The Fairy Diary Day 645 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Captain Goff joined us for the morning meal in the inn. The only one not with us was Dunfallon, who could not bring himself to leave the ship unprotected by his absence. 

And probably for good reason. The captain had some disquieting news. Rumors were rampant around Corbelin stemming it is believed from factions sympathetic to our prisoners. He fears that an attempt will be made to seize them from us. He advised us to depart as soon as possible.

We sent Rumble off to see if he could buy back one of the wagons he had sold here. Noralei went off to see to the needs of our dragons. And I took a meal down to Dunfallon and recounted the news and our decisions to him.

When Merlin came aboard, he immediately went below to visit the prisoners. After he emerged he went to Noralei who was then feeding Clemjil, and asked her to fashion cages for the renegade queen and the Caretaker, like those she had made for the Will’o’the Wisp.

By the afternoon, Rumble returned and he had with him the very wagon we had used before to transport Dunfallon’s “army.” It should handle the bell and the prisoners with no problem. And the pixie intends to keep his soldier-less weapons out of their boxes, ready and moving under their own power.

I pointed out a couple suspicious characters to Rumble and Dunfallon, whom I had seen repeatedly pass back and forth by the ship. They gave a wide berth around Cluyjil who was snoring in the late afternoon in his place on the quay. He startled awake once, and I was amused to see the suspect pair scatter.

Before we prepared for the evening meal, Noralei returned, bearing one newly fashioned cage. She gave it to the wizard for his approval. He did and she will make the other tomorrow.

I could not bring myself to stay in the inn overnight but decided to stay aboard the ship with Dunfallon.

The Fairy Diary Day 644 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

One incident marred our entry into the harbor of Corbelin. A couple of the returning fishing boats came alongside and questioned Captain Goff about our passengers. Evidently the renegade queen somehow had been trying to solicit the aid of these elvish fishermen in securing her release. At that point Merlin intervened and explained to them the crime for which she will be tried back in the Faerie Kingdom. 

The fishing crafts backed off but I had an uneasiness that they were not totally convinced. 

Such was my concern that I thought it best for Dunfallon to set up his “army” on deck once we were moored – to protect the ship, the prisoners and the Crack of Doom. In addition the pixie had Cluyjil take up a position on the quay beside the ship. 

It was also time to bid goodbye to Nora. He had more places to go and places to see. After quartering Rayjil, Noralei went for a ride around the harbor with him as her way of saying farewell. 

We are going to wait for the morning, before procuring a wagon to transport the bell, our prisoners and us. 

The Fairy Diary Day 643 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

I was just coming up for my watch when Captain Goff called for all hands. A black squall had appeared in the sky behind us and was rapidly gaining on the ship. He sent the dragon riders further aloft to weather the storm above it. 

Merlin tumbled up from below to join Rumble and me, making his appearance as three people. And consequently we soon had the sails in. 

And just in time. For the howl of the wind then overtook us. We fairies had to lash ourselves down for safety. 

Happily the squall was past almost as quickly as it had begun. The Captain and Merlin went about assessing the damage. Our prisoners were fine – complaining loudly about mistreatment. 

I found that the little dragon Clemjil was not as chipper as usual. In fact a better word to describe his condition would be seasick. We should have sent him aloft with the others. 

Rumble discovered a more serious problem. In the blow the Crack of Doom had shifted off of its moorings. We secured it the best we could while waiting for Dunfallon and Noralei on their dragons to catch up with us. Once they did the wizard directed them to lift the bell back into its proper position. 

All was again put to rights by the time the sun went down. And by its dying light we could just make out land in the dim distance. 

The Fairy Diary Day 642 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

We sailed our way out of the narrow straits and into the open sea.  No one minded at all leaving that string of islands behind. 

Rumble and I kept up our duties about the ship. Merlin joined one or the other of us as the need arose, and even took a watch himself. But he never climbed the rigging. He had his own way of making the sails bend to his will. 

Our dragon riders continued to take turns dropping in. When it came Gibley’s turn he asked us if we could do without his presence. He thought that he and Conjil would forgo accompanying us all the way to Corbelin since it seemed their being here was rather superfluous. As for Clemjil, the goblin decided not to take the young dragon with him. After all he had been released by his uncle to be a protector of the bell in the repository. Merlin concurred and we assembled to bid our friend a fond farewell. 

Gibley flew by Dunfallon and Noralei to say goodbye before he and Conjil left for the east and the canyonlands. 

The sun was just going down as I came up for my watch when Nora hailed me from over the ship’s side. He barely could get the words out as he excitedly reported that one of the prisoners was trying to escape. 

I leaned over the rail and saw that the Caretaker has hanging halfway out – caught in the porthole three sizes too small for him. For five wingbeats I considered leaving him there, but when Merlin checked on him, he yanked him back inside the cabin and sealed the porthole. 

I made sure the renegade queen was still under lock and spell before returning to my watch. 

The Fairy Diary Day 640 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

The bell has been loaded aboard our ship. It was stowed on deck, in the dragon’s former spot, which will work since all the dragons, except Clemjil, were flying. Gibley will lend a hand with Conjil, towing where needed, at least until Corbelin. From there he intends to return home to the canyonlands. With Dunfallon on Cluyjil and Noralei on Rayjil, they will escort us.

Our prisoners were locked up in separate cabins, the two smallest on the vessel. A couple troops from Dunfallon’s “army” will be left out of their boxes to guard them. 

Rumble and I will work the ship with Captain Goff. We are looking to Merlin to take up the slack with us. He has a couple of measures up his sleeves that should prove most helpful.

In the meantime the wizard has gone on ahead to the ice floes. He is making good on his promise to help Tublain and the blue fairies on their way. He had taken with him a great tun of nectar which he has infused with a special elixir to strengthen them for their journey.

As we set sail from the island, we saw the first flights of Frost Fairies taking off for their home. And we could tell that Merlin was at work also melting the ice crystals blocking us from the way down.

Hopefully the channel down to our world will be clear by the time we reach it. Which might be a problem since we now have the surge behind us to speed us along.

The Fairy Diary Day 639 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

We are satisfied with our meeting with the new leader of the Frost Fairies. His name is Tublain, and all he wants is to take his people home to the North. They want nothing to do with the renegade queen nor her Caretaker. They look upon that pair as the corrupters of their king – enticing him to leave the frigid lands behind for lives of ease in the South. 

Our meeting was short, but we asked him to stay the night and await the sun and the arrival of our ship so that we could release the blue fairies we held here as prisoners. 

Merlin promised Tublain that he would do all he could to see them safely back to their homes. 

After Captain Goff arrived the Caretaker was brought ashore and put in a separate cell from the queen. And Tublain and the other blue fairies went aboard for the trip back to the ice floe. 

Gibley now recovered from his indigestion took Conjil up to escort our ship and to keep an eye on things. 

As for what to do next our meeting with Merlin was quick and unanimous as to our decision. We will take the queen and the Caretaker back to the Faerie Kingdom to be tried for treason and the murder of the High Fairy. 

We passed the rest of the day uninstalling the Crack of Doom from the tower and packing it up for transport. 

The Fairy Diary Day 638 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

I escorted the renegade queen up into the tower. Once there Merlin offered to look at her wings, and while she submitted I took over monitoring the seers stone for the wizard.

I could see that Captain Goff was maintaining his lead over the approaching line of ice crystals. I winced with the thought that if it were to catch up, the ship would be crushed under the pressure of the burgeoning ice. Then, I saw that Nora was lending a hand. He was circling the ship constantly, churning up the water and preventing it from going solid, and seemed to be enjoying himself immensely.

Then, that thick line of blue fairies halted its forward movement and came to rest on the ice floes. 

With the morning they were still motionless. They looked exhausted. And one lone Frost Fairy stepped out of the pack and with ceremony sheathed his sword.

I told Merlin that we needed to go out there to meet with them. He gave me permission and added that we should take the dragons. I had turned to leave, but he called me back. 

“I think you should go under your own guise,” and he removed all of our blue disguises.

We left Clemjil with Gibley (still recovering) as he guarded our prisoners. Dunfallon selected Cluyjil, who then led Noralei on Rayjil, and myself on Conjil out to the waiting blue masses. (It was good to be back in our own skins).

We passed over our ship, then outdistancing the static line of frozen water. Nora broke off and began to follow behind us.

One by one we landed on the ice floe in front of that lone figure. He asked us directly, “Where is our king?”

With those thousands of eyes on us, we were silent for about sixty wingbeats. Then, I answered him, “Your king is no more.”

They answered us with silence also, but then cheers erupted from the front and carried all the way back into the distance, culminating in a unified shout of exultation.

I proposed that this fairy, their new choice for leader accompany us back to the tower for a conference. And I had him mount up on Conjil behind me. The warmth from my pendants has me expecting a fortunate outcome to this new development.

The Fairy Diary Day 637 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Merlin indulged our frivolity while he kept watch above. I kept in contact with him throughout, for it would not do to be caught off guard. During one such instance the wizard drew my attention to our ship. It was on the move towards us. And apparently Nora was in the advance, plowing ahead at an incredible pace.

I returned below and collected Noralei and together we climbed down to the shore after alerting the others to stand by.

From afar we heard the hearty halloa from our friend the water horse. He came bearing a body upon his back. I took one look and knew that it was the missing queen. Noralei and I flew out to them and relieved Nora of the burden.

Once ashore the former queen stood on her dignity and her haughtiness. It was clear to me why she had not flown when knocked off Rayjil, for her wings sadly hung in tatters.  I was polite but told her in no uncertain terms that she was no longer the Faerie Queen, and that we now have a king. 

She only smiled and turned to look out to sea.

My eyes followed hers. There on the horizon was the thick blue line of the Frost Fairy swarm. And as they advanced the sea below them turned to ice crystal. And they were rapidly gaining on our ship.

The Fairy Diary Day 636 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

Merlin assigned Clemjil for my use in liaison with the others. I took him to Noralei to fit him up with a pair of ear shields – as the wizard said he would need them. I believe the little fellow remembered me and was excited to be out stretching his wings. He definitely knew Dunfallon who stopped by to scratch behind his ears – whisper to him – and gently placed the devices on him. 

First I flew him out to the furthest away of our forces – Captain Goff and his ship. There I informed them that Merlin has seen the two dragons with one figure on each and expects we would encounter them before the day closes. And in addition to that  – a swarm of blue fairies follow behind at a great distance. 

Rumble had some information for me. His prisoner, the Caretaker, had let slip that besides the queen on one dragon, the King of the Frost Fairies would be on the other – said to be a most formidable fairy. 

Next, I took this news up to Gibley circling above on Conjil, and to prepare them for our defense. I intended to return to the tower and make one more round of my charges, but Gibley cried out that he saw two spots in the distance. 

Conjil went transparent at the goblin’s urging and my mount followed his senior’s example. Thus, instead of spots, we were mere specks. We then flew higher. 

We watched as the approaching dragons and their riders honed in on the ship and dived on it. Before I knew it, we were streaking after them. 

Before the dragons could spew fire on our ship, two things happened. Gibley ducked under a vicious backslash executed by the blue fairy king and launched himself at his attacker and in one gulp devoured him and commandeered his dragon. And at the same instant the two unshielded dragons reacted to the sounding of the Crack of Doom. I had been waiting for this, knowing that Merlin was waiting in the tower – watching via the seers stone. 

The renegade queen tumbled off of Rayjil and did not fly off under her own power. I saw her hit the water and disappear under the surge that characterizes this sea. 

I looked for her myself – unsuccessfully- before turning the task over to Captain Goff and Rumble. 

I returned to the island and joined the celebration as Cluyjil was reunited with Merlin and Rayjil with Noralei. 

The Fairy Diary Day 634 #TFDbyRWOz2

Meribabell writes:

It has been a day of action – unrelenting in our efforts to beat our way to the shores of the island. Even with the help of Gibley and Conjil towing, it was slow going. In the meantime Dunfallon drilled his army constantly. 

When at last we neared the shore, we were greeted by Nora who informed us that Noralei had landed to scout around. 

Merlin ordered Captain Goff to anchor the ship, and the rest of us helped Dunfallon land his troops. The wizard held the dragon and Gibley in reserve against the expected arrival of the other two dragons. 

Before we left the beach, Noralei returned with a captive – the Caretaker. She had surprised and subdued him not long after going ashore. She easily avoided the patrols of Frost Fairies ringing his chamber at the base of the tower in the mountain. (In many ways it reminded her of the repository back in the Faerie Kingdom). Noralei wrung from the Caretaker the intelligence that his queen was not there but with the dragons and the army of Frost Fairies in the field. Then handed him over to Nora who transported him over to the ship where the captain shackled him. 

The next task before us then, was to secure the bell. So, Dunfallon set his troops in motion and Rumble, Noralei, and l marched behind in the rear guard ready for anything. 

We came up against the first outpost but its blue defenders had disappeared. And as we swung our column towards the tower we caught sight of our adversaries in full flight. 

Our pixie had not yet pressed onward with his soldierless weapons and we three fairies took to the air and harassed the Frost Fairies from above. Then the resolve of our enemy broke and they sued for quarter and laid down their arms. 

(Later, we learned that many of them had witnessed the slaughter of their fellows back at the village of the Sprites – and did not want to experience a similar defeat). 

In exploring the tower we found the young dragon Clemjil under lock and key. Noralei with Dunfallon’s help was instrumental on reaching through his distrust and once under the attention of Conjil, he settled down. 

With the tower and the Crack of Doom in our hands, we set about preparations to meet the return of the former queen and the dragons.