Michael McKnight heard Abby’s plea, felt the waves of magic radiating out to him from the fairy charms she’d acquired, and the instant she asked and put that door at the base of the grand live oak he bent time and space to get to her. Banished for the last ten years for the misuse of his magic—and for hoarding gold—he had spent a life apart from her, one that had literally been a living hell.
ButI’ve paid my debt, and nothing will keep me from her now.
She rounded the tree, screamed, and dropped in her tracks.
Panic seized him. He tossed away his tiny green hat and dove for her, catching her head in his small arms before she hit the dirt. She’d crashed. Totally passed out. Dusted the fallen leaves with her golden-red locks. Good God, she’s not breathing!
“Abby? Abby! Wake up, Abby!” His frantic voice filled the woods. He’d scared the precious thing to death. “What have I done? Damn it, Abby, don’t do this to me! Come on, sweetheart, wake up!” No. He couldn’t lose her now that she’d called for him. “Please! Abby, come back to me!”
Getting caught by a human was end-game for any leprechaun, but Michael wanted her to catch him. He’d loved her since they were children, and sometimes he thought he’d dreamed her into life. She’d never recognize him now—penance for his sins included the curse of living in this ridiculously tiny body with the green felt hat and shoes. But he didn’t care. Whatever she needed, he’d be sure to see she got. If he could. There were limits to magic, of course.
He shook her, his chest crushing in on itself as he willed her awake. Then a breath escaped her lips and she gasped, and Michael froze.
“Praise God Almighty, she’s alive.”
His eyes roved every inch of her, seeking injuries. His trembling hands felt her scalp and neck. No bumps. No blood. The tension in his chest eased. She’d merely fainted at the sight of him. That could be good or bad. He chose to go with good.
“Ah, lass, you’re overcome with the sight of me.” He stared at her and smiled, hugged her close in his arms and drew in a deep breath. He cradled her head, her angelic face graced by those waving locks of long ginger hair. And freckles. Everywhere. Michael chuckled. My lassie, Irish through and through.
He reached out and reverently touched her face. When they’d played together as children he’d wanted to kiss her. Now he pulled her close and drew in a breath. Peaches and cream. She smelled like heaven. Her ample chest rose and fell underneath a navy blouse that set off the color of her porcelain skin and hundreds—no, thousands—of freckles. Long legs stretched out from underneath her sleeping frame. She’d grown up during the years he was kept away.
He peeked down the length of those denim-covered legs, and his face blew wide with a smile when he saw her bare feet. A work of art, her toes were painted red and perfectly pedicured. The shoes she wore lay askew from her fall, and he scrambled over to assess them. Professional curiosity. One of the heels had snapped clean off.
His face fell. Three-inch heels? No wonder she’d fallen. Who wore such beautiful things outside to plant fairy charms? But his Abigail had always fancied her shoes, and he’d yearned to make her a pair for well over a decade.
He inspected her feet. The arch was perfect, her toes a wonder, and her bare feet drew him in. A desire to give her a foot rub almost overcame him, but he forced his eyes back up her body to her face. To her lips. One simple kiss and he would die a happy man. He’d lived for this, watching her, using his magic and gold to pay the fairies to dance for her when they were both so young….
He took his chance while she lay there unaware. Leaning in, he pressed his lips to hers and stole his kiss. She stirred. Unable to control himself, Michael kissed her again. Then he eased back as her red-blonde lashes fluttered open to reveal sapphire eyes. His heart raced as for a second he glimpsed his future, and that future was good.
Then Abby’s eyes flew wide, she screamed and seized him in her hands. “For the love of God, you’re a leprechaun!”
Folklore about these little men swam in Abby’s clouded head as she reared up, the creature’s lapels in her grasp. Leprechauns were a sort of fairy without wings. But also… “Gold! Good God! Leprechauns are magic fairies who own gold!”
He narrowed his eyes. “That’s the best you can do?”
Wishing for spring? For those of us Down South, spring is definitely in the air. So, in honor of my Savannah heritage I’m sharing a snippet from a little Irish fairy tale I wrote, entitled THREE WISHES.
Abigail O’Malley cursed under her breath, stalked down the cobblestone street of Savannah’s historic district, and dialed her friend/bouncer/right-hand barman. A moment later Eddie’s big bass voice filled the phone with, “O’Malley’s Bar & Grill.”
“You’re never gonna believe it,” Abby said, cringed, and delivered the news. “Kevin Finnegan called the note due on the property taxes on the bar, and my house.”
“Sheee-it,” Eddie said, his southern drawl drawing the cussword out into two long syllables, and if she weren’t so devastated Abby would have laughed.
“He proposed last night, and when I refused he immediately demanded his damn money. Some prince charming, huh?”
“O’Malley’s is prime real estate on River Street sweetheart, but he can’t move in on us the week before St. Patrick’s Day! Can’t you file an injunction or something, maybe sic your snake of an attorney on his ass?”
“I tried, Eddie, but Kevin Finnegan’s the president of the damn bank, and he wants his money tomorrow.”
Every weekend a wonderful blog hop happens where writers, known as the Weekend Writing Warriors share creative snippets of their stories. Click the box below to visit the other bloggers. Like our posts and leave a comment. Writers thrive on comments. 🙂
And, if you’re lucky enough to join the awesome writers over at the Facebook Snippet Sunday group, then you’re lucky enough.
Abigail O’Malley wants to find true love…which is about as easy as catching a leprechaun.
Abigail O’Malley’s world turns upside down when a rival Irishman threatens to take her bar, an historic Savannah landmark, mere days before the start of the annual St. Patrick’s Day celebration.
When she captures a leprechaun with fairy charms, her three wishes include his gold, fairy magic, and the mystery of her One True Love.
Michael McKnight has pined over Abby forever, but will he have time to reveal his true nature and prove he’s up to the task of granting all her wishes before the bad guys close in and destroy Abby’s dreams forever?
St. Patrick’s Day is in my blood – part of my history growing up in Savannah, Georgia. Heck, it’s a national holiday in Savannah, and a bang-up serious celebration. Allegedly, the 2nd largest Irish celebration in the US happens right there in my hometown.
In Honor of the impending epic celebration of Irish Love in my hometown of Savannah, Georgia, and the second largest St. Patrick’s Day Parade in the nation, I’m re-blogging the Three Wishespost from 2Bibliophiles Guide from May 2013.
Lets start easy. What is your favorite Genre of books to read?
Paranormal romance – I like a little magic with my love story. I also like romantic suspense because thrillers don’t have enough romance for me, but I like a little bit of action in my romances.
Do you have any favorite authors? If yes, Will you tell us who?
I love what Deborah Harkness did in A DISCOVERY OF WITCHES. Older James Patterson thrillers, especially the Alex Cross series. When I was younger I loved to devour Jude Devereaux’s romances, especially the time travel fantasy romances. Jon Konrath makes me laugh, and that’s a good thing. I’ve discovered a host of excellent writers at Boroughs Publishing Group.
What/who inspired to write your first book?
Wanting to find the perfect combination of Thriller/Romance & Fantasy.
How long have you been writing?
I have stories that I was writing with a critique group when I was thirteen years old. I won’t tell you my age, but suffice it to say that was a long time ago. I’ve kept journals my whole life, and about three years ago that migrated into writing for publication.
What was the first book you remember reading? (other than children’s books)?
BEACH MUSIC by Pat Conroy
I noticed a theme with the titles of your books. Wishes. All the two series have totally different elements though. Are you a believer it the fae and all things magical?
I believe wishes are prayers that deserve our attention and nurturing. In fiction, at least, I do believe in all things magical. THREE WISHES is a fairytale set in modern-day Savannah, Georgia, and it’s as close as I’ll ever get to creating magic.
What inspired 3 wishes?
I learned about fairy doors on a recent day trip with my family. Apparently if you put out fairy doors, and fairy charms, legend has it fairies will come visit your property, If they’re pleased with your offerings they’ll hang out and protect you. My Muse worried that something evil might try to come through those doors, and a plot hatched to find a Hero instead. Michael McKnight, my Leprechaun in Love became that hero, and the story was born.
I love Michael the Tall, is he based on anyone in particular?
I’m so glad to hear you loved Michael. He surprised me, and I fell instantly in love. My DH is my personal hero, and I suppose most of my leading men find their honor and valiance through his example.
Can you tell us what you’re working on next?
Absolutely, and thanks for asking! DRAGONSTONE is due to be released in May by Boroughs Publishing Group. It’s a Lunchbox Romance about an Elf Prince who travels through time to rescue a stolen baby dragon. Along the way, he finds his princess, and this high heat fantasy romance features magic and love in perfect sync. While DRAGONSTONE is a short story, its novel follow-up is my current work in progress.
Have you ever based a character on yourself or someone you know?
Absolutely. All my characters are compilations of everyone I know from real life and fiction. Everyone had better behave or I’ll put you in my next book for the villain to deal with.
When writing do you dictate the story or do the characters tell you what to do?
This is a great question. I firmly believe that my characters take on a life of their own, and I’m just there to take down notes. Surely each one of them comes from inside of me and their actions and responses are my way of dealing with situations, but I don’t know…several characters I’ve written definitely led the charge. Michael McKnight is the perfect example – a Leprechaun in Love on a mission. I worried about those fairy doors, but then he showed up for work the next day, demanding his story be told.
Do you outline?
I’m a reformed Pantser. I struggle with outlines, and I’m getting better at tolerating the damn things because I feel like at some point an outline robs the story of its gusto. However, learning to use an outline as a fluid roadmap for storytelling certainly saves a lot of time in revision.
Did Michael keep his powers or is he human now?
King Dionis allowed Michael to keep his powers. Once Abby broke his spell, Michael resumed his true nature, that of an ancient Leprechaun in all his former glory – think huge, hot, warrior well-endowed with magic and gold. Oh, and his skills at making fairy shoes. Of course, that takes magic.
I have never heard of fairy charms. I know of fairy doors, and own a couple. Can you tell us more about fairy charms, please.
How cool is that that you have fairy doors! I love them.
Fairy charms are any miniature decoration you might leave just outside your fairy door for your fairy’s pleasure. For instance, all the best dressed houses don’t just have fairy doors, they have garden benches, tables, chairs, garden tools,umbrellas, glasses to drink from; any type of whimsy you love, your fairy’s should love too. Take care with your offerings though – if your fairies are not pleased, they will set to causing mischief in your house and your gardens.
Do you have fairy charms?
I DO have fairy charms! The very day Boroughs Publishing Group awarded me the contract to publish Three Wishes, I bought the most exquisite fairy ball. It’s huge, made of blue-green colored glass, and its solar powered so it glows at night. I placed it out in my humble Spring garden. It glows at night, and I know my fairy’s love it. I often think I see them dancing around it at night.
Will there be any more books related to Three Wishes?
What an excellent question! I’m currently off in another fantasy land dealing with some dragons, and their elves. First I have to help them solve their issues, but we’ll see what time and inspiration spins out of my imagination. Somewhere in the back of my mind lies the question of just exactly how the Fairy Queen Melise knew Abby’s father Angus. I think there just may be a story there…
This is a short story about true love and a leprechaun. Its not what you think, Abigail O’Malley catches herself a Leprechaun Michael McKnight the Tall, and her three wishes include his gold, fairy magic, and the mystery of her One True Love. Abbey is about to lose her family home and the bar that her family owns. Michael is a hero and Abby cant understand her good fortune. This is a sweet tale of childhood love lost and found, fairy romance and misdeeds. A wonderful short story. I found the sex scene wonderfully funny, as one would expect of a virgin who has never been exposed to sex. A romantic, funny love story, well worth the read.
Three Wishes is a really good short story. Paula does a wonderful job of mixing in a plot, with romance and fun, and kept things interesting. I loved Michael and how quickly Abbey was able to overlook his size to see a person. I loved that Abbey had such simple (yet hard to do) wishes. You have to respect a lady who is true to herself!
I loved the storyline, and would love to see a prequel or sequel. I would love to know why her father had hid the fairy charms away, and how he was so close to the King and Queen in the first place.
It was pretty cool that you could see Abbey slowly seeing her childhood friend in the leprechaun before her. Showed how genuine a person she was. I wish we had a little more detail about Michael and Abbey as kids, and what he did to become cursed.
Over all great story though, and I highly recommend it.
The afternoon had gotten away from her and twilight loomed, so Abby took the charms and strode across the yard to the old oak. Her imagination ran wild with thoughts of fairies dancing in the wooded area, fireflies though they might have been. She longed to see them again, longed for a time when she had the unfettered mind of child, when her world revolved around her parents, when she was safe and loved, and happy.
She approached the old live oak and placed the miniature fairy door at the base of the tree, just so. Next she settled one of the delicate little chairs beside it. Now the bench, and the remaining two chairs belong on the other side, on the old rock. She walked around the tree, set up the fancy little charms in an inviting arrangement, squeezed her eyes shut and asked a mighty question of the universe and whatever power imagination truly held within the world. She asked for hope, peace, and some way to solve this mess with her father’s bar.
“Please, little fairies, I need all the luck you can lend me today. I’m inviting you back to play. Please come back home and show me what to do.”
A mighty wind kicked up and swirled through the branches of the grand old oak, fluttering her hair with its force. Abby opened her eyes then frowned, surprised. Clearly, the stress of it all had finally taken its toll. The fairy charms vibrated and glowed with brilliant color, and a leprechaun dressed in a Kelly green suit, with a top hat and pointed shoes, stood waiting on the other side of the tree. A radiant smile lit his face.
Abby gasped, stepped back, and scurried around the oak toward the safety of the house. Then she shrieked. Her world closed in around her. Her heart hitched and her brain screamed foul. Her knees chose that moment to give way, and she collapsed into a heap at the base of the tree.
Author Info: Paula Millhouse grew up in Savannah, Georgia where Spanish moss whispers tales in breezes from the Atlantic Ocean, and the Intracoastal Waterway. As a child Paula soaked in the sunshine and heritage of cobblestones, pirate lore, and stories steeped in savory mysteries of the south. She’s a member of Romance Writers of America, the Fantasy, Futuristic, & Paranormal chapter, the Mystery/Suspense chapter (Kiss of Death), and a member of Savvy Authors.
In the southern tradition of storytellers, she loves sharing the lives of her characters with readers, and following her muse on the quest for happily-ever-afters in thrilling romantic fiction.
She lives with her husband at the base of the Blue Ridge Mountains with their pack and pride of furry babies.