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  • #298

      The City, year 2257

      Janice had just awoken from a strange dream, where she was watching big round cabbages being harvested in what looked like Quintin’s father garden. They were all firmly rooted on a black irrigation pole across the garden, and people were using strange devices to turn them all delicately and pick them afterwards. In the dream, there were black puppies too, sleeping in the straw of a kind of hut nearby. And she had seen another creature, and had been surprised first because it was unlike anything she had ever met, even in dreams. It was hairless and brown as soft mud, and was hiding in the neighbour’s garden. Then it had crossed and came to play with her…

      Janice was lost in her thoughts strolling on the way to the common dome, when she met Rodney, her father’s friend.
      They had been recently trying with her father Jacob, and also Qixi to connect with their shifting focuses of the Ancients, two centuries and half before their time.
      Some of them, they had found, had been playing a sort of game of story-telling and clue-sowing… (Janice was laughing as her father’s friend, the scientist Arkandin, always insisted on seesawing instead)

      Perhaps her dream was telling her that the crop was ripe, and it was time to harvest some from it. She told her dream to Rodney. All at once, he was quite excited and they started to feel they wanted to chat more freely. So they went into one of the Medraw Caps that was available and soon imagined a comfortable environment for themselves to explore more.

      Janice could hear Al or Quintin complain about how things were getting confusing.
      She tried to convey to both of them that they could be excited about it, as it was expanding their understanding, but they weren’t very receptive.


      Somewhere Al was saying to Becky
      — The more you try to fix it, the more confused I am
      — Hahahahah yes! Becky was answering, I guess so! Ahahahah! Al, what a fabulous dance of confusion we do… The Confundo Tango
      — Ahahah, yes!

      Al started again to moan:
      — So who’s dead, who’s the shapeshifter? Who’s the human, who’s the cat? :-??

      (Rodney was laughing, as for him, he could accept the confusion as much easier, letting him free to wander around!)

      Illi was a woman, a shapeshifter who shape-shifted into a cat, then, she died. Becky was saying (Rodney added mentally “Now, she is disengaged” as he knew that “death” was a confusing word.) She was an archaeologist
      — Okay, that’s cool, that’s what I thought, Al acquiesced. Then thought back of what was said of her and wondered… Anyway, it will probably find a perfect answer …
      Becky nodded
      — I got lost myself when two Illis appeared, and a grip-thing as well
      — Because I didn’t want the grip-thing to be dead! Al couldn’t help but laugh. That would have been too easy, like wiggling out. Not using your imagination within the context of objective imagery to sort out “things”…


      While Rodney and Janice were seeing that their other focuses were kind of stuck in their explanation, they had time freeze and both decided to come back to their “now” to start from their understanding.
      A funny thought had come to Janice, that she shared with Rodney.
      — Oh, the funny thing you know, about Becky having written to Sean
      Rodney nodded. Janice continued:
      — It just appeared in my mind just moments ago, at the same time you (well, Rafaela) inserted into the story of Malvina. That Becky would have been asking Sean something, and that perhaps it would have helped him talk to his father in the future.

      — Well, that Sean is SUCH AN ENIGMA! bumped Rodney a bit excited by the implications.
      — What do you mean? asked Janice, who just remembered that Sean Doran has a cousin named Dorean.
      — Who is he? Where is he? was asking Rodney now.
      Rodney was having a hard time remembering what had been inserted yet in the story about him.

      So Janice manifested the Wrick family tree in front of them, so that he could see better. She started by manifesting an acorn, then threw in on the grass, and it sprung forth in a little sapling with signs hanging from its branches.

      — Well, it’s all in the script, answered Janice, he’s Lord Wrick’s son.
      — Oh boy, I am in trouble again for not keeping up with the facts! Rodney sighed, and laughed…
      Janice laughed “So that you can surprise yourself again!”

      Rodney felt thankful for the sumafiness of Janice who was always prompt to display helpful hallucinations and reminders.

      Janice stopped the growth of the family tree for a moment and started to comment it.
      — See, in Becky’s time of the reality play, Sean is Lord’s Wrick son, and has just lost his wife Margaret, and got his two young children around their 10s.
      — When is Becky’s time then? Rodney wondered, I hadn’t though of that…
      Becky’s time for the reality play is around 2033…
      Then Janice had the tree grow again, and sprout more branches from Sean’s children:
      — …Now, Sean is the grand-father of the twins, except than the twin’s time is around 2057 if it had not changed yet. It’s so carefully woven, but it’s fun how it effortlessly came to fit in.
      TRUST AND ALLOWING AND GOING WITH THE FLOW cried Rodney and Janice in unison, in the realisation of how well all this was.

      Rodney was beginning to remember it all.
      — I just remember the part about Sean, so he is still a bit of a mystery
      — Yes, absolutely
      — We don’t really know do we why Hilarion didn’t mention him
      — Oh, there’s also the Margaret newspaper thing… Janice fumbled in her memory to find the proper link that would display the image of the newspaper cut just at the right of the family tree. Adding with a wink “with more dates to get bearings”
      — Ahahah, I’d love to have pocketfuls of ball bearings said Rodney who manifested a pocketful to distract him from the load of information. OH YES! he cried, I had forgetten about this! What an incredibly HUGE story this is…

      Rodney was squinting his dream eyes
      — So, Sean was into humanitarian effort after 2001…
      — His father actually I think, said Janice. He was a bit too young.
      — Oh OK, I misread, that’s hard to read!

      Then, all of a second, Rodney erupted in an uproarious laugh
      AHAHAHA, I had just forgotten to de-hallucinate these pince-nez spectacles! Now, it is much easier to read!
      Janice was laughing so hard, she thought she would shatter the hallucination with the wobbles of the soundless sounds.
      Then she added:

      Sean is born around 2000, a bit before.
      — OK, maybe he went to help the Tuaregs, Rodney was accessing some information now. Maybe he was the one who put the mummy in the locked room that India found.
      — You know I had something funny in store for the mummy mystery, Janice couldn’t help but laugh again. I imagined we could have inserted Old Manon, coming down to secretly drink from her old malt whiskey’s flask, and finding them messing up with her old dear stuffed cat…
      — Maybe the mummy was the same one that Dory saw in the oblong hole in the ground outside the cave, Rodney was still accessing flickering images swirling around his head. And Sean was there helping the Tuaregs and moved it to safety.
      Of course, years previously, Illi Fergusson, the archeologist had buried the mummy there too for safe keeping.

      Now, Janice was hooked:
      — Was it where Illi learned about shapeshifting tricks from the old tribe?
      Rodney noticed Janice’s funny remark and laughed before continuing:
      — The Tuaregs were conducting secret coleslaw experiments in the desert. In combination with sound and irrigation techniques, they were going to run the entire Sahara into a broccoli field.

      Janice was amazed at the cabbage “coincidence” and irrigation stuff with her dream of that morning. Of course she knew there where probably mis-interpretation of the imagery coming from Rodney’s visions, but something made sense.
      — Around which year? she asked
      — Arrggh I don’t know!… Then, taking a breath of dream air, Rodney said “1923”. When Illi learned shape-shifting trick, 1923.
      — It makes sense, said Janice who was now thinking of other dispersed informations about Illi Fergusson.
      — Yes, she learned from Dashine Ashara… Although who that is, I don’t yet know.
      — Wow, said Janice. She had felt a connection with the “da’sheen” sound. She continued: somewhere, Illi Fergusson has said: “my parents were aristocrats”
      — Yes, answered Rodney who was accessing again, they were, and they knew the Wildes .
      — And it was said too: “[…] a nurturing presence that reminded Illi of the maid she and her parents had in their cottage in South Africa”… like her parents were traveling a lot.
      — Ah, South Africa! Illi’s parents emigrated to South Africa with Sir Abingdon Portfellow, an elderly scholar on ancient artifacts and embalming.
      — Seems she knew John Lubbock too, said Janice again, reviving old data banks of information. Dates seem okay, so if she was around 30 in the Tuareg adventure, she could have met him.
      — Wow, said Rodney, this is even more interesting…

      “But we may sit at home and yet be in all quarters of the earth.” Janice had just summoned the voice of the naturalist and archaeologist. Rodney applauded “Lubbock said that? cool quote!”.
      — Yes, like Illi’s quote, which was from him “What we see depends mainly on what we look for”. I wonder if that’s one of your (Illi’s) overlapping focuses, said Janice

      — Well, Illi didnt stay long in South Africa with boring old whatever his name was, Rodney pursued
      — Yes, she was young with her parents. They were traveling…

      They were both amazed at the magical cooperation they were doing at that moment. Janice would have loved to share all of that with Qixi and Jacob, but probably their energies were present at the moment too, though not focused here.

      She then remembered something else:
      — Oh, and there is something else! Quintin’s dream of the woman detective. Let me fetch it she said, summoning now Quintin’s memory to talk to them.
      … by night, near a museum in London, in the 1920s. She was investigating a case of a strange disappearance near a small replicate of an Egyptian pyramid that had been put here for display. There had been an exposition of ancient artifacts in the museum, which had been recently unearthed by a team of archaeologists and graciously lent by Egypt’s officials. Strangely enough, the woman detective feels linked to the story, and is probably Dory
      Date fits again, she said in awe.
      — Perfect! said Rodney. She was of course Dory too, but in that focus she was Illi Fergusson… he slowed down, then said No! wait! The detective was another one of my focuses. The archeologist who stole the mummy for safekeeping was Illi.
      — Hmmm
      — Hmmm
      — So you are both the thief and the detective, the one who creates mystery for yourself, how interesting, giggled Janice.
      — Yes, and not only that Janice! Rodney was taking a mysterious air… I am the mummy too!

      Janice bust out laughing imagining Rodney in bandages. Yes, of course!
      Then, she had a name come with that: Apsh’un Shet she said, very self-absorbed.
      Now, that was Rodney’s turn to burst out laughing.
      — “I am not sure about that!”
      — Doubting my insights… mmm, how rude… Janice frowned then laughed again.
      — If you call me that, I may have to make you out to have a speech impediment
      — Sounds a good Egyptian name for me though, seems it means “Light of the Dawn
      — Does it? Oh that sounds nice…
      — Well, in some Egyptian dialect, yes. She was a Princess…
      — Hahaha! Reminds me of Aspen Shit. Rodney doubted Janice could be serious about that name, but Janice was now the one to be accessing some information.
      — Bit bossy Princess
      — Which dynasty?
      III rd, answered Janice, who fumbled in links of consciousness to find some timeline to project for them.
      — What year?
      Janice projected the timeline below then said
      — I’d say around 2657 B.C., in Ancients way of telling time.

      They both marveled at the splendid team work they had been doing, and hoped that the other focuses involved would be able to get some parts of their insights too.

      Rodney was seeing something else
      — There is also, a very fascinating link between Tassili in the Sahara and Egypt which is a mystery AND there is a connection with Egypt and Scotland too…
      Illi the gripshawk comes from the mysterious land of the Sands, south of the map fragment
      — We may unravel more than we think… Illi is an other dimensional focus of the Illi essence…
      — Yes she is. She is a connection too, being “lost” in the land of dragons after hopping through traveling portals…
      — Exactly
      — And they communicated because they are helping each other
      — Which is why she doesn’t always ‘fit’ into this reality’s energy configuration
      — And they have some difficulties at times with translations of other dimensional stuff
      — Yes! resulting in confusion!

      And they both laughed again, looking at the great tapestry of clues that was woven before their dream eyes.


        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.


        In reply to: Yuki’s Livrary


          October 12 th

          Lots of movements have been started, movements of expansion, and the joint efforts and ventures took off for new exciting potentials when the migration to the new “expanded sandbox” (as playfully expressed by Quintin) has been completed.
          Interestingly, it has been relatively painless and quick in both the find of the perfect “method”, and the perfect “tools”. In noticing how the feelings where acting as a compass that was telling him whether he was in the right direction or not, and in trusting them, Quintin has incorporated that tool without previous knowledge of its potential use. He just knew it was right.
          And so it is.

          October 16 th

          My dear friend Elias has expressed some time ago this, which may be interesting for the adventurers to read and see how it applies to them…

          “I expressed to you at our last meeting that some focuses continue each other as ‘sequels’ of books. … They are continuations, so to speak. Although they are not accomplished linearly, you may view them as continuing chapters of the same story. In this, they would be considered parallel focuses. You may view within your new game many focuses in which you have held experiences quite different to each other. Then you may also view some focuses that are seemingly related. You are engaged with all of the same characters within a continuation of the same play.” [Elias, #142]


            Blue quote thingy

            The blue quote thingy is made with bq. (blockquote) at the beginning of a new line.

            bq. will give that

            will give that

            If it extends to many paragraphs, then use

            bq.. my long quote
            p.  *back to normal paragraph again*

            my long quote


            back to normal paragraph again

            You can have more details in the Textile help file for other more complex designs…


            :face-glasses: I tried in both the search tab, and the “quicksearch”, and it seems OK.

            Only trick is in the search tab, when you look up, say… “Arona”… you have to click on the highlighted extract, and not on the title, if you want to be brought directly to the one of the many comments where Arona appears ;))


            In reply to: Yuki’s Livrary


              September 24 th

              Quintin remembered a snapshot of the notes that Dory had taken during her first trip to the Madagascan caves, a year ago.

              Relevant extracts:

              At one moment, I saw some hooded figure in the sideways tunnels… He vanished on the left, couldn’t follow him…
              […] HE KNEW HIS WAY INSIDE !
              When he vanished, I had the vision of something, […] like the layout of a labyrinth, of cave tunnels — that are all underground and the many entrances are all over the world… PORTALS
              focus opening/doors ; time/space…
              The central cavernous part is some kind of key center, where anyone can meet…

              This has inspired Quintin to write some notes too.
              He has the vision of these portals organized as clusters, like a tree, with branches and leaves… I will send him a more detailed image, but that may take him some time to digest!

              September 26 th

              The latest additions to the story have inspired Quintin. He had some inkling of how “essence” (or what is somewhat referred as “oversoul” ) and all the “focus” of essence (or lifetimes) interplay, and are not as separate as they sometimes seem to be.

              Here would be what we will say to him, if he wants to listen:

              « Now, terminology can become tricky as, for much time, you have been accustomed to be considering of your experience as the projection of that of an “essence”, somewhat separate from you, the lowly focus.
              Of course, you pretend the contrary, and become quite nifty in brandishing sentences like “I am essence, and I create all of my reality”, which you are and do actually, but that you do not always believe and trust.
              These terms of “essence” and “focus” were given to you as means for you to better understand the interplay of consciousness. In the beginning of the acquaintance with these new terminologies, you have felt them remotely blurry and unrelated to previous concepts, which was the intention. But now, you once again objectify your understanding in something too rigid at times, and that little story is giving you a hint of what your real power is.
              And you begin to really experience it, and really pay attention.

              « As was expressed many times, “essence” is no thing. It is an action.
              The “essence” is each of you, that very portion of you that you feel when you slide your attention into the comment box.
              In that, your purpose, you see, is only to experience, nothing more, nothing less.
              And then time, as you know it, becomes irrelevant, you see. Your natural time is expressed through you and your explorations.
              Notice how playfully, as essence (essence playing focus or focus playing essence), you let your natural time unfold, and at times find some strange weather pattern in your awareness that needs clarification. As essence, you playfully find the most perfect habits [shapes and clothings] to wrap around you, and continue your story.
              Just as your dreams at night overlap and blend into each other.
              Just as Rafaela created new focuses [Sam and Becky] to continue to play and make the story expand for all of the other focuses, Dory included.

              « That “I” of you is ever present, and is reflected perfectly in others’ perceptions, as you are drawing them to you purposefully. Do not brush aside their adjuncts, for they are also you, having moved your pawns forward, so to speak, through their moves.

              « Thus understand that the story is a continuous stream reflecting the essence that is you, and your travel through the various guises you borrow.
              In that manner, it does not matter how much sense it makes in linear terms. Because, in a way, it can’t make sense in these linear terms.

              « Let us explain this in other terms.
              When you found difficulties in understanding the “scheme” so to speak, the figure that is drawn by the participants, it is because you apply the linear understanding of what such a scheme should be.
              In that, you only perceive the “plot” as a succession of dots without a continuity, whereas the continuity is to be found in the other stories interwoven.
              You are accustomed to stories where a single individual is enacting throughout the play, in a linear continuous fashion. The individual goes through many different actions, but is always the same in your perception.
              Here, the tricky thing is to notice the continuity throughout the various habits [clothings] taken by the essence(s). It matters not that the essence takes that guise of say, a pirate sailing on high seas, just after having been an old crafty Lord in his windy castle. The underlying aspects of his exploration has been continuous and coherent: in this case, exploring and making sense of one’s exploration. It is just that a certain appearance has been perhaps more fitting to express certain aspects or qualities of essence, but the exploration has been one, throughout the entirety of the experience.

              « We will let you ponder this, and we will continue our own story, writing about you… »

              September 28 th

              This sand symbol that Quintin has brought up seemed to have come from many directions at once. Each character has connected it, in various ways.
              Armelle (Arona) to her magic, Rafaela (Becky) to her collecting customs, etc. etc.

              Let us say that this symbol is not as innocent as it may seem. There are lots of associations with sand.
              It is solid, yet fluid. In association with water, it can be used to build, and also to erode. It can shift into many forms, one of which is your glass, and your electronic components.
              And most of all, it is, after your very oxygen, the most abundant constituent of your reality.
              It is almost limitless in your understanding.
              As is your magic.

              This magical device we made Quintin see in a visualization is an analogy of your very action of creation as essences.
              The sand which molds itself to make forms and shapes in three dimensions is in fact likened to your consciousness. Each grain of sand represents your links of consciousness that bind together to do your command.
              The shapes are moved by your essences, in which you may see that the essence is no thing at all, but is a continuous stream of action, not separate from others’.

              As Quintin said to Fiona, some individuals do differently when they create and shape their sands.
              In analogy with the coloured sands, some people like Quintin enjoy using other people’s colours in shaping his own characters, while some others prefer to keep their own colours, to create a more definite sense of individuality. But they integrate the others’ movements and shapes nonetheless, regardless of how much they perceive it to be coming from them.

              With that said, let us see how much more will appear from that sandbox…

              September 30 th

              The Wrick family tree as it is now (or “will be” drawn around the time of the twins in 2057).

              The Secret Life of Margaret Wrick , a newspaper cut from 2033.

              October 7 th

              The dragon Naasir’s dream
              A panorama illustrating the portals between the worlds created by each of the participants… But who is dreaming, really?

              And an illustration of Chiara’s encounter with the glutton “dreggun” Buckberry


                When Cuthbert came back to bed after having had his cup of cocoa, India Louise was awake too.

                — I saw him too, she said to her brother.
                — I don’t want to see him again, these books are scarey.
                — It’s intriguing, I want to know more, India Louise said, egging on him.
                — When I close my eyes, I got all these roots and webs crawling, it’s mad… I can’t…
                — He has found a friend to help him cross the Dark Forest to the traveling portal.
                — A friend?
                — Yes, a friend. She’s special.
                — Tell me more…
                — She’s a white unicorn, only him can see her.
                — Wow…
                — She’s named Mirÿnda. She’s glowing white, and he hears her speak in his mind, she shows him the way through the forest…


                — Mirÿnda?! A fool in saffron robe gallivanting in the forest with a unicorn now? That’s all you could find?

                Tina was taken aback…

                — Well, I could have used a grizzly bear too, now I think of it… Al answered flippantly.
                — Tsk tsk, replied Tina a bit annoyed. And why not a humpback whale, or an arctic lemming, or even… why, a leopard gecko for that matter?… And who’s that Mÿrinda anyway?


                — I don’t know any Amanda, Fiona said to Quintin that night. Don’t really know many of Michaela & Elias’ students. She’s Yann friend, right?

                Quintin had answered distractedly, as he was engrossed by his last painting…

                Later that night, he couldn’t find sleep, as the dragon he was painting was still expanding his web of roots and branches in his mind’s eye. He opened his computer to see that Malika was online.

                She told him something that night, something Quintin found abysmally profound and perplexing about his dragon…

                Dragons can shape shift, into anything they want to. There are several doorways/portals that they use for travel into this dimension. Malika said
                — Yes, said Quintin, this drawing has something to do with these portals initially, but I struggle a bit to represent them…
                Yes, so you can just depict it to be flowing, liquid-like energy in the center, when the portal is active.
                There are some that are being shone to me on the bottom of the ocean floor.
                What is being shown to me, is a dragon with a tail much like a mermaid, and hands with webs, big yellow eyes…

                Wow he had thought, she can really see.


                Jadra, guided by Mirÿnda, had been moving quite easily through the Dark Forest. Of course, he wouldn’t have dared touch the holy creature, and so he was walking hesitantly behind, taking care of where his bare feet were touching the ground.

                The Dark Forest was bordering the Marshes of Doom, and at times the limits between the two were almost indiscernible. It was said that every foul, err… fool… damn,…

                — Will you stop being so buffoonish! raved Tina again.
                — Perhaps I should let someone else continue then? said Albert.
                — Well, that’s entertaining, replied Becky mechanically.
                — OK. I’ll jump in, said Samuel, with a wide grin.

                It was said that every full moon, the Mighty Shrimp would come from the shores of the Southern Seas and haunt the Marshes in search for souls to be turned into krill, so that he could be the WALRUS (Wrathful Almighty Lord Ruler of Undersea Souls).

                Well, at least, that’s what Jadra had heard in his youth, when you tend to believe everything… So he was weary of the hiki-hiki sounds in the night that might have been the dreaded call of the Mighty Shrimp.


                Quintin was having a strange dream. He was a huge whale, along with another one he knew was Yann, swimming powerfully in the vast ocean, passing by strange creatures that could have been mermaids or improbable fishes, when his gaze was attracted by a stream of glittering particles of light.

                The lights were enticing, he would have said even “mouth-watering”, had he not had the baleens full of water already…


                Salome was moving through layers of consciousness, something humans focused in physical dimensions would have found difficult to grasp, as it was nothing that could be easily conceptualized. She was, as best as she could put, like a huge cloud of lightness coalescing into a form, when she decided to project her aspect.

                Taking form into a dimension required no effort in actuality, the consensus reality created by all the essences focused into the reality making quite a strong pull. She only needed to move her attention to what she wanted to manifest. Altering her reality slowly around her, to move closer to the desired effect.

                She was not only traveling through time and space, but also through multitudinous layers of dimensions unnoticed to many humans —in fact, she was not really moving, but that was a convenient way of telling things for humans…

                She said “humans”, because she was fond of this particular dimension, where she’d had lots of experiences.

                When moving through the dimensions, it had her projected focus of attention constantly and naturally adapt its form to the psychological environment.

                Here, she had just moved through a honey-drops dimension, where focuses were drops of golden honey-like substance, and as she moved through it, her own aspect had changed to that of a sand-glass shaped drop of honey.

                This was great fun for her to see the ease with which she could focus into this infinite variety of adventures, but for now, her pull was to some more complex physical dimensions.

                She started to move again, de-focusing, past the lazy honey drops.

                The honey drops were now shape-shifting to a whole immense field of snake-like strings of light, and they all started to converge to a direction. She knew the feeling. She followed the strong pull.


                  New York, October, 4 th 2033

                  Albert had opened the newspaper, scanning distractedly through the various pages of text that would read aloud automatically when he was running his fingers through it. He was about to close it, when he noticed that article in the Life Focus section.

                  (click for article)


                  Dublin, October 5 th 2033

                  Sean Doran Wrick had received tons of phone calls, emails and voice mails of condolences since the past few weeks, but he had not found the strength to answer any of them. Especially those coming from his father.

                  That morning, he had received some letters that he would have left on top of the others, had he not recognized the round and cheerful calligraphy of Becky on one of them.

                  He had known Becky when they had traveled together in Syria, and had enjoyed so much the lively young woman that they had kept in touch during all those years.

                  He was pleased to read from her, and wanted to enjoy it fully.

                  So he took his time to put to bed Guinevere and Peregrine before. Guinevere was the eldest, very mature for her barely 11 year old. She took great care of her younger brother, who was more dreamy and foolish. Peregrine would turn 10 next March… but he was hardly as responsible as his sister when she was his age…

                  Dear Sean, Becky was writing

                  I would have liked to finally take the time to write to you in better conditions, but I could not delay any longer. I saw the obituary in the newspaper, and wanted you to know that I share your grief and loss, and extend much love and support to you and to your dear little ones.

                  I know you’re not the kind of person to be satisfied with banalities, so I will not dwell on this tragedy, and will remember the best moments we shared together.

                  I still continue my studies and practices on dramatherapy, and till now it has proved very beneficial, in many ways. I have learned so many things. It’s quite rewarding. We are a close-knit group of fools (or drôles as Al loves to say, as some of his ancestors come from the bayous!), and that is very much enjoyable when things that tragic come to one’s reality.

                  In case you feel like talking, don’t hesitate any moment, I’ll be here. Anytime.




                  Orkney Islands, October 4 th, 2057

                  This year again, Sean Doran had not answered his father’s calls.

                  This September 23 th was the twenty fourth anniversary of the disengagement of Lord Wrick’s daughter-in-law, and this was always a very somber period for the family.

                  Hopefully, the twins were here to enliven the old mansion, for as long as their parents, Lord Wrick’s grand-children, would be traveling. And of course, there had been the unexpected return of the books, which had been comforting too.

                  Nonetheless, Hilarion Wrick was sad, and Bill the painter was uneasy as to how he could not quite put right the portrait of the old dragon…


                    Arona hummed happily to herself. She felt so light without the cape and the tunnel was bathed in the gentle light of many glukenitches. Mandrake the cat followed along too, much to Arona’s delight, although she was a little hesitant to tell this to the grumpy cat

                    Magic magic magic magic she hummed to herself

                    Arona almost skipped along the tunnel, and, so wrapped up was she in thoughts of magic, that she tripped and fell heavily, hurting her left hand as she put it out to save herself

                    Ouch, hells bells and warty wizards, she muttered, for it did hurt quite considerably… and then she had some scarey thoughts. She looked around and realised that really, the fact of the matter was, undeniably, that she was still lost in the darkish tunnel.

                    What if I don’t believe in magic? and her happy mood plummeted.

                    Oh fuch, she swore, and sat down on the cave floor. FUCH FUCH FUCH FUCH she shouted as loud as she possibly could, and in fact hurt her throat a little in the process and quite possibly the sensitive ears of many glukenitches.

                    This blessed cave is doing my head in. I want to see the sunshine, or the rain, no matter, I don’t care what the weather is doing I JUST WANT TO BE OUT OF THIS CAVE.

                    Ooops that was rather loud

                    After coaxing Mandrake back, as he had retreated quite some distance at her outburst, she sat down and put her head in her hands and tried to think. Did she believe in magic? Well of course she had no choice. Life without magic was inconceivable to her.

                    She felt a familiar tiredness sweep over her as she struggled to work it out. Perhaps I will just have a small sleep before I continue, and she curled up on the ground, wishing she had her heavy black cape to wrap around her.

                    As she gave up the struggle and let sleep come she heard some soft words

                    It’s easy Arona … magic is easy … it is the thread linking all to all


                    A short while later she woke from her sleep, feeling refreshed and ready to continue.


                      A few days after Sam and Becky’s conversation on the phone, they were having a rehearsal.

                      Just at the moment when they felt stuck again, despite Sam’s moves, Al and Tina, a couple of friends came crashing into the small theater room, and were greeted by an icy cold silence. “Icy” is an exaggeration of course, said Tina, “it just meant I had to put a jacket on again today”.

                      Sorry for being late! said Al a bit uneasy.
                      — Oh you and your uneasiness! said Tina. And I’m sure we’re arriving at the perfect time.
                      — Oh, well, I’m not sure of anything today, said Becky. I’m sick of being force-fed coleslaw, and rigging down holes for myself.

                      A silence was on the scene.


                      At the same time, somewhere on the deck of his ship, Bådul was remembered of the landscapes of his land. He had not really appreciated them before, but now, he was finding them dear to him. They were for the most part a mixture of sandy dunes, from which at times peaks of icy rocky mountains would stick out. Lately he had felt like one of these peaks sticking out of the sands. The sands were shifting.


                      Somewhere in Malvina’s cave.

                      Malvina had been polishing the last dry eggs that she had found and that would not hatch. One of them had some interesting perfect round shape, and a very transparent shell, and it gave her an idea.

                      She asked Leörmn to come.


                      Quintin’s bedroom.

                      [1:01] The clock was saying. Quintin had just awoken from a dream about an elderly woman who was showing him some drawings. These were not actually drawings, but in fact, they were called by the lady “glassart”. It was made, she said, of coloured sands, and would be vitrified by some flame. Quintin in that dream had thought the designs rather crude, but had found the idea interesting, and with great potential.


                      Leörmn came almost instantly, appearing in a puff of teal smoke.

                      Oh, I see… he said, reading Malvina’s mind. And I think I have the perfect sands to go with it.


                      — Why hasn’t that pirate, Badass…
                      Badul, corected Al
                      — Whatever, Becky pursued imperturbably, that pirate Baddock used traveling portals to go and look for the eggs? Why the seas? Sounds a bit complicated and with lots of dangers too.
                      — Good question, answered Al. Well, don’t want to answer for everyone, but in my perception…
                      — Oh, get lost with your “in my perception” thing, that’s becoming tiring… sighed Tina
                      — OK. So, for me, they have forgotten much about magic in his land.
                      — Makes sense… added Sam dreamily… In fact, I’m not sure after all that Badul is only after gold. I think he has found some old desert dragon egg in a cave lost in his country and hopes to revive it, with the help of the people who still know about magic.
                      — Which would explain the quest… said Al
                      — Yeah, and he would have hidden that to the rest of the crew, probably… said Tina


                      Leörmn had now finished assembling the magical artifact.

                      — That’s one of our most beautiful magical artifact I’d say, Malvina gleamed
                      — Oh yes it is. And how would you call it?
                      — Let’s see…


                      sabulmantium !

                      Everyone cracked up at the word that Al had just blurted out. They had decided to have some distraction to alleviate the stress on the play, and they had a fun improvisation game, saying stupid things that went through their minds.

                      — Hey! Don’t laugh like that, it’s something very serious actually, said Al tongue-in-cheek. Let me see…
                      — Hahahaha, the others continued
                      — Well, it’s a divination device, or a sort of compass in a way. I see it as a globe made of glass, with coloured sands in it, and when you focus on it, the sands take all sorts of three dimensional shapes, and become alive…
                      — Wow! Tina couldn’t help but say.


                      Leörmn, as Malvina had been telling him (or vice versa), had put the sabulmantium in one of the tunnels, to a place where he knew Arona would find it, and probably put it to good use for her future adventures.


                        Illi had not known as powerful an opponent as this other Illi.

                        At first, she had been remembered of stories of possession by evil sprites (or djinns) that she had heard in her youth, when Ibn al’ Gruk, the old angora storyteller was entertaining the desert settlement beating the rhythm with sonorous drums.

                        So, she had pushed, and rebelled, and fought, as fiercely as any other gripshawk skilled and trained in the hand-to-hand martial arts would have done.

                        But the other Illi wasn’t so easily vanquished.

                        Then Illi had collapsed. She had sorrowfully abandoned the fight to the dreaded adversary.

                        All of this had been occurring in a twinkle of an eye, but for Illi, the fight had been during ages and ages, while she was trying to focus on what BelleDora was explaining to her about the land where she was now.

                        And when she had abandoned the fight, everything was again so easy. She did not care any longer, she was free again. Her evil twin could do anything, it could not matter less.

                        But the evil twin had been in fact doing the same, and she had struggled to keep the focus coherent to her. Didn’t want stupid moth-looking people in her reality, or even spare hair on her face! But that other one was strong, and fierce. And stubborned too!

                        — Who are you? she finally had asked
                        — I’m Illi, had the other answered
                        — I am Illi.
                        — So we are both Illi
                        — Yeah, that may be it, but we are quite different.
                        — Are we? You feel quite like me, despite your stupid affection for smooth baby face.
                        — Well, wouldn’t it be for that, I can see some resemblance…
                        — Will you let me continue my trip?
                        — Oh, I would have, but you’ve hijacked mine, said Illi Fergusson.
                        — So you think.
                        — And where does your trip leads to? asked Illi F. who wasn’t too sure of her trip either
                        — From traveling portals to traveling portals, to discover all that can be discovered on this world. Magical creatures, I distrust them, but the lands and people are fascinating… And what about yours?
                        — Hmm, hmm, pondered Illi F. for a moment… Well, I’m dead actually, but I didn’t expect being dead to be so busy. There are so many things to discover, and I like that. I see funny looking people, and this looks like fun. Like a minute ago, I was in some kind of funny cave, with a parrot…
                        — A what?
                        — A parrot, you know, a kind of talking bird full of colours…
                        — Mmm, some kind of demonic creature for sure. Would have slain it without an hesitation!
                        — Hey! You see, that’s why I didn’t want you to come with me.
                        — Well, seems like for a moment, we don’t have much more choice…
                        — At least, look at the bright side, with us merged like that, each of us can provide the other one with some sound experience on each other’s worlds.
                        — Well, that’s not as airy-fairy as it seems…
                        — Well, thank you for that, I’ll take that as a compliment.
                        — You really are dreadfully serious at times!
                        — Hey, I’m not anybody you see. My parents were aristocrats, I’m not the common hairy lot.
                        — Ahahah, you’re funny.
                        — So are you!

                        And they ended laughing blissfully together.

                        After a moment, Illi asked again:

                        — Huh, a funny cave you said?
                        — Well, yes. With lots of people…
                        — Interesting… I was near some sort of strange cave too a while ago, that is, before I was found by this nice man and his dogs. Perhaps there is some connection here.
                        — And could you go there again?
                        — Not sure if I want to; there were some smelly fumes, smelt like demonic magic in there.
                        — Oh you see, for as long as I’ve been dead, well even if that’s not so long ago, anyway, the point is I’ve not seen any demon so far… blustered Illi F.
                        — Oh, and I have to take your word like that then?
                        — Well, do as you please, but I’m going there again…
                        — Just wait for me now, will you; let’s try to do things hand in hand, because you’re driving me mad!

                        And the deal was made.

                        BelleDora had continued to explain lots of things about her ancestors, but had not really noticed Illi’s attention had been so far away. She was a bit surprised when she found herself interrupted in a middle of a poetic depiction of the coastal plains of the Peninsula of the Dragon Head, where some glistening Capricorns were sometimes seen swimming in the creeks.

                        — And how do I get back safely to this hole where I was found? asked Illi abruptly.


                          Of all the eggs Malvina had been collecting since the beginning of her settling down in the cave with Leörmn, only one had been producing a baby dragon, till now.

                          She had nicknamed her Buckberry, because the little one seemed so fond of the buckberries that grew at the entrance of the cave.

                          Buckberries were a variety of wild big electric blue-vermilion reddish berries, and were known to have thwarted all attempts to be grown in gardens. In a legendary past, a famous king of the near Kingdoms named Hadraz the Third was said to have been loving these fruits so much that he had spent torrents of gold in trying to have them farmed in the precious glasshouses of his realm. All the attempts of the most knowledgeable Master Farmers had been amounting to nilch.

                          This habit of Buckberry, for one moment had been making Malvina anxious of him revealing the location of their safe haven. As she could and would not prevent him to go in search for them, she created some powerful spells to hide him, at least from people to whom the little dragon had not revealed his true name first.

                          That had caused some stir from some people who where adventuring near the cave to pick up some of the juicy fruits that could be easily spotted from the plains, as they noticed a heavy breath and * munch * sound around the bushes, that moved like shaken down by a powerful ghost.

                          Thus has begun the trail of rumours saying that the cave was haunted.

                          All in all, Malvina was not so displeased that there were only a few eggs hatching at a time, as the young dragons were very lively, much more so than the older ones who kept most of their time sleeping, or more aptly put, dreaming.

                          Dragons had no need for training in a sense, as they were aware of their abilities, and Buckberry, even being so young could just have been moving away and started his own adventure, but something was compelling him to stay in the cave.

                          He had chosen a different form from that of Leörmn, and it was indicating he would not have the same intent. As he would continue to grow, he would probably be a very powerful dragon, shaped for flight and discoveries in the farthest boundaries of the Worlds. At times, Leörmn even doubted he would be fit for a human partner, as he had only managed to scare the few humans he had encountered…

                          After all, it was not necessary, though dragons could draw a lot from such a partnership.

                          Dragons were not always welcome, as they were feared for their might, and could not always easily explain what they were doing, as most of their movements were in the Unseen.

                          In that, only Ragmók, the old speech of the dragons could be used to properly explain these movements. Ragmók was not really a speech, in the human sense, as it could also be spoken through gestures or singing or drawing. But it was the very essence of Magix.

                          When a dragon and a human bonded, they shared their languages in a communion of their spirits, and the chosen human could delve easily into the Unseen, while providing to the chosen dragon an ease of movement into the Seen.


                            As the voice was becoming louder, Írtak felt also the presence of Leörmn. He was feeling this liquid vibration that was his signal for the shapeshifting of the tunnels. He knew that Leörmn was aware of his presence and wouldn’t change the tunnel he was in, but he could possibly forget to leave him an exit.

                            He felt the presence of Malvina reassuring, she was also supervising the progression of the girl. He knew it was not for him to intervene and help the girl, she was to find her own way. And if her choice was to find him she would, otherwise he had still to find that missing egg.

                            Since he’d found Malvina and Leörmn he’d unraveled many of his own abilities. They were quite different from those of Malvina, nonetheless she told him that they were perfectly fitting his own exploration. He could feel the eggs and the only difficulty was to follow a path that would lead him to any lost egg before it was too cold.

                            And for now, the egg was in another direction than the one from which the voice was coming. He just added his own encouragement and trust to the girl, and he continued his little quest.


                              Arona felt tiredness sweep over her.

                              hmmm maybe I will rest a little before I continue my journey, and she lay down on the cloak and wondered what dreadful fate may befall her.

                              All of a sudden she knew she was no longer alone in the dim light of the cave. An older woman was seated next to her. Someone who seemed strangely familiar to her.

                              You called me,

                              the woman said, and laughed gently

                              I remember this cloak well,
                              You get rid of it soon

                              And she gently stroked Arona’s hair.

                              Use your magic

                              she whispered as Arona fell asleep


                                Sanso was used to travelling alone. He’d been exploring this cave on his own for several years now, and it suited him, on the whole. No need to confer, or compromise, or rush to keep up, or slow down to let others catch up. He could follow his own impulses without hindrance. He did meet others on his travels, but only at the cave entrances, or rather, the times and places that the cave entrances revealed. He never felt an urge to settle though at any of these places, always compelled to return to the caves mysterious and ever changing labyrinthine tunnels.

                                The disembodied voices and coloured wispies were always with him in the tunnels. Sometimes one would be louder than another for awhile, then another would assume prominence. The bleakest coldest times were when he wasn’t noticing them; that’s when he found himself going round and round in circles, lost in the maze.

                                The electric blue wispy had been around alot lately, comforting him with little explosions of pinprick blue lights, and a golden mustard yellow one. English, not French mustard, he reminded himself, although he didn’t think it mattered and wondered why he’d thought it.

                                Sanso had been almost crawling for some time in a particuarly cramped and difficult tunnel; bent double for most of the time, his back was aching and he longed to stretch out. The thought of going back, retracing his steps, was unbearable, so he continued, and tried not to be discouraged.
                                ‘Find something to appreciate, Appreciation is the key’ the voice of the blue wispy sounded amused, but in a kindly and endearing sort of way. Harumph, muttered Sanso, easy to say! It would help if there was something to appreciate!

                                Just then Sanso heard another voice, muttering something over and over again. ‘… dragon egg dragon… egg dog egg … dragon dog egg…’ What the heck was that all about?


                                  Yann had been having these strange dreams and impressions since he’d been in that cave during his last trip to Scotland. In the cave he had that strange impression of a dragon roaring, but he’d rationalized that with the noise of the falls, it was quite deafening. It’d been raining for so much time that the amount of water streaming through that cave was amazing… the visits had been suspended because they feared floods and they couldn’t really explore the cave then. All he could do then was picking up a pebble for Fiona, a pebble he had still to send her :D

                                  After that, he’d had the weirdest impression to be observed by dragons… they felt quite big, and event though he tried to tell himself it was some effect of his imagination, he was still uneasy about that.

                                  The imagery of dragons had continued with his discussion with Quintin, who told him he had drawn that very cave… in which there were dragon eggs and their keeper. A strange harper woman. When he’d been shown the painting, Yann had that feeling of déjà vu, and the kid attending the newborn dragon on the upper right of the picture had aroused an intense desire to do that very action.

                                  “The tunnels had been changed again”, he thought first.

                                  That weird thought made him laugh and he couldn’t tell to Quintin why… yet.

                                  And last week there was his friend Anastasia who was coming back from a trip to Budapest where she had seen so many dragons in the hotel, in the museums, and there was that parade, they were calling that the dragon’s parade, and it was music and parties all the Saturday night. She enjoyed that tremendously. She even told him she had the impression of being a dragon when looking in the mirror right after that night.

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