The past few days had been an unexpected delight, the air was a warm golden syrup, and clouds dozed idly overhead. The carpets of goldenrod thrummed listlessly to themselves, and even the bees were too lazy to stray far from the hive, all save one.

Tiny intended to savor every moment; she lay in a circle of wildflowers and closed her eyes. Before long, the stillness was interrupted by a quiet whimper. She frowned–sat up–no one was in sight. A dragonfly danced his way through the bracken, no it wasn’t him. Nor was the sound coming from the ruby-throated hummingbird hovering at the trumpet vines. The whine was turning into a wail and appeared to be coming from the hibiscus blooms. Tiny peeled back the delicate petals to reveal Little Bee, huddled around the pistil and bawling her heart out.

“Oh my, Little Bee!” said Tiny, “What is the matter?”
“I’m so sad, Tiny,” sobbed Little Bee, “I don’t want to say goodbye to summer.”
Tiny felt the emptiness in her heart too. “I understand, it’s hard for everyone. But it will all be back next year, and so will you!” she said brightly.
“Soon the white blanket of death will be here, and it will all be gone!” Little Bee cried inconsolably. Tiny was at a loss for words. The sun was beaming and time appeared to be standing still, but she too knew what lay ahead.
“Little Bee, would you like a hug?” Little Bee managed a feeble nod. And so they lay arm in arm, cradled within the folds of the soft rose cocoon until the first of the autumn winds coiled through the dry meadow grass.

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