One sunny, breezy, afternoon in Pixie Hollow, Tinker Bell sat in her workshop, frowining at a copper pot. With one hand, she clutched her tinker’s hammer, and with the other, she tugged at her blond bangs, which was Tink’s habit when she was thinking hard about something. The pot had been squashed nearly flat on one side. Tink was trying to determine how to tap it to make it right again.
All around Tink lay her tinkering tools: basket full of rivets, scraps of tin, pliers, iron wire, and swatches of steel wool for scouring a pot until it shone. On the walls hung portraits of some of the pans and ladles and washtubs Tink had mended. Tough jobs were always Tink’s favorites.
Tink was a pots-and-pans fairy, and her greatest joy came from fixing things. She loved anything metal that could be cracked or dented. Even her workshop was made from a teakettle that had once belonged to a Clumsy.
Ping! Ping! Ping! Tink began to pound away. Beneath Tink’s hammer the copper moved as easily as if she were smoothing the folds in a blanket.
Tink had almost finished when a
shadow fell across her worktable. She looked up and saw a dark figure silhouetted in the sunny doorway. The edges of the silhouette sparkled.
“Oh, hi, Terence. Come in,” said Tink.
Terence moved out of the sunlight and into the room, but he continued to shimmer. Terence was a dust-talent sparrow man. He measured and handed out the fairy dust that allowed Never Land’s fairies to fly and do their magic. As a result, he was dustier than most fairies, and he sparkled all the time.
“Hi, Tink. Are you working? I mean, I see you’re working. Are you almost done? That’s a nice pot,” Terence said, all in a rush.
“It’s Violet’s pot. They’re dyeing spider silk tomorrow, and she needs it for boiling the dye,” Tink replied. She looked eagerly at Terence’s hands and sighed when she saw that they were empty. Terence stopped by Tink’s workshop nearly every day. Often he brought a broken pan or a mangled sieve for her to fix. Other times, like now, he just brought himself.
“That’s right, tomorrow is dyeing day,” said Terence. “I saw the harvest talents bringing in the blueberries for the dye earlier. They’ve got a good crop this year, they should get a nice deep blue color . . .”
As Terence rambled on, Tink looked longingly at the copper pot. She picked up her hammer, then reluctantly put it back down. It would be rude to start tapping right now, she thought. Tink liked talking to Terence. But she liked tinkering more.
“Anyway, Tink, I just wanted to let you know that they’re starting a game of tag in the meadow. I thought maybe you’d like to join in,” Terence finished.
Tink’s wing tips quivered. It had been ages since there had been a game of fairy tag. Suddenly, she felt herself bursting with the desire to play, the way you fill up with a sneeze just before it explodes.
She glanced down at the pot again. The dent was nearly smooth. Tink thought she could easily play a game of tag and still have time to finish her work before dinner.
Standing up, she slipped her tinker’s hammer into a loop on her belt and smiled at Terence.
“Let’s go,” she said.From the Trade Paperback edition.
Excerpted from The Trouble With Tink by Kiki Thorpe. Copyright © 2006 by Kiki Thorpe. Excerpted by permission of Imagination Studio, a division of Random House LLC. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.