The young police officer looked at the girl. It looked like she hadn’t bathed in weeks. Her hair was green with little yellow flowers and flower buds peeking out from tufts of hair. Her skin also had a greenish hue to it. He was instantly reminded of athletes who play on grassy field. He wondered for a second if the reason for the greenish hue was because she was just covered in grass stains. He noticed the over sized yellow jacket she was wearing. Aside from that, she wore nothing else.
“We found her. She just appeared on our property,” said the farmer. His eyes were filled with worry. “My daughter had seen her a couple weeks ago, in the woods talking to trees, but none of us believed her.”
The young officer pulled out his pad and paraphrased the farmer’s statement. “Was it you who put this jacket on her?”
“Yes, sir. We found her naked.”
“Was she this,” he paused. “Green when you found her?”
“We thought it was dirt. My wife tried to scrub some of it off her arm, but nothing changed. We were hoping maybe you might have seen something like this before?”
“Mr. Bradford, I can tell you sincerely this station has never met any green people before.”
“What should we do, sir? What if she’s sick? You know our boy Ro-” Mr. Bradford had to stop himself. He couldn’t even say his son’s name without warning of a tear or two. “Our b-boy-”
“Mr. Bradford, it’s ok,” said the young officer as he placed a hand on Mr. Bradford’s shoulder. “I understand. We’ll keep her here. We will take care of things. Just go home to your wife and daughter.”
Mr. Bradford nodded and turned to leave. The young officer watched as he walked away, sniffling quietly. A passing officer stopped to see if the farmer was alright. The young officer heard the farmer lie about having a cold. The young man sighed. “Poor man. His son passed away last year. F-”
“Fungus in the lungs,” interrupted the girl.
She was starring right at the young officer. There was no fear in her eyes, but rather what looked like wonder. The youth hadn’t noticed how big her eyes were until then. Why hadn’t he noticed them before? He couldn’t help but stare. In fact, he found it hard to turn away.
“Emeralds,” she suddenly said.
The officer snapped out of it. “I’m sorry?”
“You’re looking at my eyes. The farmer’s wife said my eyes looked like a pair of emeralds,” she replied.
“Th-they do. The purest of emeralds, might I add,” he said without thinking. As soon as he blurted it out he started blushing and looked at his notepad. The girl smiled. The young officer couldn’t help but think She’s beautiful. “I’ll go get a doctor, please wait here.”
Half an hour later, the doctor came by. “Thank you for coming on such short notice, Dr. Maccoby. This is the young woman,” said the young officer, signaling to the girl.
“Oh, please, David. One can only assume the worst. You told me the child was positively gr-,” the doctor trailed off as he finished the word ‘green’ with a mere murmur. He stared at the young woman as she got up from her seat. She still had the yellow jacket draped over her shoulders. She bowed her heard before the doctor in reverence. He took a small step forward and asked, “My child, what may I call you?”
She lifted her head. She looked confused. “Call me?”
“Yes, my dear, what is your name?” asked the doctor. This time he spoke with a softer tone.
A small wrinkle appeared between her eyebrows. It almost pained Dr. Maccoby and David to see it. “I have never had a name.”
Dr. Maccoby and David looked at each other, perplexed. “H-how about Emerald?” said David curiously.
“Are you naming me?” asked the girl.
“Yes, are you naming her?” repeated Dr. Maccoby.
“I-I guess so?” shrugged David.
“Just like my eyes.” Emerald smiled. She now had a name.
“Right then. David, if you would be so kind as to show Emerald and I to a private room where I may examine her.”
About another half hour later Dr. Maccoby came out of one of the questioning rooms. “Stay here for a moment, Emerald. I’ll be right back.”
“What is it, Dr. Maccoby? What is all that green? Is it just dirt?” asked David.
“I’m afraid not, my boy.”
“How can a person be that green? And her hair too?”
“Not to mention she has flowers growing out of her hair.”
“I’m sorry?” David thought he had misheard. “Flowers?”
“I pulled one out, and it hurt her.”
David’s eyes widened. He looked from the doctor to the door.
“Not to mention, I got a blood sample.” The doctor pulled out a small vial containing a transparent light pink liquid.
David gazed. What was happening.
“Also, that flower I plucked. It was a daisy. I asked her, out of curiosity, why she had daisies growing on her head. She told me that the trees in the forest told her they were Mrs. Bradford’s favorite. The trees saw little Robby picking them for his mother.”
David’s gaze shot from the vial to the door of the questioning room. “Mrs. Bradford? Mr. Bradford’s wife?” Before he knew it, he stormed into the room and slammed his hands on the table before Emerald. She gave a start. “How did you know Mrs. Bradford’s favorite flower was a daisy?” he snapped.
Emerald gave him a confused look. “The trees told me-”
“That they saw little Robbie picking them. Dr. Maccoby told me. How do you really know?”
She tried to reach for David’s hand. David, the kind young office who named her.
David slammed his hands on the table again. “What do you want with the Bradfords? Haven’t they suffered enough?”
“I only wanted to give my condolences.” Her eyes was starting to water.
“Only wanted to give your condolences? What do you-”
“Because their son died from fungus from my forest,” she cried out. “The trees warned me.” Tears started to fall down her cheeks. She looked just like any other human, save for all the green. “They said no one would understand. But I felt so terrible. I felt like somehow, it was my fault. I tried to make daisies grow in their fields, but it only seemed to make them sadder. So, finally I went to apologize. In person. I grew a crown of daisies on my head. ” She covered her eyes with her hands. “But instead, my daisies were plucked. They tried to scrub my skin off. then they covered me up and brought me here, and now you are yelling at me.”
David looked at her with a pained expression. He wanted to believe her, and deep down, he did. But her story made no logical sense. He wanted to keep yelling at her, force the truth out of her. However, all he could muster was a defeated, “Trees can’t talk.”
Emerald tried to wipe her eyes. “What are you talking about? Of course they can.”
David looked at her. “What. What are you?”
Emerald looked up at him. Her eyes bloodshot from crying. David found himself once again mesmerized by her eyes. “I am a forest spirit.”
David didn’t know what to do. He was so confused. His heart was racing. His eyes couldn’t seem to focus on her face anymore. Everything around him became blurry. Suddenly everything went dark.