Hoppily Ever After
Once upon a time, in a far away pond there was a town. It was a small town, more of a village in fact, and truth be told it really was not that far away. The name was Sphagnum, after the moss. Inside Sphagnum were two elderly, lovestruck frogs. The spunky, sweet Nymphaea, who read stories to the tadpoles on Wednesday evenings and held a book club every month for widowed frogs, had caught the eye of the quiet, somewhat grouchy Herman, who only cared about his garden. Both frogs were nearing the final stages of their lives, although Nymphaea would never admit it.
Their love story began when Herman spotted Nymphaea at the library reading quietly in the corner. She was not doing anything special; she was just being herself. He became obsessed with Nymphaea in the sense that she never left his mind. He wanted to know what made her laugh, know what made her stomach erupt in butterflies, and know what made her heart skip a beat. In other words, he was in love.
Having no experience in the game of love, Herman expressed his admiration in the best way he knew how, planting flowers. Using his impeccable gardening skills, Herman planted a new flower in Nymphaea’s garden everyday while she was in town. He first started with the more common flowers such as roses and daisies, then he moved to more exotic flowers including bleeding hearts and middlemist reds. When the flowers first started appearing, Nymphaea did not give it much thought. She thought that perhaps a seed had landed in her garden and grew, but when more and more flowers started appearing, she knew that something was up. She began waiting at the end of the street to see who this mystery gardener was. Much to her surprise, it was Herman. As Nymphaea watched Herman carefully planting a new flower, she began to see his cold exterior melt away and she grew to love the old grouch. She loved the meticulous thought he put into the flowers, the care that he took when planting them, and the way his eyes lit up after he put in a new flower. In other words, she was in love.
As Nymphaea walked home from her weekly tadpole story night, she noticed the trail up to her house was lit with sparkling lights, and an abundance of fireflies roamed the sky. At the end of the trail, Herman stood next to a small pond filled with water lilies, also called nymphaea. In his hand was a smaller water lily with a radiant ring in the center. Needless to say, the frogs lived hoppily ever after; in other words, they were in love.
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