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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    • #271

        And yet….and yet….it’s so familiar! Bill climbed out of bed, eyes fixed on the stone carved head on top of the tallboy, and went over for a closer look. He reached up and touched the cool smooth stone, and then leaned back against the bedpost, stroking his chin, transfixed.

        I must be dreaming, he thought, this just doesn’t make sense. And yet…..I’ve seen this before! The images flitted through Bill’s mind, not just this stone head, but other stone heads, all different but all linked somehow, and all so familiar.

        Bill didn’t hear the soft tapping on the door at first. Bill! psstt, Bill! Open the door, it’s me, India……


        Sanso was finding it hard to stop laughing at Arona’s funny wooping hoots of laughter. He snorted and gasped until his side ached.

        Mandrake? Mandrake! Arona came to her senses. Where has he gone? Mandrake!

        He’s taken that glass sand thing, too! All that laughing had jumbled up Sanso’s memories, and he couldn’t recall the name of that Glass sand thing

        (that glass sand thing, Becky made a note to look it up and correct the script later)

        That creature’s made off with it!

        Oh, bugger off, Sanso, Mandrake wouldn’t do that! Arona spoke sharply, forgetting her manners in her panic. What would a Mandrake want with a glass sand thing? Arona almost stamped in frustration at not remembering the name of that thing, and in front of Sanso, too.

        Sanso didn’t hear her anyway, he was striding purposefully across the cavern towards the waterfall.

        Well wait for me! Arona ran to catch up with him. How do you know he went this way?

        I don’t, Sanso was honest, But when I gets an urge, I gets an urge, and I follows it.

        Arona couldn’t think of a better idea, so she followed him. Slow down, will you! Mandrake! MANDRAKE! Where are you, Mandrake!


        On the shores of Golfindely, a young boy was playing in the carmine fields of ripe Scotch bonnets.

        Since the captain Bone had left, Tomkin Sharple was feeling a bit sad.

        The old captain always had fascinating stories to tell him, and he would indulge the endlessly curious little boy in telling him for hours all about what he had discovered in all the parts of the Worlds he had been traveling to.

        Now, all he had to do was to take care of the herd of grakes of his parents, and while they were eating the weeds of the crops, he would sat on the cliff, looking at the sea, glimmering in the sunlight.

        Grakes were funny to play with, as they were big birds, with a slender neck as geese, colourful patterns as mandarin ducks, and Tomkin always had fun jumping on the back of the alpha one, and ride it, leading the whole herd to the crops where they helped the farmers by eating all kinds of nuisances.

        But after Captain Bone’s departure, it was no longer fun.

        Tomkin was contemplating a strange thing that the captain had given him before he’d left. It was a sort of knot, shaped as a eight, and the captain had told him it was magic and meant that all was connected, but that he had to discover that magic for himself.

        Tomkin had asked the captain to tell him about this object, but all he had told him was a legend which did not reveal much about the circumstances in which the old sea dog had acquired it. Perhaps the captain had fooled him about the magic…

        Stuffing the thing again in his pocket, Tomkin let his mind wander on the sea waves, dreaming of being a cabin boy on a big boat, when he saw something on the horizon.

        At first he thought that it was a group of swimming golfindels, but golfindels were more brilliant and smaller than the shapes he was seeing, and moving less heavily too…


        Pssst Arona, over here, Mandrake hissed

        Mandrake there you are, what ever are you doing. I was so worried I had lost you!

        Mandrake was quite touched, but managed not to show it

        I couldn’t stand all the snorting anymore.

        Ahahhaahh laughed Arona, I know, so funny, he sounded like a little pigbouh

        Anyway Mandrake, don’t you worry, I am no fool, no way would I just blindly trot off after someone who said ‘when I gets an urge, I gets an urge, and I follows it.’ That’s mad.

        Sanso, realising that Arona was no longer following him, returned.

        Well I think we should use the power of the sabulmantium rather than just blindly trot off down endless tunnels said Mandrake

        Good thinking! said Sanso enthusiastically. Yes, much better than my daft idea. Good plan Madrake!

        Mandrake actually corrected the cat, huffily

        To be honest, said Arona honestly, I didn’t really understand all that technical stuff Sanso. So how exactly does this work? Hmmm wish that dragon or someone would turn up now and explain it clearly and succinctly in plain language that we can all understand. I get how to move the sand but then what? How does the compass thingy work?


        Oh well bugger it, said Arona, I have had enough of this. Perhaps we had better just play it by ear if no one really knows how this thing works.

        Which is really, although not in so many words, if I may be so rude as to remind you, what I was suggesting, said the charming Sanso, rather rudely.

        Well yes, that is true … but whatever, let’s not argue, shall we just get going? Are you ready Mandrake? All of a sudden Arona was feeling unaccustomably energised and assertive, and was totally fed up with herself for wasting time so much time sitting around. This was causing her to be a bit sharp with the others.

        You know my problem? she asked, rhetorically, although of course Mandrake felt compelled to offer a reply.

        Hmmmm and which one would that be?

        Ahahahah Mandrake, laughed Arona, well the one I was thinking of was that I think too much. I need to be more like our friend Sanso here. I mean, what does it matter where we end up, it is all a big adventure anyway.

        Well I for one, would prefer to end up somewhere in the vicinity of food, responded Mandrake.

        Sanso wasn’t really listening but was gazing at the sabulmantium with a look of awe and muttering to himself. This really is a remarkable find. I have never actually used a sabulmantium before but I gather that one uses it as a tool to focus their intention, which is a crucial component of the magical creative process. Tremendously powerful tool and when used with awareness by the pure of heart it has great potential.

        Oh great! shall we just get going then, said Arona picking up the Sabulmantium, and next thing you know, after a little bit more wandering down a few more tunnels, which isn’t really that interesting to write about, our three intrepid adventurers found themselves gazing in astonished delight at a most wonderous sight.

        F LoveF Love

          You are very fat, said Chiara to Roselyn

          And she laughed. Yes, I am

          My Nana is fat, but not as fat as you.

          Roselyn seemed to consider this for a moment, and then laughed again. Would you like to go on an adventure with me?

          Chiara was not quite sure. An adventure sounded quite fun, however she had some beliefs you were not supposed to go off with strangers, however nice they may seem. But Roselyn did seem familiar to her.

          Where would we go?

          We would fly to Fairy Land, replied Roselyn

          This offer was way too tempting for Chiara to decline

          Oh yes!

          Take my hand then, and close your eyes tightly.

          Next thing they were flying through the air. Chiara loved the feeling of flying, she often went flying in her dreams. She giggled with delight as Roselyn, no longer seeming to be impeded by her fat body, effortlessly did flips and twirls in the air.

          The colour of the world around them changed, the blue sky became all the shades of the rainbow. Down below, Chiara could see an island in the middle of the sea, which sparkled like broken glass in a kaleidoscope of shifting colours.

          Roselyn guided them gently down to the island.

          Chiara gazed around, speechless with wonder and delight and then nearly jumped out of her skin as a loud voice behind her shouted “BOUH!”


          NB: What is Fairy Land like? Well, if you like gigantic flowers, bright colours, and the possibility of unexpected magical happenings, you would probably quite enjoy it. There is loads of spontaneous singing and dancing which can be a little unnerving at first for the uninitiated. You have to be prepared to go with the flow in Fairy Land because the creatures that live there don’t have the same rules as those that come from the “real world” (whatever that is), and many of them tend to be quite mischievous.


            India Louise shivered in the draughty corridor and glanced furtively over her shoulder. Bill! she hissed into the keyhole. She tapped softly on the door again, afraid of waking Manon in the next room. It would be difficult enough to explain to Bill, let alone trying to explain to the nosy and rather batty cook.

            She wrapped her dressing gown tightly round her, and felt the weighty key clunk against her thigh. Eugenia and India Louise had been playing ‘let’s pretend’ with the key that Grandad Wrick had thrown on the bonfire (that India found in the ashes the next day and thought would make a super present for Eugenia….. they both loved odd little gifts).

            For days they’d been wandering around the many corridors and wings of the Wrick castle, and Eugenia’s ancient rambling Sandlebright Hall. On fine days they’d explored the grounds, the aviaries and stables and hay barns, the meadows and follies, the lodges and farm cottages, through the spinney to the river and the boathouse, and back through the rose arbours… imagining themselves in different times and places, as different people, making up stories and weaving the key into each little story…… the murder at the boathouse and the key to the mystery… the key to the kitchen and the affairs of the cook… the parrots and the key to the bird cage…… the key to the captains trunk in the attic…

            Until they found the place where the key didn’t fit into the story…that is to say, the one place that should have needed a key, The Locked Room that only great grandad Wrick ever went in, was unlocked.

            India Louise couldn’t wait to tell Bill all about it.


            Once Illi had realized she was dead and could ‘go’ anywhere she liked simply by creating the ‘place’ around her, she decided to take a long relaxing holiday on a deserted tropical island. She would float in the warm lagoon, feast on coconuts and pina coladas and mangoes, play with the dancing lemurs and build fantastic sand castles on the beaches. As she visualized it, it appeared as if by magic all around her…the sun warm on her head, the sand between her toes, the gentle breeze fragrant with exotic blooms and the sound of gossiping parrots filled her senses. She closed her eyes and flung her arms wide in appreciation for the physical joys she had recreated, breathed deeply and relaxed for the first time since she had died. Finally, she felt like she knew where she was, even if that ‘somewhere’ was as ‘nowhere’ as ‘anywhere’ else, just another ‘elsewhere’ really…..

            Illi stretched out on her back on the golden sand and squinted up at the cloudless deep blue sky. How nice, she thought, not to have any aches and pains, not to have to worry about shifting and those bloody belief systems, how simply lovely to just BE, with no perceived responsibilities, no interruptions…

            Just then out of the corner of her eye, Illi saw movement in the sky. Something was descending onto the island. Illi couldn’t make out what it was, and wished she had a pair of binoculars. Silly Illi, she said to herself, reaching for the binoculars that had appeared beside her. I keep forgetting I can create anything at all.

            Holy Moly! A great fat roly poly nun with a huge jolly grin was wafting down from the heavens, with an irridescent turquoise fairy in tow. They were landing on her island! We’ll see about that! Illi jumped to her feet and stomped off the beach and into the mangroves, sloshing angrily through the watery roots….. until she realized she could hover above the ground, which was a much easier way to travel.

            Hovering was much quieter too, and the jolly fat nun and the bluegreen fairy were quite unaware that Illi was peering at them from behind a peachy hibiscus bush. In fact, the blooms on the hibiscus had grown to a most ridiculous size, and Illi could hardly see past them. She hovered to the side a bit, and decided on impulse to make her presence known to the intruders.

            BOUH! :yahoo_skull:


            When Rudy the myna had come back crashing on the boat, it all became suddenly a huge uncontrollable chaos.
            The hovering menacing clouds that were looming in front of them were coming closer at a dreadful speed, and even more concerning were the rocks that were appearing everywhere now, that they had more and more trouble to avoid in betwixt the turmoils and eddies.

            So they had finally come to the Great Rift, Bådul was thinking. The back of the legendary water dragon that noone was known to have crossed.

            But Bådul knew better.
            He howled orders to get everybody ready at their posts, and felt reassured when he saw that Austor was maneuvering with dexterity and confidence through the rift.
            He ignored the crazy laugh of Razkÿ, the madman who was now shouting with a manic laughter “We all gonna diiie! AHAHAHAH! DIE! DIE!” Then winking at Bådul and laughing again.

            :fleuron: :fleuron:

            A few months earlier, Northern Åsgurdy

            A huge cloaked figure was riding in the middle of the deserts. The saurhse, a bit small for its rider, was getting tired, but the man wanted to move before the night came. Åsgurdy had a climate which made travels uneasy on land, and only on these bipedal saurians they named saurhses, could Åsgurdians easily travel on the burning hot sands by day. Then, they could gain the high plateaus of rock and ice, where the temperature was kept cold by the high chilly winds. But at night, the deserts would be chilly too, and the cold-blooded creature he was mounting would require a shelter.

            He knew that such a shelter wouldn’t be far away now.
            That region was mostly uncharted as it was fairly remote from all known cities, but that strange man he had met had said he was a traveler who knew were he could find something priceless.
            At that time, Badul had felt he had nothing to lose, and said to himself “when in doubt, go for the experience”.
            He had felt he could trust that man known to him only by a strange name, something like Gheorg.
            There had been nothing boastful about him, and he had been kind to him. He had been the only person in the World he had known to have given him back his dignity as a human being, and even more, to have given him a reason to live.
            He owed him a lot, and perhaps even more as he was now drawing closer to the cave… that same cave which was a mere cross on the torn map he had been drawing hastily before vanishing almost preternaturally, living him a bit of money and that map…


            Roselÿn had felt the urge to move somewhere else. This land didn’t resonate with her energy, and that of Rëgkvist, and of the few eggs the dragon had managed to lay, none had actually been able to hatch.
            It had affected her so much that she had even retreated from her sisters’ usual talks through the glubolíns.
            She needed to move on.


            When he entered the cave, Badul was disappointed. He could feel there had been someone living here quite recently, but it was like the cave was now abandoned. He hoped he could have found more answers, but now it was again like burning sand slipping through his fingers.

            In a fit of rage, he took a boulder as big as him and threw it across the cave with a roar.
            Something was brought down by his huge force further down into the cave and he heard it quite distinctly.

            He tied up the saurhse at the entrance of the cave, and entered it with determination, ducking through the tunnel too narrow for his big baby-faced frame. Then he found something glowing. At first, he thought it was some gold, but what kind of fool had been living here before and had been in such a haste to move as to forget gold?

            It was not gold. It was something like a broken shell. The broken bits were like a jigsaw puzzle and he wished he could make it one, as he was attracted by the strange radiance of the thing.

            :fleuron: :fleuron:

            Austor did not believe his eyes…
            They had crossed the Rift, all three of the ships.
            And it was nothing like the dark void they had nearly expected behind.

            It was an open sea, glistening in the sun, and all hope had come back through them all.

            F LoveF Love

              That morning Fiona knew she needed to change her name. Fiona was a nice name, and she was quite fond of it, but she needed to reflect the inner changes which were happening and it didn’t feel right any more. (Well were there inner changes and did she need to reflect them? Buggered if she knew. All she knew was that it did not feel right.) At that very moment she looked down at the book she was reading and instantly the name “Finn” popped out at her. As this was a variation of Fiona, it seemed perfect to her. So really she wasn’t changing her name at all, just focusing on a different aspect of it, or something.


              — The legend of Mævel — (Part I)

              as told by Cpt Bone to young Tomkin

              In the time of the Gods, the King of the Fairies, Aldurion, fell in love with a beautiful mortal named Theÿa.
              He wanted to make her his Queen but only the Elder Gods could bestow the gift of immortality upon mortals.
              So he went to see Ghört, the God of the Airs. Ghört could certainly grant him what he requested, but for that, Theÿa would have to be transformed into an air sprite. Aldurion wouldn’t be able to hold her again. So he declined the offer, and went to see another Elder God.
              Then, he went to see Nærvel, the Goddess of the Waters. But Nærvel could grant him immortality if Theÿa was to be transformed into a water sprite. So Aldurion declined again.
              Then he went to see Agnima, the Goddess of the Flames, and then Selvaniel the God of the Woods, and Margilonia the Goddess of the Earths. But all of their conditions were the same, Theÿa would have to be transformed into an immaterial and immortal elemental fairy. But Aldurion couldn’t bear to have her changed into something else than she was.

              Then, only one of the Elder Gods was left, the one than few of the Immortals dared talk to, and of whom most mortals were afraid, to the point of systematically using the Old Speech respectful form of address (“Shaint”), when referring to him.
              So Aldurion came to see Lejüs, God of the Forgotten.
              Lejüs was greatly pleased to see him. When Aldurion had finished exposing his request, Lejüs took a moment to ponder. Giving immortality was none of his wonts, as he was keeper of the Forgotten. But he was not without compassion, and seeing Aldurion’s plight, he offered to grant his wish at the condition that, not his wife, but their first born child, would become Forgotten.
              Aldurion was so hopeful that all he saw was that the condition seemed so small, based on a future event that perhaps wouldn’t even happen… All he wanted was to have Theÿa as a Queen, and so the deal was made.

              So became Theÿa Queen of the Fairies.

              A few God’s Years later, which meant in human years much more than a few years, Theÿa became pregnant.
              When she announced the news to Aldurion, he was suddenly reminded of the deal he had made with Lejüs, and was quite distraught, as he had not revealed it to Theÿa. But he remained quiet, hoping that Lejüs would have forgotten about the whole story (well, that was forgetting he was Keeper of the Forgotten).
              So Theÿa gave birth to a little baby girl fairy, with golden wavy hair and bright eyes. She, like her mother, had no wings, but there was magic in her. They named her Araoni.

              But Lejüs had not forgotten of course, and came to see the Royal couple to claim the baby. Aldurion pretended that the mother and baby was still very weak, and he would have to come back in a few God’s Days. Lejüs agreed, and left complaisantly.

              Aldurion was at a loss for solutions, but Theÿa was a fairy with lots of ruse, so he decided to reveal it all to her, hoping that she would have a solution.
              Theÿa asked him time to think about this, and told him not to worry.
              Later, she had an idea, quite brilliant she thought. All she had to do was to find another child to give Lejüs.
              So she gave baby Araoni to one of her diligent nurse, the old fairy Gretchÿa, telling her to find a house were a blond new born girl could be exchanged and proceed to the exchange of the babies.

              So Gretchÿa went across the lands of the Worlds, but only in one home she could find a blond baby girl. The new-born baby girl was almost dying, as the parents were a careless couple of peasants, already plagued with many children, and they could not bother with children hesitating to live.
              Gretchÿa was heart-broken when she did the exchange, promising to baby Araoni to get her back soon. The young human baby girl was weak and yet unnamed, and the old fairy nurse knew she would probably not live long, and be claimed by Shaint Lejüs. So all was good.

              When Lejüs came back, he smiled as he saw the baby girl, and left with her without much more words for the Royal couple.
              Lejüs smiled, for when he had taken the young baby, the parents had instantly forgotten about her, and so did everyone having ever known her…

              The human parents, surprised to see the condition of their baby improving beyond all hope, named her Mævel, which meant marvel of Maÿ the month in which she was born.


                Laughter is Priceless’ .

                Hey Genie! Look at this. India Louise held a gold locket up to the lamp. It’s inscribed on the back, look: laughter is priceless.
                What’s on the front? Eugenia asked, moving closer.
                The locket was egg shaped and had an unusual south pacific motif on the top, and an inscription in comic sans font on the bottom. Open it, Indy, see if there’s anything inside. Eugenia shivered. OOOhh someone just walked over my grave, she said, shuddering again. It’s weird in here, eh.
                Yeah, bit scarey really, India Louise giggled, fumbling with the locket catch.


                  What’s that smell, Indy? It smells lovely in here, like coconut. It’s coming from that trunk over there.


                  Chiara got quite a fright and spun round quickly. She stood gazing at the funny cat creature who had shouted BOUH at her, momentarily uncertain as to whether to burst into laughter or tears.

                  Illi watched Chiara’s trembling lip with some concern, especially when she saw the very large creature who was with her. Illi felt it may be prudent to make a hasty retreat, however, before she could make her getaway, a rather loud voice shouted out from behind a gigantic pebble:

                  I WISH YOU WOULD ALL GO AWAY

                  And a tiny figure emerged. A very small and rather rumpled looking pink fairy, with a grumpy expression on her pretty face.

                  I SAID I WISH YOU WOULD ALL GO AWAY, she shouted again, this time stamping her foot angrily and glaring at the assembled trio.

                  Is that really what you want dear? Asked Roselyn. Because we can go away if you like.

                  At which the little little pink fairy burst into loud sobbing noises and threw herself on the ground.

                  Oh dear, said Roselyn whatever is the matter?

                  F LoveF Love

                    Pull yourself together Finn, said Finn.

                    It was not so much that she needed to pull herself together, more that she wanted to practise saying her new name.


                      India Louise and Eugenia momentarily forgot about the gold locket and walked over to the exceptionally long trunk. India dropped the locket into her pocket as she investigated the exterior of the trunk, which didn’t appear to have an opening. It seemed to have been made around whatever it housed, and permanently.

                      ‘How strange’, mused India, ‘it must not be intended to open, ever!’

                      ‘That makes me want to open it’, said Eugenia. ‘Let’s! Let’s open it!’

                      Eugenia was rummaging in the desk drawers for a suitable tool.

                      ‘Wow, look at this, Indy’. She held a heavy black letter opener up to show India, with an elaborate carved dragon on the handle. The dragon had glittering amethyst eyes, and a serpentine line of coloured stones along its back.

                      India shivered involuntarily at the sight of the dragon. Horrid nasty creatures, dragons, she muttered, resisting an urge to cross herself. ‘Peace be with you, now bugger off’ she whispered the spell under her breath so Eugenia wouldn’t hear her and think she was a silly goose. Horrid scaley slimy stinky reptiles.

                      ‘You go first, Genie, try and prise the trunk open.’ India didn’t want to touch the letter opener, but she was rather curious about the contents of the trunk.

                      Eugenia was a strong and capable lass, with a practical methodical mind ~ unlike India Louise ~ and before long the first piece of wood came splintering off.

                      ‘Nice one, Genie, well done.’ India said as Eugenia wrenched off another few planks.

                      ‘Oh MY GOD!’ ‘Jumping Jehosophat!’ ‘What the……’ ‘Holy Moly, Genie, what the….’. After a few initial exclamations, the girls were silent, the hair standing up on their arms.

                      They were looking down at the shrivelled features of a dried up body, covered in bits of disintegrating faded fabric.

                      ‘A mummy! It’s a friggen mummy!’


                      Tomkin had a keen eye, and despite the dazzling light reflected on the calm glittering surface of the sea, he could see a little dark shape detaching itself from the three bigger forms, and that little dark shape was quickly identifiable as a bird.
                      Apparently the bird was not from these lands, it was black with white strips, or perhaps the contrary, and was flying like a grake drunk of having gorged on overripe Scotch bonnets.
                      Obviously the bird was exhausted, and crashed on the shore where it was nearly knocked out by the grogonuts which fell with big *thuds* from the grogonut tree on which it had just finished its erratic course.

                      Seeing the whole scene from the top of the fatly mossy cliff, Tomkin decided his curiosity was a much more pressing matter than taking care of the herd of grakes, so he ran to the little rocky path which led to the beach below.

                      Apparently the bird was still alive, and more surprising even, that was a talking bird. It could speak strange words.
                      And even stranger, though Tomkin knew none of these words, he could understand all of what the bird wanted to communicate to him.

                      What an odd thing, he wondered… The bird was requesting some food apparently.
                      Tomkin fumbled in his pocket for some bread crumbs, when the gift of the Captain fell on the sand.
                      Could it be?

                      Tomkin’s heart was racing. Could it be that there was magic after all in this strange simple gift? The Captain had said it meant all was connected. That could explain why he could understand that foreign bird… And perhaps it worked on other talking creatures and people too…
                      A whole realm of potentials seemed to open in front of young dreamy Tomkin, who was quickly brought down to more earthly matter when Rudy the myna pricked his hand with its beck for the bread crumbs, projecting to him “Give it to me! Give it to me!”.


                      The arrival of the noisy pink fairy was the last straw for Illi. She imagined her deserted island again and made sure she paid attention to imagining it completely deserted this time. No more fat nuns appearing from the heavens or squalking fairies!

                      Illi made the new island a paradise….she magicked up staff when she wanted food or a massage, a gaggle of party people for when she felt like dancing, and blithely disappeared them when she was done. Mostly Illi slept. Her favourite spot was near the lagoon on the sand under the coconut trees. She lay and dozed and drifted and dreamed and imagined and dozed some more, trailing her fingers through the sand, pushing little heaps of sand here and there, pulling them back, making channels and watching the sand sift back in and disappear them. She dreamed of sand sculptures, an astonishing variety and all made from…sand! Tiny grains of sand, made into anything at all…..every tiny grain of conscious energy…made into anything at all…..and in comes the tide and washes and ripples a clean new beach….to make anything at all……


                        Well, I’m sorry to have to tell you Becky Pooh, but your script is getting awfully confusing… Al was saying swaying his head in dismay.
                        — What?! Becky nearly spluttered her cappuccino on Tina who was munching marshmallows at the cafeteria of the rehearsal room.
                        — Yes, you see… Al was once again lost in his thoughts… This Illi is driving me crazy, once she’s here, then she’s elsewhere. At one moment you said she was dead, and I went to great extents to try to clarify…
                        — Muddle, interrupted Becky Pooh, Muddle…
                        — … the whole thing, Al continued imperturbably, and made clear, or so I thought, that the Illi cat was alive, and the Illi human was indeed dead, but now Tina makes the Illi in the dream of little Chiara the cat again… Could you both explain what happens. I’m completely lost.
                        AHAHAH, LOST! cried Becky so insanely, so that all of the others looked at her with eyes wide as saucers.
                        — Well, there could be lots of explanations of course, interjected Sam, whose energy was always soothing to incorporate in the midst of heated discussions on the reality play they were all writing.
                        — Yes, of course there are! It all makes perfect sense, said Becky.
                        — Oh sure, said Tina, except that you don’t really make Illi do anything…
                        — Do I?
                        — Well, they were near the cave, but you won’t face the scaly stinky dragons anyway, said Al a bit disappointed.
                        — Why can’t you imagine them all fluffy and pink if it’s easier for you? said Sam. Like Chinese dragons, why not? A bit dog-headed, wouldn’t that be easier for you?
                        — Mmmm. Becky was pondering.

                        — And what were your suggestions to explain that insane dream? asked Al to Sam.
                        — Mmm, let me see… Perhaps it’s from another timeline. No one has said when that dream has occurred, so it may be before, or after the events happening right now.
                        — And for the cat seen by Chiara, said Tina gently, that could just be her seeing the essence of Illi, and seeing other of her personalities…
                        — Well, seems to make sense… acknowledged Al and Sam, all turning to Becky to see if she agreed.

                        F LoveF Love

                          Oh yes, it is all perfect, interjected Tina, in her new soft and gentle voice. Thank you so much for helping me to understand.

                          AHAHAHAAHAH, laughed Becky, nearly snorting, Tina are you okay today?

                          Well no actually, my head has been pounding for the last 24 hours. I think I have been taken over by those pesky aliens again. They tell me that the only way to get rid of them is to revert back to my own true self.

                          Hope you do it soon muttered Becky, all this niceness is quite unnerving.

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