Tiny couldn’t stop thinking about Lonely Tree. She wondered how he was coping, all alone in the Wild Briar Wood, and set off to visit her old friend. As she reached the shady clearing, Tiny flung her arms around Lonely Tree’s warm trunk, who swayed his limbs in the morning breeze.

Tiny noticed an unusual-looking stick hidden within the folds of his craggy bark. It was coated in a fine gold leaf, and glittered in the sun.
“What is this, Lonely Tree?” she asked, as she smoothed her hand over the gilded surface.
“That is a wishing stick. It can grant you any wish,” rumbled Lonely Tree.
Tiny’s eyes widened with amazement.
“I have granted many wishes. I will grant yours too. It will be my gift to you.”
Tiny considered the offer, turning the stick absently in her hands.  She had so many wishes: to hold Miss Rose again, play with Penny-dog, and eat a slice of raspberry pie in Clementine’s Café.

Lonely Tree watched her with the patience of an oak, and Tiny wondered what she had done to deserve such a patient, and generous friend.
“Have you ever made a wish on your wishing stick?” She asked.
Lonely Tree shook his leaves.
“If you had a wish, what would it be?”
Lonely Tree quivered with excitement, “That would be easy. I would ask for all beings to live in harmony with Mother-the-Earth.”
Tiny was humbled. Her wishes felt silly in comparison. She knew what to do.
“I’ve made a decision,” she said, grasping the stick with both hands, “I wish, for your wish, to come true.”
 “Then it shall be done,” he boomed, sending a jolt of energy up through his roots, and into the earth. Tiny felt a spark of light course through her body, before disappearing back into the ground.

They hugged, said their goodbyes, and Tiny skipped home.
Everything felt the same, and yet something had changed. She felt a familiar flutter in her belly—it was hope—and she wondered if wishes really do come true.

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