The Daily Mail is reporting on an investigation by Russian police into a sinister new “game” spreading on the internet which encourages young girls to turn on the gas burners on the stove while repeating magical words which will then turn them into a “real fairy of fire.”
The social media post says: “At midnight when everybody is asleep, get up from your bed and go around the room three times, then say the magical words: ‘Alfey kingdom, sweet little fairies, give me the power, I’m asking you.’ Then go to the kitchen silently, so no one notices you or the magic of the words will disappear. Switch on the gas stove, all four burners. But do not light it. You don’t want to get burns, do you?”
The instructions continue: “Then go to sleep. The magic gas will come to you, you will breathe it while sleeping and in the morning, when you wake up, say: ‘Thank you Alfeya, I’ve become a fairy.’ And you will became a real fairy of fire.”
The social media scam appears credible because it bases itself on the popular animated series, “Winx Club: School of Witches”, which is a popular animated television series in Italy. Bas on the story of several teens who enter a school for fairies to learn how to use their magical talents, the story was created by Iginio Straffi in 2004 and is aimed at girls ages 4-12.
Pretending to be part of the popular series, the scam is luring young girls into dangerous activities such as a five year-old girl named Sofia Ezhova who was severely burned after playing the on-line game.
Another Russian mother told investigators that she woke up in the middle of the night to the strong smell of gas in her home.
“My daughter, seven, had just left the kitchen and went to her room. It turned out that she had read in the Internet that to become the fairy of fire you need to go to the kitchen when everyone is asleep and switch on the gas oven. If I had not gone to check, our family of eight would not wake up in the morning.”
Thus far, the game appears to be causing the most trouble in Russia, but because the internet is universal, it could easily spread around the world.
State investigator Irina Minina told the Mail: “It could be some kind of ‘suicide game’. We are searching for those who are spreading these messages.”
The Russian Investigative Committee, which is the equivalent of the FBI, believes the aim of the game is to spark panic in parents.
And there is certainly cause for alarm. One Russian search engine had tens of thousands of requests in the last month from children on “how to become a fairy.”
Straffi, whose company Rainbow, produces the Winx series, has appealed to Moscow prosecutors to demand criminal action against the creators of the social media scams.
“Rainbow deeply regrets the distribution of material, which apparently contains instructions for committing suicide and uses Winx Club characters,” he said. “The company Rainbow, which products are aimed at promoting the values of kindness in children, is shocked by such cynical materials apparently aimed at causing harm to children.”
Sadly, Straffi’s products are also introducing children to the use of magic – under the auspices of producing “good” results – which does little more than turn the moral order on its head for children. The use of magic powers (aka sorcery) always relies on powers sourced in the occult, where there is no such distinction between “white” and “black” varieties. All magic is evil, and leads to no good end.
Even more sickening is that someone would use the Winx characters to induce children to kill themselves and their loved ones by turning on gas ranges in the middle of the night!
We can only pray for an end to both the fascination with magic in children’s entertainment and the twisted aims of anonymous internet hacks who use it to tempt the innocent into potentially deadly situations.