I know you have been busy, but thank you for coming here so late this evening. What I am about to tell you may scuttle your brainwaves for a bit. Don’t think me crazy, for I could use your help with a tiny situation I have come upon.

In the glen, deep within the woods where but scattered rays of sunshine ever hit the ground and where no ax or saw have ever cut a limb is where the incident occurred. I dare say, as a witness upon the good book, I will swear the event occurred in the early evening of 4 September. Down in between the boulders, beneath the tall pines, I witnessed a strange little scene.

The thing, or should I say creature, looked like a miniature garden gnome come to life. I dare say I never fancied myself a believer in any foolish childhood fantasies—not in pixies, not in fairies, and definitely not in leprechauns.

But for me to describe what I saw can only have been—a leprechaun, fully clothed in black work pants with a pull-over grey long-sleeved shirt. He had ginger hair sticking out beneath a pointed black floppy hat. His face showed some age, as there were permanent laugh lines around his eyes. His face was fuzzy, having a five-inch beard. Beneath his bulbous nose lay a handlebar mustache. His little outfit seemed a bit snug around his voluminous belly, yet he moved swiftly and purposefully as he went about his work. His shoes, although somewhat pointed at the toe, did not hinder his movement. As I watched from behind a moss-covered boulder from a distance of fewer than 20 feet away, I knew from the lore I read as a child that if you catch a leprechaun, he must give you a pot of his gold. I peeked around the corner of the boulder and saw a tiny green vest hanging neatly on a branch.

As he gathered small twigs, he placed them in a vine-woven basket. When the basket reached full capacity, he lifted it and began walking straight towards me and his vest. My heart skipped a beat and began racing. A pot of gold flashed in my mind. Mental images of dollar signs erupted from the pupils of my eyes.

In a burst of fanatical energy, I grabbed him.

Ah, you ask for proof? If I have none, then you may think I have utterly lost my mind or what is left of it in my advancing age. In all honestly, I would never tell such a fantastic tale of such a capricious creature had I no proof of which to show you, my doubting friend. I opened my satchel to reveal the creature, eyes wide, bound, and gagged.