Heaven can often be a time aswell as a place and, for Calabella, that day and the few days that followed it were certainly a heaven. Her mother, who was a good seamstress, had gone to the milliners shop in town and bought fine fabric; bright buttons and shiny ribbon and made Calabella a pretty new dress to wear and then they had hired a coach and gone to see the large, gabled mansion house in the country that her father had left to them and Calabella had run round its enormous garden exploring all the wonderful things in it like the old marble fountain with lion heads on it and roses growing out of their roaring mouths from which water had once spouted and a tree swing attached to the sturdy bough of a ginormous oak tree which Calabella’s mother pushed, sending her feet flying towards the beautiful blue sky.
“Oh Calabella”, her mother had said, happily hugging her, “On that swing you look like the jewel in a golden pendant. Your father gave me no greater fortune than you, my wonderful daughter”.
But then, on their fourth night in that old house there was a terrible, dark storm with loud claps of thunder and lightning rending the sky with long, flashing claws and wind bending and shaking the trees so that they looked like ferocious, wild creatures.
The storm scared Calabella so much that she hid her head beneath her blankets, only raising them an inch so that she could peer out at the windows that were flickering with lightning and then, suddenly, she saw something; a strange, black, circular object butting against the window and it made her scream.
“Calabella?!”, asked her mother, rushing in when she heard the screaming, “Calabella? What happened? What is wrong?”.
The little girl came out of hiding then and pointed towards the window, “There’s a thing at the window trying to get in”, she said, frightened.
Calabella’s mother looked out and saw the black object banging against the window but she only laughed, “It’s just an old, black umbrella”, she said, “Carried by the wind. No need to be so afraid of a silly old umbrella is there?”.
Then Calabella came to the window and looked more closely at the object and saw that her mother was right, it was just an old umbrella and then Calabella started to laugh at the foolishness of her fears but, just as she began to laugh, the umbrella seemed to turn and, more like some nocturnal flying creature than a wind blown object, darted off into the night.