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      “What’s that?” shouted Albie, pointing to a small blemish on the clear blue sky. “It’s getting bigger!”

      “Goodness me, I do believe it is a hot air balloon. And it is falling our way. Quickly, Boy, we must make preparations or our inflatable zodiac will be deluged. I bought it from Mr Jiboriums’s emporium, so it isn’t the best quality but it was a very fair price.”

      “Yes! preparations!” said Albie.

      He looked around uncertainly. “What preparations did you have in mind?”

      “At this point in proceedings, I suggest we put on these inflatable life jackets, also a bargain from Mr Jiboriums’s emporium, and prepare to tally ho!”

      “Look, it is slowing down!”

      “Thank the Felines for that! Water is not really my forte,” said Mandrake.

      When the balloon was only meters away, a small person could be seen on board, excitedly waving a tea towel in the air.

      “Do you think they are in trouble?” asked Albie.

      Mandrake! Mandrake! It’s me!”

      “They know you! How do they know you?”

      “Give me a moment, boy,” said Mandrake, hiding his face behind a paw and making loud sniffing noises. “I just need a moment … “

      Mandrake, it’s me, Arona!” shouted the person. “But I don’t know how to get out of this thing.”


        Mandrake love of chasing pigeons almost got the best of him, but he managed to keep on track in the whirlportal that opened doors within places.

        The Cat had gone for errands to the Doline, the only place that the Voodoo witch’s portals couldn’t reach. Only the underground streams led to it, as some sort of enchantment protected it and kept it hidden.

        The swamps of the bayou were well connected to such otherworldly places, but it still took him much more time to get there than he’d wanted. The pearls from the Doline were the price for a tracking spell that the Voodoo witch he was going to had promised him so he could find Arona.


          There was no way around it. As hard as he would have tried, he couldn’t reach the peaks of the mountain without crossing the part of the Enchanted Forest which the Fae called their own. There was no way for him to avoid paying the price, or to avoid facing the Court.
          Rukshan wished there was an easier way, but trying to avoid it would only delay the inevitable. Besides, he would need provisions to continue his journey —that is, if they’d let him.

          The first signs of the enchanted signposts had appeared two days ago. He’d been walking through the silent and cold forest for close to ten days already. His progress was slow, as the days were short, and the nights were better spent recuperating.
          The early signs that he was approaching the Fae land wouldn’t have been noticeable by any other than those with some Fae blood in their veins. Some were as subtle as enchanted dewdrops on spiderwebs, other few were watcher crows, but most of the others were simply sapling trees, shaking at the slightest change of wind. All of them silent watchers of the Forest, spies for the Queen and her Court.

          From the first sign, he had three days. Three days to declare himself, or face the consequences. He would wait for the last one. There was something magical about the number three, and anything more hasty would only mean he was guilty of something.

          Like improper use of magic he thought, smiling at the memory of the oiliphant. The Queen was clutching at a dwindling empire, and magic sources gone scarce meant it had to be “properly” used.

          He never believed such nonsense, which is why he’d decided to live outside of their traditions. But for all his disagreement, he remained one of them, bound by the same natural laws, and the same particularities. Meant to reach extremely old ages while keeping an external appearance as youthful as will is strong in their mind, able to wield strong magic according to one’s dispositions, ever bound to tell the truth (and becoming thus exceptionally crafty at deception), and a visceral distaste for the Bane, iron in all its forms.
          Thus was his heritage, the one he shared with the family that was now waiting for his sign to be granted an audience in the Court.

          One more day, he thought…


            As the crow flies, Glenville is about 100 miles from the Forest of Enchantment.

            “What a pretty town!” tourists to the area would exclaim, delighted by the tree lined streets and quaint houses with thatched roofs and brightly painted exteriors. They didn’t see the dark underside which rippled just below the surface of this exuberant facade. If they stayed for more than a few days, sure enough, they would begin to sense it. “Time to move on, perhaps,” they would say uneasily, although unsure exactly why and often putting it down to their own restless natures.

            Glynis Cotfield was born in one of these houses. Number 4 Leafy Lane. Number 4 had a thatched roof and was painted a vibrant shade of yellow. There were purple trims around each window and a flower box either side of the front door containing orange flowers which each spring escaped their confines to sprawl triumphantly down the side of the house.

            Her father, Kevin Cotfield, was a bespectacled clerk who worked in an office at the local council. He was responsible for building permits and making sure people adhered to very strict requirements to ‘protect the special and unique character of Glenville’.

            And her mother, Annelie … well, her mother was a witch. Annelie Cotfield came from a long line of witches and she had 3 siblings, all of whom practised the magical arts in some form or other.

            Uncle Brettwick could make fire leap from any part of his body. Once, he told Glynis she could put her hand in the fire and it wouldn’t hurt her. Tentatively she did. To her amazement the fire was cold; it felt like the air on a frosty winter’s day. She knew he could also make the fire burning hot, if he wanted. Some people were a little scared of her Uncle Brettwick and there were occasions—such as when Lucy Dickwit told everyone at school they should spit at Glynis because she came from an ‘evil witch family’—when she used this to her advantage.

            “Yes, and I will tell my Uncle to come and burn down your stinking house if you don’t shut your stinking stupid mouth!” she said menacingly, sticking her face close to Lucy’s face. “And give me your bracelet,” she added as an after thought. It had worked. She got her peace and she got the bracelet.

            Aunt Janelle could move objects with her mind. She set up a stall in the local market and visitors to the town would give her money to watch their trinkets move. “Lay it on the table”, she would command them imperiously. “See, I place my hands very far from your coin. I do not touch it. See?” Glynis would giggle because Aunt Janelle put on a funny accent and wore lots of garish makeup and would glare ferociously at the tourists.

            But Aunt Bethell was Glynis’s favourite—she made magic with stories. “I am the Mistress of Illusions,” she would tell people proudly. When Glynis was little, Aunt Bethell would create whole stories for her entertainment. When Glynis tried to touch the story characters, her hand would go right through them. And Aunt Bethell didn’t even have to be in the same room as Glynis to send her a special magical story. Glynis adored Aunt Bethell.

            Her mother, Annelie, called herself a healer but others called her a witch. She concocted powerful healing potions using recipes from her ’Big Book of Spells’, a book which had belonged to Annelie’s mother and her mother before her. On the first page of the book, in spindly gold writing it said: ‘May we never forget our LOVE of Nature and the Wisdom of Ages’. When Glynis asked what the ‘Wisdom of Ages’ meant, her mother said it was a special knowing that came from the heart and from our connection with All That Is. She said Glynis had the Wisdom of Ages too and then she would ask Glynis to gather herbs from the garden for her potions. Glynis didn’t think she had any particular wisdom and wondered if it was a ploy on her mother’s part to get free labour. She obeyed grudgingly but drew the line at learning any spells. And on this matter her father sided with her. “Don’t fill her mind with all that hocus pocus stuff,” he would say grumpily.

            Despite this, the house was never empty; people came from all over to buy her mother’s potions and often to have their fortunes told as well. Mostly while her father was at work.

            Glynis’s best friend when she was growing up was Tomas. Tomas lived at number 6 Leafy Lane. They both knew instinctively they shared a special bond because Tomas’s father also practised magic. He was a sorcerer. Glynis was a bit scared of Tomas’s Dad who had a funny crooked walk and never spoke directly to her. “Tell your friend you must come home now, Tomas,” he would call over the fence.

            Being the son of a sorcerer, Tomas would also be a sorcerer. “It is my birthright,” he told her seriously one day. Glynis was impressed and wondered if Tomas had the Wisdom of Ages but it seemed a bit rude to ask in case he didn’t.

            When Tomas was 13, his father took him away to begin his sorcery apprenticeship. Sometimes he would be gone for days at a time. Tomas never talked about where he went or what he did there. But he started to change: always a quiet boy, he became increasingly dark and brooding.

            Glynis felt uneasy around this new Tomas and his growing possessiveness towards her. When Paul Ackleworthy asked her to the School Ball, Tomas was so jealous he broke Paul’s leg. Of course, nobody other than Glynis guessed it was Tomas who caused Paul’s bike to suddenly wobble so that he fell in the way of a passing car.

            “You could have fucking killed him!” she had shouted at Tomas.

            Tomas just shrugged. This was when she started to be afraid of him.

            One day he told her he was going for his final initiation into the ‘Sorcerer Fraternity’.

            “I have to go away for quite some time; I am not sure how long, but I want you to wait for me, Glynis.”

            “Wait for you?”

            He looked at her intensely. “It is destined for us to be together and you must promise you will be here for me when I get back.”

            Glynis searched for her childhood friend in his eyes but she could no longer find him there.

            “Look, Tomas, I don’t know,” she stuttered, wary of him, unwilling to tell the truth. “Maybe we shouldn’t make any arrangements like this … after all you might be away for a long time. You might meet someone else even …. some hot Sorceress,” she added, trying not to sound hopeful.

            Suddenly, Glynis found herself flying. A gust of wind from nowhere lifted her from her feet, spun her round and then held her suspended, as though trying to decide what to do next, before letting her go. She landed heavily at Tomas’s feet.

            “Ow!” she said angrily.

            “Promise me.”

            “Okay! I promise!” she said.

            Her mother’s face went white when Glynis told her what Tomas had done.

            That evening there was a gathering of Uncle Brettwick and the Aunts. There was much heated discussion which would cease abruptly when Glynis or her father entered the room. “Alright, dearie?” one of the Aunts would say, smiling way too brightly. And over the following days and weeks there was a flurry of magical activity at 4 Leafy Lane, all accompanied by fervent and hushed whisperings.

            Glynis knew they were trying to help her, and was grateful, but after the initial fear, she became defiant. “Who the hell did he think he was, anyway?” She left Glenville to study architecture at the prestigious College of Mugglebury. It was there she met Conway, who worked in the cafe where she stopped for coffee each morning on her way to class. They fell in love and moved in together, deciding that as soon as Glynis had graduated they would marry. It had been 4 years since she had last seen Tomas and he was now no more than a faint anxious fluttering in her chest.

            It was a Friday when she got the news that Conway had driven in the path of an oncoming truck and was killed instantly. She knew it was Friday because she was in the supermarket buying supplies for a party that weekend to celebrate her exams being over when she got the call. And it was the same day Tomas turned up at her house.

            And it was then she knew.

            “You murderer!” she had screamed through her tears. “Kill me too, if you want to. I will never love you.”

            “You’ve broken my heart,” he said. “And for that you must pay the price. If I can’t have you then I will make sure no-one else wants you either.”

            “You don’t have a heart to break,” she whispered.

            Dragon face,” Tomas hissed as he left.

            Glynis returned to Glenville just long enough to tell her family she was leaving again. “No, she didn’t know where,” she said, her heart feeling like stone. Her mother and her Aunts cried and begged her to reconsider. Her Uncle smouldered in silent fury and let off little puffs of smoke from his ears which he could not contain. Her father was simply bewildered and wanted to know what was all the fuss about and for crying out loud why was she wearing a burka?

            The day she left her mother gave her the ‘Book of Spells”. Glynis knew how precious this book was to her mother but could only think how heavy it would be to lug around with her on her journey.

            “Remember, Glynis,” her mother said as she hugged Glynis tightly to her, “the sorcerers have powerful magic but it is a mere drop in the ocean in comparison to the magic of All That Is. You have that great power within you and no sorcerer can take take that from you. You have the power to transform this into something beautiful.”


              Glynis could barely breathe when she thought about leaving the home she had created for herself here in the enchanted garden. Yes, for sure she was lonely and the months … or perhaps it was years … had done little to ease that pain; the birds and other creatures she interacted with on a daily basis were companionship but it was not the same as having friends of her own kind.

              But she had made a life for herself and it was bearable. At times, for example when she was engrossed in learning a new spell, she felt something akin to happiness.

              And she always held the hope that one day she would stumble upon the spell.

              And the alternative … to leave here … she felt ill. But she could not deny the restless pull she was feeling even though she did not as yet understand it.

              Glynis took a deep breath and pulled away the cover she had placed over the mirror in her room; it was actually an old drape she had found in the main house and made from the most beautiful blue velvet covered with little embossed hearts.

              It was a long time since she had looked at herself in a mirror.

              She took a deep breath and willed herself to see.

              Her hair was luscious. It reached to her waist now and was a deep auburn red colour. The rosemary and other herbs she used when washing her hair meant it was shiny and thick. She was tall and slender and the red gown with little pearl buttons down the bodice—she had discovered a whole wardrobe of wonderful dresses in the house—fitted her beautifully.

              Glynis resolutely forced her eyes to focus on her face though they seemed intent on disobeying her. She shook her head in an effort to clear the blurriness and realised she was crying.

              Dragon face.

              That’s what the Sorceror had called her. And certainly, it was an apt description. For Glynis’ face was covered in ugly green scales and a small horn protruded about an inch out on either side of her forehead.

              She’d broken his heart, he had said. And for that she must pay the price.


                The hotel manager closed the red ledger in a loud flap, releasing a cloud of dark dust. Connie wondered if it was becasue of that volcano with the unspeakable name which had been fuming again since their arrival.

                “There is no vacancy”, he said.

                “But, we had a reservation”, said Sweet Sophie with her sweetest voice.

                “Maybe you had, but had is in the past. Now there is no vacancy.”

                Sweet Sophie took a deep breath in and tried to imagine the poppy ground of her hometown in Cornwall. It didn’t work. She didn’t feel relaxed nor did she feel bliss. She had no imagination for that kind of positive thinking, her mind only worked for conspiracies and time paradoxes.

                Connie had been looking at her watch repeatedly, and breathing heavily. They had been trying to get past this man for fifteen minutes. His face was as pleasant as a Gib’s monkey ass. Not as Maybe not as comfortable to sit on though. Sweet Sophie couldn’t think with all the noise Connie was doing. She knew there was a solution, and she didn’t want to go to another hotel, their instructions were specific, get a room at Diamond Suites hotel.

                “It’s no use”, said Connie. “Let’s find another hotel. I’ve been told there is one called Blue Lagoon part of a wonderful Spa.”

                “Shush”, said Sophie. “I’m thinking.”

                “That would be a first”, said Connie with a conniving smile.

                Sweet Sophie didn’t pay attention, she was used to rudeness. Instead she looked at the manager’s ugly face and suddenly had an idea that might have come from the past but could be applied in the present to get them a key.

                “Of course it was in the past”, she began, “We just forgot to take the key of our rooms.”

                “Very well”, said the manager, “What are your room numbers ?”

                Sweet Sophie smiled. There was some progress. What did the letter say again ?


                  The next morning, Linda Paul consulted her mailbox. Seventy three messages. She had a nervous laugh. ‘Incredible’, she thought as she sifted through the mails. More and more incompetence, that was all there was in the mails. The maintenance team had been unable to unclog the time sewers. They were writing mails after mails to show that they were working. Linda Paul felt an urge to answer back ‘Stop writing mail and work!’ But instead she remembered the Love and Shine training she went with Sadie last month. “Breath in, deeply, blink three times slowly, and exhale”, she said inwardly. Already she felt better.

                  They didn’t have much time, which was a bit of a paradox considering that they had a time sewer at their disposal, but the more it stayed clogged, the more difficult it would be to find the precise way out.

                  She put on her blue and silver work suit. It really fitted her. Doubled with artificial mouse fur, very warm and good for qi circulation. She had silvery stripes added to make it more queen-like. She chose her platform boots carefully, she didn’t want to get too muddy nor stay stuck in the time muck.

                  The time sewer central hub was not at the bar. This was merely one of the numerous available entry points. It was hidden in the calanques near Aubagne. She had to drive her Subaru SUV to go there. Which was not an easy task with platform boots. When she arrived on site, she realized the work team was not there. She squinted her eyes. That was suspicious. Who was sending the mails if nobody was doing anything ?

                  She went to the hub and almost puked before she could get close enough to see what was inside. The smell was terrible, all the scum of the ages seemed to have disgorged here. She found a gas mask, which fit perfectly once she had gotten rid of her Darco Barbane meringue wig. She saw her face in the side mirror of a truck. She looked a bit like Bobba Fet. She pushed away the irritation to have to go to such length with her pride to have the work done.

                  It was much better with the mask, she realized. So it was a small price to pay to the drag-style. When she arrived to the hub, it looked worse than she had imagined. The edge of the sewer hub was covered in white moss, which seemed to be pulsating slowly. She thanked her Love and Shine training once again, it helped her keep her smile on as she went on. What she saw next alarmed her. A few people were lying there, unconscious. Yet, some of them were wearing masks. Not a good idea to go further.

                  She’d always been proud of her quick wit. It had helped her a lot when guys were mocking her wigs at school. Now she needed it for another kind of life threatening situation. She looked around, trucks, barracks, more people on the floor, a ginger cat licking its balls… she laughed nervously. Strange that the cat didn’t seem affected. She noted that somewhere in her mind, she might need it later. Then she saw exactly what she needed. The dildo truck. She never remembered the real name, but it sure looked like a giant dildo in the front of a truck. She didn’t know what was its real use of course, but years of gauging the size of men’s attributes allowed her to see that it fitted perfectly the sewer hub.

                  “Hard on, ladies”, she thought as she climbed in the front seat, saying a silent prayer to all the Queens of all ages. She started the truck and began to move. She had the weirdest impression to understand what it mean to think with your dick. She stopped the truck, facing the sewer hole with her dildo. She noticed a small red button on the dashboard, it had a tag on it which read “lubricant”. She pushed it several times and nothing happened. Go to hell, she thought.
                  Then the queen revved up the truck. “Love and Shine, biiiitches”, she said as a mantra, and let it all go.

                  The mind has a tendency to forget unpleasant things. All she could remember was that she had to get in and out several times. And that nasty suction noise. But in the end, she could clean wash the white moss with the water jet incorporated in the truck. She turned the sewer back on and threw the gas mask in the hole to check it. As good as new, and the smell was gone too. Her incredible memory allowed her to register that the cat as well was gone.


                    Finding a time smuggler on such short notice was near impossible, Linda Paul soon found out when she hit the web. There were sure long lists of pages offering the services at seemingly attractive prices, but then never covering all the highly recommended options, such as the time collision waiver, and collateral time damage waiver.
                    She had a pretty good idea of what she needed to smuggle back and when, but all the time pathways simulations seemed to run into a dead-end.
                    After a stroke of genius, realizing that the one-timeway drop-off prohibitive surcharge may be the reason why she couldn’t get decent tariffs, she changed her simulation for a return.

                    “Time and item of origin/return…” she muttered as she typed “Queen Anne’s crocheted ferrets, 1625, Louvres Palace”.

                    Of course, going forward in time was easy, so she would simply need to give specific instructions to the time smuggler to pass on those bloody ferrets along the timeline.

                    A click here, accepting the long conditions with hardly a glance, “blabla, not covering extra temporal charge… blabla… ensured discretion, yes, yes, service cannot be used to leave historical artifacts protected by the amendment on the … or any incongruent item blabla… smuggling service comes with no obligation of results…”
                    The rest was piece of cake.

                    She already had the perfect time mule in mind for the delicate mission of reintroducing the crocheted ferrets where her dragqueen competition was now held.


                    When Nicole du Hausset, widow of a poor noble man, one of the two femmes de chambre of Madame de Pompadour, first hear Madame talk about her first encounter with the Count in 1749, she remembered immediately about her mother, and grand-mother’s secret instructions.
                    A few nights later, she wrote down in her diary “‘A man who was as amazing as a witch came often to see Madame de Pompadour. This was the Comte de Saint-Germain, who wished to make people believe that he had lived for several centuries.”

                    For some reason, she was to find a way to give him two scrawny century-old (and quite frankly smelly) crocheted ferrets, as a token for the Queen.
                    She still had seven years or so to make it happen, that was time ample enough to do the deed, if the Good Lord would grant her enough life, or else she would need to pass the burden to the next of kin.
                    She’d never known exactly why this was significant, but she’d been told that her family’s past riches were due to the success of this task, passed on to the next generation until 1757.

                    It didn’t take very long. An elaborate and convincing lie did come easier to her than she would have known, and the Count swallowed it hook and sinker. Next thing she knew, she’d glimpsed the plush beasts in the midst of the menagerie of the Queen, and felt relieved of a life and generation-long burden.
                    She could now return to a simple and uncomplicated life, although she would sometimes wake up at night in cold sweat, having had dreadful nightmares that the ferrets had disappeared before the date.


                      The youngest maid, Adeline, quickly placed one of the rat like toys at the bottom of the large basket of laundry she had come to collect.

                      The Queen has so many; she will not even notice this small one. And there are two of them. What does an old woman like the Queen want with toys? she reasoned.

                      It was Adeline’s small brother’s birthday tomorrow and there would be no fine party for him. She knew he would love this strange toy.The few measly coins she received each week for slaving over her mistress left nothing for luxuries. It was barely enough to survive. Although she knew she should be grateful she was not on the streets like so many others. She noticed a small tear in the seam of the toy. All the better! If she were found out she could say she was taking it to mend. She knew if she were not believed there would be a heavy price to pay.


                        Lulla Spinosa and Vera Pappaloosa were set to meet in Pohnpei , at a few nautical knots and cable length (as the gulls fly) from the Marshall Islands in the beautiful deeply aquamarine middle of the Pacific Ocean. 🐳

                        Lulla was the first to arrive, and feeling hungry after the sea trip with the amphibian red corvette, bought a pan seared squid skewer from the street vendor at the jetty. Something Vera would certainly have disapproved of, with her uppity glances, perfect gloss lipstick and mascara. Not the kind to nibble on such barbaric foods. Anyway, too bad the street vendor had run short of garlic, she would have gladly paid extra for it, just for the priceless look on the princess’ face while they would ride for the next hours in the confined car to their assigned destination.


                          The shopping trip during Prof Less’s class time was indeed fun. Ann purchased a cruet set with a dragonfly motif, half price in a sale. Just one more class to attend before the weekend, Professor Godfrey Gordon’s class, or Good God Gordy as he was affectionately known.

                          “Ann, I must congratulate you on doing so VERY well with Continuity.” Gordon said, with much appreciation and deep sincerity. “You’re doing very well indeed. A toast!” he raised his glass, and smiled warmly at Ann.

                          Ann found herself blushing at the unaccustomed praise. “Gosh, Gordy, thanks!” she gushed. “And what fun to have champagne in class! Cheers, everyone!”



                            Salome was recalling her first steps on the Murtuane as she was fondly turning a small pale greenish stone into her palm. The stone was smooth, with a milky shine and had a diffuse warmth.

                            It was carrying many of her memories of this time. She’d taken it from the shores of the Kandulim that first night, taking the rough stone as something to cling on, and firmly grasp, to bring herself back to her own senses, and drown her fearfulness and disorientation in the strong presence of feeling alive.

                            She’d kept it for a while, and then had started to learn how to use stones to encode certain information. Of all the shiny crystals that she could have used, she’d preferred to keep the rough unpolished stone because of its genuineness.
                            Encoding it wasn’t as easy as for more regular crystalline structures found in more precious stones, yet it was almost as if she’d wanted this one to bear the mark of her mastery at this art.

                            She wasn’t very educated, and had not seen much of the Earth, but she had known at once that this place where they had docked the dinghy after that epic escape from the Sultan’s palace wasn’t like anything she could have found on Earth. Somehow, even her own body had begun to reflect that alien-ority to her.

                            The stone was showing her scenes she had conveniently let slip away from her current focus. As she was seeing them, appreciation was overflowing her heart. It had taken her a while to get accustomed to this place and eerily enough, despite that lack of familiarity, she’d had a knowing that she was meant to be there.

                            Her thirst of discovery was as immense at that time —not that it was less at the moment, but the contrast between her ignorance and the things she knew she could access had been stark and bitterly felt.

                            She couldn’t help but smile at the scene of her past self learning to read and write. When Madame Chesterhope had taken her under her wing in her schemes to approach the Sultan with a worthy price, she had begun to learn from her a modicum of English language, but she would never have dreamt of learning how to read.

                            And there, how ironic that the first place she would learn that, of all the many languages she would learn over the course of their explorations with Georges, was a place from another dimension, with a language she only started to feel she could utter the sonorities of.

                            It was no mistake Leonard had brought them here first. Now she was thinking back, reminiscing this period of time, she recognized how much she loved the languages of the Turmakis. For her, it was as close as “home” a foreign culture could be called.


                              “My yellow is fine and dandy”
                              Said green hued sickly Mandy
                              “You’re mad to suggest
                              A yellow sick fest”
                              Said sickly green hued Mandy.


                              That wasn’t one of your finest, dear, said Tina disparagingly.
                              Becky sighed. I need to find a Limerick support group.

                              Mandy felt better at once
                              “I feel better than I have in months.
                              You may be mad,
                              And that is sad!
                              But now I fancy some lunch.”


                              These are special Kuzhebarian Healing Limericks you know, Becky said a trifle huffily. Nobody appreciates my limericks.

                              Mr X is making some rice.
                              It’ll be ready in just a trice;
                              All soupy and wet,
                              She’ll feel better I bet
                              In a trice, at a modest price.


                              “You tried”, she said with a smirk
                              “But I doubt if it will work”

                              Tina interrupted: “You tried she said with a sigh”

                              Becky sighed. I was hoping you’d smirk dear, she said to Tina. The word smirk is on my ’100 things challenge’ list.
                              Tina rolled her eyes and Becky continued:

                              “But the poppy is making me high!
                              So thanks for that!
                              I’ll eat my hat.”
                              She said, “Now I’m starting to fly!”


                              Mandy flies off down the street,
                              Smiling gaily at all she meets
                              “I’m high, I can fly!”
                              She said with a sigh
                              Of joyous delight. How sweet!


                              Mongloose had a moment of doubt
                              “I fear she is still in a prout.
                              But one never does know
                              How these healing rhymes flow
                              Before long she’ll be up and about.”

                              :yahoo_idk: :heart:


                                Jarvis was dozing in a dark corner of the kitchen. He was dreaming of bees, he had been assigned to the bee keeping a few weeks ago, just after the “incident”. He was one man the Dr could trust. In a previous life, he was keeping bees as a family business. But an accident with the bees led to his dismissal by his uncle. A regrettable accident, too much smoke, too much dead bees. Jarvis had been thinking of a sabotage, surely he had been framed but as he was thinking of quiting this poor paid job, it was also a perfect occasion.

                                He had been engaged as a security agent… sort of. He had to pretend to be a gardener and not awake suspicion among the others. The funny thing is that he had soon been contacted by another organization, and had been offered quite a good price. All he had to do was observe and dream. Unfortunately, the man, Claude, who had approached him was disguised as a patient… and he had disappeared after the “incident”. Since then Jarvis had been having strange dreams of mummies, magpies, there was even one with 3 eyes 2 nights ago :yahoo_waiting:

                                The light was turned on abruptly. Someone was arriving, still hidden by the tables and shelves.
                                With the sound of the heels on the tiled floor, that was a woman… or the Doctor.
                                A little twinge told him not to let him be noticed yet. He moved his head silently in a position from which he could see who it was.
                                Oh! that big athletic woman, Vasse.
                                Claude had told him about her. Jarvis had to be very cautious, because she was of another organization… another :cat_confused: he was calling her agent V. Well Jarvis wasn’t curious enough to ask any further detail, there were already too much to remember.

                                She was doing something with a little jar of a brown substance, and brought a spoon full at her mouth. Her sudden coughing and spitting almost made him fall off his chair. But hopefully with all the noise she hadn’t noticed. Mumbling, she was heading toward the fridge. Was she possibly aware of…

                                Yes! she was taking the plate with the honeycomb… he’d have to move quickly.
                                As she was considering the modified honeycomb, he realized that she was about to eat it. So she didn’t know. :-? He had to warn her.

                                — I wouldn’t touch that if I were you, Agent V…


                                  Quite frankly, Midora didn’t know how and where to look for Badul. She had spent lots of time delving into the labyrinth of chapters that composed the book, at first to no avail.
                                  Only after some familiarization with the narrative had she come to roughly understand that the two books where rewriting the pages —or even, rewiring them— so that each time she started over, it was like a similar yet different story. Most of the alternate versions did occur within the same kind of environment, or the same dimensions as the previous ones, but there were always all kinds of small hints that made her get a small hunch that it was not quite the same story she had read before that was taking place now.
                                  She had even become quite good at tracking down these flimsy moments where she found herself wondering what felt “different”, at odds, or simply not quite at the same place. Like in her dreams, these were precious cues telling her to pay attention. More than simple cues, of course some of them where howling at her face that something required her attention. The additions made by her distant relative Dory, or later on by her step-daughter Becky were compelling cases of such occurrences. Asynchronous apparitions of mummies sometimes reminded her of stories told by one of her father and where more generally speaking of symbolic death and regeneration, but when all of these cues where as many portals the details of which she could lose herself in…

                                  Naasir had told her to find Badul. She knew Badul… Like Midora herself, Badul was a facet of the dreaming dragon who was exploring the many facets of itself in an intricate play, and it felt to her that Badul was stuck somewhere in the process and required some attention. In fact, she remembered that in all the versions of the stories that she had read about, Badul’s history was never ended. Each time, he was on his way to explore the new land he had discovered, and somehow, he just never get there.
                                  When she was trying to get to the rest of the story, as much as she would search for it, there were only blank pages.
                                  Perhaps it was for her to write them, like Indy did after she encountered that mummy decades ago, not necessarily to exorcise the experience, but rather to learn more about her connections.

                                  What were her own connections? She wondered.
                                  What did happen to Badul on his way to the clandestine traveling portal of Gralm Tur? And why did it matter? Did he found something about the network, and some link to the skulls which have been an obsession for quite some time for some of the major and most intriguing characters of this inter-dimensional sopoohpera?

                                  Truth was, Badul felt a bit like an oddball to her. She didn’t know how to get close to him. Apparently, when she had read the early articles from her great-uncle Cuthbert, she had found out that he had connected quite well to the daunting character. As a matter of fact, most of his comments had helped flesh out the character, while most of the other participants in the books had been only remotely observing his deeds. However priceless these clues were, Midora knew by now that they were not absolute, and would rewrite differently if the story was asking for it. And in fact, perhaps her own addition would change whatever his fate would have been.


                                  Midora could feel Badul differently now… a young boy, whom she is babysitting, in another life.
                                  Bastian is baby Badul’s name and he’s a toddler, a toddler exploring an unknown world made of colourful toys.
                                  Midora (her name’s Ada in that focus) likes to work for little Bastian’s family. The woman, his mother, looks a bit odd like Morticia Addams, or like a Cher just out of her bed, but Ada likes her. She’s busy traveling alot, and doesn’t have much time to care for the baby.

                                  Midora thinks she has read about his woman somewhere in the books…
                                  Could it be that? Yes,… there is little doubt about it.
                                  It seems like she’s just run into young Carla


                                  In reply to: Synchronicity


                                    Two funny number plate interactions this morning on my walk .. my mind drifts all over the place when i am walking, I started thinking about the story and the latest entry from Eric on the Ooh dimension. I looked up and noticed a car going past at that moment .. numberplate POOTY

                                    The numberplate thing intrigues me, sometimes they seem so specific to my thoughts and often they seem to reflect interactions happening in the story and with you guys. On my trip to Auckland there were periods I felt this connection strongly, TEENA1, EGG555, numerous 57s, 23’s and 53’s etc …. although again it was the timing and interaction with my thoughts which felt the significant things. Three cafes in a row I was given the number “12”, the fourth I was not given a number but I noticed the lady at the table next to me had the ’12”.

                                    The next numberplate which jumped out at me this morning was ALQ823, this was following POOTY


                                    While I was away I had found myself in a big book barn with sale books. I had just a few moments and decided on impulse it would be good to have a book. I picked up two books at random and skimmed the back covers. One of the books had main characters Gabriel and Maya. I relate to Maya as being another form of the name May and Gabriel of course being the Arch-Agent introduced on Tikijkoo (sp?) Island recently. All the other books seemed to be reduced to $9.99, this one was reduced to $5 (fun), well i thought i could not go far wrong at that price.

                                    some more on this soon … i have to get dinner :chomping:


                                    In reply to: Synchronicity


                                      cool, I had a look at the trailers.

                                      Bridal Goddess synch ….. was browsing through a Time magazine in cafe, our story popped into my head and I found myself anticipating something related to it. On the next page was a story on Vera Wang, a New York Bridal Designer. I googled her later, one of the first links I looked at said:

                                      Fairytale wedding gowns, photographed at the stunning Dore Abbey, Gateway to happiness: Ivory, A-line, strapless gown with Lyon-lace appliqué on layers of tulle, organza and georgette, sizes 4-18, also in white, by Vera Wang, prices from £8,800, the Wedding Shop

                                      As well as an 88 synch, I thought Dore Abbey sounded like a Dory/Becky synch. haha


                                      In reply to: Synchronicity


                                        For the 123 th comment on this thread (woot)
                                        Checking out the new trailers, there are new films coming this summer with islands & other dimensions syncs and more (sycamore?) :

                                        Fools Gold
                                        Ben Finn Finnegan (Matthew McConaughey) is an affable, modern-day treasure hunter who is obsessed with finding the legendary 18th century Queen’s Dowry*-40 chests of priceless treasure that was lost at sea in *1715. (that’s 11 and 57 with a little fold of imagination :yahoo_winking: )

                                        The Chronicles of Narnia, Prince Caspian
                                        Some other-dimensional island sync on the opening sequence of the trailer…

                                        Nim’s Island
                                        Success-story female author, imaginary friends, island, frog technique coconut harvesting, even a goat! How funny…


                                          Home, at last… Bernie Eleonara Mynd, Viscountess of Shropshire sighed, dropping her hairy salmon coloured hermine fur coat to the butler.
                                          Now, leave me alone Vigor, I don’t want to be disturbed.
                                          Madam, Vigor bowed deferentially

                                          A smoking teapot of fine herb tea was prepared on the glass coffee table just near a black silk pouch. With a greedy look on her face, she untied voraciously the pouch to reveal the crystal skull she had just acquired.
                                          After a few seconds of beholding the priceless possession, she lifted the teapot lid with a stiff face which eventually smiled blissfully at the smell of the fine Earl Fuchsia crop which was infusing.

                                          Good Lord, that trip was exhausting!… she growled in a very deep voiced that suddenly sounded more male than before.
                                          Didn’t know I had to go as far as Spain to get that darn skull!

                                          Bernie suddenly ripped her fine chignon from her head, revealing a bald head with a few short black hair on the top. She spitted her false teeth, peeled off some wrinkled patches of latex skin, smeared the mascara around her globular eyes and scratched her crotch…

                                          A ruffled sound and a “mmm mmm” suddenly caught her attention off the itchy body parts.

                                          She went to the cupboard, drew a key dangling from a necklace deeply buried inside her ample bosom, then stopped for a moment, and muttered a “bugger” before unbuttoning her tight blouse and removing the corset that was constraining her breath.
                                          Smiling wickedly, she proceeded to open the cupboard, but recoiled at a pale tied and muzzled figure who looked much similar to whoever she was impersonating.

                                          Oh, Lordy, what a stench! There’s no point in making such a fuss Viscountess, this will soon be over… I just needed a few things, and will soon be off, tonight to be precise…

                                          The pale figure whined with pleading eyes.

                                          Oh, just don’t make these eyes at me…

                                          Bugger! I can’t bother with her now, she said to herself, closing the cupboard’s door oblivious to the plaintiff whines. Now, got to move on real quick, before they realize something was wrong with the transaction.


                                          Juan had insisted that they all spent Christmas together before Paqui and Joselito went for their trip. He felt that there was more to this trip that he could grasp, and wanted to share these precious moments now, not wanting to live on regrets.
                                          Now, the new year was here, and he was alone. At least, he’d been more than glad to see Claudio move out. It had all been a lot easier than he’d thought at first. Obviously, when Paquita had said to that maggot that she was going to accompany Joselito to his trip on the whachaname-Kikkoo Island, Claudio had been outraged, probably thinking a good playing victim act would soon make things right for him.
                                          But he’d been wrong altogether. It was not about love for him or the other. It was all about freedom and being what she wanted. And emotional blackmail very quickly proved besides the point.
                                          His father had been proud at Paquita. Her decision obviously was made, and it had been the first time he had seen the frail girl unwavering at the arguments.

                                          The situation had soon proved unbearable for Claudio, who had no longer any reason for hanging around Juan and Paqui’s house, and one day he’d moved out, rather discreetly, not to be heard again. Somehow, Juan was aware of the town’s gossips, that he had acquired some unexpected sum of money, not sure if all very legally, but the thing was that he had decided to take his chances by going some said to Nicaragua, others to Brazil or even to the US…
                                          But who really cared?


                                          On his plane for Valparaiso, Claudio was looking at the letter he’d found in the family trunk. It was a brief correspondence between his grand-father and a certain Cillian Mc Gaughran, and it was linked to the skull he had sold such a handsome price. Perhaps he could get more information about them, if the recluse old man was still alive, that is…


                                            Jo was looking at Mc Gaughran. He didn’t like him. Especially since he was so insistant at buying their ranch. It was not the price that was important. Mc Gaughran had offered them much already and Jo was a bit shamefull that he even once considered the offer. They had a little argument about that with Elroy, and he had felt very tore appart opposing his brother. He was very close to him and was admiring him so much.

                                            And he was feeling very protective toward his sister. She could do whatever she wanted, that was not the point. The point was he didn’t want other to bother her. And that Mc Gaughran was looking at her a bit too insistantly to his taste.

                                            He finished his whiskey an looked at the barman, Thomas. He was a very good friend of Elroy and him and was like a giant dwarf, stout and big red beard. He knew he could count on him to have a look at the man.

                                            — Have to go, Tommee, he mumbled. Be back later.

                                            Despite his disgust of Mc Gaughran, he also had some stuffs to check about the new man in town. He was feeling a bit unseasy as if some things would be unfolded, things that should better stay burried. He left the saloon like a shadow.

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