Wicked Wylds: Where The Magic Is Real

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Gwyneth:

Gwyneth:

Once upon a time, there was a collection of people, people whose imaginations were bigger than their back gardens, people whose desire to tell stories and live more than one life captured their thoughts and dreams.

A couple of those people created a place where those thoughts and dreams could come to life, and they called it Wicked Wylds.

This is where I spend my Second Life roleplaying time. WW is not the sort of place you go if you just want to kill some monsters or have lighthearted intimate relations with pointy-eared elves. I mean, you could do those things, but there is a much, much larger story of which your actions can be a small part, or a large part.

In WW you can have come from anywhere. Maybe you were about to go into the shop to buy some milk and suddenly felt dizzy. You might wake up on an idyllic hillside and wonder if you’ve had some kind of stroke or maybe just dropped dead. Maybe you are a realm-walker, and the Wylds is just a convenient stopover between Asgard and Wonderland.

Maybe you are a demon who longs to role-play in a meticulously detailed Hell with a rich cast of characters who will engage you.

Maybe you are a changeling who has lived as a human for so long, and one day, one day, you open the door to Faerie.

Maybe you are an ordinary (ha!) person who dreams of interacting with so many different kinds of beings than you encounter at your day job in the bank.

Maybe you just want to be taken to where the magic is real.

You can’t find Wicked Wylds through a Second Life search. But you can take a look at the Tumblr to see what’s going on Read the histories, the rules, all that admin stuff there, or you can request it from one of the admins in-world. You can seek out members of the admin staff on SL and IM us. Tell us your story and we’ll talk about how it might fit into ours.

There is so much room for growth and there is no end to the stories we might write together.

Some of the people who live in or are frequently found in Mysthaven: L-R: (back row) Gwyneth, Seelie Queen in Faerie; Nathanial, Mysthaven Steward and Queen's Consort; Aoibheann, Lost Rabbit and Lord Maric's Consort; Lord Maric, Lord of Mysthaven and by a strange twist of fate the current Unseelie King; (front row) Wren Darling, Fae Teen and Nathaniel's adopted daughter; Dyisi, Elder Satyr, Realm-Walker, teller of tales and talker of riddles.

Some of the people who live in or are frequently found in Mysthaven:
L-R: (back row) Gwyneth, Seelie Queen in Faerie; Nathanial, Mysthaven Steward and Queen’s Consort; Aoibheann, Lost Rabbit and Lord Maric’s Consort; Lord Maric, Lord of Mysthaven and by a strange twist of fate the current Unseelie King; (front row) Wren Darling, Fae Teen and Nathaniel’s adopted daughter; Dyisi, Elder Satyr, Realm-Walker, teller of tales and talker of riddles.

Admins to IM: Vedis Seid (sim owner and the architect of hell); Faermorn Violet (plot spinner and the architect of Faerie); Suboki Paine (RP and Tech Admin); Benbold (RP Admin); Dickensiandreamer (RP Admin); Dyisi Oppewall (Rp Admin); Gwen Enchanted (RP Admin, Welcome Wagon, Fae Dreamer, and the Blogger of Record).

Spiffy photo taken with the indispensible aid of a LumiPro. Go look at the web page. Yes, I know they’re expensive. If you want to take amazing photos in SL, they’re worth every Linden.

Readiness, and the Future

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Gwyneth:

Gwyneth:

We’re making ready. The ballroom has been created. Tables and chairs have been set up. There are only just a few last minute touches to be touched upon, and I am beginning to get nervous. What if everything goes wrong? What if no one comes? What if one of the children doesn’t show up? I don’t know what I’d do if that happened.

Here's Callista, working on cleaning a nectar pool for the demifae.

Here’s Callista, working on cleaning a nectar pool for the demifae.

Here’s Callista, working on cleaning a nectar pool for the demifae. Some of them have volunteered to do some pretty heavy work, like suspending the nets some of our decorations are hung from, so these little nectar pools are being put all over the forest: that way none of the demifae have to go very far to refresh themselves. I may really keep some of them up permanently.

She's quite fastidious in her work.

She’s quite fastidious in her work.

She’s quite fastidious in her work, is Callista. She comes from sturdy wood faerie stock, and lately she’s been giving us a lot of help around the grounds.

Poor kid, she nearly cried when I told her we would not be using this bench, or the gazebo, for the ceremony or the reception.

Poor kid, she nearly cried when I told her we would not be using this bench, or the gazebo, for the ceremony or the reception.

Poor kid; she nearly cried when I told her we would not be using this bench, or this gazebo, for the ceremony or the reception. She protested rather a lot.

Then, of course, I showed her the space we would be using.

Then, of course, I showed her the space we would be using.

Then, of course, I showed her the space we would be using, and all was forgiven. I can’t get over how beautiful this ballroom is, and the addition of the moons and stars, well. I only wish I could keep it here permanently, but of course the Forest may have other ideas.

I also really love the dress I'm wearing.

I also really love the dress I’m wearing.

I also really love the dress I’m wearing. It reminds me of something a Hellenic goddess might choose to wear. As you know, I do a lot of realm hopping, and recently we happened upon a Faire called Fair Play. Unlike some of the other Faires we visit, this one promises to stay open all the time, with a revolving list of artisans and wares. I’m looking forward to visiting this Faire quite a lot in future.

In Future.

The Future.

Oh, I shouldn’t have said that. Because then I got started thinking about the Future. You know, the big “f” Future that we can’t ever know about.

The idea of being handfasted, which isn’t exactly the same thing as being married, but which definitely leads to being married (after the whole year and a day thing is done), and having a stepdaughter, having two daughters and a son—it’s overwhelming.

I think those thoughts of what I might have been were ways to hide from the fear of the unknown. I shouldn’t be afraid of fasting my hands to Nathaniel’s. It feels like we’ve been together forever.

But I suppose it’s change that I fear. Which is unfortunate, of course, because everything is changing and everything will continue to change. I am a different Queen today than I was a year ago.

I can feel myself as the days go on, becoming more and more Fae and less and less human. I don’t think I shall sleep through the winter this year.

But what sort of a Winter Queen will I be?

But what sort of a Winter Queen will I be?

But what sort of a Winter Queen will I be? I can see myself, nearly made of alabaster, spring and summer memories that force themselves out of my eyes as tears, that colour my lips in dreams of kisses.

I think it will feel powerful to be this Queen.

I think it will feel powerful to be this Queen.

I think it will feel powerful to be this Queen. Powerful and sad.

A Winter Queen, neither Seelie nor Unseelie, who withstands and perseveres.

A Winter Queen, neither Seelie nor Unseelie, who withstands and perseveres.

A Winter Queen, neither Seelie nor Unseelie, who withstands and perseveres.

Is this a vision? I remember I once had visions, as a younger Sidhe, before I became Queen.

Is this a vision? I remember I once had visions, as a younger Sidhe, before I became Queen.

Is this a vision? I remember I once had visions, as a younger Sidhe, before I became Queen. They’d come upon me with no warning, sometimes as dreams, and I recall there were times when I did not know if I was having a true vision or if I had been sucked into one of His Unseelie Majesty’s nightmares.

What will I create, as I grow into my role?

What will I create, as I grow into my role?

What will I create, as I grow into my role? I imagine myself as a mother, not just of my own children, but of my clan, my race, my people.

I know one day I will have to fight again.

I know one day I will have to fight again.

I know one day I will have to fight again. I won’t like it. I remember a time when I was completely anti-violence. And in a way, I still am. I do my best to settle arguments and disagreements peacefully. And when I cannot, I hope I do the Mother’s will.

I give myself to Her at these times, because I do not believe I could do what is asked of me myself.

I give myself to Her at these times, because I do not believe I could do what is asked of me myself.

I give myself to Her at these times, because I do not believe I could do what is asked of me, myself.

Even when I must be a warrior, I never fail to ask why this must be at all.

Even when I must be a warrior, I never fail to ask why this must be at all.

Even when I must be a warrior, I never fail to ask why this must be at all.

Peace is so much more preferable. I do not understand war, and I hope I never will.

Do you hear me? I said, I hope I never understand war.

Do you hear me? I said, I hope I never understand war.

Do you hear me? I said, I hope I never understand war.

I can hear the clock chime up in the treehouse: wow, that’s loud. It’s time. Time to forget the fantasies and let the Sidhe maids and the demifae garb me up.

Time to leap into the rest of my life.

Time to leap into the next chapter of my life.

Time to leap into the next chapter of my life.

Style Cards:

Callista:
 Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Daisey, 4th July Gacha, v 1 (Available at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main Store!)
Hair: Elikatira, Lena (Available at June Collabor88)
Clothes: [QE] Woodland Fae, Green (Available at the now-open Fair Play event!)
BirdBath: Velvet Whip, Ginger Line Elven Bird Bath

Gwyneth in the Ballroom: Preparing
Body: Maitreya
Skin: Pink Fuel, Sora Alabaster
Hair: Analog Dog (natch!), Theresa (New from Analog Dog!)
Clothes: (Dress, Wreath, Belt, Shoes), Belle Epoque, Criseida, White (Available at the now-open Fair Play event!)
Ballroom: The Looking Glass, Enchanted Ballroom
Moons and Stars: Refined Wild, Nightly Netting

Gwyneth as the Winter Queen
Body: Maitreya
Skin: Lumae
Hair: Exile
Face Paint: Madrid Solo
CrownJunbug, Crown of the Tuatha de, Ancient
Dress: Lybra, Tempest (Available at the now-open Fair Play Event!)
Necklace: OtherSkin: Salvation
Wings: OtherSkin: Quendia Wings
Stone Circle: Artisan Fantasy
Trumpet Mushrooms: Ceridwen’s Cauldron
Flower Fields: The Looking Glass, Ichi Fields
Poses with Spheres: Mien, Only Forever Series

Gwyneth as Warrior Queen
Body:
Maitreya
Skin: Pink Fuel, Sora Alabaster
Hair: Analog Dog (natch!) Ever
Makeup: Oceane, Silverlicious
Clothes: In honour of Alegria’s amazing “Isabel” neck corset, I dressed Gwyneth head-to-toe in Alegria!
Bra, Corset, Trousers: Alegria, Penumbra
Bracelets: Alegria, Dragon Born, Light Silver
Boots: Alegria, Minerva Boots, Light Silver
Axe: Alegria, Moon Axe, Silver
Neck Corset: Alegria, Isabel Neck Corset, Silver (Available at the now-open Fair Play Event!) (Seriously, look at the texturing on this piece. Is it not gorgeous?)

The Fair Play Event is Open! “Fair Play is a kind of different fair group and organizes permanent fantasy fairs with designs, inspired by games.” Don’t miss the official inaugural round of this great event. There’s so much stuff to see, the space is beautifully designed and easy to navigate, and all the designers have created exclusive items for the event that you won’t find anywhere else.

Over at 7 Deadly s{K}ins, the Fourth of July is a big event! One of the skins featured above is from their Fourth of July Gacha (100L$ per play, 50L$ for group members), and there’ll also be a sale starting on the Fourth of July. As if that weren’t enough, there’s a Fourth of July Marketplace Only Special

Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my LumiPro. I never leave home without it!

Fair Play Logo skinlogodiap

What If….

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Gwyneth:

Gwyneth:

My children have emerged. That sounds more accurate than saying they are born, since I did not give birth to them. I merely gave life. Merely.

The night was such a blessing. Eilian and Drysi arrived talking up a storm to one another, but Bronwen was quiet and new as dew. I won’t go in to more now, because I want to believe my children are possibilities and not the shadow that pass over them from the past. I won’t.

Three Parents

Three Parents

Janus couldn’t stay away. I hope he will decide not to stay away on a regular basis. I miss him so.

After what probably seemed like a short meet and greet, Bronwen grew tired and the others were pretending not to be, so I whisked us all, the family (Nathaniel, me, Wren, Eilian, Drysi, and Bronwen) off to the tree house, where Bran made hot chocolate for everyone and we got the children settled into their bedrooms.

Poor Nathaniel was so tired out he just crashed.

Janus left through the tree roads, but I hope, I know, he will be back.

In a few days, mine and Nathaniel’s handfasting will take place.

Bran brought me a second mug of hot chocolate, and I just, I don’t know. I started thinking about my life.

“No one is ever allowed to know what might have been,” said Aslan. But it doesn’t stop me speculating about it.

What if I'd grown into one of those sassy Croyden party girls?

What if I’d grown into one of those sassy Croydon party girls?

What if I’d grown in to one of those sassy Croydon party girls? The sort of girl who doesn’t think she’s dressed without a pair of 4-inch heels and shows as much skin as possible, particularly when it’s 0°C outside.

What would she have thought about my house? “Great staircase, but you really ought to get some colour in here. You should redo this kitchen in avocado, mate.”

That.. doesn’t bear thinking about.

But assuming my life followed the same path, the path where the four of us were in that accident and only I woke up on the shores of the river…

What if I’d not grown into the person I’ve become now?

Would I have become a fae servant in my own kitchen? Serving some other Fae Queen?

Would I have become a fae servant in my own kitchen? Serving some other Fae Queen?

Would I have become a fae servant in my own kitchen? Serving some other Fae Queen?I imagine my house-proudness, how I’d turn my magic, what little there might be of it, to the growing of herbs in the counter garden, the height of the fire.

The sort of house-manager who has one perfectly serviceable dress in a variety of colours, all made by her own hand.

The sort of house-manager who has one perfectly serviceable dress in a variety of colours, all made by her own hand.

The sort of house-manager who has one perfectly serviceable dress in a variety of colours, all made by her own hand.

The kind of woman who has one unbelievably beautiful necklace, given to her by a lover who left her, a thing she can’t bear to put away, ever.

A woman who remembers her old life a lot more clearly than I do now. A woman who reads in her spare time and might be instructing the children in literature, since none of them will ever be interested in cooking.

But what if the whole thing had never happened?

And into my head comes a picture of me, laughing because I'm at a great LARP, probably with Richard, in a big house.

And into my head comes a picture of me, laughing because I’m at a great LARP, probably with Richard, in a big house.

And into my head comes a picture of me, laughing because I’m at a great LARP, probably with Richard, in a big house. Fen is probably taking this photograph, maybe with my iPhone. I can tell because I’m laughing. Fen, Fenella, always knew how to make me laugh. And I don’t have to think about the last time I saw her, my best friend, so much blood.

I’m imagining this photo the way I used to look. So short. With my Welsh granny’s face and my professor dad’s hair, and my professor mum’s broad shoulders, and my euphemistically “child bearing” hips.

In this picture I’m happy because we are in a big, beautiful house, and oh what weird things there are on the mantelpiece, and here we are in this house, and we pretend to live here, what fun!

The next picture changes.

I am longing, all the time we're here for this LARP, longing and longing, for it all to be true.

I am longing, all the time we’re here for this LARP, longing and longing, for it all to be true.

I am longing, all the time we’re here for this LARP, longing and longing, for it all to be true. Only I know it can’t be, but what if it is? That’s how I walked through the world, before. Knowing, knowing beyond a shadow of a doubt, that there was no magic. And yet not believing it.

I wonder if my children will grow up and wish for a world in which they are not magical. I wonder if that will happen.

Style Cards:

Three Parents:
Janus’ Clothes & Ears: Gauze
Nathaniel’s Clothes: Junbug
Nathaniel’s HairWasabi Pills
Gwyneth:
Body: SLink
Skin: Pink Fuel
Hair: EMO-Tions, Cersei (available at The Instruments)
Dress: Jumo: Mother Of Dragons, Gold (Available at The Instruments)
Wings: Falln, Rose Vine Wings (Orange)
Crown: Lode: Head accessory, Vesna, yellow (Rare)
Halo Headpiece: Zyn
Arm Vines: RFyre
Ears: Lumae: Leevi Long Ears
Lipstick: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Greedy Oranges (Available at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main Store!)
Face Makeup: Madrid Solo, The Vow
Neck Corset: Silvery K

What If…
Body: SLink
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, FREYA, Cotton Candy (Available at Alice In Sexyland!)
Hair: Analog Dog (natch!), Inu
Ears: Lumae: Leevi Long Ears
Dress and Shoes: Jinx, Gweneth, Royal Purple (Available at Fair Play!)
Necklace: Otherskin, Salvation (Available at Fair Play!)

Would I… and The Sort Of…
Body: Maitreya
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, FREYA, Cotton Candy (Available at Alice In Sexyland!)
Hair: Analog Dog (natch!), Motive Braid, Bangers Bang 3
Ears: Lumae: Leevi Long Ears
Dress: Mistique, Aurora, Red (1); and Green (2) (Available at Fair Play!)
Shoes: Aisling, Tess Orty
Necklace: Otherskin, Salvation (Available at Fair Play!)

And Into My Head… and I Am Longing…
Body: Maitreya
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, FREYA, Cotton Candy (Available at Alice In Sexyland!)
Hair: Analog Dog (natch!), Bangers (with Bang 3)
Ears: Lumae: Leevi Long Ears
Dress: BMe, Fishwife Dress (Available at Fair Play!)
Shoes: Aisling, Tess Orty
Necklace: Otherskin, Salvation (Available at Fair Play!)

Location:
Gwyneth’s Treehouse in The Great Seelie Forest

Notable Props:
Treehouse: LAQ
Kitchen Decor: DDD
Mewnicorn: Quirk & Co.
Andolyls Rapunzel Tower: DRD
Wall Planeterium: Nomad

Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my LumiPro. I never leave home without it!

skinlogodiapFair Play Logo

Midsummer’s Night

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Gwyneth:

Gwyneth:

So many things rising. This week, my week, the week of Midsummer.

I flew to check the children and remind them they must come out of the crystals soon, and I happened upon Dyisi and Aoibheann.

There is a mystery to be sorted there. Not one I have time to figure out now. A birth, a handfasting, a demifae uprising, Goblins making trouble, and of course Dyisi’s plan to contain Gwythyr, which Aoibheann seemed to dismiss last night; I’m sure that was unhappily received by Dyisi.

How long the twilight lasts.

How long the twilight lasts.

How long the twilight lasts. Once Dyisi and Aoibheann disappeared (and I do mean disappeared), I counselled Wren to go back to the village, for I could hear the revels starting.

For myself, I headed downstream, away from the tree and the meadows and the rising music.

So many things there were, to think about.

So many things there were, to think about.

So many things there were, to think about.

But first, the children. With my back to the tree, I positioned the crystals again, imagining myself as the tree, tapping in to Ardan’s considerable resources and adding my own, heightened of course at this time of year. Now, a cloud beneath them to ease the passage. Then, a softening of the crystals themselves. And all ready for tomorrow.

Then of course there was the matter of the handfasting.

Then of course there was the matter of the handfasting.

The of course there was the matter of the handfasting, and a prayer to the Goddess that it go smoothly and joyfully. And that after everything, Nathaniel still wants me.

A quick searching after Aoibheann's mystery: what happened to her in the Twilight Realm?

A quick searching after Aoibheann’s mystery: what happened to her in the Twilight Realm?

A quick searching after Aoibheann’s mystery revealed no easy answers, but I think there will be more to this. What happened to her in the Twilight Realm?

And a further reaching, a remembering, back to that day at the Faire.

And a further reaching, a remembering, back to that day at the Faire.

And a further reaching, a remembering, back to that day at the Faire. A turn, to make sure I was mirroring the tree properly, but I must keep my back to it, for already the revels were distracting me. My muscles and my spirit told me I wanted to be on the green, dancing, but so much work to be done: dancing later. I’d get no sleep this night, anyway.

Oh, the dance of summer should energise me, but at the end of my work and my searching and the questions with no answers ... I just felt tired.

Oh, the dance of summer should energise me, but at the end of my work and my searching and the questions with no answers … I just felt tired.

Oh, the dance of summer should energise me, but at the end of my work and my searching and the questions with no answers … I just felt tired.

And behind me, always, the music on the green, our mortal musicians, our revels.

And behind me, always, the music on the green, our mortal musicians, our revels.

And behind me, always, the music on the green, our mortal musicians, our revels.

One of the mortal musicians, a ginger bastard, tried to shove his tongue down my throat when I kissed him in payment for his services. I bit him. Perhaps he’ll remember not to be so free with the Fae Queen in future.

Why did thinking of that make me suddenly want to dance, to spin in front of him and remind him, and anyone who hears his tales once he returns to the world of day and night, that one does not shove one’s tongue into the mouth of the Faerie Queen. And I think of him as I might think of an insect. And now I want to dance.

So much to do.

So much to do.

So much to do.

But now, let there be revels.

But now, let there be revels.

But now, let there be revels.

Fae Queen dances on the green,
Fae King nowhere to be seen.
Flame, she dances with the faeries,
Skirts red as midsummer berries.
Crowned with roses, crowned with pearls,
Envy of the mortal girls
Love her, hate her, can’t ignore her
Never free of gossip’s murmur
Sing her summer passions flown
Know she walks each day alone.

Style Card:
Skin: Pink Fuel: Sora V2 Alabaster
Body: SLink
Lipstick: 7 Deadly s{K}ins: “Greedy Oranges” (New and available at 7 Deadly s{K}ins Mainstore!)
Face Tattoo: Madrid Solo, The Vow
Neck Corset: Silvery K, Silver, Red Rose Option
HairEmo*Tions: Cersei (New and available at The Instruments)
Dress: Jumo: Mother of Dragons (New and available at Teleport to The Instruments)
Wings: Falln: Rose Vine Wings Silver
Headpiece: Noctis: Briar Rose, Blooddrop
Halo: Zyn: Morning Song Halo, Summer Kiss

This round of The Instruments is amazing, by the way. If you haven’t been there, you should go. I don’t blog for them: I just really, really loved the stuff they have available this month. 

Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my LumiPro. I never leave home without it!

Checkmate

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The Gypsy Davey:

The Gypsy Davey:

We heard of a vineyard looking for hands, so we travelled west, to the island of Checkmate.

We arrived to a morning rainstorm.

We arrived to a morning rainstorm.

We arrived to a morning rainstorm, and took our time exploring the island before searching out the vineyard owner and seeing what work he might need from we realm-hoppers. The boys were on me all morning about the length of my hair: Dyisi’s magic has given me more than my colour back, and my hair seems to be growing inches every day. I have to keep it braided or pulled back, or it gets everywhere.

The boys discovered this folley on one end of the island, high above everything else.

The boys discovered this folly on one end of the island, high above everything else.

The boys discovered this folly on one end of the island, high above everything else. It wasn’t in poor repair and in fact looked like someone had been there recently: there were candles lit in the windows and the divan inside looked as if someone might have slept in it the night before. “We could sleep here Uncle,” one of the little ones said. I reminded him that we have cosy vardos and that we’d need to check the horses before we went much further, but then we took a walk a little further on.

Once the sky cleared, I thought I'd give the boys a little lesson in perspective.

Once the sky cleared, I thought I’d give the boys a little lesson in perspective.

Once the sky cleared, I thought I’d give the boys a little lesson in perspective. There were crows wheeling about everywhere: the creatures seem to follow me. “So,” I asked them. “Am I taller than this lighthouse?”

“No, Uncle,” said one of the big ones; I think he’s called Michael, but I forget these things. They’re just the boys. “The lighthouse is far away, and you only look bigger than it is.”

“Now, why is that?” I asked, and we had a lively discussion of how things could be the size of your thumb when you’re miles away but dwarf you when you got up close.

Then, of course, we checked the horse and saw to the wagons.

Then, of course, we checked the horses and saw to the wagons.

Then, of course, we checked the horses and saw to the wagons. The morning was beginning to wear, so I wanted to get in touch with the vineyard owner, who was sure to know that there were travelling folk on his land already.

He turned out to be an all right fellow, and his wife offered us tea, which we accepted.

He turned out to be an all right fellow, and his wife offered us tea, which we accepted.

He turned out to be an all right fellow, and his wife offered us tea, which we accepted. We found vines in need of a little tender loving care. The vineyard owner looked us over in the way they do, sniffed, said, “Well, you’ll do! I can use you for a week or so.” This life, you’ve got to be glad of what work you can get, but by the time the sun was higher in the sky, the day began to grow hazy, the way a day does after a morning rain. I figured I’d best go back to the vardo and exchange my raincoat and boots for something a little more forgiving of hard work and sweat.

I tied my hair up, and when I got back, the boys had already tended a third of the little vineyard.

I tied my hair up, and when I got back, the boys had already tended a third of the little vineyard.

I tied my hair up, changed my clothes, and when I got back, the boys had already tended a third of the little vineyard. “Good work boys, but you know there’s a bigger one back beyond those trees.” There was groaning: they’d been working full-out in hopes this was the whole of the vineyard. “A man doesn’t plant a whole island with grapes and have only this little space to show for it,” I said. “It’s another lesson in perspective, boys.” More groans. Everything is a lesson, Uncle. Why can’t we go back to Faery, Uncle. How come your hair is so long, Uncle. What does that tattoo mean, Uncle. Shut up and be careful with the pruning shears, boys.

Finally we were done for the day, and the boys wanted to go exploring.

Finally we were done for the day, and the boys wanted to go exploring.

Finally we were done for the day, and the boys wanted to go exploring. Again. Our time wasn’t wasted: we found this beautiful little place, again, high up on a hill above everything else, and it looked like someone had taken a posh man’s living room and just arranged it on top of a mountain. Little lanterns hung as if by magic. “Sky’s going pink, boys,” I said. “We’ll have to get home.”

“But Uncle,” they said. “Uncle, there’s a beach! You can see it from here!” I sighed and let them lead me down a ways.

The way to the beach was down the same flight of steep stone steps we’d come up to find this place.

It was nice to look out over the vineyard we'd tended that day, think of a good day's work, and consider the next day as well.

It was nice to look out over the vineyard we’d tended that day, think of a good day’s work, and consider the next day as well.

It was nice to look out over the vineyard we’d tended that day, think of a good day’s work, and consider the next day as well. Almost, I could imagine myself the master of such a place. That is, until the urge for going got me. Then, well. The road.

Finally, we reached the beach, and the boys made me tired with all their running about, and that after a hard day’s work from all of them. Oh, to have that kind of energy again.

How eight boys who can't agree on the time of day managed to make a sand castle together is beyond me.

How eight boys who can’t agree on the time of day managed to make a sand castle together is beyond me.

How eight boys who can’t agree on the time of day managed to make a sand castle is beyond me. But there it is, just about to be washed away by the tide. The little ones didn’t even make a fuss about it. “We’ll build another one tomorrow, just like this one,” they said. Of course they will.

Home then, to the vardo and the farmhands coming round for a bit of music and dancing and seeing what it’s like to step and turn with a gypsy lady. And there will be farmer’s daughters and some posh girl who’s a niece of somebody who’ll wander round, but they will come later, after I’ve had my supper and a pint of something and perhaps a wee nap.

Style Cards:

Photos in Coat & Boots:
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins: Ziggy (The Menstuff Hunt Prize, at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main Store!)
Hair: EMO*Tions: Michael (A new release from EMO*Tions!)
Clothes: Equinox: King’s Guard Tunic, Pants and Boots (At The Conquest event!)
Brooch: Miamai: Game Of Thrones House Emblem Brooch: Baratheon (Rare!) (Gacha, at the Conquest event!)
Ears: Mandala: Steking Ears

Photos in Shorts:
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins: Ziggy (The Menstuff Hunt Prize, at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main Store!)
Hair: Besom: Derek (At The Mens Department)
Shorts: Trashed: Denim Shorts Smile (Menstuff Hunt gift)
Shoes: 2Real Footwear: Emotion LMT Limited Edition Shoes (The Mens Department)
Tattoo: Reckless: Bronx (The Mens Department)
Necklace: Otherskin: Wish

Location:
The Vineyard at Checkmate, a sim designed by Amae Moriarty, is a gorgeous place to visit and photograph. We enjoyed continuing our story there, and we hope you’ll go to visit too. Don’t forget to give at least a little donation if you stay a while: places like this need to stay up and running so we have beautiful spaces to visit in Second Life for a long time to come.

Create Your Own Tarot: The Empress

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Gwyneth:

Gwyneth:

The Create Your Own Tarot: Empress round opened on the 15th of June, and I’m a couple of days late talking about it, because Real Life hit me in the gut when we returned from Germany and hasn’t really let up.

The Empress is the fourth card of the Major Arcana, numbered 3 (We start at 0, with The Fool, remember). I know when we think of the word “Empress” we think about a regal and powerful woman, and don’t get me wrong: the Tarot Empress is powerful. She’s an earth mother who’s often depicted as being pregnant, often shown with children, animals, harvest vegetables and fruits, often apples, corn, wheat.

Empress in the garden.

Empress in the garden.

Once again, Apollo Scribe has assembled a great bunch of creators for this month’s tarot round. The dress above is from BLOKC, simply called “Empress”. The colour is Blue Ombre, but the dress comes in several other good colours: I just really like Gwyneth in blue. The crown and necklace are both from BLOKC as well. I love the line of this dress, and the blue stretching down into teal really says “summer” to me.

Another great dress from the event.

Another great dress from the event.

This dress is from Byrne, called “The Empress Soon”, and again it comes in a variety of colours. The crown is from Naminoke, available from a gacha at the event. The Byrne dress recalls other floral dresses worn by Empresses in tarot cards, and the Naminoke crown depicts the 12 stars that are often pictured with the Empress.

Here's another view of this terrific dress.

Here’s another view of this terrific dress.

Here’s another view of this terrific dress. I particularly like the way the collar/cowl works with the body of the dress to bring the whole design together.

Don’t forget that along with the event, there’s a photo contest! It’s inspiring to me to make my own tarot cards, and I’ve enjoyed every round so far. You can find out more about the contest, and see past winners at the Create Your Own Tarot Flickr Group, and each month there’s a separate contest Flickr group as well that will give you an indication of the great variety among photographers and tarot card fans who’ve been enjoying this contest so far.

Here's another look at the cowl.

Here’s another look at the cowl.

Here’s another look at the cowl.

Style Cards:

First Photo:
Dress: BLOKC: Empress, Blue Ombre (Available at Create Your Own Tarot!)
Necklace: BLOKC: Crystal Necklace, Turquoise and Gold (Available at Create Your Own Tarot!)
Crown: BLOKC: Crown in Gold (Available at Create Your Own Tarot!)
Sceptre: Zuri: Scepter Of the Mist
Hair: Entwined: Elektra
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Daisey V1 (a gacha now available at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main Store!)
Shoes: Muka: Feetwrap Rosa Dark
Ears: Lumae: Leevi Long Ears

All Other Photos:
Dress: Byrne: Empress Soon, Violet (Available at Create Your Own Tarot!)
Crown: Naminoke, Empress Crown S4 (Available at Create Your Own Tarot!)
Hair: D!va: Judy
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Daisey V1 (a gacha now available at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main Store!)
Shoes: Muka: Feetwrap Rosa Dark
Ears: Lumae: Leevi Long Ears

Props:
Arch: Artisan Fantasy: Maiden Tor Stone Arch
White Deer: Alyxen Designs, Silver Deer
Brown Deer: JA: Deer Pack
Brown Bear: Sweet Revolutions
Rabbit: Raya Jonson
Goat: JA: Young Goat
Baskets of Fruits & Vegetables: Dysfunctional Designs [DDD]
Chair: Artisan Fantasy: Renaissance Faire Chair

Location:
The Great Seelie Forest

Miracles

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The Amazing Catwoman:

The Amazing Catwoman:

I said I never wanted my holiday to end. Truth is, I hadn’t taken a break in so long, I just extended it. For nearly a month. And I’m not even out of money yet. I guess that’s what happens when you do the sort of work I do.

Yeah: don’t ask what sort of work I do.

I spent a lot of time just enjoying the wilderness.

I spent a lot of time just enjoying the wilderness.

I spent a lot of time just enjoying the wilderness. This place was really off the beaten path: you can only get to it by boat, in fact, and I spent one really lovely afternoon just soaking up a hazy summer day, watching and listening to birds, and, believe it or not, reading. I know I said I’m not into books, but there’s this series I discovered that’s got me totally hooked, by some American girl named Seanan McGuire. Usually, books about contemporary Fae written by ordinary people, well. They’re fanciful, good for a laugh. But this author really has her head together, and honest to gods, she gets it right. Most of the time.

And then, wouldn't you know it. I started thinking.

And then, wouldn’t you know it. I started thinking.

And then, wouldn’t you know it, I started thinking. It wasn’t the book: the book was a fun read, but– or maybe it was the book. I want my life, my work, to matter.

I figured that as I ended my holiday I’d go back and check out some of the other places I love to go.

I went back to It All Starts With A Smile.

I went back to It All Starts With A Smile.

I must have sat there and just listened to the surf for hours. I keep meaning to go back and investigate the valley, but something about the sea just calls me. Those choppy waves, a craggy shore. Not a boring beach or, no sand and surf: there’s something about the desolation of a rocky beach that draws me.

I hitched a ride with a guy in an old truck back to L'Arc en Ciel.

I hitched a ride with a guy in an old truck back to L’Arc en Ciel.

He ran out of the truck as soon as we arrived to make some deliveries, but he’d left a box in the back of the truck, so I lifted it to carry it to him. He thanked me for helping and then handed me a little warm parcel. “For your trouble,” he said.

And then the parcel started rocking in my hands. I tore away the cloth cover to discover that I was holding a large egg.

Inside of which…

...was a dragon!

…was a dragon!

…was a dragon! Not a big dragon, mind, though I have no idea how big the little fellow will get.

He is so lovely! And he settles on my shoulder and hovers just above me most of the time. I’m calling him Kermit. I don’t know why: it just seemed like a nice name for a dragon.

When I turned around to thank the old guy, he, and the truck, were gone. I never heard them drive off.

When I turned around to thank the old guy, he, and the truck, were gone. I never heard them drive off.

When I turned around to thank the old guy, he, and the truck, were gone. I never heard them drive off. I must have looked a right idiot, leaning forward to prop on the truck’s door and thank the guy. Luckily we weren’t closer to the edge of the dock or I’d have fallen in and people around would have thought I was swimming for the lighthouse!

Here we are, Kermit and me, in front of the market sign.

Here we are, Kermit and me, in front of the market office.

Here we are, Kermit and me, in front of the market office.

I made my way over to my old digs, telling him all about the great fried chicken place right next door. He seemed as excited as I was.

But when we got there, the fried chicken shop was closed!

But when we got there, the fried chicken shop was closed!

I’m sure I swore quite a bit, but I don’t think Kermit minded.

Then I turned and noticed that the tattoo shop was closed too.

Then I turned and noticed that the tattoo shop was closed too.

Then I turned and noticed that the tattoo shop was closed too. In fact, it looked abandoned. Deserted. I walked back to the chicken shop and found grime on the windows and everything inside was in disarray, stuff strewn about on the floor, chairs and tables knocked over. How strange.

I guess I’d been completely oblivious, which is totally unlike me, on my way to the chicken shop, busily talking to Kermit about how great the chicken was. I don’t know if he understood me, but he sort of chirped and mrrped along, so I figured he at least likes — wow, how do you tell if a  dragon is a boy or a girl, anyway? — I figured he at least likes conversation.

Then, we had a look at the deserted street from the other end.

Then, we had a look at the deserted street from the other end.

Children's toys just left out in the street.

Children’s toys just left out in the street.

And air of finality and desolation about everything.

And air of finality and desolation about everything.

I couldn’t believe I’d just walked past some of this stuff, intent on getting city fried chicken, without noticing things like a car in the middle of the road with the door opened, the overturned gas truck, the empty shops.

Just outside the town limit, we even saw a deserted tractor.

Just outside the town limit, we even saw a deserted tractor.

Just outside the town limit, we even saw a deserted tractor. And across the water, the church I’d danced in front of just a few weeks ago … looked like no-one had been there in ages.

Even the beautiful church looked deserted.

Even the beautiful church looked deserted.

This sign, outside of town, always moved me.

This sign, outside of town, always moved me.

This sign, outside of town, always moved me.

It's one of the few things I have in common with *her*.

It’s one of the few things I have in common with *her*.

It’s one of the few things I have in common with her. She was amazed by this sign as well. I think it might have something to do with their strange religion.

And I got the call to go to my next assignment, which is in New Brighton of all places, talking of beaches. And boardwalks.

So we said goodbye to L'Arc en Ciel, probably for the last time.

So we said goodbye to L’Arc en Ciel, probably for the last time.

So we said goodbye to L’Arc en Ciel, probably for the last time.

Goodbye, L’Arc en Ciel. And thank you a million times to Asa Vordun for making such a beautiful place and opening it to avatars and humans (like the one who’s typing this entry). Your creation was a beautiful gift, and we will all miss it very much.

Style Cards:

The Amazing CatWoman in a Bathing Suit:
Body: 
Maitreya Lara
Head: Lelutka, Karin
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Patience in Caramel, with NEW Lelutka Head Applier, available at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main store!
Bathing Suit: Faboo, Box Wrap Bikini (Maitreya Applier)
Hair: Elikatira, Piper (At Collabor88!)
Ears: Gauze, High Elf Ear

The Amazing CatWoman, all other photos:
Body: Maitreya Lara
Head: Lelutka, Karin
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Patience in Caramel, with NEW Lelutka Head Applier, available at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main store!
Top: Emery, Audrina top, Smoke
Jeans: Emery, Lauren Riot Jeans, Grey
Shoes: Ingenue, Pandora Flats, Noir
Hair: Elikatira, Piper (At Collabor88!) (swept back style)
Hair: No Match, No Exceptions (straight style)
Ears: Gauze, High Elf Ear

Gwyneth, There Will Be Miracles:
Dress: 
Evie’s Closet, WindSong, Violet
Hair: 
Truth, Daniela
Hair Flowers: 
Liquence
Necklace: (L’Arc en Ciel) 
Evie’s Closet, Briar Rose
Shoes: 
Deviance, Milady’s Slipper, Amethyst
Skin: 
Curio, Simone, Moondrop
Ears: 
Lumae, Leevi Long Ears

Locations:

Bathing Suit Photos:
Linden Premium Wilderness

Surf Scene Photo:
It All Starts With A Smile

All Other Photos:
L’Arc en Ciel (Closing on the 28th of June)

We’re back!

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From All of Us:

We are home from Germany! That’s right- we’ve been away for two weeks, making music and visiting friends in Germany. We had a wonderful time, but Gwyneth, The Amazing Catwoman and The Gypsy Davey have some great things to share with everyone, including wonderful stuff from the now-open Create Your Own Tarot Event, new Lelutka Head appliers from 7 Deadly s{K}ins, and even a few surprises!

The Amazing Catwoman will be ending her holiday soon.

The Amazing Catwoman will be ending her holiday soon.

Gwyneth is dying to tell you all what she's been wearing!

Gwyneth is dying to tell you all what she’s been wearing!

And the Gypsy Davey? Who knows what he'll get up to?

And the Gypsy Davey? Who knows what he’ll get up to?

Don’t worry: we won’t be sharing much about the player’s trip to Germany: the three of us just want to get back in to the swing of our lives. Don’t worry: there are so many more stories to tell— we can never tell all the stories. But we will continue to tell our stories as well as we can.

There’ll be more coming soon.