses his whole paycheck to buy candy so he can watch children play in his yard.  It makes him smile.

NOTE: I belong to a writing group that meets every morning at 7 a.m. and write in community to a prompt. On Wednesdays, we each contribute two words. The prompt is to use all the words in a poem, essay, or story. Today’s words were: candy, lore, cup, race, bounty, driftwood, snerd, and abounding. This is my story.

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