So the Story goes...
Inside her cave, Malvina was playing the harp. She was happy and in harmony with the Worlds.
She came from a long lineage of Light Sorcerers and Sorceresses, but had preferred to the fuss of a great career in one of the quarreling kingdoms, a pleasant life inside this cave. The cave had been empty when she had found it, safe from some schpurniatz, but she knew how to tame them, and she had even left a few shadowy places for them to rest , hung upside down under the holes and crevices during daylight, when she had used Magix to transform the rocky walls into a comfortable dwelling place.
She was happy, because new eggs had been laid, and they had come early this time. The eggs, she cherished not because of their gilded aspect, but because they were the sons and daughters of her mighty dragon friend Leörmn. Eggs were highly sought by greedy pirates of the Northern Seas, and though she had been as discrete as possible, she knew they had lots of informants, and her aura was spreading in the villages around, especially since she had helped that little boy who had fallen inadvertently inside the cave.
At least, this time she would be warned by Leörmn, who was keeping watch at the entrance, and whose riddles could very well befuddle the greedy uninvited fellows into forgetting their names altogether.
So now, she played, and played, and music notes were like soothing water drops, carried away by the rivulet inside the cave…
Leörmn was indeed very kind hearted, but he was also quite playful too, and wanted to be as extensively welcoming as was possible. Which meant, they would have some fun with that assertive young woman in visiting as much as possible of the cave.
Arona was heavily cloaked as if the cave were dark humid and cold, but in fact, it was all of the above, except cold. Leörmn grinned widely when he saw her surprise at the steamy temperature inside it.
Oh yes, he said you didn’t expect us dragons to feel comfortable in that grassy land where every dolt can make rain happen at any minute without warning… Then he added at least, we have some proper heating, but you’ll see that in due time…
Arona was adapting slowly her gaze to the light steam, and could see more clearly the inside of the cave. Right now, they were only in a wide tunnel, with many creaks and at times, smoother parts of the walls with paintings on them.
Her attention caught up by the richly decorated walls, Arona didn’t notice that the sly dragon had disappeared in front of her, and she was now standing in front of three openings at the end of the long tunnel.
Rats… she thought, exasperated by the heat, the heavy cloak and now the waggish dragon. Of course, she still could hear the sound of the harp, but she was not in the mood for more treasure hunt.
Hey there! That’s no fun! she cried in exasperation. But in her exertion she only managed to awaken the colony of bat-like schpurniatz nested in the cracks of the upper walls.
Írtak was exploring the tunnels again. Leörmn had changed them for the 4th time since he fall down one of them, discovering the cave and everybody inside. Everybody meaning Malvina, the dragon and the eggs.
Moving along the wet and mossy tunnels was not as easy as he had first thought. The way the power of the dragon worked was not just like creating new tunnels and filling the old ones… he was just recreating the whole cave keeping some stuffs he liked and rearranging others. He’d been keeping the sandy rookery for Malvina all along as she had convinced him to do so. But was it only for Leörnm, the eggs would have been lost with all these reconfigurations.
“It is not a matter of importance to a dragon”, he said to Malvina once.
“That’s why you’re here for, I’ve created you to keep some of them and allow them to hatch.”
Since his arrival in the cave, Írtak was fascinated with all these galleries… he had the dim impression that it was not only the expression of the dragon fantasy but was expressing much more of his being… He’d been busy trying to find any sense but nothing yet.
An unusual noise.
He stopped and listen to the sounds of the cave… there was clearly a human voice, swearing it seemed, and quite grumpy… who could that be?
He had laughed a tiny squeak when he had heard her gasp “Rats”, but it had been muffled down by the flight of the schpurniatz. That was another test for the girl’s endurance, and she had brilliantly passed.
Of course, as he could change the cave’s tunnels into his mind, he would not have let Avona fall into a pit… Well now that he thought of it, that could have been interesting and quite funny, but she probably wouldn’t have appreciated that kind of humour.
But the dragon also was not really giving her clues as to how she could perceive the tunnels, because after all, she was also choosing her way, in a sense.
You are so wicked! laughed the delightful vibrant voice of Malvina in his head.
Oh yes, he answered mentally, and I see that you enjoy it too…
Malvina enchanted harp had been playing for quite some time now, an old tune from her homeland and she was beginning to feel like she wanted to improvise some new music.
She had been combing every nook and cranny of every hole into the many tunnels spreading inside the cave this morning, and was quite exhausted now. Of all the few pearl-like eggs that she had found, only two looked like a promise of new baby dragons. Others would probably dry up and become hard glassy balls, that she could polish and sell in the market of the village.
These round balls were mostly bought by rich merchants who used them only as decorations, or as a ostentatious display of riches. Few of them knew that imbued with dragon magix, they could be used as focal points, especially for two people to communicate through them.
Malvina did not care to explain to the buyers, as long as they were only interested in the mundane. That was somewhat saddening at times, because when people started to forget about the innate magix pervading the Worlds, they started to loose their power to steer their own ships. And sometimes, for some of them, they would just create strange things out of nowhere, like sudden rains in a clear blue sky, only to remind them of this power. But for the less fortunate of them, they would just wallow in the mud and cry to the sky, forgetting that they were creating this for a purpose…
But now, the harp was calling for her, and she knew it would delight the little Buckberry and the guests she could feel were approaching, if not here already…
Hells Bells muttered Arona to herself , this had better not be some sort of a test that dragon is putting me through
As she stepped forward into the darkness of the chosen path, she had a sudden sense she was walking off the edge of a cliff.
Arona had been practising quietness for a long time. The journey had been lonely at times and offered her many opportunities to practise her skills. There were so many parts of her wanting to have a say, discuss, analyse her every move, so that she would become paralysed and unable to move at all. In desperation almost she had learned to still the voices and find that part of herself she most believed herself to be. The part which believed in the existence of magic.
Well done, and shall you fly?
Arona hesitated. It was that voice again. She was not sure if this new voice came from her own thoughts, but she felt not.
Great, she thought, perfect time to finally lose it. Stuck in a dark cave with a troublesome dragon.
Shrugging her shoulders she went still inside and moved her body forward.
It was hard for the proud dragon to consider, but he did wonder if sometimes he went too far with his joking. After all for him the cave was a playground, clay he could mould at will, or at a whim. Perhaps one could even call it a work of art, he thought proudly.
But he did realise that for the girl, who was newer to the ways of magic (although showed the most tremendous potential he grudgingly had to admit), he realised it represented something far deeper, a dual potential, the hope of light, but also the possibility of the deepest darkness.
For a moment he even considered revealing his whereabouts.
She is fine , Malvina answered his thoughts, she loves the challenge. It is what drew her here.
Glukenitches were slimy wet creatures fearing light, and thus kept most of their time living underground. They lived in colonies generated from a single individual, and they shared the same mind. It was thus quite easy to communicate with all of them at the same time, and that often proved quite useful, for people not at ease with teleportation, as glukenitches, despite their not very engaging looks, were most helpful creatures.
They especially liked the cave where Malvina had settled down, because there was this moisture and steam coming from the hot springs which allowed them to live a relatively peaceful life. They used to eat almost everything, not too regarding as to the nature of the things they consumed, and were quite useful recyclers of garbage. Their droppings had a bluish halo to them, which made the inside of the tunnels glow with them until they had completely dried up, and coalesced into a glassy substance.
That is, until Leörmn had it all changed again.
So Leörmn was quite fond of these creatures as they were of a great help to keep the natural balance of the cave.
Don’t worry he told the glukenitch mind, gripshawks are not as carefree as they seem; most of them are simply known for their dreadful sense of direction, and also at times for their limited attention span…
Oh yes, answered the mind now I understand, this one buggered off without any notice… Could have asked for directions, but we guess it would have been useless anyway… Perhaps this one thought I would eat it. As if we were such undiscerning creatures…
You know, added the mind, without meaning to be disrespectful, it’s twice now we’ve got people falling inside this hole… Perhaps for your next transmugrification you’ll like to block it. At least, the first one, that boy, was much more polite and engaging, but you know, we cannot have all the Worlds move in here as if it were Shaint Lejüs Festival…
Lots of things were moving around, Quintin felt. It was nothing he could have explained in words of the physical world, but he was aware of some deep movement, something like a new beginning.
Lots of others had been moving too, in their own ways, sometimes not quite comfortably, but it was calmer now, like after a tempest, clear limpid sky, and splinters of wooden ships floating gently on the oily surface of the sea.
Dory had been very sick in Madagascar she’d told him, perhaps after having eaten some food, she could not have told why. But now was better… It had seemed a good night of sleep was good enough a medicine for her.
He had dreamed of Fiona too, some shared past lives in the 1860s in a small town in the US, it had been very vivid, and he had felt a great lovingness between them… Somehow they could find each other again, anytime, he knew that.
As for Yann, after that week-end they had spent together, all was clear too between them, they could create the fun they wanted without needing to make it difficult for them, it was only a matter of being accepting of their own choices and impulses, which was at times easier said than done.
Malvina looked for a moment at the movements of the strings of her enchanted harp before beginning to play herself. The strings were moved very beautifully, and reproduced her own graceful movements, when she played that lovely tune from her homeland .
The sounds were carried down through the many tunnels, and resounded in all the cave, in soothing drops of music. When she observed the creatures through her mind connection with her dragon companion Leörmn, she knew they were loving the sound of it.
And all very naturally, she began to wrap her alabaster hands around the instrument, and as if she was consoling it, inclined her head towards it, and started to move her fingers along the strings, beginning to enhance the previous melody, blending her new sounds into it, until the strings felt so at ease that they let themselves vibrate with the sound, without need to stir more than what Malvina’s fingers was gently asking.
The sound enveloped the cave, and the delightful music even drew some glukenitches closer, even though she was in the plain light falling from the hole at the top of the cave hall, down to the wooden platform where she was seated.
In the silgreen tree which was blooming sparkling flowers of emerald and silver once every moon, that she had planted here when she had first come to the cave, she saw a couple of flying sparflies settle down. These were usually very discreet birds, and their song was one of the treasures of the Worlds. And their accompanying her music was for Malvina a joy beyond compare.
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.
The transmugrification was about to start.
He had been checking out every living being in the cave, and wanted to make things less complicated for them, without startling them too much. For creatures, that was easy, he could communicate well with them, and they knew the changes would be temporary.
But for humans, let alone gripshawks, that was more difficult as they could play deaf as pleased them.
Hopefully, the gripshawk was in good hands outside the cave, and that was probably better for her, as she would probably have hurt herself more than was necessary in not listening to the exhortations to stay calm.
As for the young adventuress, she was sleeping joyfully, and the little glukenitch that Leörmn had left to her side to keep watch and warn him in case she would be too distressed was silently watching over her.
Írtak was aware that the process was about to begin, as he had been trained by Malvina to listen to the flimsiest changes in the cave, and how his body was responding to these subtle modifications. This one would probably become of great dragon rider, but for now he was young and needed to hone his abilities. His father had been renouncing of telling him what was best and most reasonable for him to do, and allowed him to spend much time in the cave. He was not really interested by these magical things, but he knew they were important for his son, and was encouraging, in his own manner.
As for Malvina, she was unaffected in a way, because she was part of Leörmn as much as he was a part of her, and it was like they were moving hand in hand. These hiding and seeking the eggs were like a playful game between them, because their interests were different, but all in all, they were one, and trusted each other completely.
The more troublesome was perhaps Sanso, the wanderer. This one seemed trapped in between Worlds. The caves at times also acted as portals between Worlds, and this one had been unknowingly crossing the Worlds, as the delimitations between imagination and reality were only in words, and did not really exist. Leörmn was hoping he would not appear in the midst of the ruckus.
So, on one of the wooden decks near the apartments of Malvina, he sat, overlooking the glowing eggs, and bathing into the music.
Closing his eyes, he felt every part of the cave as if it were an extension of his own body, which was in fact much bigger than this current appearance, so big in fact that it was the World itself. And every creature breathing in it was a very cherished part of his body, and he slowly breathed in and out.
He envisioned a great light pouring from the volcanic insides of the cavern, which inundated the cave in a misty warmth. It was a loving light that neither glukenitches nor schpurniatz feared. And the sinuous insides of the caves expanded and straightened in huge corridors, and doors disappeared, and gorgeous paintings from the mind and craft of Malvina decorated the walls in rich colours.
And near the platform, inside the hall, a huge table sprung from the floor, for the banquet that was to come.
And a new egg was laid somewhere in the cave, glowing of an emerald tint.
This “one” was a bit different though…
This morning, Fiona and Quintin had a small impromptu chat —or rather, prompted by the story they were all weaving, that Archie, the puppet black panther, had been telling them last week-end that it was a magic connection between all of them…
Quintin: Your story was great!
Fiona: Thank you So was yours.
Have you written any more since I last looked at the story?
Quintin: no, I’m not that much inspired… I even considered to wrap in up in a way, but seeing you were all drawing so much from it, I think I will leave it open ever after…
Fiona: no, wrap it up if you feel.
I have drawn what I wanted. I will go and blow up the cave if we don’t finish it
Quintin: Ahahaha! Don’t restrict yourself
Quintin: This one nagged me because there were many people I felt behind it and I did not know how to get them to show up and make their presences known. And I felt that it was loose enough too, to allow people to jump into it; and there was your initial interest in the picture
Fiona: The endearing dragons…
But I had strictly no idea about the rest. It was just a bet, on luck…
That’s funny, because I had a strange impression of a little girl yesterday, in a futuristic city, named something like Janice , and it was like she knew now what she wanted to do, and it was something similar to that, something like creating worlds for other people, in which they could have fun, or heal, or explore things…
Fiona: And did she have any impression of what form that could take? Like books, or games or what…
Quintin: No, it was much more “real” in fact…
Fiona: you know like the card-captor game which I suppose is interactive, so real
Quintin: Yeah, perhaps a bit like that, yes; or like creating a ball of energy in which people can be drawn and experience as they will. It’s only a translation, but that’s the idea… in a way, that’s very similar to a game or a book, but only that it just feels totally “real”
Fiona: So a little bit like I have done with the story, to resolve something
Quintin: yeah, exactly, or with your paintings
Fiona: It can be really useful to take on other personas to do that, even like in drama type situations, being someone else…
Quintin: Yeah, people can unleash their imagination.
And I think there are still lots of things that we can expand in this universe in fact, not only related to the cave…
Fiona: such as? eggsamples?
Quintin: You said it! The eggs and relationships with dragons, all the magical artifacts or creatures. Didn’t you want a baby dragon?
Fiona: Yeah, I told you I did, but you just said some riddle!
Quintin: Did I? That’s not like me
Fiona: Ahahhaha! It is you to the core
Quintin: LOL, damn me!
Fiona: Well, that is a bit strong, but …
Quintin: Ahahahahah. I said you would have to earn his trust? (or hers, for that matter)
Fiona: I can’t remember the eggsact wording, I think I had to work for it though, like you weren’t just handing out dragons on a plate
Quintin: It could bound with you very strongly and help you unravel your unknown magical powers. It’s not just a creature, it’s a complex personality, you cannot just take it like a puppy. There is a sharing between the two…
Fiona: So are you going to allocate baby dragons to people or what? Or shall I just go and find an egg that no one knew was there
Quintin: Ahahah, no, they will not be allocated, they will choose their own partners
Fiona: Ahahaha, one minute you say it is my story! And now you are back in control
Quintin: Ahahaha, the story has a willing of its own too…
Try to do what you want, it’s not a matter of control ; it’s just you’ll know what clicks and what does not…
Quintin: And actually, I don’t think everyone will be interested in dragons…
Fiona: How does a dragon help one learn magic powers?
Quintin: It’s just because there is an openness between the two; let me find something for you, that Elias (you know, Michaela’s partner), has told to me and Yann, when we had them on the phone last month.
: I would express to you that, as you focus your energies with each other, and you allow yourselves to merge and feel into each others’ energies, you may in actuality each discover some obstacles that the other may not necessarily be aware of yet, and you can share that with each other, and therefore facilitate your interactions even further.
Fiona: And how having a baby dragon could help unleash our magic powers then?
Quintin: It helps because it reinforces your trust in your own abilities to connect. It’s not directing, it’s a sharing and exploration for both of them; that’s why they are picky. As you would be picky too, knowing you would share together all the darkest corners…
Fiona: I am not sure if i have dark corners
Quintin: it was a metaphor
Fiona: I know, so was mine
Fiona: I was thinking I feel really accepting of myself
Quintin: Yeah, that’s the point in the little adventure before you meet it.
You have shown your trust in yourself and in your abilities, and your self-centeredness, which is essential, for the dragon doesn’t want a frail personality. Because he drops his defenses too when he shares and bonds.
Fiona: Well I think it sounds scarey now, what if no dragon picked me…
Quintin: There will be instant recognition. And you don’t “need” a dragon actually, that’s what is important: it’s a catalyst, nothing more, nothing less…
Fiona: I felt like I have pictures now to assist me. I link strongly to pictures as a quick reference when I start to feel something like a negative emotion, for instance I may start to worry about how I am going to have enough money, or whatever, and I could quickly link to the spider picture
Quintin: you mean, you create an imagery, right? That is something which I like in your stories and emails; even though it is not necessary to create imagery, it’s always so entertaining, like having these funny creatures pop in the cave!
Fiona: Ahahahaha yes
Quintin: And also, in creating imagery, it helps you seeing it in a more neutral way
Fiona: I suppose it is just a quick trigger for the desired belief. I can link in quickly with the child, when I start to feel left out, for example.
Quintin: yeah, beliefs as an alphabet or a palette, neutral, but that can create words and sentences or images. And the imagery of the child was very similar for me, to that of the playfulness picture
Fiona: Yeah, I know… That’s what I said to you with the playfulness picture
Quintin: Of course, you know
Fiona: That I related most to the figure of blue hat… and big feet
Quintin: Ahahaha, stomping on the poor key-fish
Quintin: Have to go now, thank you for this enjoyable conversation
Fiona: See you!
The feelings of the eggs was increasing, Írtak was close now. He could feel the pulse and where he thought it was only one egg, he could feel now that there were two of them, though the vibrations were so close to each other that he had been “fooled” in a way.
He smiled, happy that he could bring back two eggs.
When he entered the room where they had been layed, there was that sparkling green glowing all around, the waves or energy coming from the eggs were very lively and joyful. The communication between them was so strong and loving that he was almost overwhelmed by the feelings.
They were aware of his presence and they greeted him. No words needed to feel they were eggstremely eager to live…
They were still soft and smooth, the shell had not hardened yet. They were quite big actually and he wondered a moment how he would bring them back. His concern surely was transparent and he could feel the reassuring energy of Malvina.
He felt a surge of energy and knew she would open a gate between the room he was in and the rookery… she connected and created a connection between the two spaces and he saw the entry of the room blurred somewhat and soon he heard the sound of the waterfall of the rookery… new flowery scents came into the room and as he was picking up the first egg he found out that they were welded together… dragon twins. He felt awed for a few seconds as the energy ripples from the eggs were increasing since his realization.
They would help him in his task. Humming silently and quite directively.
The eggs seemed so light with that eggstra energy.
He could bring them in the moistly and warm rookery. He laid them down near the waterfall but not too close so they wouldn’t be bothered by the rippling sounds. And close enough so that they would be warmed up by the heat of the spring.
The baby dragons were not to be born yet, but they each already knew who would be their dragon rider.
One last stroke on the shells.
One last glance on the emerald green glowing eggs.
He shivered with anticipation.
He would be back soon for the hatching…
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.
Illi felt much better, and was sitting at the breakfast table, basking in the warm shafts of sunlight filtering in through the window, and listening to the birds singing in the lemon tree outside.
BelleDora came in from the kitchen bearing a large tray with freshly squeezed buckberry juice, soft boiled eggs in pistachio green eggcups and bread and butter soldiers, and The Reality Times newspaper.
Illi wasn’t in the habit of reading the news, but occasionally found an article of interest. Todays headlines looked intriguing: Fiona’s Diary: never before published excerpts of the Malvina Dragon saga.
Very quickly, he became aware of a whole new continent, in that World, across the Middle Seas. In that continent far North of the one where Malvina’s was living, lived some intrepid people. They were strong with big voices, and a bit quarrelsome too. Their ways had forgotten lots about Magix and they placed most of the value into tangible items.
But Bådul was tricky, and after a bit of a surprise, very soon discovered that the little boy could be a very interesting informant, though an unusual one.
And in fact, his information was much more interesting than that which the shamans of King Wulfrick babbled in the most inspired manner.
Till now, from the mouths of the buck-pelts clothed shamans had only came stupid gibberish that the King and his court gobbled endlessly. Something about “YaWn”, as they said: You animate Worlds neatly .
How stupid was that? Their only answers were useless to him, they were only telling him that he activated and animated the Worlds neatly, and that, in short, nothing was fixed and he could do anything.
Well, with that boy, that was different. He was talking about a cave with gilded dragon eggs, and THAT was of a great value to Bådul.
But of course, he would not frighten the young boy and pretended that his intentions were that of an explorer, trying to discover new shores and new continents, so as to become closer to understand from where he came, and hopefully make people aware of their closeness to each others.
He was such an eloquent actor that he almost shed a tear saying that sentence.
As a matter of fact, for as long as he remembered, he had been wandering in many situations, and lots of them had not been very pleasant. Born from uncaring parents, as lots, if not all, of his people were, working as a janitor in a sordid tavern, then as a warden (if not executioner when requested) in an even more sordid jail… Were the Gods to be blamed for that? Well, according to the shamans, he was the only one to be blamed, because he did not accept his responsibility as a weaver of Worlds.
At least, he had found his passion. He love sailing, and taking riches for his pleasure. Whatever then, he would take his share, and not care about what was next.
At least, if he could coax the boy into revealing more about that cave.
She found this quite irritating. They are really bit rude around here, she muttered.
Arona sat down on the floor of the cave and considered her options. She was tired of the cave and could barely remember what had drawn her here in the first place.
It had been the music of course. She had wanted to find the source of the music. However for the most part she decided her experience had been rather disappointing.
(Arona was never at her best when hungry and this was causing her to quickly forget some of the wonderful experiences with the music and the paintings, and take a rather negative view of events.)
All I have done is wander around dark passageways really.
And now, to top it all off, apparently things are shifting. In the name of heaven what does that mean?
AND if one more person tells me to use my magic I will probably scream or something!
Perish the thought, came a grumpy voice from a particularly dark corner. Your moaning is quite sufficiently bad enough.
Oh cute, said Arona, a talking cat.
Cute yourself, responded Mandrake, love your cape by the way.
(Mandrake was prone to sarcasm, considering it a perfectly valid form of humour.)
Arona stroked Mandrake’s soft black coat and tried her hardest to work out what to do. It was all feeling a bit bleak at the moment, the ever changing cave, the half light, the heat and humidity… and especially her hunger.
Mandrake sighed in an impatiently eggsagerated sort of a way.
Heavens to murgatroyd¹, how can I relax with your incessant thinking? Okay so here’s an easy one for you: what’s the most important thing about magic?
All of a sudden Arona felt a flash of lightness and a sense of new energy moving within her.
of course! She exclaimed delightedly, hugging the less than enthusiastic Mandrake, you have to believe in it!
[¹] Mandrake being a very educate cat from noble ancestors, some of its speech may be difficult to grasp for the average reader, which was certainly not the case for the astute Arona.
Anyway, here is some complement on that ‘Murgatroyd’ .
Raising an eyelid, his cheerful wrinkled face smiled at the little girl.
— And how can I be of assistance, dear little one?
— Grandad, this book is full of wonders, but at times it’s like some characters have their own life, and I don’t always understand what they do… In fact, she added thoughtfully, I don’t understand them most of the time…
— Hahaha, laughed the old Lord, but they have certainly their own lives, as they are living in your imagination. What can I explain to you?
— Well, let me think.
India Louise took a moment, and asked again
— For instance, this woman who just run in the cave, she seems to meet many people here, but I am confused. Is she dreaming, or are they real?
— Well, as a matter of fact, let me express to you that they are all real, even if you think that she dreams them. However, I am understanding of what you are saying, and I shall acknowledge your perspicacity. These characters are not all from the same areas of consciousness.
Here, we will explain for the reader that these books were not unknown to Lord Wrick who had spent lots of time during his youth playing with them. How they were lost and found again is the subject of another story, and we will not divert the reader’s patient attention for much longer on this issue.
— Areas of consciousness?
— Yes, you see, let me explain. That individual that you call Dory, she is in a physical world. But she is aware, to an extent, of other realities that overlap her own reality. Just as her story overlaps your own reality my dear one.
— And Illi? Who is she?
— This one is also Dory, but another personality of her, in another time. She has just passed away, quite recently. She is beginning to slowly become aware of that, and she connects with other of her personalities, and at times blends with them, like the other Illi, the cat-like creature, who is still in the physical reality of Malvina’s world.
— Mmmm, this is quite intricate…
— Hahahaha, yes, it seems so, but it will not be so puzzling when you don’t try to attach your current limited perception to this story. This story is you my dear. You are the story.
— Well, and Sanso, and Georges then, are they dead or what? How come Dory can see them?
— These ones are special, they have mastered the crossing of the Worlds, and can move through them. They move differently though. Sanso comes from a lineage of an ancient tribe of Zion, and had learn from them how to activate some portals, but only through the physical world of Dory, in their own time. He is not yet aware that he can also move through time as well, or even through other Worlds —worlds that he has no conception of yet.
Georges is more consummate in that art. Their meeting is not coincidental. You will see that.
— Thank you Grandad, it’s becoming a bit less confusing.
— Just flow with the story my little one, don’t hold on too much, or you will find it too difficult, and you will stop to find fun in it.
She was feeling like he was in between worlds. And there was that other energy personality with him, a bit confused but ready to move on.
Salome was moving fast through the elements of this dimension… it seemed she already had experienced it before, but it was different. New energies and new aspects were adding to the experience and the diversity of it. A movement that could be translated as a big Cheshire smile rippled from her center throughout the entire dimension, and Malvina’s giggle responded in different times.
Salome was not yet fully focused on the time and space of the encounter, it was not yet necessary, though it has already been done and they were all meeting in the cave(s)… These caves were a translation of the interconnectedness of the dimensions and were constantly reshaping in the timeline of this dimension —though with the particular focus she could experience most of the ramifications.
She was in a manner of speaking waiting for someone, someone has yet to do a little thing before she would send a focus of herself in the joyful party.
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.
[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.
It’s been a long time since Írtak last paid a visit to his family. But this time would not come now as the twins were just hatching.
The hatchtone, a humming inaudible sound that would help the little dragon break the hard shell, had been resonating for almost an hour now, and Írtak had to constantly refocus and pay attention to himself not to be distracted by the unheard sound. The tone was quite intense and as they were both hatching at the same time the hatchtones were enhancing each other.
Írtak could see the shell resonating with the gluid tones. It was shifting shape slightly, and his eyes were also perceiving a bluid glow around it.
In the hatchtones were the names of the dragons… Írtak was a bit astonished because those names were quite odd, but he was feeling a strange inner giggle of sort coming from some part of himself.
The inner laugh of Malvina was still resonating in his ear when the shell began to crack.
Malvina had been busy opening doors for herself, and thus, for the All.
Creating the sabulmantium with Leörmn had revealed new potentials to her. And just before putting the final touch to the device, she had felt engulfed in a huge wave and before she knew it, she was talking with someone. A great creative power, which was stemming from herself, and also from which she stemmed too.
It had named itself Naasir.
It had revealed to her, in the form of a dark abyss, myriads of unknown potentials waiting for her to leap in faith into them. It had gently requested that she release her hold on the caves openings, so that she could explore more, and also bring more to herself.
Then Naasir took the form of a great dragon in that abyss, from which roots were growing and pushing their way, slowly and surely, into the rich soil towards the light of their fullness.
She had then seen the dragon’s arched back and tail shift into a chain of spiked rocks, separating the worlds seas in two. Three of the scales on the right of the dragon’s skin were glimmering, and she could see they were looking for a passage.
Would she allow that to happen? Yes, she wanted to. Open the doorways, and reunite what was separate, but gently, one at a time.
Slowly, the kite-shaped rocky plates on the back of the dragon moved apart, to open a slight, safe passage for the glimmering scales. They were caught in the eddies that surged from the opening, but Malvina’s focus helped them to float and cross safely, as they wanted to.
She then came back to herself, seated in front of the glass-shell dragon egg filled with coloured sand, awed with that power she had just felt through her. She knew it was her own power, and that the device had only allowed it to be expressed, but she had felt wary of how the sabulmantium could be used by others.
At the same time, Leörmn who was once again the tiny weaszchilla trotting on the wooden table in front of her had laughed squeakingly. And looking at the toy in front of her, she had understood how it could only be used by those who would see beyond the thinly veiled surface. For the uncaring eye, this would only be a toy, mundane and without interest, but for the pure of heart, its help could be harnessed.
That’s how she’d knew she did not need it any longer, and could release it.
So, the doors had been opened, and people were feeling the new jewels sparkling behind the dark passages. And gifts from friends could now come across the veils.
When she entered, she saw a guéridon table in the middle of a moistly pungent room. On the table, a polished egg was here. She recognized it at once. It had an azure blue glow to it, and fond memories came back to her.
Back then, she was a young Sorceress in training on the Island of Mörk, in the middle of the Icy Lands, the birth and dying place of the dragons.
This egg was one from a set of three. It was the first glubolín she’d ever made, along with her two companions. They had kept it to communicate with each other when they parted.
Malvina, the youngest of the three, had kept the azure blue, and chose to go to the Dragon Head Peninsula.
Oörlaith had kept the mauve, and went near the town of Kapalÿka, on the Snimeÿa River delta bordering the Marshes of Doom.
As for Roselÿn, the eldest of the three, she had taken the amber one, and had went as far as anyone would have dared go, flying on her spiked dragon Rëgkvist, past the Great Rift.
They had kept in touch, but contacts had been more and more sporadic as each were discovering their own new environments, and had ceased altogether, almost at the same time.
As far as she knew, Roselÿn had been starting her own rookery in the sandy ice deserts of Åsgurdy, mostly hiding there from the superstitious people of that land. And Oörlaith, whom she was closest to, had been devising another funny way to keep people away from her rookery. Her own dragon, the playful Andarión, was shape-shifting as a huge shrimp to pretend that the surroundings were haunted.
Recalling all these moment, Malvina laughed at how silly they all were, and felt a long to be connecting again with her friends. Would anyone of them be around their own glubolíns?
Oörlaith heard the sound of a barking dog not far from her rookery. They were back with his master, and she knew at once their mission was complete.
A few months ago she had met a strange man, he told her he was called Leonard, and the funny black dog that was following him everywhere was called Moufle. An ancient word for mitten… Well she didn’t ask why he’d call him like that, the dog was so hairy…
Leonard was a lonely traveller, quite ancient as she could feel, but she wasn’t able to know his actual age. And there were some other weird feelings when she was focusing on his energy tone, something to do with time itself.
When she first met him she knew he was the one she was looking for for ages. It’s been such a long time she hadn’t heard from her sisters. Oörlaith’d been having these dreams since they chose different direction many years ago, Malvina and Roselÿn, her precious ones. It wasn’t necessary for her then to keep objective contact with them through the glubolín.
One year ago, the dreams stopped abruptly, and she tried several methods to reach her sisters. None of them with success. All her attempts failed, and she thought first she had lost her own power, but she knew one can not loose power of self, just forget it or create it on purpose. She realized then it was time to recreate these links more objectively.
She couldn’t find her glubolín though. And Leonard arrived. Fortunately enough he had news from some strange events occurring in the land where she knew Malvina had settled her rookery. Was she still here with Leörmn?
Yann had been feeling many impulses to draw scenes from his dreams and from the story they were creating with Quintin, Fiona, and Truth. It was an urge from inside and last night he had a very intense dream activity, most of which he couldn’t remember, it was more like a big forum with many different personalities all exchanging experiences and exploring new avenues.
He was also attracted by old stories he was writing when he was a student, the one involving Georges and Salome, it seemed to him they had taken a life of their own now, and they felt very powerful, and most of all, they felt like really having fun.
One of the drawing that was intriguing him was one that represented a sign of sort, in grayish sparkly clouds. He had given the pic a strange title, Oorlath. Yann had connected the name to an individual and was surprised when Quintin told him about a princess named Oörlaith. He was wondering who she was…
She still had no face when he thought of her… maybe she was hidden for the moment… and he had the strangest thought that she knew Leonard, the man he’d been drawing with his black hairy dog.
Haha, he had felt her smile.
Chiara was looking for the boy she’d met last time in her dreams. Maybe he could give her some berries again, they were really tasty and fluberrish.
But she’s been looking for him for so long she wonder if she could find the way again…
Where she was now felt different. The light? The air? She took a deep breathe and just sat down on the grassy land. She had a quick thought that the land were more rocky than grassy a few seconds ago, but as she was feeling the grass under her hands, she dismissed the thought.
She was hearing birds singing, it was quite funny the way they were bounding from one sound to the other and she could understand what they were saying, much gossips and a few compliments for a new mother nothing really important to her. She Jibbled.
Lying down on the mossy land, she was looking… mossy? wasn’t it grassy? Now it’s mossy… hope that wouldn’t become mothy
She was looking the clouds, some were grayishly sparkling, she was enjoying it…
“Are you looking for something” a voice said.
Chiara quickly sat up and gazed at the fat lady who was standing before her.
“Hahahaha, you found me at least my dear” laughed the woman.
The little girl was gaping at Roselÿn… how could she possibly know her name?
“I feel I know you :yahoo_thinking:” she said dreamily.
“You make me feel like when I’m with my uncle Yann, and… there’s something else… oh!?”
Whanga the witch crawled out of the narrow entrance to her cosy cave to survey the day. Perfect witching weather she chuckled gleefully to herself; a tad overcast and cold, which made her job much easier, as even the fairies tended a little to despondency in such weather conditions. She noticed a bruise on her left shin and sighed. Whanga was used to this sort of misunderstanding in her job of course. She enjoyed her work, and was proud of what she did, however humans in particular just didn’t understand the service she provided, and were quick to be vengeful. The dream world left her a little exposed unless she remembered to do her protective spells before sleep, and last night she had just been too weary. Still, she thought cheering up considerably, she had obtained another wand for her collection yesterday, and felt sure this would improve her Witch of Loathing ranking.
Still feeling a little put out though about the bruise, although this was mainly pride, as she was impervious to pain in the way the humans suffered it, Whanga looked into her glass ball to see what knowledge it would reveal. That little Fairy Princess from the Land of the Far White Cloud was carrying on she saw. Hmmm who was that fat lady with her though? Whanga wondered. She looked very familiar to Whanga, who felt a ripple of uneasiness in her right index finger, a sure sign of danger. This could be trouble ….
She looked again and saw a young human female, attacking her violently in her dreams. For a moment Whanga toyed with the idea of revenge and cackled happily at the idea of all the mischief she could cause.
Pull yourself together Whanga, said Whanga, drawing back reluctantly from this delightful daydream. Keep on track. You know it won’t get you any points with the high witch adjudicators, it is the fairies you must focus on.