Under the Lantern Tree

Under the Lantern Tree BLOG - 1

Sometimes, things just appear in the garden, and I don’t know what they’re for.

Sometimes, things just appear in the garden, and I don’t know what they’re for. Take that weird house opposite the gallery, for example. I mean, I guess we’ll hold dances there or something, but at the moment it’s just sitting there. But when this Lantern Tree appeared, with its comfortable seating and characteristic beautiful touches (how could it be from anywhere but The Looking Glass?), I knew exactly what it was for, and I had a use for it right away. Obviously, it’s for late night discussions of things that matter. So I asked Arahaelon to come along, and we began to discuss the situation with Saoirse.

Under the Lantern Tree BLOG - 16

“I might have vented a bit,” I said.

“I might have vented a bit, I said, “when I found out that my vision was of her being abducted as a seal. The penny dropped when Dyisi asked her who had her skin; then I realised what was happening.”

Under the Lantern Tree BLOG - 2

“We should summon Dyisi,” Arahaelon said.

“We should summon Dyisi,” Arahaelon said. So this we did. Dyisi arrived with Rire, and we went on with the conversation.

I summarised what we’d already talked about for Dyisi, and Arahaelon asked if Dy could shed a little more light on Saoirse’s state of mind.

Under the Lantern Tree BLOG - 12

Dyisi shrugged.

Dyisi shrugged. “Is story as old as time,” she said. “She fell for someone who, in turn, used her and took her skin, Ah, forced her to do such deeds that she has done. Though she does noht with to harm anyone… just get her skin back and be free of those who control her. Is why she picked simple boat. Is why when ordered to do more … drastic … measures she picked empty house. Well, empty as that none of people who lived within were there at time. Also, she needs to be within water soon, or she will noht make it.”

Under the Lantern Tree BLOG - 9

I felt that anger rise within me again.

I felt that anger rise within me again. “Unbelievable arseholes,” I said. “Did she tell you who has her skin? Where they are? I’m just so pissed off about this. Obviously, I’m angry about the graffiti and the boat and my house—I’ll never get that little bed with the iron birdies on it back—but it really appears she was not acting of her own free will. That said, I would hope she’d have come to one of us before all that had to happen.”

Under the Lantern Tree BLOG - 5

“That would fit…”

“That would fit,” Arahaelon said, “with the story I’m getting from these messages on her phone.” He passed the phone to me so I could take a look. “If her skin has been taken, then we must get it back.”

Dyisi applied her usual calm to the situation. “When faced with death… as it is… I understand why she had noht come to any of us. Such mortality places you within a different mindset. But, nai, her skin must be returned to her.

Under the Lantern Tree BLOG - 11

“Those who are using her…”

“Those who are using her to further their goals… they must face a higher court than what is on the Island. Especially since it is not just island they are attacking.”

I agreed. “Nathaniel might have some contacts on the mainland, “but he’s away in Mysthaven and won’t be back until next week, I think? We’ll have to give it some thought ourselves.” I smirked. “I could always check with Cherish Gelato. She’s sure to know some wild rumours, at least.” And I nodded to Arahaelon. “Certainly, we must retrieve her skin; she will survive without it, but there is the matter of how well the skin is being kept, of course.

Under the Lantern Tree BLOG - 7

“Let’s hope they don’t see her as expendable.”

“I hope whoever’s done this doesn’t see her as expendable: the idea of a selkie’s skin being destroyed—well, we’d have to talk to the selkies themselves about that one.”

Under the Lantern Tree BLOG - 6

Arahaelon brooded for a bit.

Arahaelon brooded for a bit. I noticed his eyes: they looked like storm clouds. “What if we use her as bait to draw these people out? I’m sure the Bureau of Supernatural Affairs would be happy to help us hunt them down. It would go a long way towards shortening her sentence. Despite how much I understand her plight, she must still serve time for what she has done. Had she come to us earlier, much destruction and pain could have been avoided. And as Dyisi points out, she will also have to answer for parts she might have played elsewhere.”

Under the Lantern Tree BLOG - 9

Dyisi looked to Rire.

Dyisi looked to Rire. He just gave the satyr a shrug; he was dutifully doing his job at standing guard. “It is your call on what to do,” she said finally. “I have no say in such a matter. However, I will also speak to may own contacts over there, as our reach tends to be … deep.” She left it there, not going in to specifics as to what exactly this group she was affiliated with did.

 

Under the Lantern Tree BLOG - 3

The night air developed a chill.

The night air developed a chill, so I shrugged my wings back on. “I worry about using this girl as bait. She seems … Volatile? Scared. And scared people do stupid things. I’m on the fence. I see how she could help us catch these criminals, but I’m not happy about putting her in a position where the only decision she might make would be a wrong one.”

Under the Lantern Tree BLOG - 15

Arahaelon closed his eyes.

Arahaelon closed his eyes for a moment before continuing. “She would be closely supervised bait, but I do see your point. She will always be bound to the one who has her skin.” He considered for a moment, rotated his head to the side. “We may not have to, though. We could simply text them back and lure them out ourselves.”

Dyisi sniffed, gave a half-shrug. “Perhaps, paidi mou, you should bring this up to this, ah, Bureau before doing such things. So that they can be at ready. Nai?”

 

Under the Lantern Tree BLOG - 8

“A good idea.”

“A good idea—who’s our Bureau contact, Arahaelon? Or is that safely with Nate in Mysthaven, as well?” I sighed. “I don’t relish going back there, but I could make a special trip if it were important. I reserve the right to be a complete bitch to everybody, though.”

“Yes, of course they will be notified,” Arahaelon said. “I have a close relationship with our contact: there is no need to be a bitch to anyone, unless you really want to, Dear Queen.” He winked at me in that way that he does. If I were mortal, I’d have been flushing beet red and offering to bear his children. “I will see if I can replicate Saoirse’s style in these messages,” he continued.

“Then if that is all, nai?” Dyisi seemed to have someplace to go.

I nodded. “Yeah; that probably about does it for this evening. I’m glad you were both able to join me. It might be time for me to see what Bran is up to in the treehouse: he was talking about decorating my office.” I winced. “I don’t really want an office.”

Arahaelon actually laughed at me, not that I was surprised. “How will you ever cope?”

I just stuck my tongue out at him. “You know where to find me if you need me,” I said.

Dyisi and Rire disappeared, presumably back to her beach house on the Island, and Arahaelon also disappeared, presumably back to his house on the Island. And me? I walked back to the treehouse, through the magic flower meadow. When I got to the path, I turned around for one more look at the beautiful Lantern Tree. And it seemed I saw myself and Arahaelon sitting there, and the people we sat with varied, and they kept changing. I think we will be using this tree as a meeting place for a long time to come.

Under the Lantern Tree BLOG - 17

The Lantern Tree

Style Card:
The Lantern Tree, from The Looking Glass, will be available as a gacha for the upcoming round of Enchantment, which opens on 12 August.

Gwyneth:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Catwa, Lona Bento Mesh Head
Hair: Emo-Tions, Alanis (Available NOW at Hairology!)
Eyes: Mesange, Sanford Eyes (Available NOW at Lost and Found!)
Ears: Lumae, Leevi Long Ears
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Savory (Full face and body Omega applier)
Makeup: VENGE (formerly Vengeful Threads), Catwa Luna Makeup (Available NOW at THE COVEN!)
Collar: Footpaw Industries Celtic Filigree Amythest Collar (attached rose from Footpaw Industries AeLan necklace)
Necklace: VENGE (formerly Vengeful Threads), Evening Lord Necklace (Available NOW at THE COVEN!)
Top: Facepalm, Play the Game (Available NOW at Fable!)
Leggings: The Muses, Ariane Legging (Omega Applier)
Boots: Sweet Lies, Ragnarok Boots

Style cards for Arahaelon and Dyisi are coming soon!

Location: White Owl Island Faerie. If you’re looking for a great contemporary fantasy roleplaying sim, why not check us out? White Owl Island, Where Everybody Knows Your Shape.

skinlogodiap   FABLE2   Hairology Logo - 1   TheLookingGlassLogoFullColor   MESANGE LOGO 2017   Venge Logo_2017_Skull Wing square

SaveSave

Preparing for Samhain

Gwyneth:

Gwyneth:

I could tell something was up; Clutie and Dani were chittering like mad this morning. I mean, more than they usually chitter. And usually they know better than to enter my bedroom before Bran has brought me my first pot of coffee; speaking of which we’re running out of the Kona I got when I was in Nu Jyorck; I’m going to have to go back and replace it soonish. And eventually I’ll have to tell you all what happened while I was there. It wasn’t anything huge and spectacular, but Nu Jyorck was a very interesting place.

Anyway. I could tell something was up. And then it dawned on me. Autumn has come to the Bower and to the Realm. Mason is swift approaching. And that means… shit.

“Your Majesty, Your Majesty!” Finally, Clutie could no longer contain herself. “The first wave of Samhain gowns is here for you to try on!”

Oh, Jesus, Mary and Joseph. Fuck, fuck, fuck. Samhain gowns. It’s about to be masqued ball season, and the Fae are very, very serious about Samhain parties. Now, I love parties as well as the next girl, but back in my old life, Halloween was never my favourite holiday, and don’t get me started on British vs. American customs. But the fact is, the Fae seem to celebrate Halloween (Samhain) far more in the spirit of the Americans than the British. Which, OK, is fine, but a lifetime of being told that “we do not dress up and go door to door in this country, well not at Halloween, anyway,” will stick with a girl, you know?

I tried to roll over in bed, but that little bitch landed on my head. Her feet were all wet from dew, and she practically stuck a toe up my nose. Ew.

“Fine, fine, fine,” I said finally. “Where do you want to do it?”

“Ballroom!” she and Dani chorused together. They’d obviously been planning this since before the sun came up. So I got up and didn’t bother doing anything with myself, since they’d be poking and prodding at me all morning anyway. Let them worry about whether or not there are knots in my hair.

The first dress they had me try was surprisingly regal!

The first dress they had me try was surprisingly regal!

The first dress they had me try was surprisingly regal! And I have to admit, I loved the jewellery Dani picked out. The dress designer is Dark Water Designs, and the jewellery is from Devious Mind. Dani did my face with some more of those designs she gets from Madrid Solo, and Clutie pulled my hair back in to a simple design from Rezology which I actually rather liked.

"It might be too formal," Clutie said critically.

“It might be too formal,” Clutie said critically.

“It might be too formal,” Clutie said critically.

“What? What are you talking about? I love it!” I wrapped my arms around my chest, unwilling to have them remove the dress. “It’s perfect! We don’t have to try any of the others: let’s just pick this one!”

Dani clucked. Clutie kissed her teeth. “Your Majesty,” she said. “My Lady. You know there are no less than seven separate masqued balls you’ll be expected to attend this season? You can’t wear the same dress to all of them.”

I groaned.

“No, you can’t send regrets to any of them,” Clutie said sternly. “Put your big girl wings on and lift your arms so we can get you out of this dress and into the next one. Put it in the ‘yes’ wardrobe,” she said to Kern. Why do they always pick him to do the heavy lifting? Then again, he does look stunning without a shirt on.

“And when you’re done with that,” I said, “send a message and cancel my brunch with the children. They won’t mind.”

"The children need Samhain outfits too," Clutie said as she straightened the mermaid skirt on this dress.

“The children need Samhain outfits too,” Clutie said as she straightened the mermaid skirt on this dress.

“The children need Samhain outfits too,” Clutie said as she straightened the mermaid skirt on this dress. Dani nodded as she deftly attached a butterfly made of black titanium to the dress’ headband.

I just shook my head. “Let’s really not think about the prospect of getting Bronwyn to wear black this morning.” The two Sidhe footmen pulled the mirror around so I could see myself. “Oh! I love this one too! I look like a goth flapper! A Gibson Girl without the boobage!”

This dress is by Beyond Persuasion Designs, and Clutie explained (she was translating for Dani, whose only human language is Portuguese, of all things) that the raven tattoo pattern came with the dress, but that it was her idea to match them with the face paint design from Mon Cher and the jewellery from Alchemy Immortals. She was quick to point out that she’d chosen the hair design from Lelutka when I praised it. I had to laugh at that. “Right,” I said. “Yes wardrobe for this one too: next!”

"Next!"

“Next!”

Clutie giggled. “That’s the spirit!” she said as the two footmen came round to help me shimmy out of the dress. (Yes, of course they were cute. There are no ugly footmen in the Seelie Court!)

"It's purple! I love purple!" I said, when I saw this one.

“It’s purple! I love purple!” I said, when I saw this one.

“It’s purple! I love purple!” I said, when I saw this one.

“It has purple accents, Your Majesty.” Clutie always gets more formal when she is correcting me or telling me how to do something, I’ve noticed.

“Whatever.” I rolled my eyes. “What? Drysi’s not here to do it: somebody has to be the teenager here.”

Clutie clucked. “Do you know where Her Highness is, Your Majesty?”

Uh, oh. Two formal titles in one sentence. “I do not,” I said tightly. “Dyisi would only say she’s somewhere safe and she’ll come to me when she’s ready.”

Clutie sniffed and visibly chose not to say anything more on the matter. “Kern, put the Facepalm dress into the ‘yes’ wardrobe, and note that we’re using the MOCK makeup and the Eden Moon jewellery with it, please? Hair is…” she flipped through a set of index cards big enough that she had to use both hands. “Oh! Rezology again.”

Kern sighed the sigh of the long-suffering and complied. As the two footmen moved to remove this dress, he did manage one comment: “Why are you always sending me out of the room when the Queen’s undressed, hm?” There were giggles. They might have been from me.

I gave the dress a final twirl and waited for them to bring on the next one.

I gave the dress a final twirl and waited for them to bring on the next one.

I gave the dress a final twirl and waited for them to bring on the next one.

“It’s not really a ‘room’, Kern,” Clutie muttered while she went through designer cards to decide which dress would be next.

No sooner had they put the next dress on me than a small murder of crows appeared.

No sooner had they put the next dress on me than a small murder of crows appeared.

No sooner had they put the next dress on me than a small murder of crows appeared. “Well, I guess this means Nemaine approves of this one,” I said.

"Would you cretins get off me? And don't be taking any more of my hair back to Nemaine: she's got plenty already," I grumbled.

“Would you cretins get off me? And don’t be taking any more of my hair back to Nemaine: she’s got plenty already,” I grumbled.

“Would you cretins get off me? And don’t be taking any more of my hair back to Nemaine: she’s got plenty already,” I grumbled.

Clutie ignored the crows and asked Kern to make a note that the Moeko dress included jewellery by Glint and another facepaint design by Madrid Solo, lipstick by MOCK. I asked about the body paint, and she explained it was a design that actually came with the dress, from the dress designer. “Tableau Vivant for the hair,” she whispered to Kern.

“When did I start handling the notecards?” Kern asked.

“You complained about not seeing the Queen naked,” Clutie responded. “So I’m handing off the wardrobe job to….” she flung her hand out in a seemingly random direction. “him!” A surprised steward’s assistant came running from the ballroom’s edge. “Yes, madam; of course, madam,” he said. Clutie rolled her eyes at him, but I don’t think he noticed: Clutie’s eyes are very small, of course, and he only had eyes for me. Of course.

I liked the dress a lot better once the crows had been shooed away at last.

I liked the dress a lot better once the crows had been shooed away at last.

I liked the dress a lot better once the crows had been shooed away at last. “Hey, you can see my shoes!”

GizzA,” Clutie informed. “You’ve been wearing them all morning.”

“I know, I know!” I said. “But now I can see them!”

Clutie sighed. “Next dress, please?”

“Next dress, please.”

"Now, this," I said, "really makes me feel like a Gothic Samhain Princess. And Dani, what have you done with my hair?"

“Now, this,” I said, “really makes me feel like a Gothic Samhain Princess. And Dani, what have you done with my hair?”

“Now this,” I said, “really makes me feel like a Gothic Samhain Princess. And Dani, what have you done with my hair?”

Dani chittered excitedly to Clutie. “Analog Dog, she says,” Clutie informed. “Best curls ever, she says.” Clutie turned to Kern. “Necklace is from Cae, armlets are from Earthstones, dress is from Deceitful Innocence.” Kern grumbled that she was talking too fast, and she grumbled back. “Makeup is Madrid Solo and MOCK again.OK, strike a Gothic Princess pose for us, Your Majesty, and then we’ll move on to the last dress for this morning.”

"Only one more dress?" I moaned. "Oh, the humanity!"

“Only one more dress?” I moaned. “Oh, the humanity!”

“Only one more dress?” I moaned. “Oh, the humanity!”

Everybody laughed. Some of the footmen applauded, luckily not the ones who were holding up the mirrors.

“Right, Your Majesty. Keep your eyes closed for this next one: I want you to get the whole effect immediately!” Clutie had a wicked gleam in her eyes.

“Am I going to hate it that much?” I asked.

Clutie smirked. “I have absolutely no idea,” she said, wide-eyed.

So I closed my eyes, because after all, these are my trusted advisors, right? Clutie would never steer me wrong. I felt — ooh, definitely raw silk. I heard the swishing of fabric, the engaging of buttons and clips. Someone slid my shoes off and added stockings—felt like fishnet! I love fishnet. On my feet, definitely boots (I love boots). And… was that a hat they were putting on my head? Oh, help.

"Open your eyes, Your Majesty," Clutie said.

“Open your eyes, Your Majesty,” Clutie said.

“Open your eyes, Your Majesty,” Clutie said.

I couldn’t stop myself: I squealed! I screamed with delight. “It’s so, so, so, Purple!

Clutie fell backwards in the air, she was laughing so hard. She managed to get out, “It’s So- So- So- Souled Out, actually!”

We were all laughing by this time. “The hat too?”

“Yes, the hat too.” Clutie grinned widely. “I knew I was right to save this one for last. Kern– did you get that? Dress is by Souled Out. Makeup is Madrid Solo. Hair is Olive. Boots are Lassitude and Ennui, and the necklace is Maxi Gossamer.

Kern scribbled furiously— at least he could almost manage the notecards.

I turned sideways. "You have no idea how much I love this outfit," I said to no one in particular.

I turned sideways. “You have no idea how much I love this outfit,” I said to no one in particular.

I turned sideways. “You have no idea how much I love this outfit,” I said to no one in particular.

Several different versions of, “Oh, yes, we do, Your Majesty!” came from various voices.

"I'm not taking it off," I declared.

“I’m not taking it off,” I declared.

“I’m not taking it off,” I declared.

“Yes, you are, Your Majesty,” Clutie replied. “Because it is not Samhain yet, and this is for a Samhain party.” Demifae logic. Gotta love it.

“But I don’t want to take it off!” I protested.

“Would you like me to ask the guards for help?”

I smirked. “I can’t decide whether to say ‘yes, because then I’d have sexy Sidhe men holding me down,’ or ‘no, because the jacket might get torn in the process….'”

In the end, I let them take it off me and went back to my chambers with a spring in my step and a smile on my face.

But the HAT. Oh, sweet Lady of Summer, I love the HAT!

But the HAT. Oh, sweet Lady of Summer, I love the HAT!

Style card for items not mentioned specifically in the text:
Body: Maitreya
Skin: DeeTaleZ
Ears: Lumae
Eyebrows: Dead Apples
Hands (and feet, even when not visible): SLink

All these clothes, and the Glint jewellery, are available at Endless Love of the Night: A Gothic Wedding Eventhosted by Hidden Sanctuary Events. Many of them are exclusives; for example, only 20 copies of the Beyond Persuasion gown Gwyneth is wearing in the second set of photos will be sold. 

Endless Love of the Night: A Gothic Wedding Event is OPEN NOW!

Hidden sanctuary events sign

See you at Hidden Sanctuary!

See you at Hidden Sanctuary!

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