She looked exactly like a tiny Pippi Longstocking, complete with striped tights, haphazard braids, and red shoes with buckles and room in the toes to carry her treasures.
Nobody knew why she ended up along the Mohawk trail or how long she had lived there, but they assumed she had interacted with adult humans at some point in her life, because she used a lot of English words – not always in the usual fashion. She communicated in one way or another with stars and bees and raccoons and fairies.
If she had a name, it was apparently Awbin Aire and so we will call her Binny, as her friends do. She has always been eight years old.
The grown-ups think Binny is an imaginary friend or local legend, and although the children speak matter-of-factly about her, no adult has actually laid eyes on her. They speculate that she has wandered west from Salem, through Ayer and Auburn, and that she was probably baptized Mary Elizabeth, but doesn’t know it. They are all aware that most of the stories about her occur around May Day and Halloween.
Binny naps at noontime and travels at night. Every so often when the day first opens its eyes, Binny steps into a creek and washes her Auburn Hair.