Gentle starlight envelops the world in a soft glow as you make your way over to Xiaolong and your friends tonight. On your way to the Pond though, a soft chirping reaches your ears. You know instinctively that this isn’t a sound that you’ve heard before in your many visits to the Pond. You glance up, and within the blooming shrubbery that extends before you, you notice a faint rustle in one of the nearby bushes.
Xiaolong tugs your hand gently, her head tilting to the side in curiosity, before a moment of realisation dawns on her. “Oh, friend, follow me!” She says, and waddles in the direction of the bushes.
Friends, I have been waiting for this day for weeks and I am so excited that today is finally here! It is with excitement and pleasure that I get to finally announce my newest co-blogger, and I am so thrilled for you to meet her and your newest Pond friend.
Once again, choosing one co-blogger was such a challenge. The applications that I received were absolutely fantastic, and I was honoured to the range of ideas and talents and passions emerge from everyone’s application. Once again, thank you all so much for giving your time to be part of The Quiet Pond; I appreciate you all so much.
However, I was only able to choose one co-blogger, who you will be meeting today! My newest co-blogger brings so much energy and passion and love for everything that The Quiet Pond stands for. Ever since inducting her into The Quiet Pond, she has fit in so well with Joce and I, and her brilliant ideas have been absolutely incredible. I feel so hopeful and excited for the future of The Quiet Pond.
And here is my newest co-blogger! I am certain that you are going to love her.
Friends, meet Sprout the Lorekeeper!
As you tread over carefully, you watch as the rustling gives way to a small fluffy bird emerging from the underbrush. The bird’s brown eyes brighten as they see Xiaolong walking towards them, and the two critters embrace each other in a tight hug.
Xiaolong turns to you after a moment, smiling widely, “This is Sprout, our sparrow friend! They have been travelling the world for a very long time, but they’ve come to help us out in the Pond while Stella embarks on her next adventure.”
Sprout’s kind eyes twinkle as they turn their attention towards you. You can see a tiny, verdant sapling sitting on the top of their head that seems to glow in the soft light of the Pond. Their soft, cream-and-brown feathers are enveloped by a small cloak that trails on the ground as they walk. They walk over and grasp your hands, gentle and firm.
“I’m honored to finally meet you, new friend! Xiaolong has written to me much about you, and I have already heard so many wonderful things about your adventures here in the Pond. My name is Sprout, as you may have already gathered!” They curtsy a little, a grin finding its way onto their curved beak. “It has taken me a while, but I’m so glad to have finally found my way home.”
Xiaolong excitedly hops up and down, “Friend, Sprout also does really cool work in the outside world! They travel from place to place, and listen for stories that are important to people all over the world. The Pond will have a Lorekeeper now too with Sprout around!”
Lorekeeper? You ask, curious. You have never heard this term before, but it certainly sounds exciting!
“Yes, friend, a Lorekeeper!” The tiny sparrow agrees. They begin hopping over to a tree stump by the edge of the Pond, gesturing for you to follow. “I keep and remember tales and legends of people across many different lands. Stories are a very special kind of magic to me. They tell us so much about who we are, what we treasure, and who we shall become.”
You watch as Sprout places a gentle wing on the side of the stump, its weathered bark grown over with soft and springy moss. “And when I travel, I learn by talking to the trees! They have been in any place the longest, and have seen the most. My work keeps my heart full of wonder, even after all these years.”
The breeze picks up around you, and soon the stump begins to glow the same leafy green as the sapling on the top of Sprout’s head. You blink—and the stump has become a home! Complete with a tiny door, gleaming lanterns, and a small plant growing on top of the stump.
“This is amazing!” Xiaolong exclaims, and you nod your head enthusiastically in agreement. Sprout hops up to you and nuzzles your hand warmly. “This stump and the Pond will be my home from now on. I’m so excited to share more of my magic and stories with you!”
The heart and mind behind Sprout: Skye!
My dearest friends, please give the biggest welcome and your best hello to my new co-blogger, the heart and mind behind Sprout: Skye!
Many of you may know Skye as the incredible artist-in-residence behind some of the art in marginsbox, a subscription box for diverse books! Skye is an incredible writer, a fantastic artist, and one of the most creative and thoughtful creators I have ever had the pleasure to meet. Skye, as Sprout, is joining The Quiet Pond as the new face behind The Book News! If you know about her ideas for her stay and journey at The Quiet Pond, you’d be as ecstatic as I am (i.e., extremely ecstatic)! I am so honoured and thankful for Skye for wanting to be part of The Quiet Pond, and we are already working together to create some beautiful, wholesome, and magical content.
Say hello to Skye!
Friends, please give Skye and Sprout a very warm welcome to The Quiet Pond. Feel free to introduce yourself and say hello!