But once autumn came, all the winged creatures began to fly away, leaving Thumbelina by herself. And once winter came, Thumbelina became very cold and even more alone. She could only warm herself with the dried leaves that had fallen off the trees during autumn.
One very snowy day, Thumbelina had become so cold and hungry that she decided to search for shelter and something to eat. She wandered farther than she ever had into the meadow beside a field of corn. There she found a small hole beside a tree. She climbed inside and was surprised to find a field mouse standing in a large room filled with pebbles of corn.
“Come inside, dear. You’re shaking. I will warm you. You will stay with me,” the field mouse said. The field mouse was kind to Thumbelina. She fed her all the corn Thumbelina desired and gave her a warm place to live and sleep. In return, the mouse asked that Thumbelina tend to the chores and tell her stories. Thumbelina told the mouse all the stories of her travels and eventually the mouse loved to be sung to sleep as well.
One morning Thumbelina awoke to the sounds of the field mouse scurrying around in a panic to spotlessly clean the hole where they lived.
When Thumbelina questioned this, the mouse replied, “Our neighbor is coming to visit. He is a very important visitor. He is rich, he wears a shiny black coat made of the finest velvet, and he will make the perfect husband for you. Unfortunately he is blind for he is a mole.”