The Fairy Diary Day 687 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

I kept a promise to Dunfallon this morning by rolling a game of ninepins with some of his dwarf friends, with the pixie’s mountain goat Gabhe looking on. I was able to express the pixie’s sadness at not being there with them as he had hoped. They all understood the reason for his absence. And asked me to convey an invitation to him to return soon. 

I discovered that I quite enjoyed the game, and did very well. (They did make me swear beforehand not to practice any “fairy business.” Dunfallon in the beginning had gotten away with a few things before they exacted a similar promise from him).

I had just won a game when Herblas came down to retrieve me. As he was ushering me up to Gilgorgon’s audience chamber he informed me that we had a visitor.  

Upon entry I was overjoyed to see the elf Navril there with Merlin and Gilgorgon. As he had promised he brought news about the renegade elves. He had been on his way to the Faerie Kingdom and just happened to stop by to pay his respects to the dwarves, and was delighted to hear that we were present. 

Navril and other elves were never able to elicit any explanations from their renegades until just a few days before. In sharing this news with the wizard and comparing dates they ascertained that the transformation in them came about the instant Merlin had placed her former majesty’s voice in the box. 

The difference in their behavior was as stark as that of night from day. They were no longer obstinately devoted to her cause, but were left wondering how they became committed to her in the first place. 

After hearing this, I was more than ready to return to the fairy capital. And Merlin announced that so we shall on the morrow. 

The Fairy Diary Day 684 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

We took turns on watch throughout the night. And today, I found myself constantly scanning the sky about us – looking for more black birds, or for the hornet swarms that oft times were associated with them in the past. I must say that with the blackness filling the sky more and more to our front, it would be very difficult to distinguish them.

Thankfully the black plants have not spread beyond the pixie territory. The last ones we saw took up an entire meadow at the end of the forest. Dunfallon had coaxed Cluyjil to torch them all to ash. He now cannot wait to deliver our prisoners to their waiting cells under the mountain, and return to his beloved land of the pixies with the dragon and eradicate the rest.

As we came out of the rolling hills, a light shone out of the darkness ahead. Rumble directed Cluyjil and the wagon towards that beacon. And I ordered our fairy escort to form up and follow behind us.

There at the base of the mountain, Herblas was waiting for us beside a signal fire. He had no explanation for what was going on, and was hoping we might know something. We filled him in on our suspicions, then pushed forward in the dark, following behind his dwarves, illuminating the way with firebrands.

All was quiet within the cages. A peek inside was met with glum and long faces. Then I realized that the queen no longer stuck her tongue out at me. And probably could not. 

The Fairy Diary Day 683 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

The incident yesterday with the black bird has us all on edge. That and sightings of the black plants here in pixie territory today bring up bad memories. Dunfallon jumps down from the wagon and eradicates each such plant he sees.

I took out my scroll and wrote out a message that I hoped would reach Merlin. We all fear that like the struggle Tinadell had with his evil self before Noralei and the others defeated that manifestation, someone else is now the pawn of that evil. Perhaps the renegade queen herself.

And though the sun has risen here, the night has not departed from Gilgorgon’s mountain which can just be made out in the west as we entered the area of the rolling hills.

Time wore on with no answer, and just when I was about to use the talisman that the wizard had given me to summon him, a message came back from him. Tinadell indeed had relayed the message to Merlin, and the Fairy King was deeply concerned that what had happened to him before, was happening again – to someone else. 

Merlin was more hopeful – even had half expected something like this. He said it was all the more important that we get to Gilgorgon’s mountain as soon as possible. And he promised to meet us there.

As encouragement, the wizard added that the strength of the adversary would be severely limited by the fact that he – Merlin – had the renegade queen’s voice with him, locked in a box. Hence, why she could not speak to us.

The Fairy Diary Day 682 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

We passed into the pixie territory under lowering skies before midday. A storm appeared to be brewing ahead in the direction of our destination. We could not see Gilgorgon’s mountain as of yet, but the gathering blackness seemed to be settling over its general location.

My companions did not like the look of it. Nor did I.

About that same time the voice from Dunfallon’s ring was intoning an alarm urging us to be on the alert. And the pendants on my chest throbbed in unison.

I passed the word to our escort to be vigilant. And Dunfallon ordered his soldier less weapons to close ranks around the cages. Rumble reined in Cluyjil to a steady walk.

I felt a rush of air behind me and turned about in time to see a black bird swoop down from the sky and attempt to close its talons on one of the cages. It missed. I notched an arrow to my bow and let it fly after the retreating bird. It caught one of its wings and the bird spun to the ground, bursting into flame upon impact.

We halted and sent the escort back to retrieve the remains. They returned, bearing only the arrow, and reported that dust was all that remained of the bird.

Rumble interrogated the Caretaker afterwards, but he could give no answer to his questions, and protested that neither he nor the renegade queen had ever seen the like before.

The thing of it is, we had.

The Fairy Diary Day 680 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

My companions Dunfallon and Gibley did their best to lift my spirits along the way to the capital. Their banter was constant and full of good humor. And for long stretches the pixie had his harp out to regale us with pixie traveling tunes. Even Gibley entered the fun with a couple of rounds of rhythmic croaking. (There was one in particular that caused Cluyjil to pick up his pace to a gallop. I had to rein him back).

I was thankful, for they did much to prevent my mind from dwelling on my predicament. Though at one point when it did cast its shadow over me, I was beginning to wonder if I might just withdraw my name and be done with it.

Merlin again was awaiting our arrival at the inn, where we will pass the night before departing for Gilgorgon’s mountain. The prisoners will be delivered to us tomorrow morning, and we will leave immediately. The wizard tells me that the tide is turning, and he thinks will eventually redound to my candidacy. And he truly believes that my successful completion of this latest mission will put a seal to it.

Before Merlin returned to the palace, he forcefully told me that I am the High Fairy that the Faerie Kingdom needs and deserves.

The Fairy Diary Day 679 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Merlin has transferred me to the repository. I am under Tinadell’s orders to bring back the wagon and whomever and whatever I need to effect the transfer of the two prisoners to Gilgorgon’s mountain. 

The wizard then returned to the capital to be my advocate there. He explained beforehand the present circumstances to my friends here – Dunfallon, Noralei, and Gibley.  And spent some time privately encouraging me. He had long suspected that I had been human – but it is even more clear now to him that I am fully a fairy. 

I was thankful for his vote of confidence but perhaps more so for my current assigned task to keep my thoughts occupied and off that predicament. 

According to Gibley’s estimation the dragonlings are ready to assume their roles as guardians of the repository. So he asked me if he can accompany me in the wagon back to the capital and there retrieve Conjil and return to the canyonlands. I agreed but consequently had to decide to assign Noralei and Rayjil to remain in charge here for now. 

I wanted Dunfallon to join me in my assignment. So he harnessed Cluyjil to the wagon and selected a good portion of his soldier-less weapons to accompany us. 

The goblin and the pixie and I set out for the capital. 

The Fairy Diary Day 674 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Gibley invited us out of the repository to the place just outside of the gates. There he planned the fitting of igniter stones in the young dragons. The goblin had examined the pair quite minutely the night before and pronounced them both ready – their teeth are all in, and the prequisite space is available for their installation.

Merlin had the red stone for Clemjil, and for Torjil, he brought forth an exquisite purple one. A minute’s observation confirmed that each gem chose their dragon.

Gibley’s work on Clemjil was a quick and easy matter. Afterwards he assigned him to Rayjil and together the two dragons cleared some brush from around the front area. Noralei and I kept ourselves available with skins of water, just in case the burning vegetation got near the trees of the repository.

Torjil was another matter. She had watched with interest as the goblin installed the red stone into Clemjil’s jaw, but when it came her turn, she chose that moment to disappear. Both Rayjil and Clemjil scurried about trying to pin her down, but she was too quick for them.

It was the timely arrival of Dunfallon on Cluyjil that rescued us from our predicament. The frisky dragon ran into Cluyjil when (we assume) she was fleeing from the others. She reappeared as he held her fast in the coils of his tail. Dunfallon scampered to her side and whispered into her ear.

In the following lull, Gibley performed the procedure on her. We may have to keep the young dragons out in the open air tonight.

When things were settled Dunfallon told us that they had had no problem finding the remains of the High Fairy. Rumble has returned them to Nonin-gal-dith where his excellency will be memorialized tomorrow.

I shall accompany the pixie there tomorrow. The others have yet to decide if they will be going too.

The Fairy Diary Day 669 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

The dinner given by Tinadell was small and intimate – only we three fairies and Merlin. For a reason that only became clear later, I was seated in the place of honor. 

After the meal was served and eaten, instead of talking about the obvious thing – the impending trial, Tinadell questioned each of us in turn about our recent adventures. Our king was singularly focused on asking Rumble and Noralei and Merlin about my conduct. 

It was a little embarrassing. I interjected praise for my companions at each and every opportunity to deflect from the discomfort of being in the spotlight. 

This morning I was hopeful that it would all be forgotten. And with the return of Dunfallon and Gibley, I felt reasonably certain that my notoriety of the evening before would soon be overshadowed by their fresh accomplishments. 

It was not to be. 

I was present when Tinadell received them. Again, the king turned his questions around to their estimations concerning my actions. I do believe that Merlin took much satisfaction in my discomfort. 

Before the pixie and the goblin departed to their quarters, Dunfallon presented to Tinadell the scroll of the High Fairy by which he communicated with me. The fairy king had asked the pixie to retrieve it from Emminie on the way back to the capital. 

Once Tinadell was alone with Merlin and me, the fairy king asked me point blank if I would accept the post of High Fairy. 

I was flummoxed and at a loss for words. I could only stammer out a reply that I needed time to consider his kind offer. 

Tinadell understood and granted me until after the trial to give my answer. 

The Fairy Diary Day 668 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Screeching became howling from our prisoner’s cages as we reached the last stretch to the capital. Already they were under the weight of impending judgment. I almost pitied them.

Merlin waited at the gates to the inn where the dragons and the wagon will be housed, and was first to receive us. Noralei remained behind to see to the needs of her charges. The wizard took a cage in each hand and led Rumble and me to the gates of the capital. Rumble supervised several fairy soldiers who carried the two boxes of scrolls. 

Just within the city gates, Tinadell stood to greet us. This encounter wrung another cry of despair from within the cages. Merlin handed over the prisoners to a phalanx of dungeon guards who whisked them away from our presence.

The fairy king himself ushered us up to the library where the boxes of evidence were deposited. There Tinadell extended an invitation to us to join him for dinner. Before he departed I asked him to send the same invitation down to Noralei. To this he said he would do so personally.

Merlin and I left Rumble to work on arranging the scrolls. As Dunfallon had not been on hand to meet us, I assumed the wizard had agreed with my request. He confirmed to me that the pixie had been sent to the canyonlands – not only to bring Gibley back to help with Clemjil – but also to have the goblin on hand as a possible witness in the trial.

This idea gave me pause. I said to him that that would mean all of us could be potential witnesses. The wizard only arched an eyebrow to my comment, and I knew that he definitely was being called as a witness.

The Fairy Diary Day 666 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Noralei and her sister’s shop and home is surrounded nonstop by an elite corps of fairy troops from the capital. And there is an inner ring of Dunfallon’s army whose only focus is the bell and our prisoners. 

I feel safe and secure. We all do. Yet I want to be off to the capital and get the trial behind us. But for now we must wait. 

Rumble with an escort assigned by the captain of the elite guard left early for the former High Fairy’s residence to collect documents for the trial. Upon his return this evening he informed me that he will need the morning tomorrow to complete his task. 

While we were waiting today everyone was talking about their plans for the future. Noralei is looking forward to settling back into the business with her sister – which she plans to do after the trial and after settling Clemjil into his role as the protector of the Crack of Doom at the repository. 

Dunfallon has a decision to make. Nailbiter reminded him that there is a new burrow that desires to have him for their leader. He asked me for my opinion in the matter. I hemmed and hawed at first, but then told him straight that I could not envision him as a pixie settling down in one spot. 

He then turned the tables and asked me if I had any plans. I confess that at first nothing occurred to me other than taking up my life again here in Nonin-gal-dith, but even in the act of thinking it I knew that something more would be asked of me.