The Fairy Diary Day 500 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Glossom did not go with us to the stronghold city of the dwarves. He told us that he had too much work to see to as leader of his goblin clan and could not safely neglect it any longer. 

Before we parted he gifted his nephew with a young dragon that has manifested the same behavior as Rayjil. Not yet named (Gibley would have that honor), she was strong enough to carry the three of us – with room to add Herblas. 

Arriving at the entrance to the Low-way of the dwarves, Gibley remained with the dragon while Dunfallon and I went into the stronghold city. 

Herblas had not been idle and eagerly displayed for us a pouch full of purple gems. I thought they looked promising. 

We paid our respects to Fliget (Gnoston had returned to his village), and alerted him to the intelligence that the black bird was abroad in our land. Then we rejoined Gibley. 

The young goblin, having passed some time with the dragon, had named her. So, he introduced us to Conjil. And after we coaxed Herblas to join us, we winged our way to Merlin’s castle. 

The Fairy Diary Day 495 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Before we met again Merlin had been prompted to change a few things. Instead of the council chambers the wizard asked for a smaller and more secure venue – and he also limited those in attendance. 

Fliget and Gnoston, as their presence was not required, took it upon themselves to stand guard against any eavesdroppers at the doors of the inner room in which we convened. Herblas joined his fellow dwarves, leaving only Dunfallon, Gibley, and myself to attend. The High Fairy was not present, as he had returned to the Faerie kingdom to give a report to the Queen. 

Merlin opened the meeting with important information from Glossom. He made it plain that only dragons like Rayjil can transport to the other side in their own power. For other dragons and their riders to accompany such a one required a beacon stone worn around its neck. And the only one that Glossom’s goblins possessed was the one lost when Gorbin was immolated. 

(When this was said I had a flash of understanding of how the black bird moved between the worlds with the Will’o ’the Wisp). 

Upon a quick glance Gibley’s way I was filled with pain for him, wondering what may happen in any future encounters with this bizarre reincarnation of his father. Is there anything left of Gorbin in that beast?

Thankfully the wizard did not allow us the time to dwell on such thoughts, for we immediately set out for the goblin holdings in the canyonlands for answers. 

The Fairy Diary Day 492 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Well, at long last some of the mystery in which Merlin has shrouded his plans has been revealed. 

Fliget and the new regent for the city were taking us on a tour to show off all the improvements when word was brought up that the long awaited guest had arrived and was outside the canyonlands gate. 

The wizard begged to be excused from the party, but rather than go on without him, all of us chose to accompany him down to the gate. 

Gibley the goblin spotted the mystery guest first. And his look of astonishment left his mouth agape. There at the gate was Gibley’s uncle. 

Merlin greeted him warmly, then made the introductions all around to Glossom the chief of the goblin dragon handlers. 

This time the uncle greeted his nephew in what we only could understand to be warmth between goblins – a stiff embrace. 

Then, Fliget moved everyone up to the city’s council chambers and thus began our council of war. 

(Thankfully another feast was not proclaimed).

The Fairy Diary Day 491 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

The gates to the stronghold city were wide open. The High Fairy joined us there. The sights awaiting us inside were so different than at the time of the original victory celebration. Lights and garlands were festooned overhead, bringing a cheeriness to the eyes and heart. The citizen dwarves having declared a holiday lined the street singing snatches of praise embroidered around each of our names. 

Fliget later told us that he had so wanted to do this as a more proper thank you for all that we had done. 

And the most rousing song of all was lifted up for our pixie Dunfallon the Noble. 

Even before any note was sung I knew we were in for another round of dwarfish hospitality. And there in the city square table upon table was set up for a feast. 

But unlike our feast up in Gilgorgon’s mountain, talk about the future was not only allowed but also encouraged. And the first decision made was about the dwarfish involvement in the mission to the other side. Fliget announced that he would back Gilgorgon’s selection to represent all the dwarves, and while looking at Herblas he added that he thought him a perfect candidate. 

Merlin and the High Fairy applauded the king of the dwarves choice. Then, the wizard stood to make an announcement himself. He introduced Dunfallon and myself and said that we would be part of the team joining Herblas. He had one other to name, but could not until a missing guest had arrived. 

And with that he left us to wonder who that might be. 

The Fairy Diary Day 490 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Our progress picked up after Fliget decided to exercise his prerogative as king of the dwarves. All caravans were shunted aside to allow ours the right of way. 

I began to feel uncomfortable about what might lay ahead for us in the stronghold city. My sense that something was off lead me to approach Merlin to talk to him about it. Gnoston’s and Fliget’s actions were hard to understand as to what motivated them. And afraid to say, I was suspecting our friends of evil intent if not outright perfidy. 

The wizard listened patiently to my fears. When finished he chuckled and painstakingly calmed all my concerns. 

The High Fairy has been sent for and will join us in the stronghold city. The dwarves have invited him to be present for a special celebration of our victory over the dark elves. 

Evidently the dwarves think that a season of thankfulness is called for, especially on the eve of another conflict. 

Before he dismissed me, Merlin hinted that more surprises await us upon our arrival in the stronghold city. 

The Fairy Diary Day 489 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Come time to set out for the stronghold city I was almost too full to move. This feasting of late slows me down considerably. Looking around at my companions I saw a similar effect at work in them – all except in the case of Merlin. He seemed ready to march nonstop all the way to our destination. 

Even more traffic was traveling the Low-way of the dwarves. Most of it headed towards the capital. Many times our party had to yield to the traffic headed in that direction – huge caravans carting building materials and there were other transports headed in that direction which we knew were ferrying metals from the mines, judging by the amount of soldiers guarding them. 

During one of the instances we were waiting Dunfallon excitedly brought to us a new arrival – our friend Gnoston. He wanted to know if I would send a message to the High Fairy – but before I could answer him, Fliget saw him and took him away from us. 

I asked Dunfallon if he knew why Gnoston wanted to contact his excellency. The pixie shook his head. 

We had the distinct feeling afterwards that our friend was being kept from us. 

The Fairy Diary Day 488 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

We were not the only ones traveling the passageway down to the Low-way of the dwarves. Many merchants were passing us in both directions. In the main they were dwarves, but there was a smattering of goblins and elves among them. All were curious and stared unremittingly at Merlin. The wizard took it in stride – and even exchanged pleasantries with a few of them. 

Gibley was not a little amazed at the attention he was getting from these strangers for his being among our number. It made me want to shield him all the more, but Dunfallon beat me to it and fell in step beside him. 

When we reached the bottom where the great doors stood open (as was Merlin’s hope when they were replaced) we found another surprise. Fliget was there – set up in a camp just on the other side, in the Low-way of the dwarves. He had heard that we were coming and had come out to meet us. 

His capital is still being rebuilt and wanted to take us down to the stronghold city to talk through things there. 

Thus we entered into another occasion of dwarfish hospitality. 

The Fairy Diary Day 487 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

It was decided in our meeting that we will be sending a team over to the other side in order to protect our world. It was further decided that this team will consist of members from all its kingdoms and races. The only question left open for now – is it to be one dwarf to represent the whole – or one from each kingdom. Gilgorgon has wisely opted to make this a decision to be shared with Fliget- in the interest of future cooperation. 

So, we assembled our party to travel down to meet with Fliget. Gilgorgon is sending Herblas with us as his representative. 

Gabhe and the other friends of Dunfallon gathered to see the pixie off. They mutually promised to meet again in the not too distant future. Watching Gibley at that moment I could not help but notice a hint of loneliness in his demeanor. 

I kept him company as we descended down the main passageway. It was brilliantly lit and even more dazzling than I remember. And I understood better all the improvements that Herblas ordered on our way up.  He stopped us on one of the grand staircases to point out a new bas relief on the nearby wall. It depicted Merlin, Dunfallon, Rumble, Noralei and myself- all to commemorate the great victory at the former city of the dark elves. 

I admit I was a little embarrassed. 

The Fairy Diary Day 441 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Some tense moments passed as the two sides waited one another out. Hostilities nearly ignited several times between separate individuals facing each other. Thankfully Fliget kept his dwarves in check while waiting for an answer to a set of demands he sent over by an emissary. 

A very good thing – for we had to retrieve Gnoston from the bowels of the sunken capital where he had gone to help Gilgorgon’s miners. And like we believed, he was the perfect one to explain the current situation to Fliget. 

Everything Gnoston had shared with us regarding the deep seated dislike towards Artoxon proved true. In response Fliget ordered his dwarves to stand down, and while the majority made camp, he sent a contingent of miners into the capital to help those belonging to Gilgorgon. 

At the first opportunity I finally obtained an audience with Merlin and he agreed with my reasoning that it would be best for Rumble and I to return to his castle. He did not say out right that Gibley and Dunfallon needed watching, but just remarked that Noralei could use a little break. 

The Fairy Diary Day 440 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Gilgorgon has won his point with the help of Gnoston’s testimony. Although the details going forward are not yet settled. Many of Gilgorgon’s best miners, having refused to come out earlier, remain behind in the sunken capital and have been hard at work trying to dig their way down into Artoxon’s apartments. 

I recalled vaguely the location of the maintenance access that Dunfallon, Gibley and I used to descend to that level and gave them that information. 

Other than that I do not see anything else left for Rumble and me to do. 

Merlin and the High Fairy are staying to see things through, but I thought that Rumble and I should return to Merlin’s castle to check on our dragon handlers. So, we went to Merlin to get his permission. 

But before I could gain an audience with him an alarm was raised from fairy troop sentinels stationed back on the Low-way of the dwarves. 

Another dwarf army headed up by Fliget had arrived. Has he come as our friend or our foe?