I got to sleep in this morning because it is the first day of the weekend. Pada got me up after sunrise and said we needed to start picking some of the early apples before they fell to the ground. I groaned, but got up. I'm just happy I don't have to go to school today! The chickens clucked as we walked by and the goats fussed, but Nida had already fed them before I got up. We came to the orchard, the very tops of the apple trees fading into the low fog, and Pada climbed the ladder up the first tree.
'We have to get the apples picked before they fall and the glow worms get them.' he told me. 'Glow worms?' I asked. And I'll tell you the truth, I was feeling rather lazy and bored until he mentioned those glow worms. 'Yes, the glow worms.' he repeated from the tree's branches. 'We'll look for some when we're done.' So I helped him pick apples upon apples and put them in the baskets he had set out the day before.
When we were done, Pada walked me over to a pile of rotting apples on the edge of the orchard. 'Look, glow worms.' he said, pointing and smiling. I squinted, and after a moment I saw them. Oh! They were so wonderful! Caterpillars the size of my fingers, glowing in all different colors: blue, green, yellow, orange, red, pink. They looked like the inside of a candle when the wick is burning low, and they were covered in tiny hairs that shone even brighter at their tips.
'They do love apples,' Pada remarked, standing casually with his arms crossed, 'but I prefer it when they eat the old ones and not the new.' I stayed out in the orchard for quite some time, watching the glow worms munch away at the bruised fruit. I couldn't wait to tell Gieaun and Scede all about them when we went back to school at the start of the week.
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Want to read more about Jahrra and her adventures? Download The Legend of Oescienne - The Finding, the first book in the Oescienne series, for FREE from Amazon.com!