Story Quest – Cora and The Oak Tree

Welcome to Story Quest, a weekly podcast where we bring your stories to life!

In this episode we bring Sadie’s story – Cora and The Oak Tree – to life.

Cora and her friends are making daisy chains in the garden when they make an amazing discovery inside a large oak tree…A TRAPPED FAIRY!

If you have a story idea, you could be like Sadie and have it turned into a Story Quest. All you have to do is send us your story idea here. We know you have the best imaginations and together we can create the most brilliant stories!

That’s just what Sadie did! You can watch the story she suggested come to life below, plus she tells us all about the inspiration behind the story at the end.

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Read along to Cora and The Oak Tree

You can read along to the story while you listen. Just follow the text below. Don’t worry if you find a word tricky – you can pause the video whenever to give yourself more time.

Have you ever made a daisy chain?  It’s easiest when the daisies are fully grown with long stems – one way to do it is to make a slit in the stem with your nail and push the stem of another daisy through.  You can make them as short or as long as you like and even wear them like a crown.

Well, this story has some daisy chains in it but it also has something else that’s a BIT more unusual.  OK, a LOT more unusual so let’s find out more.

It all started when Cora and her friends went on holiday and were staying at a very old cottage which had a really nice big garden, full of trees.  The cottage was near the beach and so they could have lots of fun splashing around and building sandcastles – but the kids liked to play in the garden too – it had lots of interesting nooks and crannies, and an enormous oak tree in the middle where the families had picnics and barbeques in its shade.

Cora’s friends were Umi and MADIE and they were having a brilliant time playing in the garden on the day our story starts.  It was scorching hot and the grass was full of daisies and so the friends decided to make daisy chains.

“Mine will be the longest!” shouted Cora but Umi just laughed “Wanna bet?  Mine’s already twice as long as yours!”

“You’re hogging all the best ones” grumbled Madie, searching around for some nice long stems.  Cora had noticed that there were loads of perfect daisies under the oak tree and so she went to pick as many as she could – it was also nice and cool in the shade of the tree and because it was such a hot day that was really great.  She had just sat down to make her chain even longer when she heard a tiny voice.

“Help!  Help me!”

It was like a silver whisper – or the chirrup of a bird.  Cora thought she must have been imagining it and so went back to her daisies.

“I said HELP!  Have you got fluff in your ears?” 

Cora looked around – the tiny voice seemed to be coming from the oak tree?  But trees don’t speak.  Or at least not as far as we know.  I mean maybe they wait until we’ve all gone away and then have a good old gossip about us. but anyway I can tell you now that the voice was NOT the Oak Tree.  It was IN the Oak Tree.

Cora saw that if she stood on tiptoes she could just about peek into a opening in the trunk.  The hole inside went right to the bottom of the trunk. It was dark but inside she could see something small – and shiny – it looked like…. A FAIRY?

“Are you a FAIRY?”  breathed Cora in amazement.

“No.  I’m an elephant.  Of COURSE I’m a fairy!  And I’m stuck!”

“Can’t you fly out?” asked Cora – noticing the gauzy wings.  But then she could see that the hole in the trunk was too narrow.

Madie and Umi were curious to know what Cora was doing and had come over.

“What are you doing?  You won’t find any daisies in there!…” said Madie.

“There’s a fairy!  A real fairy!” whispered Cora, leaning back so they could take a look at the rather grumpy looking creatures sitting in the bottom of the hole in the trunk.

“Yeah… great joke there Cora… As if there would be a …. “ then they paused as they could see with their own eyes and then exclaimed “A FAIRY!”

Cora shushed them and explained how the fairy was stuck.

“How did you get down there?” asked Cora.

“I fell in!  And I’ve been here for a whole week!  No one seems to hear me call out – those strange big humans can’t hear me at all it seems”

“Yeah, grown ups are weird” said Umi shrugging. “So what should we call you?”

“My name is Silverdew. Silverdew Flutters to be precise.”

“Well you’re not fluttering now!” said Madie.  “So how are we going to get you out?”

They scratched their heads and tried to think.

“Can you reach my arm if I put it through the hole?” said Umi.

It was no good the fairy was too far down to reach.

“What if we get a stick? You could climb up?” thought Cora.  But the only sticks they could find were tiny twigs – not long enough at all.

“If only you had some rope… or a chain I could climb up” said the Fairy mournfully.

The children looked a each other and at the same time shouted out – “The DAISY CHAINS!”

They ran to collect their daisy chains and it seemed that if they joined them together to make one long chain it would be long enough to reach Silverdew.

The fairy wasn’t sure, but as the chain was lowered into the hole in the trunk she tentatively grabbed on with her tiny hands and began to climb and climb and climb… and then she was free!

She stretched her wings with a satisfied sigh and flew around their heads delightedly, sprinkling them with glittery sparkles.

“I’m free! I’m free!  Thank you so much!  I will grant you each one wish as a reward – but choose it carefully – just one wish! And it must be secret – tell no one else!”

There was a shout from inside the cottage – the children looked towards the kitchen – it was time for dinner.  When the children looked back to see the fairy the WEIRDEST thing had happened.

All they could see was a small toy fairy lying on the grass amongst the daisy chains.  The real fairy seemed to have gone…. But the toy looked just like Silverdew Flutters.  Could they just have imagined the whole thing?

They took the toy inside and told everyone what had happened.

“She was a real fairy – we saw her flying around –  she was stuck in the tree and now she’s turned into a toy!”

The grown ups didn’t believe them after all it was just a toy fairy with gauzy net wings and ballet slippers stitched on to her tiny feet. 

Cora’s mum turned the toy over and noticed a tiny label, just under the pink tutu skirt.  “Look!  It says SELINA!  I wonder if that’s the fairy’s name?

“No!”  interrupted  Madie – “she SAID her name was Silverdew.”   Cora’s mum gave Madie a look that suggested she thought Madie had an overactive imagination.

“Maybe Sadie is the name of the girl who owns the fairy?” said Cora.

Cora’s mum checked with the owner of the cottage and it seemed that Yes!  There had been a little girl called Sadie who had stayed at the cottage with her family the previous week.  And the owner had the address and so Silverdew could be returned to Sadie.

And that’s what happened.  We don’t know much about Sadie but we do know that she comes up with very good ideas for stories and was delighted to get her toy back and I can also tell you Cora, Umi and Madie had a lovely holiday in the cottage – even if there weren’t any more fairies.

And you might be wondering about those fairy wishes that Silverdew granted the children?  Are you curious to know what they wished for?  Well, I can’t tell you that because as the fairy said they had to be kept secret but I am reliably informed that all the wishes came true and they all lived happily ever after.  And that’s the end of the Story about Cora and the Fairy in the Oak Tree.

Do you have a story you want to hear made into a Story Quest?

We’d love to hear from you, submit your idea here and maybe we’ll be hearing you on Story Quest soon.

And you can listen to more Story Quest stories here.

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