Cynthia sighed with relief as she closed the backdoor behind her. In front of her lay the narrow mud path that led to her favourite spot in the whole world. Clutching the little cloth bag that hung against her knobbly knees, she scampered along the path and up to the base of an umbrella tree, its branches spread so wide that they appeared to shelter from wind, hale and rain.
Cynthia gazed in silence at the roughly hewn wooden base of a swing, dangling from sturdy ropes tied to a low branch of the tree. She reached out a seeking hand, and curled it round a rope. Soft tears dangled upon her lashes. Her father had built it for her, so that ‘his little princess’ would have her very own secret place where she might hide from the world.
Cynthia was hiding now. Hiding from the solemn voices, and the keening tears. Out here, under her little umbrella tree, she was alone with her father.
Note: Tale Weaver #215 prompt at Mindlovemisery's Menagerie