To start at the beginning ...
“I always admired Father’s ability to carve such delightful creations. And I see that he passed on his skills to you.” Her voice trembled. “Do you remember when he carved me this?” She reached under the woolen afghan and retrieved the delicate bird from her apron pocket. She held her fist out to Hansel, still cautious and hesitant to share this with him. He waited patiently.
Slowly Gretel opened her fist to reveal the fragile hummingbird sitting in her palm, wings stretched out as if in flight. She felt her heart beating rapidly in her chest and waited for Hansel to say something.
It was quiet in the cottage for a few moments before he spoke. “I remember when you first showed me that little bird. I was jealous that Father had given it to you. I had watched him whittling that little friend over several evenings and I was certain that he was making it for me. Then when you told me it was yours, I was terribly angry. And hurt. But ... but now I am truly grateful he gave it to you. It makes me sincerely happy to see that there is a small connection between you and Father, no matter how delicate it might be.” With one finger he stroked the hummingbird’s head as it rested in Gretel’s palm. “Thank you for sharing this with me.”
Hansel stood then, holding the corners of the burlap scrap that had laid in his lap, being careful not to scatter the pine shavings. Gently he shook the fabric out over the fire, watching the curls of wood catch fire and burn. He laid the tulip alongside the family of wooden rabbits on the mantel and turned to smile at Gretel. “I think I’ll turn in for the night.” He left Gretel holding the dainty hummingbird in her hands. Her teary eyes reflected her inner peace and the flickering fire from the fireplace.