“Ate fairy-bread!” exclaimed Birdling, “do you mean to say I am a fairy now?”
The Bumble-bee put his head on one side and deliberated.
“No,” he said slowly, “You’re ‘not a fairy. You’re only fairyish. What’s your name?”
“I haven’t any. But people call me Birdling.”
“Well, that’s not so bad. What can you do?”
“Nothing. Oh, yes—I can whistle!”
“Where will you live? You are too small to live with your great-aunt. She would surely step on you.”
Birdling looked around; there was a ground- sparrow’s nest under the witch-hazel bushes, very near the fairy-bread flowers.
“Here,” he said, “If nobody minds, I’ll live here.”
So that is where he lived all summer. Everybody on the hill grew fond of him, and in the mornings when the robin sang to the sun, Birdling too would be up and whistling.
But one day the Bumble-bee came to call. His face was serious and his voice unusually rumbly. It was a cool day so Birdling was all wrapped in a mullen leaf.