Even a gutter On a sunny day can break Out in a rainbow.
Even a gutter On a sunny day can break Out in a rainbow.
I wrote to Merlin that we would be underway as soon as preparations were completed. And informed him that we had taken precautions to protect Conjil from being summoned from us.
I closed with a rundown of our accomplishment here and all that it will mean for the future relations between the Dromadil pixies and the Sprites.
Today we bid farewell to Nora. He left with some of the Sprites who wanted to continue their exploration. In a short time they have become fast friends. Noralei did tell him before parting, that we will be headed for the coast around Corbelin and that it would be wonderful to see him there.
Conjil was overjoyed to see us. So much so that she did not mind being harnessed to the wagons again. With everyone in place we were about to set out, when the Dromadil king stopped us – but only to thank us and to bid us farewell too.
Gibley started her out but then she headed straight for the rainbow on her own volition and mounted that color-filled road.
It felt good to be in the air and not knocking around underground.
We came down off the rainbow in the hills above Corbelin. But there was no wizard in sight – nor anywhere around.
We decided to pass the night here and I tried to contact Merlin through my scroll.
I was not looking forward to our meeting with the Dromadil king this morning. Noralei, Rumble, and Gibley went back down to join the Sprites in the work of freeing Nora from his prison. Dunfallon and I brought Emminie up with us for our meeting with the king.
I went in by myself to begin. And I announced that we had located the obstruction and right then as I was speaking it was being removed. The king clapped his hands at this news.
I then did what I could to cushion the blow that would come to him at the revelation of the agency of his deliverance. Still I did see him tense up under the force of my words.
I went on to state that my friends and I would have failed without the timely arrival and help of the wee folk – the Sprites. I begged leave to bring their chieftain in and make his introduction.
The Dromadil king fell silent, and seemed to shrivel on his throne.
After the space of sixty wing beats, he looked up and nodded his consent. I called to Dunfallon and he escorted Emminie into the chamber. And then pixie to pixie, Dunfallon introduced the chief Sprite to the king. My friend continued on to extoll the strengths and virtues of these wee folk. And then surprised us all by imploring him to count the debt the Dromadilians owed to the burrows of Dunfallon’s pixiedom, to be deemed paid – through his acceptance of the Sprites.
The Dromadil king glared at the mention of his secret, now fully known. And all resistance towards the Sprites ceased.
Emminie for his part was gracious. He went on to say that he was honored to lend this help, and that it was a matter only of humble thanks for the king’s opening of his land to them in their late distress.
I felt relieved upon leaving the king’s chamber.
But then looked up – and a rainbow was arching down into the fields outside the city. And I knew Merlin needed us.
A reply from Merlin to me was waiting on the scroll when I opened it this morning. He and Navril had made it to Laguayil. Nililitil confirmed that the High Fairy had not stopped by recently, but he did add that there were rumors out of Corbelin that his excellency and two other fairies had taken a ship from there out into the west. And that is where the wizard and Navril intend to go next.
There was one other thing that Merlin added which I relayed to the others. He told me to stay in contact and be prepared to come to him. If he needed our aid he would send a rainbow.
Conjil was a little reluctant to be hitched up this morning so Gibley took her up to spread her wings for awhile. Once she was back and harnessed, we were on our way again. The goblin told us that from their view above he estimates we will sight Dromadil tomorrow.
We surveyed the area north of the village. Merlin took me to the creek to show me where its water dropped from view, abandoning its bed so that it no longer flowed by the village in its crook.
Then, finding nothing of consequence we went into the village itself. Before we got there the wizard told me that the Sprites, for safety, had moved to Dromadil. We had our pick of residences in which to pass the night – in miniaturized form of course – (Merlin more so than me – in fact I was closer to his size for the first time).
We were shaken awake in the early morning and returned outside (and to our normal sizes). The ground continued its shuddering as he led us to the base of the rainbow. Our friends arrived just as we reached it, and as soon as they were safely down Merlin dismissed the rainbow.
He instructed us to dig in here and set up camp. And wait. All indications were that whatever was coming – was coming from the north.
Merlin joined me in the Caretaker’s office and retrieved the seers stone and secreted it somewhere within his robe. I had nothing further to report from my monitoring. He told me to get prepared for he had chosen me to accompany him as soon as the dragon and wagons were got underway, we would go on ahead.
Navril with Noralei’s help, finished up their work on a harness for Conjil with which to pull the two fully loaded wagons hitched together in line. It took just a short while to acclimate the dragon to this new arrangement. Then she seemed quite eager to proceed.
Gibley and Noralei took their positions on Conjil. Navril climbed aboard the first wagon behind them; and Rumble and Dunfallon clambered aboard the second. The wizard instructed them to make for the base of the rainbow that had touched down on the road ahead. He waved his staff over the wagons as they passed by and they began to float behind the dragon. Merlin told Gibley to follow the rainbow all the way to the village of the Sprites where he and I would meet them.
Satisfied when they were off, Merlin turned to me, tapped my shoulder and in the blink of an eye we were standing at the other end of the rainbow – somewhere to the north of the Sprites’ village.
The wizard proposed that we look around until our friends arrive.
It was a time of leavetaking.
Merlin departed first. With his blessing he left Cluyjil to help in our transport back to the repository. He shared with Dunfallon and me that he had a strong premonition of a need to look into Laguayil and Dromadil. He hopes that our actions here have brought them relief.
With the wizard’s departure we turned our attention to Gibley. He and Conjil are staying here in the Land of Plenty. The goblin wants to travel throughout the land to check on what changes may have occurred since the rift was sealed off. Only then will he return to the canyonlands and report his findings back to his uncle and the clan.
The rest of us waited for a message from the High Fairy that he had returned to the repository to summon us there. When his confirmation came we paired up – Noralei and Tinadell on Rayjil – and Dunfallon and myself on Cluyjil. After our swift journey across the colors of the rainbow we touched down in front of the repository.
It was a time of frantic activity. And I am so thankful for our time on the elvish ship, so long ago. For the lessons learned then were put to good use here.
The fabric additions that Tinadell had woven onto the line were now unfurled like sails and spread in a fan like manner across the gap. The blowing wind even helped us.
And utilizing the model put together by Merlin and Noralei, the Master Weaver directed us in securing it all around its perimeter.
When we had effectually sealed off the rift, the rush of air out of the Land of Plenty ceased. And as a final touch Merlin took out a phial within which was a greenish liquid. He gave it to me with instructions to anoint the completed screen.
I flew up on my own, picked a spot in the center and poured out the entire contents of the phial. Amazingly it covered the whole – adding the sheen of a rainbow across the face of it. This was a thrill in particular for Gibley (so we learned) for they were a representation of his clan’s design and colors.
After admiring our handiwork our party drifted back to the nearby cavern where we discussed our next steps. And I wrote out a note on the scroll to the High Fairy.
Noralei had some difficulty with Rayjil convincing her to leave her new found playmates behind. Thankfully Dunfallon enticed her away from the stable by whispering something in her ear.
I jotted a quick note on the scroll to the High Fairy to alert him to our movements.
The three of us were soon mounted and Rayjil took flight, pursuing the westering moon. I knew we were on the right track when the rainbow circling that orb reached out to us and drew us in.
The Land of Darkness was no longer. Instead of the vast well sinking down to its depths there was an irregular shaped mountain filling the same space. A pleasing light filled the air about us. Dunfallon wondered out loud if this was the Land of Plenty once again.
We touched down on the nearest side of the mountain. Everything was barren roundabout – hardly a paradise. And everything was cold to the touch.
We scanned our surroundings for any sign of Glossom and Gibley. But nothing.
We sent Noralei aloft on Rayjil to do a wider search. Dunfallon and I remained on the mountain to explore all the nearby caves and crevices.
In one such cave we found what we believe to be a goblin hunting camp. Noralei circled back at that instant to report a similar finding further down. Since she judged the one she had found of more recent use, she packed us up and we descended to it.
There we took our ease after a busy day. And tried to rest despite the constant light bathing the land.
I did rest before our departure. It was peaceful and calm. In some measure due I am sure to the kindness of Merlin. A shadow passed over me just prior to waking, or may even had caused me to waken.
I was confronted by a tunnel with the sound of air rushing through it – endlessly droning. And a gripping cold squeezed my heart.
I was so glad to wake up and shake it off.
Then I remembered Noralei’s concern that we guard our minds on the other side. And I donned my breastplate and took up once again my three pendants.
I shall not remove them while in the Land of Darkness.
The dragons were alert and ready, chomping at their bits in their excitement to be off.
I was the last to take my place. They all watched me as I mounted Cluyjil behind Gibley. In unison we signaled our readiness to Merlin and the High Fairy. Then, Gibley and Cluyjil led us up into the sky through the covering clouds.
There before us was a shining moon with a rainbow circled round it. Gibley pointed his dragon towards it and blew the whistle.
Rayjil and her riders to my left faded from view – then Conjil and hers on my right. And last of all us. The rainbow reached out to us and darkened the deeper we went. The rush of wind, its source to the front of us, sucked us in.
At the end we flew through our own reflection into the Land of Darkness. When we landed it was by the edge of a crater – a crater so vast, we could not see the other side.
We looked to Noralei and from its edge we followed her down into the well.