The Fairy Diary Day 581 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

I do not know how he did it, but I suspect that Merlin shortened our trip from the capital to Nonin-gal-dith. We were so focused on our misery that we did not notice the swiftness with which the landmarks were soon behind us. And the journey that normally consumes a couple days took only one. 

No fuss was made over our return. A few fairies who knew why Noralei was gone asked after news as to the hearing. And from them the news soon made the rounds. 

Tinadell came running out of the weavers’ shop when we passed and accompanied us over to Noralei’s, where the sisters greeted one another. Her sister had even prepared their stable for not one, but two dragons. And was saddened that there were none. 

When we learned that the High Fairy’s residence was empty, we settled on Noralei’s as our headquarters while we deliberated our next steps. 

The Fairy Diary Day 580 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Merlin was also confident that the decision would fall in Noralei’s favor. But as the day dragged on with no summons from her majesty we were increasingly uneasy. 

To get away from our thoughts, Dunfallon and I went out to where Cluyjil and Willie were stabled. Willie and his cage were there, but not the dragon. The Wisp, grateful to see us, whined that he had been helpless to prevent Cluyjil from being led away. 

We took him with us back to the palace where we were met by a contingent of the Queen’s guard and ushered into the throne room. The others were within already, having received their summons.  

The Faerie Queen was not there. Her prime minister was. And he announced that she had departed on her scheduled trip, but had left it to him to announce her decision. She had accepted Noralei’s gracious offer to allow Rayjil to remain at the repository for now, and had added Cluyjil to her menagerie until such time as a breeding pair was provided in their place. 

As the others gasped, I looked to the wizard, but saw no anger there, just a placid acceptance on his features. 

Our dismissal followed and Merlin led us from the chamber to our suite where we packed our things and set out for Nonin-gal-dith. 

Throughout all this I was left to wonder where was the High Fairy. And why had he not answered any of my communications via the scroll. 

The Fairy Diary Day 579 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

We stayed up into the early watches of the morning as Noralei laid out the strategy that she and Rumble had put together for the hearing. It met with everyone’s approval. And they followed it exactly when it came time for the hearing. 

The Faerie Queen did us the great honor this time of hearing us out herself without an initial step of appearing before her prime minister. (That august official, however, did stay by her side throughout the proceedings in his advisory capacity). 

Noralei began by submitting statements from others to the truth that Rayjil was hers. She went on to share the grief she has felt since this injustice had been visited upon her.

After that, she challenged the wording of the Queen’s edict that confiscated her dragon in perpetuity. We learned in their response that its wording had been put together by the Caretaker. 

Rumble followed her with a history and examples of decrees that have been altered to make them more just for the individuals affected. (I believe I saw a look of helplessness in the prime minister’s face when Rumble reached his conclusion).

Next up Dunfallon begged leave to present to the Queen the testimonials he had collected from neighboring kingdoms, petitioning her to look favorably upon the claims of Noralei to her dragon. Navril at his side, presented with a flourish, the letter from the king of the elves. Her Majesty consented to receive them all, so her minister stepped forward to receive them on her behalf. 

Lastly Merlin spoke his piece. He started with the statement that for all Noralei has done for the Faerie Kingdom, and for all the kingdoms of this world – she is owed a great debt – and the return of her dragon would be the right thing to do, and all in all a very small recompense. The wizard went on to offer (at Noralei’s suggestion) that Rayjil would be allowed to remain at the repository until such time as a breeding pair could be supplied to fill her position. And that, he promised, would be every soon. 

After Merlin concluded his remarks, the hearing was declared at an end. The Queen asked us to come back tomorrow at which time she would render her decision.

I confess that we are all feeling very confident. I know that I was convinced. 

The Fairy Diary Day 578 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

It has been a long, long day. We arrived at the capital of our Faerie Kingdom very late in the evening. We flew more or less directly here. We skirted around a few problems, and did not stop at Gilgorgon’s mountain for the obvious reason. 

However, Dunfallon wanted to swing around to Aznastria to solicit an endorsement from King Nimrood, but I told the well meaning pixie ’no.’ With the hearing set for tomorrow I did not want to chance any untoward happenstances. (And anyway I was sure that any human endorsement would not be looked upon favorably by her majesty). 

The High Fairy met us and brought us to an inn outside the capital where he had arranged a place to stable Cluyjil. Merlin decided that it would be best to leave Willie (in his cage) tethered to the dragon, to the end that they could look after one another. Then it was that the wizard revealed the substance of his discussions with the Wisp – Willie wants to be released back into his swamp in the pixie territory. Merlin went on to say that we could discuss it further after Noralei’s hearing. 

His excellency led the wizard, Dunfallon, Navril and myself up into a suite in the palace set aside for us. There Noralei and Rumble were waiting up for us. 

After the briefest of reunions Noralei herded us together into the library to talk over tomorrow’s hearing. 

The Fairy Diary Day 577 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

When we left behind the trolls and the well that was once the tower of the Dark elves, Merlin turned his attention to Willie by joining him within his cage and stayed there throughout our transit to Laguayil. 

I admit as time went on I became uncomfortable at the long bouts of silence between the intermittent buzz of conversation. The wizard emerged as the city of the elves of light came in view. He stated that all was well within and expressed satisfaction at the change in the Wisp’s demeanor. 

The frost that covered the fields round about the area we were approaching, melted before our eyes as the sun appeared from behind the clouds that had hung over our entire morning. 

Dunfallon maneuvered us around to the main gate, and from there we were shown up to the palace to meet with Nililitil. Navril was there, of course, and he took Dunfallon aside for a quick chat. 

Once the formalities were observed, Merlin told the elven king all that had transpired since last they met. Nililitil was particularly interested in what he had to relate about the Sprites. Then, we got around to the point of our visit – seeking their aid for Noralei’s claim for Rayjil. 

Navril spoke up at that juncture and volunteered to appear at the hearing in her support. Nililitil agreed to his proposal and drew up a letter for him to give to the Faerie Queen. 

Before we departed Merlin asked me to drop a note to the High Fairy to inform him of our imminent arrival. Then, he told me he had decided to ride with Willie again in order to make room on Cluyjil for Navril too. 

Navril sang his farewell to his king and once underway took up that pixie ditty with his friend Dunfallon. 

The Fairy Diary Day 576 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

There were no qualms about allowing Cluyjil to descend down into the well past the pixie habitations and over to the troll domain underground. It proved a might tight at a couple points but the dragon did not appear to mind. 

The trolls had heard of our coming and their leading chieftains came out to greet us. They cast appraising glances Cluyjil’s way and Dunfallon leaned on the dragon as a way of signaling that he belonged to us. 

They listened respectfully to Merlin as he laid out his concern for the Sprite village to the North. 

The trolls confirmed that they indeed had an operation ongoing up in that area and agreed to hold up further excavation until things could be investigated. Merlin thanked them for their understanding and asked permission to return soon to help them find a solution for both parties’ needs. 

I felt good about the mutual respect evident in our meeting. And was glad to be off so soon.

But Merlin had one more request. He thought it good (I believe Dunfallon may have suggested it) to stop by Laguayil and pick up an endorsement from Nililitil for Noralei. 

Since we had three days yet to get to the hearing, I approved. 

The Fairy Diary Day 575 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Crisp and cold air – and a warm dragon – the only way to travel. 

We were traveling along above pillowy clouds, when Willie commenced counting backwards a series of five tens. As he began the count for the final ten, a break in the clouds opened below us. And upon sighting a tiny village in the crook of a brook, Dunfallon brought us down. 

Before we could even dismount wee folk brandishing spears and swords, spilled out of the village and surrounded us. A calamity was averted by the timely arrival of Merlin who emerged from one of the tiny houses, growing in stature as he came. 

At his friendly greeting towards us the wee folk backed down and dropped their warlike stance. Then the wizard introduced us to Emminie the chief of the Sprites. And the little fellow – one wary eye cocked towards our dragon, welcomed us to their village. 

As our joy over finding Merlin mingled with our urgency, we (diplomatically, I hope) declined the wee folks offer of hospitality and took Merlin aside to talk. 

Dunfallon briefed the wizard on his need to accompany us to appear before the Faerie Queen on Noralei’s behalf. 

Merlin agreed. But revealed that he must first fulfill a promise to Emminie and his people. He went on to tell us that he had gone with them willingly when approached for his help. They were at their wits end over two problems. The first was the unseasonal cold – which he explained to them would eventually pass, and the second was a strange rumbling in the ground beneath their village. For this Merlin asked if we could take a side trip to see the trolls about their mining activity and whether it may be affecting the Sprite’s village. 

I am afraid we rushed him out of there with the briefest of farewells to Emminie and the Sprites. 

The Fairy Diary Day 574 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

This morning we were no closer to a decision about what to do when I received a note on the scroll from the High Fairy. It complicated things even further. 

His excellency says we must return in five days time or we will miss the only opportunity to meet with the Faerie Queen before she leaves for another extended period of time. Noralei and Rumble have already joined him in the capital to prepare for the now scheduled hearing. But they feel having Merlin there is crucial to their case. 

I wrote him back immediately with the news from our end. Then, we agreed amongst ourselves that we must depart before the day got any older. 

With the Dromadil king’s blessing we collected Cluyjil and set off in the direction recommended by our host – due North. 

No sooner had we left the city behind when my pendants grew warm to the touch and flashed in such a manner that revealed we must bear more to the West in our northerly flight. 

So we willingly corrected our course to follow the sun. 

The Fairy Diary Day 573 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Dunfallon took the lead when we arrived at the capital of the Dromadil pixies. It took all of his assurances for them to allow Cluyjil within the city gates. Even then we had to stable the dragon well away from the inner city wall. 

They were even reticent about Willie’s presence with us. But they permitted him entry on the condition that he not leave our side. (The sight of his bobbing cage turned every head as we passed by). 

Dunfallon’s friend, the Dromadil king was away at the time of our arrival, so we had to wait for his return this morning. And when he did – to await again his pleasure to receive us. 

When we did at last, we learned that he had been out in pursuit of some marauders from the North. Such groups have been preying upon the Dromadil pixies since the first descent of the unseasonable frost – the harbinger of the snow and ice. 

Dunfallon explained to him our mission and reason for coming and our fear that Merlin has fallen prey to these aforementioned marauders. 

The Dromadil king was saddened to hear about Merlin’s capture. And we were aghast at his further belief that the wizard must now be dead or irretrievably lost. 

Willie interrupted at that moment and said simply, “No. Merlin was willing.” And could add nothing further as he himself knew not why he had said it. 

The Fairy Diary Day 572 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

After a night of rest in the open we were again on the way to Dromadil. There were signs around us while on the ground of a great thaw ongoing in the area – with patches of snow and ice scattered here and there. I was thankful to have the warmth of a dragon available to us.  

There came a point in our flight when we could see that we were passing into an area over which the cold had not yet loosened its grip. And it was not in the mountains. Willie broke his silence to call our attention to a path far below. Dunfallon took us down for a closer look. 

There in the snow we could track the passage of a man wielding a staff. The tracks pointed in the general direction of Dromadil. So, we again took wing – but instead of flying direct to our destination we kept these tracks in view in hopes of discovering where and if the tracks had turned off – believing them to be our friend’s. 

We were eventually rewarded when Willie sighted signs of a great disturbance in the snow. Dunfallon again had Cluyjil take us down. The path there had been trampled much and what we supposed to be Merlin’s tracks went in but not did not come out. 

We agreed he must have been surrounded and then carried off. And no trail of the attackers led away from that spot either. 

With Dromadil clearly in view I decided that we press into the pixie city and make our inquiries there.