“What shall I paint for you?” asked Brazen with a nasty glint in his eyes. He was feeling deliriously happy.

“Use this brush wisely, Brazen,” warned Gran Adalie. She was an artist too, but never shared her work. After she died, no one knew what happened to her canvasses. They only found her cat, a tank full of fish and her parrot.
“Silly old paintbrush,” he thought and threw it into the back of his drawer.

This morning his favourite brush broke. He dropped it and Mom accidentally stepped on it. “Mom! Look what you’ve done!” he yelled. Gran’s brush caught his eye. He reached out and took it. “What did Gran mean when she said I must use it wisely?” he pondered.

The little girl in the tattered clothes in front of him gave a meek smile. “Please Sir, may I have a butterfly? One with large, colourful wings.” She cheered up at the thought. As with the clients before her, Brazen was set on tricking her too. The last guy, who was too posh for his liking, got the dog he asked for, but with a kitten tail. Mr. Fancy-Pants before him asked for a horse; he gave him one, but with Dalmatian spots. Not to mention the sloth with the raccoon eyes given to Princess Pompous! Brazen laughed at the thought of their disdain. Much to everyone’s amazement, the animals came alive as soon as the paintings were done. “This paintbrush is simply brilliant!” Brazen giggled.

He reached out to dip the brush in the gingerbread brown paint. “A moth it will be…” he said under his breath. The tip of the brush touched the canvas. Something was different. Brazen felt his heart racing. His arm moved involuntary as the brush took over. With angry strokes it shaped a magnificent butterfly in a kaleidoscope of colours.

“It is beautiful!” whispered the girl.
“This brush is possessed!” Brazen called out. Worry was etched on his face.

With a last splash of colour, the butterfly finally spread its wings and landed gently on the arm of the ecstatic girl.

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Carrie OLeary
Carrie OLeary(@carrie-oleary)
1 year ago

What a wonderful gift to have Marianna. So much possibility, but I would imagine it could be quite dangerous too.

Maryke de Witt
Maryke de Witt(@maryke-de-witt)
1 year ago

Oh I love the twist! I almost felt the butterfly on my arm, great job!

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Linda Rock
Linda Rock(@linda-rock)
1 year ago

I loved the ending Marianna, how the brush got the upper hand on the dreadful Brazen (what a great name!), It’s always satisfying when good overcomes evil. Great story.

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Greene M Wills
Greene M Wills(@greene-m-wills)
1 year ago

The magic of a paintbrush bringing things to life! I thought it was the real protagonist here. Your story is a gem Marianna!

Sandra James
Sandra James(@sandra-james)
1 year ago

I think Brazen will be very careful what he paints in the future – I do love a story where the tables are turned on someone who has no respect for others 🙂 Well done, Marianna!

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Christer Norrlof
Christer Norrlof(@christer-norrlof)
1 year ago

What a wonderful creation of imagination, Marianna! I guess grandma isn’t happy with her grandson’s attitude. Brazen needs to learn a few lessons. Your story has the potential to become a great, entertaining story for children, teaching humility and friendship, as well as inspiring them to do art work.

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David Drew
David Drew(@david-drew)
1 year ago

I really enjoyed that. It reminds me of a story my children enjoy about a little boy who paints rocks and then they turn into animals!

Eric Radcliffe
Eric Radcliffe(@eric-radcliffe)
1 year ago

Hello again Marianna, I like the theme in the story. The Guy who was too Posh, Mr Fancy Pants, Princess Pompous, and the idea that Brazen thinks he has the right to bully them because in his eyes they are different. In the end he learns his lesson – from Moth to Butterfly. Let’s hope this transition also applies to Brazen!

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Thompson Emate
Thompson Emate(@thompson-emate)
1 year ago

I love this story. I wonder what made Gran Adalie choose not to showcase her paintings. I think they were nice paintings. Hmmm, a paintbrush like a magic wand.

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Lotchie Carmelo
Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
1 year ago

Wow, this is an amazing story, Marianna. I really enjoyed reading it. You are blessed with a good imagination to come up with a story that really excites the minds of the readers. I’m sure my kids will love it.

Lotchie Carmelo
Lotchie Carmelo(@lotchie-carmelo)
Reply to  Marianna Pieterse
1 year ago

You’re welcome, Marianna.

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