So, I guess you could say I’m into mesh heads….

I know a lot of other bloggers have done this, but as my friend Lapis says, everyone brings their own perspective.

I seem to have several mesh heads.

Mostly, I have gravitated toward Lelutka and Catwa heads, because these heads are easy to match with the skins I want. And, as much as I like the look of some of the Genesis heads, I’ve rarely bought one, because the appliers just aren’t out there. Now, I’ve heard many rumours as to why this might be the case, but I don’t really know for sure, so I’m not going to speculate here.

The very first mesh head I bought, probably over a year ago now, was the Lelutka Aria. At the time, there were only a couple of Lelutka heads out, and I bought it because it was the one that had the smallest lips, believe it or not! I have this thing where I don’t want my avatar’s lips to look super-botoxed, and I’m so glad that lately, I’ve been seeing some mesh heads that look closer to right for me. Of course, every one I see that’s closer to right, I buy… so now I have a bit of a collection.

Aria

The Lelutka Aria

So this is the first mesh head I bought. It’s the Lelutka Aria head, and it’s pictured here, as all the other heads I’ll show in this post with Lumae’s gorgeous Eirtae skin, Emo-Tions Leni hair, and BentBox Sylvan Ears. And yes, at the time, these looked like the least full lips that Lelutka had to offer. I’m one of those people who loves to jump on the bandwagon and try new things, so I did go out and grab one shortly after they were released.

Later on, Lelutka’s range broadened out quite a bit. Over the past year, I’ve acquired four Lelutka heads; they’re pictured below.

Lelutka Head Comparison

All four of my Lelutka heads.

Here are all four Lelutka heads, pictured next to one another. I’m aware I don’t own the whole range: I spend a lot of Lindens, but I don’t blog for Lelutka, and I am not made of money, you know. 😉

Of the four, I think my personal favourite is the Stella, and that’s really all about the lips! I know, I know, I keep going on about lips, but to me, they really matter.

Stella

Lelutka Ever Head

I also quite like the slim nose on this head, and the pointy chin, again, these are personal preferences.

For the others I have varying degrees of love. I use a Lelutka head sometimes with The Amazing Catwoman, who needs a blog of her own sometime soon, and I’ll be using a Catwa head in the near future for The Gypsy Davey, who’s also long overdue for a Three-Knots-style update.

For Gwyneth, though, who’s my primary roleplaying character and the love of my SL life (hey! self-love is important!), I admit that I still haven’t found the absolute perfect mesh head. But I suspect, as they keep getting closer and closer, that if and when it appears, it might very well come from Catwa.

Catwa Head Comparison

I, um, own six Catwa heads.

I, um, own six Catwa heads. Seven if you count the Nicki head, which is not a personal favourite and which I only bought because it was L$100. Eight if you count the Justin head, which is the boy head that The Gypsy Davey will be in sometime soonish.

Catwa Test Shot -- Jessica

First, I fell crazy in love with Jessica!

First, I fell crazy in love with Jessica! I mean, look at her! Those pronounced cheekbones, that lovely, straight nose, and lips that don’t look like they’ve been plumped to three times their natural size! (OK, OK, I’ll try to stop it with the lips, or at least tone it down…) I was in the Jessica for a while.

Annie and I never really got on, though I’ve used her on TAC a couple of times. Gwen… well. OK. I bought Gwen because I’ll buy anything named Gwen. It’s true.

Catwa Test Shot -- Helena

Then, I was head over heels for Helena!

Then, I was head over heels for Helena, partially because the face shape makes me think of a more mature version of Jessica. The only thing was… (Oh, no; here she goes again!) the bottom lip. It’s just kinda sticky-outy. Which, I know, is probably a good thing for some people, and the lips are perfectly proportioned for the face, but I just… Gah! I might be obsessed with lips. Right. Moving on.

Then, a miracle happened.

Catwa Test Shot -- Amy

Amy!

Amy! I mean, I know she is meant to look like a doll and all, but I just love her! I love her perky little nose, and her pointy chin, and…. OK, I promised. You know what else I love.

And then, right on Amy‘s heels, came Dyana.

Catwa Test Shot -- Dyana

Dyana

Right, now, I’m thinking the Catwa Dyana is my forever mesh head. It’s doll-like without being totally a doll head, the features are lovely, and I think it takes the Lumae shading exceptionally well.

Of course, next week, Catwa will probably introduce another amazing mesh head and I’ll fall madly in love with that one…. yeah.

I can stop buying mesh heads anytime! I can! I can stop!

Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my LumiPro. I never yammer about mesh heads without it!

I do promise to get back to story-blogging soon! I know, I know. I just keep saying that, don’t I?

 

 

Ramblings about We <3 RP, Skins, and More!

Gwyneth Blog Header

Gwyneth:

There’s not really a story today. Mostly, I’m just going to be talking about some of the fun stuff that’s available at We ❤ RP this month, and also about a new direction I’m taking.

actually bought a sim! Yes, that’s right. As it turns out, we need a little more space for a forest bit in our upcoming role-play sim, so I took the plunge. While the Amazing Dyisi Oppewall is down designing us a Pacific Northwest-style rainforest, I’ve been putting together an OOC office and home in the clouds. I’m going to need a space to myself while I’m working on my PhD in the upcoming months and years, so it seemed like as good a time as any to fashion a real just-for-me, OOC home. I’ve also got new skins to show you from 7 Deadly s[K]ins and (YES!) Curio!

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So, here’s a view of my OOC office.

So, here’s a view of my OOC office. I self-indulgently put some of my favourite photos from past blog posts up on the wall, because they make me feel happy. The cool lamp is from Epic Toy Factory, a hunt gift from the 2016 Fantasy Faire and a memento of their sim, Tinker’s Hollow. The table is from Thor, and I’m pretty sure I got it at a Love To Decorate event a while ago, but I couldn’t promise that. The skybox itself is one of RageWorks‘ beautiful designs, the Classical White. Great camera angles, plenty of space for stuff, and a crisp design that makes me feel like working on stuff.

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What’s Gwyneth Wearing?

What’s Gwyneth Wearing? The outfit is comprised of two of my favourite things that are at We ❤ RP this month, Emo-Tions beautiful Linea bra, and the Leather Pants from Yasum, in Metallic. The shoes are from Reign, the Kiko Flats, and they’re available at FaMeshed. The hair is Analog Dog (natch!), one of her Fantasy Faire releases, Omega. I picked the light brown colour way to go with this fabulous new skin from  7 Deadly s[K]ins, which you can see more closely in the photo below. Body is Maitreya, feet are SLink, ears are Lumae‘s Leevi Long Ears, and the eyes are the Soul Sidhe Eyes. The head is the new Helena head from Catwa, which I bought because it looks a little older than the Jessica Gwyneth had been in, and it reflects Gwyneth’s IC maturation into an ageless Sidhe.

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New Skin Colours at 7 Deadly s[K]ins!

And (yay!) there are new skin colours at  7 Deadly s[K]ins! This is the Sand shade, and the face is Leslie. Izara is now making Omega appliers, which work beautifully on my Catwa head. This is Leslie version 2, which I chose because I love that eyeliner. In this photo you can also see the beautiful detailing on the Emo-Tions bra; it looks even better in world.

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Here’s a view of the (faux!) fireplace wall in the skybox.

Here’s a view of the (faux!) fireplace wall in the skybox. I’m having such fun decorating this place, but you know I’ll change it all around in 3 months when we move from summer into autumn. That said, decorating is fun! The cats on the rug are from Mutresse; they’re a common from the Witty Cats gacha at the current Arcade Gacha. I love this one because they’re all animated: here, one cat is giving another a massage! The two baby pegasi, also at the Arcade Gacha, are from Hextraordinary; they never seem to stop having great ideas for beautiful collectibles and gorgeous things to put in your home. These two beauties are the rares, the Nesting Crystal and the Nesting MidnightThe Pegasus Pony Hatchling is on the left bookcase, and I’m not ashamed to say I played this gacha 50 times. The ponies are all so beautiful; I only wish I could display them all… Wait, I can  display them all, because I have my own sim! OMG THE PRIMS.

Right! Also on the bookcase is another one of the 50-pull prizes from the Arcade Gacha, the Princess of the Swans, from OMEN. The books on both shelves are the product of Stormwood‘s really cool Literati Book Set, which has add-on HUDs that let you customise books to various genres and types. I have Fantasy, Children’s, Crime, and I think some Library books up there. The fighting hedgehog is from Loki, a memento of the 2016 Fantasy Faire Echtra sim, and it was a hunt gift. On the mantelpiece is another lovely memento of FF 2016, the Lucentia music box from The Looking Glass, whose creations never cease to delight and amaze. The mirror is from Mushilu.

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The Amazing Catwoman in Rosemoor

Now, there are often things at We ❤ RP that aren’t Gwyneth’s style, but luckily The Amazing Catwoman is always here to help me out if I need someone else to look great in things that are a bit too, hm, badass for Gwyneth. Here, she’s wearing the Wicca’s Wardrobe Eileen outfit. Her hair is also from We ❤ RP; made by Emo-Tions, it’s Warlord, which comes in sizes for both men and women Her skin is, as often, from  7 Deadly s[K]insit’s the very beautiful Ymke in Faun. I just love the spots, which you can see more clearly in the next photo.

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This skin was released for the 2016 Fantasy Faire.

This skin was released for the 2016 Fantasy Faire, but should now be available in the  7 Deadly s[K]ins Main Store. If ever you’re looking for something specific and you can’t find it in the main store, by the way, you can always IM Izara Allen, and she will be able to tell you where you can find it or source it for you. The 7DS group is also a great resource; most of the time it costs a (small!) fee to join, but she does make it free for special occasions. You can find all the group links in her profile. These eyes are from Gauze; they’re the Paradox Cat Eyes. The ears are also from Gauze; they’re the High Elf Ears, in the Drow colourway. The body is Maitreya, and the mesh head is the Catwa Gwen, because I’ll buy anything called “Gwen”! No, seriously; try me. 😉

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Rosemoor.

I found Rosemoor through Ziki Questi’s Blog, which is where I find a lot of great places to photograph. This is only one view of this gorgeous sim; you can see more in Ziki’s blog post, or why not visit the sim and see for yourself? It’s gorgeous, and the windlight the sim designer has chosen just gives the whole place a slow, relaxed, almost nostalgic feel. I loved visiting and photographing there. The above photographs of The Amazing Catwoman were all taken in Rosemoor. Such a yummy and beautiful place.

Now, I had so many beautiful things to show for this blog entry that I decided to take just some quick editorials of outfits I put together and loved. So bear with me, because I’m just going to give the style cards under the photos.

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Senzafine and Aisling!

Senzafine always hits the ball out the park with her beautiful designs, and this one is no exception; it’s the Ysmay gown in the blue from colour pack 2. I love that her colourways are so consistent; the gowns always go perfectly with the Aesbrenni slippers she released a while back. I always wear those slippers with her gowns.

And yay! Aisling has made another beautiful crown! I love jewellery from Aisling. The crown is called Nealane, and it, along with the Senzafine gown, is available at this month’s We ❤ RP. The crown is great because it comes with a colour-change HUD that gives you a lot of options for both metals and gems. The hair is from Damselfly, also a We ❤ RP release; it’s called Cedar.

Body is Maitreya, head is Catwa Helena, ears are Lumae Leevi Long Ears, feet are SLink, and the skin is Leslie in Sand from  7 Deadly s[K]ins.

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And then there’s this fun, sexy design from !go!.

And then there’s this fun, sexy design from !go!. It’s the Lottia dress and panties, also available at We ❤ RP. For this outfit, I changed Gwyneth back in to one of the Lumae skins she commonly wears; this one is the Eirtae skin in colour way Shell, released for a Genre event a while back. I love that Lumiya Rae has made appliers for the BentBox Sylvan Ears; you can pick those up, along with the skin, at the Lumae Main Store. Body is Maitreya, head is Catwa Helena, feet are SLink, and the foot jewellery is from Carrie’s Lingerie, the Silver Sandals. They come with a gem change HUD so you can match them to whatever you’re wearing. This hair, by the way, is from Magika. The style name is Love Song, and it’s available at the Magika Main Store.

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Last, but not least…

Last, but definitely not least, here is a beautiful new outfit from The White Armory, just released in The White Armory Main Store. This is the Guardians of Mirkwood dress set, in Hunter. Now, Bee Dumpling has been designing clothes in Second Life for a long time, and I, like every other fantasy fashion junkie, have been buying her stuff for as long as I’ve been in SL. She is always right on the trend with designing things for mesh bodies, and this is a Maitreya fitted garment that works beautifully. The trousers (thank the gods!) are both system and applier, so The Amazing Catwoman can wear these beautiful Moccasin Boots from Maitreya over them with no problem. Like all the shady hunter/ranger types out there, Tac is always frustrated when she can’t fit boots over a pair of mesh trousers, and her poor player spends hours (I am not making this up!) searching on the SL Marketplace for boots that will actually work with ranger-style outfits, because Tac lives in these when she’s working in a fantasy environment, and there’s nothing worse than suddenly discovering your trousers are peeking through your boots at an inopportune moment. Throws you right off your stride when pickpocketing in the better parts of town. 😉

The other amazing thing about this outfit for TAC is that she is in a Curio skin! Gala Phoenix has amazingly released all her original skin tones as appliers for mesh bodies! And they look beautiful. Along with this, she’s also released three new faces. This one is Pout. There aren’t any Omega appliers or mesh head appliers yet, but I shall keep hoping. Some of you know that before Gala had to take a break from SL, I pretty much wore nothing but Curio skins, and now that she’s releasing more, I just go to her shop every time I get a notice and fatpack that shit. Gwyneth absolutely adores her lighter tones and hopes desperately for Catwa or Omega head appliers in the near future! This is the Bean Light colourway. I think it looks great on TAC, and I can’t wait to try some of the others. Body is Maitreya, hair is Tableau Vivant, Luminay, from last month’s Collabor88, the necklace is Miamai‘s Rise In The Sun, and the ring is Aisling‘s The Good Wife. Eyes and ears are Gauze, Paradox Cat Eyes and High Elf Ears (Drow).

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Just one more photo!

Just one more photo! Now, the thing about Guardians of Mirkwood is that you have to look at the back! I love this beautiful design on the back of the jacket, so I had to show it to you. It’s one reason why I put TAC in such a short cropped hairstyle for this photoshoot; I wanted you to be able to see the beautiful line of this jacket from the back.

Whew! Such a long info dump; thank you if you’ve read this far. I’ll get back to my regular story-blogging later in the week. I’m about to have exciting stuff to show you from Hairology, and The Vintage Fair is just around the corner, as well. Collabor88 opens in just a few days, too: I can feel my Linden Balance slipping even as we speak…

No Style Cards today; everything’s noted below the photographs themselves.

I am instructed to thank Dyisi Oppewall for something, so I shall thank her for helping me have what was for me a very difficult conversation with a friend last night. Thanks for holding my virtual hand, and I shall continue to butter your biscuits for the foreseeable future.

General thanks also go to Moxy Macbeth for being awesome, and to Lanella Little for restoring my faith in youth. Dickensian Dreamer also helps keep me sane, and my life would not be complete without the inimitable (and occasionally snoring) Benbold. 

Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my LumiPro. I never ramble for hours about clothes and skins without it!

 

 

 

 

 

A Dream of Winter

Gwyneth Blog Header

Gwyneth:

My dreams grow more intense. I had the most haunting dream the other night, and I wasn’t sure about all the messages there seemed to be in it at the time, but now I think it must be about protection, and unity.

 

 

 

 

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I was standing in a place that I knew to be my Bower, though it was much changed.

I was standing in a place that I knew to be my Bower, though it was much changed. There was new snowfall everywhere, and I came to myself in a little copse of trees, all alight by some magic. How beautiful, I thought. I noted the house behind me, but it seemed obvious that I had just come from there. And there was a path, and you know how sensible these things seem in dreams: I walked down it.

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Everywhere, there was the mist that I have come to associate with thick, Fae magic.

Everywhere, there was the mist that I have come to associate with thick, Fae magic. To my right, I spied a gazebo that I was sure I’d seen before, and two little houses were on my left. I knew instinctively that these were Drysi and Eilian’s residences, and I wondered for a moment why there was no residence for Bronwyn. I made a mental note to ask Dyisi whether or not she’d seen anything about Bronwyn’s future. Perhaps Bronwyn is in some kind of danger. Then again, half the time I don’t know where she is anyway. At least, now that the number of injured we have just seen come through the Bower has convinced Eilian that books are more interesting than pretending to be a warrior, he can be counted on to be in his room studying most of the time, and I have some hope that he might turn out to be more sensible than I’d feared. And Drysi, well. I just hope our relationship continues to improve.

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But something else caught my eye.

But something else caught my eye. At the end of the path, there was a circle of purple flowers. I laughed to think of flowers in the snow. In their midst, there was a statue of a spring goddess, or I assumed she was some aspect of spring or summer: she certainly wasn’t dressed for the snow. I found that I was holding, somehow, five votive candles, which I placed around her feet and lit: three for our Realms of Earth, Sea, and Sky, one for the creative initiator of Fire, and one to the Shining Ones.

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Then I turned and saw what looked like  a garden wall.

Then, I turned and saw what looked like a garden wall. But no ordinary garden, no. I could already see what peeked over the edges. It was our somewhat wilful Sithen Rose. I smiled to myself to see that someone had made it a much more secure enclosure than Davey’s well-meaning stonework, but then as I got closer I saw the gypsy’s mark on the gate post and smiled to myself.

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I swear, if ever there were a more menacing plant, I have not met it.

I swear, if ever there were a more menacing plant, I have not met it. Nor would I want to. As I entered the garden, one of the roses lifted up and followed my progress round the still-existing stone enclosure, and I could swear I heard a hiss. The Sithen Rose at the old Seelie Sithen in Ashbourne was a much more benign plant than this. I wonder if it’s exposure to Maric’s roses that has made it so, well, odd. I left the walled garden quickly, resolving to have that very structure built the moment I woke up.

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When I left the walled garden, I found the familiar field of flowers, blooming even in the snow.

When I left the walled garden, I found the familiar field of flowers, blooming even in the snow, and my beloved reading house. As I walked round, I saw that Wren’s treehouse still looked intact, so no need to worry about her future, at least for the moment.

The paths, now covered over with snow, seemed the same, though the central one now pointed toward the gazebo I’d rounded on my way to the Sithen Rose.

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As I drew closer, I realised the gazebo was more than just a decorative piece of the garden.

As i drew closer, I realised the gazebo was more than just a decorative piece of the garden. Beneath its mosaic roof was a council table with many seats.

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Of course, as with everything in dreams, this felt significant.

Of course, as with everything in dreams, this felt significant. Reflexively, i reached for the necklace I wore, then discovered that it felt unfamiliar. I looked down to find I was wearing an exquisite, perfect dragon, with a crystal clutched in its talons. The workmanship was so familiar. How odd that I didn’t remember purchasing this dragon necklace from anywhere, and how odd I’d have a dragon symbol at all: I just don’t think all that much about dragons, unless they’re Lilacor. Was I now being protected somehow by a dragon?

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I couldn’t resist a little play when I finally got to the beautiful and impressive looking council table, with its big wooden chairs.

I couldn’t resist a little play when I finally got to the beautiful and impressive looking council table, with its big wooden chairs. “Oh, Lord Daecharion. How awful to see you. Do please take a seat: I’ve iced this one specially for you.” This made me cackle like a madwoman in my dream.

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Still, there’s no denying the beauty and workmanship of this table.

Still, there’s no denying the beauty and workmanship of this table, even if all I could think to do with it on first glance was insult that stuffed old prick Daecharion. I did wonder what it meant, though: are we to be at war again? Will we be drawing up treaties? Are we to come together with other Fae royals from different realms and try to make sense of the cosmos?

All these questions started jumbling together in my head, and then next thing I knew, I was waking up in my own familiar bed.

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Well, the bed was at least familiar.

Well, the bed was at least familiar. Nothing else was. Oh, joy: a new season, a new Bower. I went to explore to see if my dream was true, and I found a magical ladder, similar to the ones that we had in my lovely Treehouse, to take me down to the new Residence’s main level.

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I descended in what I could only imagine must be intended to be Nathaniel’s office.

I descended to what I could only imagine must be intended to be Nathaniel’s office. It was full of dark wood and purple and old books. Not that I don’t like old books, mind.

 

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Of course, my eyes lit up when I saw the kitchen!

Of course, my eyes lit up when I saw the kitchen! No more sneaking to a different building to get a midnight snack! And the table is the same one from the coffee pavilion in the old place, so that’ll be familiar at least to the children. I must go round and inspect their little houses later on.

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And the rest of the main level!

And the rest of the main level! Such huge windows, and my beautiful desk, and a big window seat, and an artist’s corner with an easel! I suppose this means the Shining Ones want me to explore art again. I haven’t been painting in such a long time.

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And now I imagine the bower as a snow globe.

And now I imagine the bower as a snow globe. A little circle of light. How funny it would be, to live in a snow globe.

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There are dragons, and wolves, above the fireplace.

There are dragons, and wolves, above the fireplace. And I’ve been a brunette since I woke up from my dream. I don’t know what that means, either. But I am so happy not to be asleep again, like last year. I never want to sleep through another season. I think, had I not been sleeping, My King Janus might still be with me. I miss him every single day.

Style Cards:

Gwyneth in Red
Body:
Maitreya Lara
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Vlinder, version 8a, Catwa Applier, in skintone Apricot (Available, along with Maitreya and SLink appliers, at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main Store)
Head: Catwa Jessica
Hair: Calico, Theia (Available at The Secret Affair)
Crown: Noble Creations, Gold Crown (Group Gift at the Noble Creations Main Store)
Ears: BentBox, Sylvan Ears, Medium (Available at We Love Roleplay)
Eyes: IKON, Spectral Eyes, Gold
Dress: The White Armory, Crystal Solstice Gown, Ruby
Necklace: Otherskin, Gaurdians Mercury Tigereye (An Advent Calendar Gift at the upcoming Fair Play [opens 1 December])
Wings: Deviance, Sidhe Wings, Briar Rose (Rare)
Shoes: Junbug, Valkyrie Sandals, Red (even if you can’t see them!)

In the bower:
New Seelie Queen Residence
: LAQ, Picturesque Cottage
Children’s Houses: KTZ Houses, Pashoot
Statue: Paper Moon, Visage Stone Statue (Rare)
Flower Ring: The Looking Glass, Dream Fields Circle
Sithen Rose Walled Garden Enclosure: Spargel & Shine, Jardin Marisol (Available at Cosmopolitan)
Sithen Rose Inner Enclosure: Artisan Fantasy, Maiden Tor Stone Wall
Sithen Rose: The Looking Glass, Hearts Like China Roses
Flower Field: The Looking Glass, Ichi Fields
Stone Circle: Gor Con, Menhir Circle (Ultra Rare)
Storyteller’s House: 8f8 Storyteller’s Burrow (Rare)
Gazebo: Cerridwen’s Cauldron, Seelie Gazebo, Wide
Council Table & Chairs: Noble Creations, The Round Table (Available at  We Love Roleplay)
Trees: Studio Skye, Enchanted Woods
Signposts: 8f8, Storyteller’s Burrow, Sign Post and Direction Post
Snow-Covered Paths: Happy Mood, Dirt Road
Cobbled Paths: [DDD] Stoney Path

Gwyneth in Jeans
Body: Maitreya Lara
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Vlinder, version 8a, Catwa Applier, in skintone Apricot (Available, along with Maitreya and SLink appliers, at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main Store)
Head: Catwa Jessica
Hair: Analog Dog (natch!) Gwen
Ears: BentBox, Sylvan Ears, Medium (Available at  We Love Roleplay)
Eyes: IKON, Spectral Eyes, Gold
Shirt: Kitja, Nile Shirt, Grey (Available at Uber)
Jeans: Spirit, Abba Jeans (Available at Uber)
Boots: aDiva, Kenya Moto Boots
Necklaces:
Otherskin, Gaurdians Mercury Tigereye (An Advent Calendar Gift at the upcoming Fair Play [opens 1 December])
BAMSE, Moon Necklace (Rare) (Available at The Fantasy Collective)

In the House:
Bed
: Tarte, Enchanted Slumber
Nathaniel’s Office
Bookcases: 8f8, Storyteller’s Burrow, Grand Cabinet, Double Bookcase
Furniture: Artisan Fantasy, Valezquez Set, Hacienda Reading Bench
Kitchen
Table, Chairs, Benches: Trompe Loeil, Laney Table
Back Kitchen Fixtures: [DDD], Victorian Little Kitchen
Coffee Decor: Kunst, Coffee Gacha (Available at Shiny Shabby)
Food Prep Table: Ginger Line: Double Wood Basic Counter
Lamp: Velvet Whip, Moon Lamp (ultrarare) (Available at the Fantasy Gacha Carnival)
Fireplace Shield Decor: Artisan Fantasy, Symbolic Shields Triple Wolf (ultra rare) and Dragon Triquetra (rare)
Living Room
Couches, tables, and candles: Artisan Fantasy, Hacienda Living Room
Desk: Tia, Diplomat’s Desk
Easel: Solarium, Medhir Woods Easel and Painting
Artist’s Table and Bench, plus decor: Apple Fall, Old Stained Table and Old Stained Bench; Red Tea Towel, and Liberty Sketchbook
Curtains: ASO, Vintage Curtain (Available at The Fantasy Collective)
Kitten Painting: Antique Artistry, Yard Long Painting, Kittens
Lamp: Velvet Whip, Moon Lamp (rare)

Snow Globe: Turnip’s Skydome 2.0

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

Fair Play opens on the first of December and runs through the seventh of January. Make sure to check out the Advent Calendar there, where you can get a beautiful free item every day!

I’m absolutely chuffed to have been selected to blog for Noble Creations, whose beautiful things I’ve bought and enjoyed for some time now. I only blog stuff I love.

7dsFair Play Logo[NC] - Noble Creations - LOGO

Midsummer’s Night

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!

Miracles

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)

Faewatch - 1

Nathaniel Ballard: MystHaven’s Sexy Steward

Everything you always wanted to know about the Beguiling Mr Ballard (Almost!)

—by Cherish Gelato
The Castle of MystHaven

The Castle of MystHaven

The Castle of MystHaven rises high above the village, dwarfed only by the mysterious peaks behind it. Stories say no one has ever been to those mountains, and we’re not going to prove them wrong, at least not today! Today, we bring you an exclusive, one-on-one interview with the mysterious Steward of MystHaven, Nathaniel Ballard, who’s captured the hearts of queens, dryads, Victorian vampiresses, and of course our readers!

Could you be the lucky winner of a private date with Nathaniel? Read on to find out how!

The village itself was quiet.

The village itself was quiet.

The village itself seemed quiet when I arrived there, a few townspeople talking, animals grazing on the common, the sort of thing you’d expect to find in a quiet, unassuming little place. Of course, this quiet, unassuming little place is connected to Faerie, and its leader has a very strange reputation, indeed.

Nathaniel met me in the castle's reception room.

Nathaniel met me in the castle’s reception room.

Nathaniel met me in the castle’s reception room after I’d been waved through by the Mysthaven guards, a daunting force of armed men who work tirelessly round the clock to keep the population of MystHaven safe from whatever lies out there, in Faerie.

I just have to say to start out: What a dish! I had to concentrate on the interview, but of course it was impossible not to keep sneaking glances at such a feast for the eyes. Nathaniel explained to me that because Lord Maric, the ruler of MystHaven was busy much of the time, he had the day-to-day responsibility for everything from the town treasury to defence, as well as the diplomatic liaison between MystHaven and the fae courts.

CG: Goodness—that’s a lot of responsibility for someone who looks so young. But you’re not as young as you look, are you, Nathaniel?

NB: Well, don’t believe everything Gwyneth says about me, sometimes she exaggerates. As to my age, that’s a kind of tricky question, since I don’t really know what year it is any more. I was born, by my reckoning, in the year 1853. In 1885 just before my 32nd birthday, shortly after the death of my wife, Alexandra, I was embraced, that is to say, was made a vampire. That was when I stopped aging, in physical terms, so, I look 32, and will look 32 so long as I choose to. The one who made me disappeared, and I spent six years searching for her in Germany and America, before ending upin London in 1891, six years later. Since then, due to various adventures, I seem to be somewhat disconnected from the normal streams of time. Since you are familiar with fae matters, you will understand that. By my reckoning, I have experienced four years since I arrived in London, which would mean that, were the calendar linear, it would now be 1895, which would make me 42 in terms of elapsed years.” He chuckles. “On the other hand, given some of what I have experienced over the past few years, sometimes I feel a lot older.

MystHaven's sumptuous dining room.

MystHaven’s sumptuous dining room.

CG: I could never imagine Gwyneth exaggerating, but of course, I am familiar with fae matters, and I do know that everything is not what it seems in Faerie! Of course, what my readers really want to know is, what’s it like to be the Consort of the Summer Queen?

NB: I have only been Consort, formally, since Ostara a couple of months ago. It is a formal acknowledgment of my relationship with the Queen, as opposed to my relationship with Gwyneth. It gives me an official position and status within the courts, a place at official functions etc. I suppose it gives me some measure of authority within the fae realms, but so far, I have not needed to exercise it. It’s largely a political matter and to my view, anyway, irrelevant in terms of our relationship.

CG: So your position as Consort gives you ‘some measure of authority’. Would you then, be leading the Shining Throng, say, into battle, in the absence of Queen Gwyneth?

NB: [laughs] I’m an accountant, not a warrior. Though, of late, I have become more and more of the latter. Leading the armies is matter for the rooks and ravens and such like, but, when it comes to the defence of the realm, then I would be there at the forefront and if the Shining Throng would accept my leadership, I would provide it, but I would take their advice. It is the same here in Mysthaven. Captain Kustav is a far more able warrior than I, yet he would accept my lead on the battlefield, but I would lead based on his advice.

The happy couple!

The happy couple!

CG: Good, good; so you do have a good head on your shoulders, despite your long sojourn in Faerie. But yes, what about your relationship with Queen Gwyneth? Are there wedding bells in your future?

NB: I met Gwyn in a place far from here, now long gone, called Jasper Cove. I had not long arrived there and had found myself a position as accountant and barkeep at the tavern there. Gwyn arrived a little later and started working as a barmaid. She was not as you see her now then. She was a short-arsed girl from the East End of London, and that was the London of the 21st century, as opposed to the London the 19th century I knew. She had a mouth on her that would make a sailor blush, and I should know, I was a sailor, but, despite that, she was smart, knew a lot about literature and poetry, which was about the only common ground we had. I used to call her a potty-mouthed polymath and she called me a posh fuck. She also thought I was, what was the word she used, gay – a homosexual. Nevertheless, we became friends.  It was while we were in Jasper Cove, as a result of some defences we had to erect to protect ourselves from attacks from fae creatures, that Gwyn discovered she was of fae blood, that she had been left with human parents, a changeling. Anyway, Jasper burned and we found ourselves here. Gwyn was still coming to terms with her fae nature. We were still friends, but became closer. Then, one day, we found ourselves facing almost certain death at the hands of the Raven of the then Unseelie Queen. I decided to take a chance on feelings that seemed to be developing, and kissed her.  We survived said battle and things developed from there.  And, a couple of weeks ago, I did propose and she accepted. We are trying to play down the whole ‘marriage’ in the political sense, because that opens a whole can of worms in the fae courts. We want it for ourselves, for love, but…

CG: What a sweet story! I am trying to picture Queen Gwyneth saying … well, anything unpleasant, really, and I just can’t. What a different side of her you must have gotten to know. So she’s changed a lot, then, from when you first met and fell in love with her. Is that ever a hardship for you?

NB: She has changed a lot, it is true. And it was hard on her. She came into her fae maturity a lot faster than was normal, because of circumstances. A fae prince here adopted her and we had to do a lot of negotiation for her to continue in the relationship with me because, in fae terms, she was far too young.  Also, during this time, I discovered that I was part fae myself, through my mother, who was descended from the Tuatha de Danaan.  And my fae nature was .. amplified through my dealings with a fae goddess and the late Unseelie Queen, so I have changed a lot too. As to it being a hardship, maybe so. She has a lot of responsibilities as do I. We have to be aware of the political implications of what we do. But, for all that she has changed – she is taller now, and more beautiful, even when you discount the glamour. She has matured and become more fae in nature, which can be … trying at times, when starts talking in ways that are normal to the fae, but to mortals seems a little crazy.. especially when her words start making flowers grow and butterflies appear.” He laughs, “Sometimes, I think it irritates her too, because she can’t swear properly any more. Even when she is frustrated and angry and wants to curse like a sailor, it still comes out like the dulcet tones of a refined princess, which rather ruins the effect.  But, when it is just her and me, underneath it all, she is still my Gwyn, I am still her Nathaniel and our love is as strong as ever, and gets stronger every day.

How could one's love for this man NOT get stronger every day?

How could one’s love for this man NOT get stronger every day?

CG: That’s so lovely. Now, of course our readers will be curious about your upcoming wedding! I know you said you wanted to play it down, but surely there’s no way for the Queen of Faerie to have a tiny, private wedding ceremony. Have you set a date? Do you have a theme?

NB: [rolls eyes, curses under breath] Let’s say that the political implications are still being sorted out. As I said, I am 1/8 fae by birth but probably a lot more than that by … adoption and quickening, but, that isn’t going to be fae enough for some. I’m not a huge fan of great ceremony. The only reason my first wedding turned into a bit of an event was because the town mayor attended, and that was because he was a family friend, rather than us having any great significance as a couple. I keep hoping that it can be an event for us, rather than a theatrical extravaganza, but,” he sighs, “I suppose, if it were down to me, I’d probably want to go for an Arthurian theme. The stories of King Arthur were my first great love as a child. Or maybe something Shakespearean.  But, it’s not about me, is it? Weddings are all about the bride, and usually, her family. I know Alexandra’s parents more or less took over ours. There’s probably less chance of that happening. We haven’t succeeded in locating Gwyn’s mother, Sia, yet, and I haven’t heard anything of her adoptive father for some while. Though, there is a chance we could find him, if we could work out where Roanofa…. or something like that is.  As for a date, I don’t really know.  We’re too late for Beltaine, the solstice is coming up way too fast, so I don’t know if we could get organised in time, then maybe Lughnasadh. We haven’t really talked about it yet.

CG: Oh, I was sure you’d say it was coming up at Midsummer. I mean, isn’t that the time your children will be … do we say, ‘born’, or not? Queen Gwyneth explained to me about the crystals when we spoke a few weeks ago.

NB: In an ideal world, midsummer would be the obvious choice, because once that is over, the throne becomes more the responsibility of the winter king, so we will have more time together without having to spend so much time on the throne.  And, yes, the children are due then, which is a whole other puzzle, as I have no idea how to deal with fae babies. I guess that is something we will have to work out between us. Like I said, I’m just the groom.” he grins. “If midsummer is what my lady wants, then I will have to apply my extensive logistical experience and do my damndest to see it happens.

A gentleman and a scholar.

A gentleman and a scholar.

CG: You seem to have everything under control, even if you say you haven’t. But moving on to some things our readers have asked about…. Of course, I, and our readers, are very curious about the world of the Fae: that’s why we’re in business here at FaeWatch. When Fae are intimate with one another. Do they- do you really glow?

NB: [laughs, coughs] Well, now, what a curious lot your readers must be. You hear a lot of things about fae intimacy, from glowing bodies to flowers blooming to exploding bluebirds.  Though the latter was suggested by one of the fae who was a little strange. I can’t say that my experience is typical, given my somewhat … hybrid … nature.  Fae intimacy involves a lot of fae energy, what I like to call the wyld, which is, to me, a life-affirming energy and there is often a lot left over, which can manifest itself in many ways. You may have noticed that Gwyn tends to get flowers growing round her feet, and that’s just be walking around. I’ve learned how to channel much of that energy, soak it up, so to speak. Plus, Blaise, her adoptive father, gave us a crystal that helps to dampen the external effects. Even so, there is often a lot left over sometimes, so, yes, there can be glowing.

The Steward's Chambers at MystHaven.

The Steward’s Chambers at MystHaven.

CG: Exploding bluebirds? That must have been some night! So you need magic to dampen magic? That’s very interesting. Now, Gwyneth has explained to me that the Fae don’t treat relationships as we mortals do: she says she has many lovers and intends to keep it that way. As her future husband, do you have any worries about the sort of … extracurricular company she might keep?

NB: [chuckles] Well now, you really do go for in-depth reporting. I know who they are, at least, I think I do, and, at times, we have shared intimacy, so most of her extra-curricular company, what a delightful way of putting it, is my extracurricular company too. And if there are others, on either side, that end up not being shared, then that is fine too, so long as we are both open with each other about it. It provides variety, it makes sure we never get bored, though that is extremely unlikely anyway, and at the end of the day, we come back to each other, and that’s the main thing.

CG: We ask the questions our readers want to know. I have a list here of questions sent in by our readers, some of which are far more … probing than what I’ve asked you so far. But let’s move on from your relationship with Queen Gwyneth. Is it true that Maric, Lord of Mysthaven, is a Prince of Hell and that this very village rose out of the depths overnight?

NB: [Shakes his head] I am fairly sure he isn’t from Hell. We have dealings with Hell, of course, but he is by no means a fan of the place or its denizens. I’m better inclined towards them, but then, I’ve known some of them a long time. But Maric, no, not a Prince of Hell, so far as I know. It is true that the village appeared her overnight, but I wouldn’t say it rose from the depths so much as emerged from the mists. It is my guess it came from somewhere in the Slavic areas of Europe, from the names and accents, but when it came from, I am not so sure.

Snapshot_006 Snapshot_007 Snapshot_005 Snapshot_004

Some shots of the village that rose out of the mists, fully formed, not so long ago.

CG: And did that not strike you all as just a little bit, well, creepy? Or do villages generally emerge from the mists in your experience?

NB: [laughs out loud] Ten years ago, I was a ships purser. I went to visit my older lover and she turned out to be a vampire who made me into a vampire. I spent 6 years traveling the world looking for her after that. Four years ago, I sailed into a place that looked very much like London, and discovered there were others like me, and also werewolves, faeries, elves, dragons, demons, a devil, a clockwork bunny rabbit…. a few years ago, I left that London and was shipwrecked. A man on a boat, that at the time, I believed to be Charon, took me across a river to an island outside time, where I met more exotic creatures, including a phoenix. That place burned and the boatman turned out to have also been the prince of that place, as well as a young man I nearly had an affair with when I was in London, and, was once that famous Elizabethan mystic, John Dee. I came here, and once, on this hill, stood a castle run by a vampire. I had a brief affair with a dryad and met an old, and much loved  friend I had previously known in London, who turned out to be queen of the Cait Sidhe. That castle was besieged by tree creatures and destroyed, while I took shelter with the Unseelie Queen and she and I became very close friends and more. I have battled great sea creatures, sluagh, the hounds of hell, the Wild Hunt, my girlfriend turned into a faerie queen, the old faerie queen passed on yet still visits me in dreams…. In among all that, a village appearing out of the mysts overnight barely merits a raised eyebrow.

CG: Well, when you put it that way, I guess it might be an everyday occurrence. Now, I’m sure you have to get back to your duties, but let me just ask you one last question, something that keeps coming up from our readers. You must know that you’re quite the heartthrob. I’ve had no less than fifteen requests that Faewatch sponsor a contest to win a date with you. How would you feel about that? Can we sign you up for some fun with a lucky mortal?

NB: I’ve never considered myself a heartthrob. And I’m not sure what sort of date I could offer – it’s not as if we have a wide range of restaurants, theatres etc to go to here. But, I suppose, if Gwyneth is agreeable, I could do that. Is there any way the contest could benefit some worthy cause?

CG: Of course, of course! Charity of your choice? I understand there are quite a few displaced folks wandering around Mysthaven: could we donate a portion of the entry fees to their upkeep? Thank you so much, Nathaniel, for your time and your candour. 

NB: Thank you, Cherish. It’s been a pleasure.

Want to learn more about this man? Enter our contest!

Want to learn more about this man? Enter our contest!

To enter FaeWatch’s Win A Date With Nathaniel Ballard Contest, just send your name, method of contact, and the entry fee of $100 to our offices here at FaeWatch. We’ll announce the winner sometime before Samhain!

NEXT WEEK: CHERISH GOES IN-DEPTH WITH HERMETIC HEDGE WITCHES TO PROVE WHETHER OR NOT YOU CAN CURE WARTS WITH HALF A POTATO AND A RUSTY NAIL! DON’T MISS IT!

Have I stayed too long at the Faire?

Gwyneth:

Gwyneth:

Have I stayed too long at the Faire? What a ridiculous question. The answer, of course, is no! But the Faire has ended officially, and the merchants are beginning to pack up their wares, those who can’t wait to go home, that is.

I was a vision for the Masqued Ball.

I was a vision for the Masqued Ball.

I was a vision for the Masqued Ball, if I do say so myself! But I felt myself on the fringes, as if something were tugging at me. When I turned to see what it was, it was gone.

But I feel it. Something in the air. Something of summer. My King. My King. I know it was him.  I feel the call to go home to Faerie now. But a few more stories, before I leave. just a few more.

One night, I found myself in Ichi-go Ichi-I.

One night, I found myself in Ichi-go Ichi-I.

One night, I found myself in Ichi-go Ichi-i, unsure of how I’d ended up there. A nice faerie offered me some tea. I felt made of gossamer, clouded pink with spring butterflies. I danced all night. This glorious dress is made by AZUL, the same dressmaker who designed the gown I wore for the masqued ball, above. Both so completely different from one another. What talent! I am wearing a set of jewellery from The Plastik, who never fail to amaze me with beautiful things. This one included a pendant that didn’t come with a chain, so I hooked it in to the strap the dress and hoped! As often is the case: my hope was rewarded— it looked great there!

Then, I got to thinking about summer, the triumph of the sun.

I saw my future as the Queen of Summer.

I saw my future as the Queen of Summer.

I saw my future as the Queen of Summer, in a dress from The White Armory and matching adornments from Muse. 

Before I left, I wanted to revisit one of my favourite places at the Faire.

Before I left, I wanted to revisit one of my favourite places at the Faire.

Before I left, I wanted to revisit one of my favourite places at the Faire.

This is the Writers' Circle in Sylvan of Spells.

This is the Writers’ Circle in Sylvan of Spells.

This is the Writers’ Circle in Sylvan of Spells. Those of you who know me will be unsurprised that it’s among my favourite places: my mortal background was in literature and writing, and before the… well, I used to call it an “unfortunate incident”, but I’m not so sure that’s the case now… before the event that whisked me out of my mortal life in and into Jasper Cove, I was a lecturer, a professor I guess some would call it, a writer, a teacher of literature and writing, and an avid fantasist.

Now that my life is fantasy, I don't know whether the word 'fantasist' applies....

Now that my life is fantasy, I don’t know whether the word ‘fantasist’ applies….

Now that my life is fantasy, I don’t know whether the word ‘fantasist’ applies…. unless it’s when I try to explain to Nathaniel about the Internet and his head explodes. Again.

I suppose that’s a a habit of mine, as it is the same with many people: to go back and revisit one’s favourite place before leaving someplace special.

I wonder, I wonder. I wonder if by some magic, some generosity of the goddess, I could create a space like this? In Faerie or elsewhere; it wouldn’t matter to me. I wonder.

And on a more important note: yet another perq of being a Faerie Queen: you don’t have to pack! And it’s not like other fae just do it for you: it’s that you really don’t have to pack. I fucking love magic.

Style Cards:

Gwyneth preparing for the Masqued Ball:
Mask: 
Illusions: Unseelie Headpiece (Available at the Fantasy Faire!)
Skin: 
Curio: Simone in Moondrop
Hair: 
Analog Dog (natch!): Sola (Available at the Fantasy Faire!)
Ears: 
Lumae: Leevi Long Ears
Wings: 
Remarkable Oblivion: Eternity Wings in Licentious
Jewellery: 
Violator: Hedera
Dress: 
AZUL: Naarnisse
Shoes: 
GizzA: L’amour Heels

One Night, I Found Myself in Ichi-go Ichi-e:
Dress: AZUL: Pepeke (Available at Fantasy Faire!)
Hair: Analog Dog (natch!) Contriuneau (Available at Fantasy Faire!)
Jewellery: The Plastic: Illariel circlet, pendant, and ring (Available at Fantasy Faire!)
Skin: Curio: Simone in Moondrop
Shoes: Tumble Twig & Skjern Designs: Pearls of Muse (pink)

All other photos:
Dress: The White Armory: Maiden of Tuatha in Royal
Jewellery (crown, earrings, choker, dress ornament, veil): MUSE, Maiden of Tuatha Accessories in Royal
Skin: Curio: Kai in Moondrop
Ears: Lumae: Leevi Long Ears
Hair: Analog Dog (natch!): Megan
Anklets: Honesty Starsider: Empress Rose

Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my 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.