Circle of Eights, Stories

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  • #78


      Back from the depths of his sleep, the dragon Naasir exhaled in a puff of smoke. He’d just woven a wonderful dream —for all dragons and creatures do dream of course, even if most humans doubt it.

      Yawning, Naasir stretched out his long slithery body. Fully stretched, his body was an impressive sight to behold. He was quite old by human standards, while in fact, he was still in his youth, and could very well stay as rambunctiously lively for many other long centuries.

      He had given the final touch to a new world he had been creating in his dream time for many nights now, and was rather proud of it —even if dragons knew no such thing as pride, his feeling at this very moment was very akin to being proud.

      He had filled this world with many wonders, dragons of course, and other creatures yet to be named. And magic was all pervasive in that world, and so slightly cloaked, that it could be used by many.
      It would be a great playground he thought, for he was not a possessive and dictatorial dragon. In fact, he could feel some others were about to step in, and tell and live the story of that world.

      Sighing in delight, like a sleepy cat of majestic dimensions, he cuddled again, about to sink deeply into the harp music playing in his mind, ready to dream and let that story be told again…

      Another Never Ending Story

      Malvina. That name had been thrown into a conversation Yann and Quintin had had together, during which Quintin had felt images come into his awareness. He had instantly liked that name.
      He was feeling the aura of a woman, long hair of a pale rosy color, with a noble bearing. That name had been around, and they had played with it to find more impressions.
      And they had felt it linked to breeding of dragons, in a sort of rookery.

      They’ve both felt her connected to Malika, an online friend of them, whose gentle touch and kindly influence, as well as her passion for dragons seemed to fit in quite interestingly.

      Then on an impulse, Quintin had begun to paint an image around it, letting his feeling guide his movements. He’d loved the peaceful environment he’d drawn, and even if he was not wont to share “unfinished” drawings, he immediately shared the initial sketches with Yann and Fiona.

      They both loved it, and Fiona even considered for a moment adopting one of the cute baby dragons to be born.
      “Buckberry” : that was the name Quintin felt for the baby dragon… But he did not see any character in that picture for Fiona. She would have to decide to step in, to get that baby dragon. What character would she be? A young impetuous rude adventuress, or an o(w)ld wizened witch? Perhaps a bit of both?

      These thoughts were now coming back to him.
      Ever since he had seen Yann’s pictures, those taken when he’d been in Old Albion, he had felt that something strange was manifesting.
      One of these intriguing coincidences: the picture of a cave that Yann has been visiting looked so strikingly similar to Malvina’s Rookery… And that playful kid in the cave was probably linked to Yann.

      So, now that the painting was finished, perhaps he could have people join in the fun. All that was required was imagination…

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    • #731

        It was taking longer than expected for Sanso and Zhana to find food, and they were weak with hunger when they came across the big toad. There was plenty of water; gurgling brooks and rushing streams crisscrossed their path, crystal clear with icy cool snow melt from the summer thaw. The’d found a few cow berries along the way, and they had chewed a few mushrooms but they wanted something substantial before setting off for the other side of the world. Sanso had left a trail of flourescent green cave lichen, to show them the way back to the cave entrance, which was to be their portal to Nishanti’s place.

        Maybe the toad will show us the way to find food, said Zhana. Ask him, Sanso!

        You ask him! replied Sanso.

        No, YOU ask him. Zhana was inexplicably feeling shy.

        Sanso chuckled goodnaturedly, and agreed to ask toad. He stood there silently smiling for some minutes, and Zhana began to wonder just WHEN Sanso would oblige. Her stomach was grumbling and growling and she was starting to get impatient when Sanso turned and strode purposefully off to the left.

        What the…..snapped Zhana. She rushed after him, angrily shouting OY! Her foot caught on a root, sending her sprawling face down amongst the mushrooms.

        Sanso turned, and couldn’t help but laugh. The more he laughed, the angrier Zhana became, causing Sanso to laugh all the more.

        AAAH Ha Ha Ha! AAAHHHH Ha Ha Ha HAAAAH! OOO Hoohooo! If you could see your face all covered in blue mud and red and white spotted mushrooms, you’d laugh too!

        Zhana started to cry.

        There there, dear, Sanso said kindly, trying hard to stop laughing, and wiped the mess off the girls face with an old rag he found in one of his pockets. Did you know that Siberian blue mud is a much sought after beauty treatment in some places? This little mishap will do wonders for your complexion, you know.

        Will it? snivelled Zhana, who had been preoccupied of late with with her adolescent skin.

        Yes! There is no such thing as an accident, you know.

        Well, where were you rushing off to, anyway? You promised to ask toad where to find food, and then without saying a word, you dashed off and left me!

        Sanso looked perplexed. I DID ask toad!

        No, you DIDN’T, retorted Zhana.

        Sanso stared at her, wondering what was the matter with her. Then the penny dropped, so to speak, and he realized that Zhana was more familiar with verbal conversations, and had been unaware of the silent communication between him and toad.

        Zhana, most of our conversations aren’t in words, you know, he explained gently. Listen to the non-words.

        Huh? it was Zhana’s turn to look perplexed.

        You do it all the time you know. You are simply not paying attention.

        He winked at her, and smiled. Come on! The food is this-a-way!


        Elvira and Boris were knee deep in mushrooms when the strangers appeared asking for food. Visitors were few and far between at the isolated old wooden house, but it was with mixed feelings that Elvira greeted them. It would be wonderful to have a little conversation, some news of the outside world, but this was the busiest time of the year and she hardly had a moment to spare as it was.

        However, she greeted them amiably enough, and invited them inside. Come in, come in, come in! she said, Would you like a cuppa? Are you hungry? There’s some reindeer stew left over from last night.

        Zhana’s stomach growled loudly in response. Would I ever! I am STARVING! Zhana beamed a smile at Elvira.

        Well, sit yourselves down then, if you can find a chair that’s not covered in mushrooms.

        Elvira suddenly had an idea.

        Are you two in a hurry? Would you stay a few days and help with the mushroom packing?

        Zhana looked at Sanso, who nodded. A few days with plenty to eat before their long journey, and a few provisions to take along with them would be perfect.

        Of course we will, we’d be delighted to stay and help, Zhana said to the old lady.

        Splendid! Boris will be so pleased! I’m a great cook, you know, if I do say so myself. As much food as you can eat in return, eh? How does that sound? Elvira smiled at her guests. My, my, girl, what a wonderful complexion you have! she said, peering at Zhana. Like a summer peach!

        Zhana blushed happily, and Sanso beamed.


          When Becky realized what she was wearing, she wished the ground would open up and swallow her. She rummaged in her bag for her phone, and called Al. She would hide behind a bush until he arrived, bringing some clothes with him, she thought.

          The number you have reached is not connected at this time, the automated voice on the other end told her.
          RATS! His phone was switched off.

          Becky tried Tina’s number. Her phone was disconnected too.

          Becky tried Sean’s number. Thank Flink for that! At least it was ringing.

          No answer. It rang and rang, but nobody answered.

          Bloody hell! Sam’s in Australia, he can’t help, what am I going to DO? she wailed.


          That’s when she heard a little voice… not really in her head, the voice was like coming from under the space tissue.

          Dear RATS… Thou canst do it thyself. Let the power of the Snooshrooms flow through thy skin.

          — Who’s there? asked Becky anxiously… is it the Snoot? What are the smooshnools? I don’t want any more skin problem, don’t do anything!!!

          Becky was feeling a bit drowsy again. She was tired of sleeping though and managed to get rid of this feeling.

          She got startled by her cell phone, it was vibrating furiously now… oh no, just a picture message from Sam.

          With that distraction she lost grip of herself for a few seconds… and when she woke up she was feeling her head like heavy… how god!!!! what the f…


          The last words of the stranger were still resonating in his mind. Franiel was feeling a bit drowsy and he had the odd sensation of being looked from the inside. A smile illuminated the face of the man.

          You are the weirdest man I ever saw. he said in a sigh. When he realized what he had told his guest, he blushed with shame. I’m sorry, I wouldn’t mean…
          Hahahahaha. The man was slapping on his legs. Hahahaha, my dear Franiel, you don’t know how close to the truth you are. I appreciate when one speak his heart.

          Franiel couldn’t say anything. He was aware that he should have been feeling shameful, but the laugh of the stranger had dissipated that convention. He was just feeling in harmony with his creation. This last thought surprised him. His creation? He’d been told that the gods created all that is on the Duane, her sister the Murtuane and their ghostly sister the Phrëal.

          What was in the nectar? I’m seeing things. He frowned. Something in the surrounding objects, the mossy rocks and the earthly path, the grass and the insects flying or crawling around. The colors were different. Your eyes… they are… blue…

          The stranger was still smiling, not saying anything, and though Franiel was feeling as if he was communicating him important things.

          Something leapt from behind a tawheowheo, making the nearby dandelion seeds fly away silently.
          The creature was barking and Franiel jumped on his feet, making the chalice fall in the dust. It was similar as a mountain wolf, but smaller. Black and fuzzy. And it was running toward him.

          Don’t be afraid of Moufle, he’s my long life companion, he’s been following me in my exploration for quite some time in a form or another. He makes a lot of noise, but he knows his friends.

          Moufle was trying to lick Franiel’s face. All the love he had felt a second before was shaded by the need to keep the animal away. Not that he was dangerous. The stranger… what was his name? He didn’t tell him his name. Franiel was too shy in his normal state to dare ask directly. But he could at least relax as Moufle was now occupied with his master, who spoke as if he’d read his mind.

          I am not his master, you see. he was fondling his companion. He’s just choosing to come with me.
          He kept silent for a minute, snooting around.

          By the way, my name is Leonard.

          F LoveF Love

            What’s that, slow down Felicity I can’t understand what you are saying!

            Felicity took a deep breath. I am so sorry Tina, there has been a dreadful mix-up with the dresses. The dress that arrived for Becky was meant for another wedding.

            Oh right, said Tina, well I was a little surprised when I saw it, but then, I have no idea what russian wedding dresses look like.

            Oh yes I am so sorry, it is a terrible mix-up. Yes that dress was meant for a … well the bride was going to arrive in a huge wedding cake and then pop out the top . Oh Tina we worked weeks on it … and isn’t the dress just luscious! pure silk it is … and we had a ladder purpose built and the groom was going to climb up beside her and say their vows on top of the wedding cake on a revolving pedestal .. and somehow the dresses got mixed up … I am so sorry. Her voice trailed off.

            Tina, making a valiant attempt to contain her laughter, tried to reassure the distraught Felicity … well I am not sure if Becky even have noticed her dress, she was quite preoccupied with applying peachy glow mineral cosmetics when I last saw her. She has some unfortunate splotches on her face, an allergy to red fruit I think.

            Oh that poor sweetheart, gushed Felicity sympathetically. Oh I wish I could give her a big hug! She is such a sensitive one, I didn’t want to bother her, that’s why I am ringing you Tina. You are always so calm and sensible. What shall we do?

            Well to tell you the truth Felicity, I have been trying to contact Becky for the last hour, I can’t get through to her number.


            Finnley, you let me in right this mooment! commanded Elizabeth Tattler imperatively.

            I am sorry, Ms Tattler, I am under strict instructions from Mr Arak that I am under no circumstances to let you in until this office has been cleaned. I will lose my job if I let you in.

            Now there’s an idea! she thought, toying with the idea momentarily

            Why that pompous, arrogant, supercilious proot ….. Elizabeth paused midflow to admire her vocabulary.

            Finnley was quite enjoying the change of routine, and Ms Tattler’s office really was a treasure trove of interesting bits and pieces. The thick layer of dust, and were those magpie droppings? were a little off-putting mind-you. She plucked a book randomly from the shelf, and lifting the visor of her protective faceshield in order to see better, gently wiped the title clean. “I am Perfect Indeed” The author was some fellow named Erwin P Lemone who Finnley had never heard of. She picked another one, “Basic Flying Massage Techniques of the Ancient Kuzhebar, Book One for Beginners” by Jibberish E Shrale

            Finnley, Elizabeth’s voice had taken on a wheedling tone from the other side of the door. Be a sweetie-pooh will you and put this note in my clooh-box. Finnley watched intrigued as a piece of paper inched its way under the locked door.

            Sure Ms Tattler, where is the clooh-box?

            On my office desk, next to the daily quotes. Don’t mess anything up Finnley dear, you be careful, I have very precious things in my office.

            Finnley could not resist a peek but the scribbled words made no sense to her

            Amanita muscaria intoxication typically produces macroopsia – Beckipooh?
            13th gate and the 13th skull FEBRUPOOH 20TH 2008
            The Snoot – who is he really?
            supercilious proot! Arak Dr Bronkelhampton? ? ? ? WHAT IS PLAN B?????????

            Her eyes fell on the daily quote for the day, that Lemone chappie again!

            rainy wedding, merry marriage

            She snorted derisively, He must be madder than Almad that Lemone, how silly! No wonder poor Ms Tattler seemed a bit mindblown sometimes if she reads stuff like that


            Leonard stood up, stretched, and began to make strange movements with his body, much to the delight of Mouffle who leapt around him joyously barking.

            Are you alright, Leonard? asked Franiel, a little concerned by Leonard’s gyrations. His voice sounded odd to his own ears, as though it came from a spot somewhere behind him. He was even unsure if he had spoken the words out loud.

            Leonard chuckled, and Franiel joined in, though why he did so he was not sure.

            I am very well indeed, thank you, Franiel. I am performing the motional practices of Ancient Kuzhebar aborigines. It is an excellent technique for straightening the mind. Perhaps you would like to join me?

            Although I am sure my mind would benefit from straightening, perhaps I will just watch for now, said Franiel, feeling a persuasive tiredness sweep over his body. It must be the nectar, he mused. He lay back on the grassy verge, and though he tried his hardest, he found it impossible to keep his eyes open. I will close them just for a moment, he thought.


            Vessie Darl, Sha and I are just popping down to the beach for some more of them special beauty sea waters you told us about.

            Great idea, Gloria, responded Veranassessee vaguely. She watched absent-mindedly as Gloria’s generous body, clad only in a skimpy red bikini, disappeared down the corridor. There was something about that shade of red tugging at her memory. Vermillion red …

            Red! PLAN B! Oh my God! how could she have forgotten!

            It was two days since she had called him, that meant he would be here soon, that did not leave her much time to prepare.


            Everything has to be perfect. She wears a silk vermillion red camisole, the one he gave her, scarcely covered by lush black velvet and topped with bright red lipstick. She casts her eyes critically around the room. It is nearly three years since she has seen him, she doesn’t want to spoil this moment. The glasses of soft red merlot are ready, a plate of miniature liqueur chocolates on a plate by the bed.

            She shakes out her long dark hair and looks in the mirror. Her chocolate skin glows, her eyes are bright. She will do. She touches the red silk camisole … it is still beyond her comprehension how she can have forgotten.

            When he arrives he is beautiful. Too beautiful. she thinks. It is so easy for him, effortless. He appraises the room and laughs casually, he knows how hard she has tried. Agent V he says, a pleasure to see you again. He kisses her. She remembers everything.

            He takes a sip of the wine. She watches him, unsure of herself. He has a black bag with him.

            He looks at her, sees her looking at the bag, and smiles slowly, I have something to show you, Agent V, he says, and she can sense his pride, the barely suppressed excitement in his voice.

            He opens the bag carefully, pulls out a small white box, handles it lovingly. Two years experimentation in the Russian lab, he says softly, delicate threads of spun blue bonnet spider silk and yet strong enough to hang a bridge on.

            He looks at her. Come here. he says

            She hesitates for just a moment thinking of Mahiliki, and then inwardly shrugs, bugger it, I never really wanted to live on Fukitupi island and have loads of babies anyway. She moves over to him. He takes the transparent silk and slowly starts to wind the delicate thread around her wrists. Try and break it, he whispers in her ear, kisses her neck.

            Then stops.

            My God, what the fuck is that?

            Veranassessee sighs.


            No I swear Sha, I am telling you, I saw him go into Vessie’s room.

            Oh my God Glor, he might be a murderer, or a bloody rapist even!

            I tell you though, he were right bloody gorgeous.

            Well never mind that! The door is locked Sha. I think we’d better shout out. Make sure she’s okay.

            Right, good idea. And then if she doesn’t answer we can bash the door in and we can both pounce on him.

            Right, on the count of three Glor, we’‘ll shout out, one… two… THREE!”


              Becky huddled behind a bush, shivering, and trying desperately to pull down the ridiculously short dress she was wearing.

              I can’t believe I came out wearing my honeymoon outfit, she grumbled crossly. No wonder that Gondola man kept sniggering and pulling his sweater down to his knees. PFFFT! The only nasty habit around here is not looking in the f’kin’ mirror before I leave the house.

              Becky tried to phone Al again, and then events took a turn for the worse. Her phone battery was dead.


                Elvira was tucking into some reindeer stew left over from Becky and Sean’s wedding when she telepathically tuned into Becky’s distress signal. Chewing thoughtfully, Elvira tried to make sense of the visual imagery she was receiving. She seemed to be getting a mixed message; was it a nun, or was it a tart? She reminded herself to trust her impressions, and not discount them even if they seemed incongruous or unlikely, and accepted that Becky was indeed in some kind of tarty nun trouble. The question was, where was Becky.

                Elvira pushed her empty plate away, and focused on the situation. AHA! Nutley Park, 25th bush on the left.

                Boris, I’m going out, she said. Becky’s in a spot of tarty nun trouble in Nutley park.

                Right Ho, dear, shall I come and help?

                Another image of popped into Elvira’s head of the see-through black mini dress. Er, no Boris, I’ll handle this myself.

                And with that, Elvira, sprightly old crone that she was (and fortified with mushroom laced reindeer stew) bustled off to hail a gondola cab, carrying a large carpet bag containing a selection of hastily chosen clothing.


                Due to the unusual events in the year 2026, Nishanti and her five sisters lived in the reconstructed ancient city of Hingapooloopi that had been submerged beneath the ocean for centuries. There had been a series of tsunami’s and eathquakes and volcanic eruptions resulting in an enormous hole appearing in the sea bed into which a considerable amount of Indian Ocean sea water had disappeared, lowering the sea levels in some locations, mainly those that had risen slightly due to shifting tectonic plates.

                Ten year old Nishanti and her five sisters (Hinni, 3; Yaso, 5; Yuvani, 7; Eromi, 13; and Nanda, 16) had lost their parents, and indeed most of their relatives, due to an unfortunate mishap in the kitchens two years previously in the year 2032 at the wedding party of their brother, Chandra. Gayesh, Nishanti’s eldest brother had mistakenly included poisonous red berries in the desert. Fortunately, Nishanti and her sisters had been reading the Snoot Q&A column in The Tarty Nun girls magazine that they had procured without their parents knowledge from a school trip of American tourists, in which Snoot had advised against red fruits.

                Hingapooloopi was located on the land bridge , once again exposed, between Sri Lanka and the Indian continent. The reconstruction had been an enormously interesting undertaking, and Nishanti’s uncle Roshan had been involved in the ground work excavations. He found many artifacts, which he smuggled off the building site, and secreted under the floorboards of the old family home in the highlands . Perhaps the most interesting one was the crystal skull; certainly it was the one that Nishanti found the most intriguing.


                  Al woke up from a series of lucid dreams, interspersed with false awakening in which he was in the same space arrangement, but visibly another time space or even dimension… He was quite familiar now with these stuff, and could remember them well, but still had doubt about the implications of the strange imageries he was getting glimpses of.
                  It was like his tatami (because at this time, Al was finding more comfortable to sleep on the rice-straw mattress) was a flying carpet with its own volition, and Albert, like some modern-time Aladdin, was finding himself plunged right into new horizons.

                  Last vision had almost made him blush of the deranged aspects of his mind. Sure he was finding Becky rather attractive (who wouldn’t, he was wondering), but imaging her scantily clad in that skimpy dress in the middle of the bushes was surely some trick of his luscious mind rather than some bona fide connection of his magic tatami.

                  Good thing too that the joggers (or thought-forms, whatever they might have been) in the park in which the magic tatami had landed couldn’t see the projected form of Al, because he was unable to move right now, except for some embarrassing lower part of his body. Now the tatami was looking like a circus tent. Oh dear… the wedding had been really hard on his nerves, he reckoned.

                  When he finally woke up, he noticed some voice messages on his telephone from Becky and thought he would probably skip mentioning his last synchronicity of his :yahoo_whistling:
                  What was she wanting that necessitated a dozen messages on his phone? Couldn’t she just call Sean, or was he still incapacitated by the gallons of vodka he had “injested”?
                  Well, surely the matter would wait for him to shave, for he was starting to look like Mr Cavern, with the huge hunger too —he smiled at the idea that dear Becky would surely fear he might eat a clue by mistake…


                  Moments later, after a good shower, fresh clothes and some slices of buttered nuts bread with pumpkin jam, he telepathically connected to Becky, wondering why she had not thought of that method in the first place… What was the point of all these group meditations together with Sam and Tina if they couldn’t make good profit of the enhanced neurological pathways they had built together. Granted Becky had always been a bit reluctant to use it, or perhaps just forgetful of that possibility… Anyway…

                  CAN’T YOU JUST KNOCK BEFORE YOU CONNECT! a shriek suddenly filled his skull

                  Al immediately shut the visual, blushing of the renewed deranged vision…

                  — Sorry, I just…
                  — Oh, no need to trail forever on that… I’ve found someone to help me, and yes, I do remember how to connect telepathically!

                  With that, all was left in Al’s skull was a big whooshing wind.


                    Just as Becky was retorting crossly to Al to please knock before remote viewing her, a clap of thunder made her jump (causing her dress to ride up alarmingly) and the heavens opened. Lashing rain soaked her to the skin, making the few threads of her dress become completely transparent.

                    Becky moaned in disbelief. Well, she giggled, suddenly seeing the funny side. (She was connecting to the Kuzhebarian Laughing Monks). This is one Wet Tarty Nun that couldn’t get much wetter. I hope Elvira brings a towel.


                    Arona, my dear?

                    The silky voice of Malvina resounded in Arona’s ear, while she was meditating on the implications of the story Vincentius had told her.

                    — Yes?
                    — May I borrow you Buckberry and your sabulmantium for a few moments?
                    — Oh sure, no need to ask… Though I don’t think you require my permission for Buckberry, isn’t he free as I am?
                    — Oh yes he is, exactly as you said, free as you are

                    Arona could have sworn she felt a winking energy rippling through her flesh, making some unfamiliar electrical currents crawl underneath her skin. She would have said she was thoroughly disliking it, though she wasn’t really sure if she was.

                    — Oh, Malvina added as if an innocent afterthought, we are moving by the way, perhaps you may find interesting to join us for the homationing ceremony. You may learn some more about your sabulmantium.
                    — Well, why not, answered Arona having no idea of what a homationing ceremony could be…
                    — Very well, please join us in the main entrance, where I am playing the harp. We will be waiting for you.
                    — I’ll be there in a second.

                    So, they were moving? Speak about implications… Arona muttered, stroking dozing Mandrake, who had feasted on too many of the moorats crawling inside the moisteous cave tunnels.
                    I guess I’ll take this astounding elan as a hint that I’ll be going alone she said. A yawn for all answer.
                    Considering it was Mandrake, that was almost a mark of distinctive affection… or was it rather of affectionate distinction?

                    Moving? She didn’t want to move, not yet, not like that… And to be honest, with all the stuff in that cave, she sure didn’t want to help pack all of this, be it by magic. What an impossible task.

                    Vincentius the nanny was taking care of Yikes, so she was confident should anything happen, he would be alright.


                    On the outside of the cave, the dragons were all lined up, as if waiting for some unknown signal. Leormn first in shades of teal, and his spawns, Buckberry, with the most florid and baroque hues of purple that one could imagine, and the two facetious Heckle and Jeckle in shades of emerald, looking unusually calm.

                    Malvina, with Leo the little marmoset on her left shoulder, was playing her harp, while Irtak was accompanying her playing a mouth harp.
                    Some drums had been disposed around, and quite naturally, Arona felt like beating the measure on these, getting slowly and slowly relaxed by the music and guttural sounds produced by the throat singing dragons.
                    She almost laughed and broke the meditating pattern when she let the memory of Sanso come into her awareness. What a shame he’d missed that, that would have fitted him better than her.

                    Slowly the sounds stopped, and Malvina very gracefully rose from her stool, and greeted Arona with a loving hug. Her flowing robe was a tender orchid hue with laces of thistle pink, and her silvery peach long flowing hair were giving her the aura of a princess.

                    — Wait, where are Georges and Salome? She said, are they already gone?
                    — No, they are waiting for us at the new location, she said with a smile… Now, Leormn will start the ceremony.

                    Arona almost said Wait again, in anticipation of what was to come, and finally decided to let it flow. The serene look of Malvina and her motherly smile was of a nurturing reassurance.

                    Outside, in the grassy lands, the dragons had all grown wings and were apparently ready to take off. A pile of conic shaped dirty sand was standing in front of the entrance, that Arona had never seen before.

                    She could feel Buckberry answer her unspoken question without even a word being uttered. It is soil from the cave, and we will use it now.

                    Arona watched the dragons rise in the sky full of damp gray clouds, and wondered what they were doing.
                    They are doing two things, Arona answered Malvina (again that disagreeable habit of reading thoughts, couldn’t help but think Arona, wishing there would be some World around where such thing wouldn’t be so easy), first they are checking what kind of creature are staying with us and following the movement, continued Malvina, ignoring the remark, and second, they are drawing with that sand from the cave a circle to enclose the area we want to move

                    Arona didn’t dare say the explanations were making her even fuzzier, so she nodded as if abreast of what was going on.

                    Popping sounds of the dragons blinking in and out to get some more dirt almost made her dizzy, and she forgot the strangest feeling she had when she thought she heard “the area we want to move”.

                    — Now, continued Mavina, the sabulmantium.

                    The dragons were now all back, and the pile of sand had disappeared.
                    Arona’s attention snapped back to herself, and she handed the fine object to the lady. She couldn’t help but notice the glowing eyes of Irtak, who apparently was very eager to see what would happen.
                    So he will move too, she thought, hope his father won’t be too sad… Why did she felt it was a separation from this place she had found she was liking…

                    — If you look closely, said Malvina to no one in particular, but Arona took it for herself, you will see how easy it is to come back if you feel so inclined.

                    At her touch, the coloured sands in the sabulmantium’s transparent dragon shell globe started to move. And all could see the cave being formed, with all the little people, dragons, glukenitches and even Leo and Mandrake… They were all here, enclosed into a circle of sand.

                    — Now, if you will follow me… said Malvina who traced on the ground a curvy symbol.

                    And very slowly, as the whole sand scenery inside the sabulmantium was turning in a round, they all felt as though they were dissolving into the air. Yet, they were all solid, and the interior of the cave was still too.
                    The only thing that was moving was the exterior, twirling and changing, getting out of focus, and moving erratically at the beginning, and then getting close to a focal point. Some fine tuning was occurring.

                    And in a snap,
                    The landscape
                    In all its splendor…

                    — Greetings! a smiling couple at the entrance of the cave said to the people inside.


                    My God, what the fuck is that?

                    Veranassessee sighed, seeing the two plump lady on top of one another, lying sprawled all fours on the ground, with the door blown out in shards.

                    Untie me Gabriele, so that I can ask for the nurse’s help. she said reluctantly to her partner, seeing with a bit of dolefulness, the effect of their strange erotic games already waning off.

                    — Are you alright ladies?
                    — Oh, I guess so, Vessie, sorry to have interrupted, we thought…
                    — Yes, yes… Veranassessee was feeling oddly detached from the women’s babbled and muddled excuses, and even more detached from her own sloppy appearance.
                    All she could think at the moment was that she seemed fated to marry Mahiliki, and get loads of children on Fukitupi, a doom that hovered on her head like a rapacious magpie over a precious gemstone…
                    Good thing she was so gorgeous she would look great even wearing a potatoes sack. Sure Gabriele had noticed that already…

                    Arch-Agent Gabriele came back, telling her he had called nurse Bellamy on the intercom, and she would be here in a minute.
                    I’ll go to my room dear, we’ll talk later about Barbella. he said casually, a convenient code for “plan B” between them two.
                    Professional as he was, he had also, V’ass noticed, as the women were untangling themselves, made the box and the silky rope very stealthily disappear.

                    Sure, they would have more time in the evening. But now, she noticed she’d been a bit too lax on the security around the new guests. Fine that Dr Bronkelhampton’s recommendations were to have the patients free for the first months of their treatments (after all, the more drastic transformations never occurred before the thirteenth week), but she had to be more careful about them.
                    She could not have them compromise “plan B”.

                    B as Barbella… or rather…
                    B as Bee-hive.


                    — Did you hear like me, Glo?
                    — I think so, Sha
                    — What’s that Barbiella, Glo?
                    — Barbella, Sha, barbella, like barbell… Could be a woman’s name…
                    — Poor Vessie seemed so annoyed by the incident…
                    — Yes Sha, we have to help her somewhat, if we want her to forgive us
                    — Sure, we’ll find something to do, Glo.
                    — Yes… I don’t like that Barbella. Perhaps it’s the man’s…
                    — Yes, Sha, Gabriele —does sound Italian, doesn’t it?
                    — I was about to tell you Glo
                    — Perhaps that’s Gabriele’s wife…
                    — Or some kinky sadomasochistic practice we never heard of…
                    — Rhooo, Sha, chuckled Gloria, who was thinking of Veranassessee’s dress and wrists tying games…


                    What a francitic woman thought Elizabeth, a bit less distressed now she had secured her last insights into her clooh-box.
                    Hopefully, she could happily forget about those, and go for a walk to have some welcomed cooffee.

                    Wishing she would not bounce into some unwelcome apparition, she trod her way to the outside world.
                    How long it had been? With all that pressure from her publisher, she had almost forgotten how exquisite it all was outside.
                    So simple, and yet so brilliant.

                    It didn’t have the complexity of the Worlds of which she intuited things, nor the same amount of excitement it aroused in her, but nonetheless it was appeasing, and that was perhaps all she needed for the moment.
                    Perhaps a walk to Garden Centrool would do her great.


                    Sitting on a bench near the dribbling foontain where cuckoos were drinking at the sound of woodpeckers’ holes drilling, she became entranced by the sound of water, and almost felt like dancing at the cuckoos and woodpecker’s cooing and drumming beats…
                    All this Lemone quotes were now far away… She’d had enough of them, and wanted simpler truths. Lively ones.

                    She could feel inspiration flow back into herself, as she envisioned her favorite depiction of inspiration, the mangeloose Pigoosus. Elizabeth was reeling in its wonderful aura, seeing the squinting eyes of the creature, the magnificence of its sprawled wings, its awe-inspiring moose antlers, and the slick body of a foxy mongoose with a protuberant snoot.

                    It all was symbolic of herself of course, the best depiction of all her awesome features. The snoot for curiosity (and nose in general), the wings for imagination, the antlers for connection, and the mongoose for the fearlessness and sex-appeal.

                    Pigoosus, or Pigooh, as she called him, was telling him tales, tales that were spun between the gapping holes of her clooh-box items, and that were weaving them together in beautiful macramooh patterns.

                    The Shift in Earth-dimension awareness is coming and it is revealing long-lost hidden things, that is the reason of these other-dimensional bleed-through on the islands. Where those having hoped to bury some artifacts away of consciousness, in that dimension where all was so separated that even Pigooh would have had trouble getting throoh. The skulls gates one by one open now.

                    Pen! She needed a pen!


                      Och aye the noo! shouted nanny Gibbon, There’s a moose loose aboot the hoose!


                      Malika and her dog Leo stood at the entrance of the cave and was so excited to see the little draggies, she screamed with joy… and sent such loving, tender energy into the cave that all the little draggies came out to play with her and Leo, and familiarize themselves with each other. There was a mother dragon that resided inside the cave and as Malvina put her head inside the entrance, she was met with a smile, from the mother of whom was sitting atop a purplish egg.

                      The Mother Dragon introduced herself as Glordieoun…and said, softly, that this cave was a portal to her world, and a birthing chamber for all mother dragons, that were to be stationed there. It was a pregnancy chamber, a hatching chamber and a childcare chamber, that served the little draggies until they were able to fly themselves, and all the other attributes were in place, for them to be independent.

                      Glordieoun, said, that she was a bit tired and required some rest, but that she was glad that Malika finally found her way to the house, as her and all her people, knew they were now in safe and caring hands.

                      F LoveF Love

                        I take it from that you don’t know where the wedding dress is currently. Well if you do come across it would you mind letting Felicity know. said Tina haughtily, switching the phone off abruptly.

                        Al’s words running through her head she started walking quickly nowhere in particular.

                        Tina, what’s the point of these experiments we have been doing with Becky and Sam if you are going to keep relying on the phone all the time? And why are you trying to sort out the dress for Felicity, it isn’t your problem.

                        It wasn’t the so much the words which had stung, after all he was right, it was the annoyance she thought she had heard in his voice.

                        She felt him making contact, quickly blocked, feeling too hurt to be open.

                        She knew he was tired, god knows he had put so much into the wedding preparations, as he did with all his projects. He was fast building a reputation for his ground breaking experiments with body processes. Tina loved Al whatever he looked like, which was just as well really considering some of the rather bizarre effects he managed to produce.

                        Becky had been a bit irritated with her as well, Tina you are so last decade, nay century even! she would say, rolling her large eyes dramatically. Becky too was racing confidently and exuberantly ahead. Her intriguing contributions to the reality play never failed to amaze Tina. Her own contributions felt stolid, words trapped in a big gluggy ball of last century energy, she had to work hard to extricate each one.

                        It was nearly dark, raining harder now, wind-driven rain. Tina liked it, the rain complemented her mood and disguised the self-pitying tears streaming down her face. There were very few people in the street. Just the long line of shop windows, glass faces warmly lit, overhangs offering some shelter from the rain, though it wasn’t shelter Tina was looking for.

                        Her long hair whipped around her face, wet blue satin clung to her slim frame.

                        Sam had taken off unexpectedly and suddenly to Australia. He had been gone only a few days and she missed him. Dear Sam, his wicked and irrepressible sense of humour could make her laugh even in the blackest of moods. He too was playing with new potentials, forging new and exciting paths.

                        The others are probably all communicating with their advanced telepathic skills right now, laughing at dumb old last century Tina, she thought morosely. In fact even last century I would have been so last century, judging by my spectacular lack of success at anything I have undertaken recently. A vision of her recent humiliation in the ballet dancing class sprang to mind. She winced and quickly blocked the distressing image of the dance teacher drawing her aside after class and gently suggesting she might try the Ancient Kuzhebar Motional Practices beginner’s class, to get some basic rhythm, before attempting the ballet. ….

                        An elderly woman who had disembarked at the nearby gondola stop splashed by her, and, illuminated momentarily by the street lamp, Tina felt a flash of recognition. The woman turned suddenly towards her, smiled, gesticulated with her free hand, the other was clutching a large bag, towards some distant bushes. She mouthed some words at Tina, but these were lost in the wind. Tina waved and managed a reciprocal smile.

                        She noticed a Positivity Robot parked in front of Samantha Lingerie, and found herself drawn towards it, 3D images of models wearing the latest in underwear fashions rotated in the shop’s window, their faces beaming irritatingly at her. These Positivity Robots had been all the rage in the early 2020’s, you did not see as many of them now. On impulse she stood in front of the robot, touched the screen, allowing it to read her energy. “negative 21” its glass face discreetly informed her. The words “I AM PERFECT flashed up on the screen as a suggested thought pattern to implement. Tina grimaced. I wonder how low I can make this damn thing go. The idea made her giggle and to her alarm shot the meter up to a positive 12. Bugger, a bad start!

                        What am I going to do with myself, Mr PR, if you are so positively smart?

                        I AM PERFECT…. I AM PERFECT …. I AM PERFECT ….

                        perfectly grumpy, perfectly insecure, perfectly last decade, perfectly soaked to the skin, Tina watched as the meter climbed all the way up to 55.

                        She glanced at the shop window, just as a smiling model wearing a minuscule open net dress and nun’s habit rotated by. She felt an inexplicable burst of amusement as the meter climbed to 57.

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