An Extra Place at the Table

It is October in Awenia. And so we watch the world change, and sometimes we make the world change, as our magical year turns toward its ending. And yes, we believe that inside all endings there are also beginnings, and that is how we see the world on a wheel. Our Three Realms, Land, Sea, Sky, they all live in this wheel and on this cycle. As we near the turning point of the cycle, we mark where our old year passes into the new. In Awenia, because we are a Realm of inspiration, this marking goes on throughout the month of October.

To remember our departed, recently and ancient, every table gains an extra setting at this time.

An Extra Place

In some traditions, this practice is known as the Dumb Supper, and everything is prepared oppositely with everything usually on the right placed on the left, for example. Here, there is so thin a veil every day between worlds and realms, we do not bother with this ritual aspect.

Instead, we concentrate on beauty

Instead, we concentrate on making the space beautiful, welcoming, inviting, in the hopes that our honoured departed, be they recently gone from us or from many centuries ago, will find our tables to their liking.

For this year’s Sacred Meadow Table, I have found the most beautiful tableware, produced by master craftswoman Nodnol Jameson and her Kraftwork house. These arrived just as I was beginning to Turn Awenia to Autumn. They were part of a larger seasonal decorating package called a Decorate that I have enjoyed receiving for many years. This time of year, the contents are often focused on the more popular aspects of our Autumn holidays, the spooky fun, and the spooky creepy, and while we love those things in Awenia as well (Her Majesty will personally kiss you if you bring her candy corn!), we do take a more meditative view of these days.

Cats and Cups

So, this month, while you’re getting ready for your spooky fun and working on memorising your best ghost story or perfecting the perfect Hallowe’en costume, take a moment, if you can find one, and consider why we honour the dead. Why do we venerate our ancestors? For what reasons do we hold them in our memories and our hearts? How would the repast before us be possible, if we truly existed on our own, in some bubble, and had no ancestors, no giants on whose shoulders we could stand?

A Place at the Table

And, if the spirit moves you, set an extra place at your table, too. And have dinner with your father, your grandmother, your long-lost relative who gave some part of themselves so that you could be you.

Back, and Forward

Now, imagine—in a hundred years’ time, in five hundred years’ time, who will set a place at their table and hope to share a meal with you?

Notes and Credits:
The table setting: Kraftwork, Fall Dinnerware, for the 2020 Halloween DecoCrate
The Table, Chairs, & Benches: Raindale, Maplemoor
The Cats (both stone and sleeping) Maru-Kado
The Unicorn & Pony: Teegle
The Pond: Two Moon Gardens
The Statue: HarshLands, Spring Guardian
The Standing Stones: Studio Skye, Skye Standing Stones
The Castle In The Distance: Rivendale, Dreamy Castle
The Ground Cover: Happy Mood, Sweet Garden Grass 08
Prominent Trees: The Little Branch
Purple Bush: Cube Republic, Useful Bush
Environment: Landscapes Unlimited, Sweetwater Valley
Stars: Landscapes Unlimited, Starry Night

Look Back With Love; Look Forward With Hope

What We Become

They tell you when you start the road
They tell you that the road is long
They don’t tell you it never ends
They don’t tell you that it’s all hills

And I am tired

It’s beautiful, it’s beautiful
It’s long, it’s hard, and I am tired
And here among these picture books
Perhaps I’ll rest a little while

Not my quarter

They’re all well-kept, the picture books
Like someone reads them every day
Not overgrown, like my quarter,
With dead grass, and mushrooms, and moss.

It’s a stark difference

It’s a stark difference, isn’t it?
From picture-book to literature,
Look how they throw their things away
And paint the wood in shades of grey

What do they know?

For all that rhyme and whimsy lost
Another suited mannequin
Can take its place among the rest
And lurch through life without a song

But does the moon make up for it?

The thinning of the atmosphere,
I admit, makes the sky more clear
But does the moon make up for it?
I don’t think so. No; I do not.

Watch the pages fly

My anger turns into an orb
My wings release me from the flames
You don’t respect this treasure trove?
I’ll burn the whole place to the ground.

Weep for Alexandria

Now, find me in a gallery
Called Weep for Alexandria
Some artist painted tears on me
And said I must have felt despair.

Despair? You fool. No: that is hate.
At what I watched you do to them,
My books, my scrolls, my poetry
And all the people who loved them.

I give and give, and every time
You answer me ungratefully
No more chances, children of earth
This time the fires will never end.

Notes and Credits:
Burn It All Down Gown: Senzafine, Maerwynn (Get it at We Love Roleplay!)
Weary As My Soul Skin: Poema, Metis (This is at The Darkness Event. Poema does an amazing job with skins that look middle aged and older; you should really check out her work)
Crystal Earrings Of Hope Still Surviving Despite All This Stuff: Mini A Chuu & ~MF~, Ticha Crystallic Earrings
Above It All Wings: Deviance, Sidhe Wings, Unseelie
Done With This Hair: Sintiklia, Tumelo
Seeing Red Circlet: Deviance, Erulisse Circlet, The Priestess
Blood On My Hands Tattoo: Nefekalum, Gilded (roses)
Pointy Like Knives Ears: Swallow, Elf Ears High Definition
Body: Maitreya; Head: Lelutka, Lake
Environment:
Location: Awenia Faerie, The Book Forest
Stunning Picture Books: Happy Mood, Pop Up Book, Your Story With Stuffed Animals
Moon & Stars: Landscapes Unlimited: Off Sim Starry Night
Tree With Green Sap: HarshLands, Magic Sap Tree
Winter Tree: The Looking Glass: Dead Wood, Large Tree
Burning Library: TRIIN, Ruined Castle

Short Time

It’s been so long. Yes, as usual, I have spent all my time working. The practical side of faery is no less real than anything else you read, but it does not leave everyone’s favourite svart alfar very much leisure time. This is my last faery tour job before I take a short holiday, and it involves a bit of a journey, so I can tell you a bit about what’s been going on with me: I’m sure you’re all vitally interested.

Setting off in the morning

Awenia’s under re-construction this summer, so I signed up to work on fairytale tours. Fairytale tours are a racket and a half, but they keep me busy and you know how I hate to be bored. This was my last tour of the season, last assignment, even, and it was going to be a piece of piss; just spend a night at Merrywether Cottage while the Faery Aunties were gone to market so this particular fairy tale princess could enter the climax of whatever story the legend matrix picked for her. It’s a complicated spell system, and I’m not sure even the story wizards understand it, but basically my job was to keep her alive and on course long enough for the plot to create itself around her organically. What can I say: it’s not an exact science, and I’m only a stand-in, anyway.

I do really like this horse, though. Her name is Omega, and she has this amazing Aurora coat design. This year, Cinnamon won the contract bid to do all the animal art for the tales, so there have been the most beautiful horses everywhere you look. Obviously I’m biased, but I’ll miss Omega most of all when I have to go back to Awenia to get us ready for autumn tourist season opening.

Forced Perspective

I remember when I visited the Harry Potter studio park when it opened up in Watford Junction. It feels like a lifetime ago now, but it must only have been, what, eight, ten years? Anyway, everything was so close together, and docents explained how camera angles and forced perspective could make everything seem bigger than it was, closer or farther away, that sort of thing. Kevin was nodding away like he understood it all, and he probably did. I nodded too. When you’re immersed in it, it’s easier to realise how you can feel utterly separated from a castle that’s barely fifty yards away if you’re not meant to know it’s there.

This is a roundabout way of saying the ride to the cottage was short and I probably could have had a nice spar with some of the guys in the barracks before I headed out, but the story says it’s a day’s travel, so I took it at its word.

Evidently, the residents did as well, because nobody was home. Garden demifae explained the three fae aunties had gone out to the market early that morning and weren’t expected back and that “Little Fair One” marched out before lunch time with a picnic basket and said she’d be back eventually. Bless their little cotton socks, the fae aunties did not have any benches in their garden, so I liberated Omega from her tack and settled down in a nice forked tree to wait. Luckily, I had some contraband AirPods Pro and my equally if not more contraband iPhone with me, so there was at least some music (I have batteries. Don’t ask).

I fell asleep.

The Omega Full Moon Demifae Fan Club

When I woke up, there were three interesting things.

  1. No tourist.
  2. No fae aunties
  3. Omega was being fawned over by four demifae

I couldn’t really do anything about any of these things.

Well, I could laugh

I could laugh at one of them, so that’s what I chose to do in the moment. Because Omega was soaking it up like the Arabian princess she was. Don’t get me wrong, I do miss Awenia’s beautiful unicorns, especially my favourite dark chocolate unicorn of train station fame, but if I’m honest I’d just about swap my whole summer’s wages if they’d let me take this horse back home with me. I’m sure Gwyneth wouldn’t mind. We’ve got plenty of land for fae horses, and the tourists love them.

As the moon began to set, I started to worry, though. Surely the aunties should have been back by now. I didn’t want to take the demifae away from their new toy, and a few minutes more in a fairy tale wouldn’t hurt anyone, so I let it be.

“Don’t worry,” said a gravelly voice.

The Legend Matrix

“The fuck are you?” As an aside, when you jump half out of your skin, coming down hard onto the split trunk of the tree you’ve been dozing in for something like six hours hurts like fuhuhuhuhuck.

And then there was a gravelly laugh. “Well, you’re new, aren’t you? I’m the legend matrix. You didn’t wonder why there are so many dragons with polyhedral dice everywhere along the fairytale tour routes?

OK, I had actually noticed that.

I bit my lip. “Thought you were a fucking design feature,” I said.

“You are not entirely incorrect,” said the dragon. “I suppose you could say I am the central design feature.” He laughed again. It sounded a little bit like if a puppet made entirely out of paving stones had an asthma attack. I guess if you’re the central design feature, you get to laugh at your own jokes.

“So I shouldn’t worry?”

Worry

I was going to worry anyway.

“Nothing to worry about at all.”

“And why’s that?”

The glowing D20 slowed, stopped, and began to spin in the opposite direction. “She came to me and asked me to,” and then there was some static and a voice played back through what must have been a speaker somewhere in the dragon’s abdomen, “Just get me out of here, OK? This is not what I paid for!” Some static. “And so I did.”

I paused. “You didn’t send her home did you?” I could foresee that lawsuit.

“Of course not.” The D20 slowed again. “I am the central design feature of the legend matrix, not the all-powerful dragon god of the multiverse. That would require additional upgrades.”

Of course. “So what did you do?”

“I created her plot, of course. She seemed to want to spend her entire fairy tale tour in a castle, so I sent her to one.”

I frowned. “I mean, don’t they usually start off as peasant girls or get kidnapped or something?”

Another gravelly laugh. “When they’re the real protagonists, yes. But when they’re merely the prize to be won, sure, they can live in the castle. But rest assured, I have followed her form to the letter. She will live in a castle and have many servants. She will wear fine dresses and dance at many balls. And in the end, she will marry a prince. So what if she has to kiss a few frogs first? She didn’t specifically exclude it.”

And that’s why I bought a miniature copy of the official fairy tale tour guardian dragon statue in the gift shop before I took myself and my salary (codename Omega) through the realm portal back to Awenia.

Sometimes, even my crap summer jobs have happy endings.

Stay safe out there in the human hinterlands,
The Amazing Catwoman

Notes & Credits:
Enchantment closes today! It’s your last chance to see the beautiful build, enjoy the atmosphere, and grab some Sleeping Beauty souvenirs while they’re all in one place to take home to your own castle. Even if you’ve already been, you probably missed something: it’s an event full of wonderful stuff, beautifully and lovingly designed, and always full of wonder.

Enchantment items featured here:
Omega’s Skin: Cinnamon, Aurora Teeglepet skin (also comes in versions for Jinx Centaur and Waterhorse; matching wings are also available for your Teeglepet Pegasus)
TAC’s circlet: Air, Thorns Crown Gold
Demifae Fan Club: Titans, The Aurora Fae
Guardian Dragon: Cerridwen’s Cauldron, The Guardian Statue

Other Amazing Stuff:
TAC’s stunning new Drow Skin: Wyrd, Nightshade (This is at the Wyrd Main Store, and I cannot tell you how over the moon I am to have been the first person to test this amazing graphite/purple drow skin. It is perfect, and perfectly TAC)
Head: Lelutka Evolution, Nova
Body: Maitreya
Hair: Sintiklia, Connor
Ears: Andore, Hu-gu
Eyes: Yoshi, Alina (I’ve recently fallen madly in love with Yoshi eyes; expect to see lots of them here)
Clothes: Jangka, Hawkeyes outfit black, and Hawkeyes boots black
Castle: Harshlands, Devonshire Castle Keep
Omega Herself, Teeglepet, Arabian

The Moment It Happened

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I think I said, ‘What’? Yes; it must have been

I think I said, ‘What’? Yes; it must have been
Unable as I was to think beyond
The stomach-fall, the tightness in my chest
Consideration left me and I stopped.

But context is important, we know this,
So I will tell you what transpired before
The moor-bell rang a message-bearer in
And made the thorn bush wrap me in a fist.

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We, all of us, were having a good day

We, all of us, were having a good day
Before the envoy came to break my heart
Look, here we are preparing songs for plants
My little handmaids tuning up their throats

By singing silliness first each to each
And silliness to rhyme and rhyme to thought
And thought to word and word to magic wrought
Another round of flower-growing songs

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We sing to them because it helps them grow

We sing to them because it helps them grow
And magic voices carry more than breath
So grow they do: we light them from within
With energy no mortal eye can see.

In summer, we sing softer than in spring
Because we know that soon they’ll go to sleep
And lullabies are such enchanted songs
They work beyond words, frequencies, and years.

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And then at nightfall, it was story-time

Then, after singing, it was story-time
As it will always be when skies go dark
And just when they were making up their minds
Which tale to hear tonight, we heard the bell.

‘Moor Majesty, there is a messenger
‘With news from outside, far beyond the Realm.’
So foolishly I said, ‘Do let him in:
‘Despite the hour; I’m sure he’s due some cheer’.

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The moment when I vowed to burn it down

The moment when I vowed to burn it down?
That moment lasted longer than some lives.
‘Moor Majesty, a new Princess is born
Beyond the wall; her Naming is today

And I am sent to tell you from the King
That you will be unwelcome. Stay away’.
An ember in my gut turned stone to fire
In seconds. I am sorry for the plants.

uninvited

It is the contrast I remember now

It is the contrast I remember now
Like iron curtains drawn on a full moon.
I think I let him live, the messenger
But once the blood mist fell, all bets were off.

So I became the raven, or the swan
Black wings of death, a heart strangled by thorns
I salted all their earth. I cursed her palms
And learned how quickly grace to hate transforms.

Notes & Credits:
Almost all the items you see in these photographs are at Enchantment’s Sleeping Beauty event, which opened on the 8th of August and will close on the 31st. I can think of no more satisfying and engaging escape, whether dark or light, than to lose myself in a fairy tale, so that’s what I’ll be doing for the rest of August.
Avatar Items Featured at Enchantment:
Horns: Snowpaws, Luna Horns With Dead Leaves
Face Tattoo: Nefekalum, Uninvited
Dress: Poet’s Heart, Rosaura Gown
Staff: Skellybones, Scepter Of Thorns
Raven (really not as visible as he should be and you will see more of him later): Jinx, Animesh Raven Arm Pet
Poses: All from Diversion, Protector Of The Moors Poses
Setting Items Featured at Enchantment:
Bounding Rocks: Harshlands, The Moors Rocks
Throne: Harshlands, The Moors Throne (Aurora)
Animesh Faeries: Titans, The Aurora Fae
Magical Flowers: Simply Shelby, Mystical Fairy Flowers
Thorns: Love, Evil Thorns
Ground Roses & Petals, Rivendale, Ground Roses
Things Not Featured at Enchantment which are pictured here and pretty doggone cool:
Skin: Wyrd, Alva in T1
Ears: Swallow, Noldor Elf Ears
Hair: Exile, Something Wicked
Body Tattoo: Nefekalum, The Fair Ones, Sidhe Galaxy SOI
Lipstick: Pink Fuel, Dazzle Me Haunted
Eyes: Madame Noir, Lizz Eyes
Gloves: Amias, Embla Gloves

 

 

Things I am Not Meant To Do, Part I

By Princess Briar Rose, aka, Talia, aka, That Girl, aka, The Cursed One, aka, loads of other names people just haven’t called me to my face yet.

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1. No Dancing At The Fey Stones At Twilight

I’m not allowed up to the moor
To catch the copper twilight slant
I’m not allowed even to view
The windows of Maleficent

I’m not allowed to visit her
She makes the nicest lipsticks though
I’m not allowed  to share her tea
And make my way home after dark

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2. No basking beneath waxing moons

I’m not allowed to bathe beneath
The magically waxing moon

Nor feel the mystic rise in me 
And sparkle up like fairy stars

I’m not allowed to use the pinch
Of Rose Potion she gave to me
To call the flowers of my heart
Because I have no other date

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3. No Magic, What-So-Ever!

I’m not allowed to test my gifts
I’m fifteen: all my cousins do!
But no, I mustn’t hold a flame
Or say the magic phrases, no

I’m not allowed to catch a rose
And burn it so my wish comes true
And I must never close my eyes
And use my stone-sight in the dark

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4. No Wearing My Nice Gown Onto the Moors At Night, Where I Am Not Allowed to Go Anyway.

I’m not allowed to sneak outside
In my best dress: these gowns aren’t cheap!
Silk’s strong, but not impervious
To dirt and dew and grass, princess

I’m not allowed to rip my gown
While doing things I mustn’t do
Like sprinting home ahead of dawn
And not quite falling off a bridge

But no-one has to know: I know
The spinning lady in the keep
Has needles she will lend to me
Though I am not allowed to sew
The King and Queen will never know

Notes And Credits:
The Moor Stones: HarshLands, The Moors Rocks (Get them at Enchantment when it opens on 8th August!)
My Best Gown: Senzafine, Gwyneth (It’s at We Love Role-play, which opened today, 4th August!) Also, Synjari is amazing and you should buy all her stuff!
My Perfect Princess Skin: Wyrd, Edda (It’s at the Wyrd Main Store!)
My Beautiful Hair: KMH Hair, F141 (Get it at Enchantment when it opens on 8th August!)
The Makeup Maleficent Made For Me, Because She Is So Nice: Shiny Stuffs, Beauty Sleep Eyeshadow, Good Morning Kisses Lipstick (Get them at Enchantment when it opens on 8th August!)
My Roses That Are Actually Magical Manifestations Of My Awesome Blooming Fae Power: Rivendale, Swirling Roses (Get them at Enchantment when it opens on 8th August!)
My Proper Princess Crown: MoonRabbit, Shiny Queen
My Proper Princess Pearls: Kunglers, Margaret Necklace & Earrings
Little Briar Rose, Or Whatever You Want to Call Her was portrayed by Gwyneth (she likes the cosplay!), and is styled on a Maitreya Lara Body and a Lelutka Evolution Lake Head.

Environment:
Y’all, I love Enchantment so much that I build a set for it for the duration of the event. This one is on the ground in Awenia, and it’s got the Wicked Fairy House from yesterday’s post, plus HarshLands’ Moor Stones, plus HarshLands’ Ritual Rocks, and there’ll surely be more added as we get closer to the event and even further into it.
Gorgeous moon and amazing stars cape is from Landscapes Unlimited, Off Sim Starry Night.

Enchantment Presents- Sleeping Beauty - August 2020

 

The Way Things Grow

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I should be used to it, really.

I should be used to it, really. Used to the way things appear and disappear and remake themselves. It is Faerie, after all.

But that never stops me from just staring in raw wonder at some of the things that crop up.

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A new faerie circle

In the Sacred Grove, there’s a new faerie circle with lovely illuminated grass and mushrooms that, I kid you not, smell of strawberries. Our demifae are a wonder. I did find one of them and ask, and the only thing she’d tell me was they got the mushroom spores from Keira Raindale. That’s no surprise: the lady is a mistress of whimsy: of course the mushrooms smell like strawberries.

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I picked up some friends

Apparently, bunnies like me today. And this is Tuille, one of our resident unicorns. He’s feeling very spiffy since he told me he had always wanted to be a viking unicorn and so we found him some beautiful tattoos and a horn etching from Devras at Valkyrie Designed. Behind him, you can see where the demifae have made their summer goddess altar; this is our summer guardian tree, and while she may move on when autumn comes, I doubt she will ever stay far away.

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Everything illuminated

I just can’t get over the illuminated grass in this faery circle. And beyond it, you can see the rocks surrounding a new little pond (I must take a dip in there later!). And the Cats and Caitsidhe were apparently so happy with our hosting a Summerlands for cats here that they’ve added a temple in the roots of the Shrine Tree. I’m glad they’ve chosen us.

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Dancing Elf

Our dancing elf statue ended up here? I expected to find this in the Book Forest; which reminds me, I must get over there and explore sometime soon: there’s no telling what the stories have been getting up to. You can’t stop stories, no matter how hard you try. Stories just are. They persist, and if you won’t tell them, they’ll tell themselves.

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The little dryad!

Haha! I didn’t even notice this lovely little dryad the demifae placed here on the summer guardian altar. What thoughtful little creatures they are. And they’ve left a guard, right in her hand. I hope they’re giving you regular breaks, guard of the guardian.

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Next Stop?

I stepped across to spend some time with the memory of our gone-forward cats, and shed a few tears for cats I’m missing especially right now. I think it’s safe to say the sacred grove is ready.

I do still want to spend some quiet time in that bathing pool, though. Maybe soon.

Notes and Credits:
The Halter With Tassels: PaperMoon, Gelsey Halter (get it at Midsummer Enchantment—hurry, the event closes on 26 July!)
Those Amazing Boots: Wicca’s Originals, Lyndis Boots (get them at Midsummer Enchantment—hurry, the event closes on 26 July!)
The Hair That Makes You Wanna Know How Gwyneth Got Such Amazing Hair: Analog Dog (natch!) Fluttercup (it’s new at the Analog Dog Main Store!)
But Those Jeans Though: Blueberry, Evie Jeans
Gloves? Those are so cool!: Masoom, Petra Gloves (these are at the currently-running [til 25 July] Cosmopolitan)
Choker: Kibitz, Tricia’s Choker (at Kustom9)
Sparkly Antlers: Attic, Fairy Horn (also at Kustom9)
Circlet: Amias, Edana
Body: Maitreya
Head: Lelutka, Evolution Lake
Skin: DeeTalez, Jane for Lelutka Evolution, in Celtic
Ears: Swallow, Elf Ears High Definition

Environment: Awenia Faerie, Sacred Grove (open soon!)
Amazing Fairy Circle: Raindale, Fairy Circle (get it at Midsummer Enchantment—hurry, the event closes on 26 July!)
Grove Trees include:
Happy Mood: Garden Tree10 – A (ground shape2) LI:14
Happy Mood: Fallen Tree – flowers LI:9
Little Branch: AppleTree, BuckTHorn, DownyBirch, GreenAsh, HawThornTree
Summer Guardian Tree: HarshLands, The Summer Guardian
Offering Table: *ionic* Forest Tree Table
Bonsai Dryad: *HEXtraordinary* Bonsai Dryad
Summer Guardian Roses: Heart, Classic & Wild Roses
Summer Guardian Food Offerings: Kopfkino, Royal Pavilion various food
Cat Shrine: Maru Kado
Ground Cover: Happy Mood, Sweet Garden Grass 08, Raindale, Fairy Grass
Tuille the Unicorn: Teegle, Unicorn
Unicorn Mods: Skin, Cinnamon, Silver Buckskin. Tattoos and horn: Valkyrie Designed, unicorn horn, engraved light brown, and tattoo, Celtic Shields

ping me in world if you’d like to know about anything else!

 

Fox Mother And The Faerie Meadow

How alike we are, the Faery Queen and me, the Fox Mother. Centuries and continents and worlds divided, and yet we were born from the same desire, the same seeking if you will. We are the longing to explain the ineffable. We are the why the full pot of rice has disappeared without a sound. We are the chiming bell of Fate, though perhaps not Fate Herself.

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Greetings from Fox Mother

Perhaps this is why—no, no; it is why—I was so disappointed when I found that Her Majesty the Fae Queen of Awenia had visited one of My Realms, passed through on a day, and departed all without so much as a word to me, or even a note. A postcard like this one would have been lovely, and it might even have been enough, though tea and perhaps a nice stroll through my home together would have been better. She was guided by a young kitsune who has taken a liking to her, from which I surmised that we have another thing in common, and that is a love of animals and animal spirits.

For these reasons, I find myself travelling Realm-far and Rain-wide to the tiny Fae Realm of Awenia. It really is such a small thing, isn’t it?

Unlike Her Majesty, I have brought gifts. It is proper.

I have brought a Torii, for I know she and her Shining Hoarde of Aos Sí perceive, as we do, a transition from the secular to the sacred world. I presumed she would have some sort of spiritual sanctuary in her Realm, and I was not wrong; in fact it was the largest single land mass in the tiny place.

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This is no ordinary Torii

I will of course leave a little note for Her Majesty to let her know I passed by on this day when she seems not to be in residence. I will tell her, this is no ordinary Torii; this is an Inari Torii, and it vibrates with the tones of the forest, of prosperity, of craftsmanship, and sometimes, though I am not a friend to war, of warriors. This is no ordinary Torii, for it was crafted by the great artisan Kadaj Yoshikawa, who calls magic from the air with abilities that, while they may not be magic, they are indistinguishable from it. Some say he is a very lucky kitsune-mochi, and his seventy-five foxes all contribute to his considerable creative inspiration.

So, yes, first a gate, because the way should be marked. And secondly, well. Another gift. Seventy-five little gifts. Look here they are!

My darlings, my darlings, are you all with me?

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Yes, mother, yes, mother, here are we

Yes, Mother, yes, Mother; here are we.

Did you know that when Fox Mother laughs, flowers fall from heaven? Yes, yes; when I see them all here, my darlings, these seventy-five precious foxes, no more and no less, darlings, I feel joy First, we first take stock of the Realm into which we have passed. Seven little islands; you will have to divide yourselves, but the passages through to each look simple. And there are many cats in this forest made of paper. Some islands are larger than others, and I think this one is only for the Realm portal itself and perhaps tea. This sign, Come From Myth. It’s an invitation, I think.

Now we will for the first time move through this gate, and you will all see a Faery meadow for the first time. But be careful! Your tricks and Fae tricks are not unrelated.

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Here is Her Majesty’s stone temple

Look: here is Her Majesty’s stone temple! Each set of stones is laid out like the numbers on one of their western clock faces. Yes, yes, the incense clock makes your eyes water, my love.

And you! What are you doing?

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These small creatures are treacherous

No, no, my love! These small creatures are treacherous; they will give you food that will turn to ashes in your mouth; their gifts turn to leaves sometimes like ours.

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Foxes love hot dogs!

Leaves, schmeaves, leaves schmeaves, foxes love hot dogs, French fries and cheese! Fairy meadow, fairy gold, foxes love pizza and burgers and cold drinks that freeze their brains, freeze their brains, oh!

You must not eat the fairies’ fare; their fingers have bewitched it!

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Foxes love pizza!

Bewitched, beswitched, beswitched, bewitched, foxes love pizza: it’s their favourite dish! Have a sniff; you’ll understand. Take the pizza from my hand! Lady Mystie, Fairy Hippo, self control meter on zero!

Do not sleep where the faeries go! And careful where the mushrooms grow!

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Foxes love naps!

I’ll save you cried the blue kitsune
If I don’t you’ll lie there through May!
Though the month is almost through
I will pounce and rescue you
Oh, but now I’m here, so sleepy
Wait: do I smell something cheesy?

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Foxes love Mac & Cheese!

Cheesy, creamy, creamy cheesy, Foxes come and eat: it’s easy! We have burgers, we have fries! We have salve to clear your eyes! Little lovelies, come with us! We’re not evil; you can trust! Just ignore your mother there: too many berries in her hair!

Blue fox pounces, black fox jumps
Red fox nips them on their rumps
Another red fox waiting there
While fur’s flying through the air
Who will get the first hot bite?
Faeries bet there’ll be a fight!

Leave it alone, my loves! ‘Ware the Fae!

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Foxes love triple burgers!

Don’t beware us, dare us, share us! Your Fox Mother does not scare us! Look how how high we’ve stacked the bun-up with its flag up to the sun-up! Bread and lettuce, never mind: rarer meat you’ll never find!

Sniffing here and whining there
Blue fox once more catching air
To beat her brothers to the prize
Faery ointment in her eyes
White fox waiting for the surplus
Eat the burger! You will thank us!

Stop, my darlings! Stop! These little creatures are dangerous! Or… this is your home now, after all. Perhaps you should make friends. Imagine the tricks you can do together! What a delightful little crepe plate! Thank you, Mistress Moynihan. No, no; I don’t need your fairy ointment to see you all. What a lovely sparkly dress you have. Here, let me give you something in return. No, no; it’s just a talisman. If you hold it, you can come and visit me in my Realm.

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Foxes love chocolate (fox-friendly, we promise!) milkshakes!

Shakes and burgers, fries and steaks! See how long this blue fox takes! Willow fairy’s so bored now: Aren’t milkshakes kitsune chow?

Turquoise kitty bets a dollar
Chipmunk laughs and tries to top her
In for a penny, in for a pound
Hustle-Kitty stands her ground
Chipmunk pokes Fox with a French fry
That’s not gonna work: hey, let’s try
Putting whipped cream on his nose!
Foxes are fun when their brains are froze!

Soon, Willow Fairy got distracted
Cat, chipmunk and Foxxie chatted
Til Willow found the fiddlers
To entertain their visitors
With vats of mead, they danced ’til dawn
Then slept it off on the Fae Queen’s lawn.

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Awenia By Night 

Awenia by night, so lovely: now I know the way
You’ll be seeing more of me, Queen Gwyneth of the Fae.

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Come From Myth? Thank you: we will.

To: Her Majesty Queen Gwyneth
Dreamydale Castle
Awenia

My Dear Queen Gwyneth,
How sorry I was not to meet you when you visited Kintsugi these few weeks back. I hope you enjoyed this beautiful part of My Realm. I have come to repay you the favour of your kind visit, but it seems you are not at home. No matter: I have left you some gifts, and I hope you will receive them with joy and find them a treasure always. They are in your Sacred Meadow. Please do make arrangements to meet me for tea should you chance to visit again.
Kindly look after these gifts for me: they are priceless tokens of my esteem for you.
Please, take good care, and give my regards to all your little meadow Fae; they are delightful creatures.

Fox Mother
<paw print>

Notes & Credits:
Enchantment’s Kitsune Tales Round Closes today, 31 May, 2020!
 If you need beautiful kimonos, fox masks, enticing footwear, kitsune-inspired jewellery, fox makeup, a fluffy tail, or perhaps seventy-five spirit foxes of your very own, you have only a few more hours to go and visit Enchantment before it closes!

The Cast:
Fox Mother: The Author
—Fox Mother’s Costume, including hair, skin, headpiece, kimono: irrISIStible, Japanese Kitsune Outfit Available at Enchantment for today only!
—Necklace: Supernatural, Kitsune Necklace Available at Enchantment for today only!
—Eyes: Anatomy, Fading Eyes
—Body: Maitreya
—Head: Lelutka Evolution Lake
Lady Mystie: Myst Edenflower
Turquoise Kitty Cat: Dyisi
Chester The Chipmunk: himself
Seventy-Five Spirit Foxes: Jinx Fox Gacha, Pounce, Sitting, Snoozy, Stretch, Companion, and Shoulder Rider (cuddle pup is great too but not pictured here!) Available at Enchantment for today only!
Two Larger And More Imposing But Still Seriously Into Junk Food Foxes: Harshlands, Spirit Fox, idle, feeding — Available at Enchantment for today only!
Whimsical, blameless demifae: Titans: The Lunafae Fairy, Animesh NPC

The Setting:
Location: Awenia Faerie (not open to visitors at the moment, sorry!)
Inari Torii: Harshlands, Inari Torii Available at Enchantment for today only!
Stone Circle: HEXtraordinary, Druid’s Temple Ruins
Twinkly Grass: Keke, Dotty Grass, Summer
Green Grass: The Looking Glass, The Shrine Tree Grass Clumps
Bridges With Lanterns: The Looking Glass, The Shrine Tree Bridges
Portal Clock: RH Design House, Cafe In The Park, Music Clock
Prominent Tower on its own island: Death Row Designs, Boho Princess
Come From Myth Sign Frame: Figure 8, Vintage Theatre Frame Blue (original sign texture by Gwen Enchanted)
Leafy Tree Woman: Harshlands, The Summer Guardian
Fairy Mushroom Circle: The Looking Glass, Lunafae Sleepy Fae Mushroom Circle, Large
Ginormous Tree With Lanterns: The Looking Glass, The Shrine Tree (not available for sale)
Big Treehouse Visible In Night Shot: LAQ, Serene Tree And Widmill Home

THE FOOD!
All from Vespertine, Comfort Food Gacha, including: Baked Pizza, Choco Milkshake, French Fries, Hamburger, Hot Dogs, Mac & Cheese, and Triple Hamburger

Invaluable Resources:
Fourth Wall: Quick Credits HUD (It’s at their main store. You want it. I mean it.)
LumiPro: Don’t leave your skybox without it!

If you are curious about anything else, just ping me: I am very nice!

 

 

A Dream Of Spirits

The fox journey has seemed at times surreal, at times frustrating, and at all times inscrutable. I do not understand why this spirit fox picked me, why he keeps showing up in my dreams, why he so desperately wants to show me this or that.

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I thought I was alone

But this time, I thought I was alone. It seemed I woke at the end of a bridge, and there was something abnormally quiet about it, at least at first.

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A sense of solitude

I really might have been the only person in the world, for those few minutes.

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Little visions

But then little visions began to come to me, little flashes of what else there was to see here.

And so I walked on, looking and discovering as I went. From path to bridge to little farm,  all seemed still and calm and somehow holding its breath as if waiting for something…

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And that’s when I met the owl.

The owl was the first living being I’d seen since waking up at the bridge. ‘Well, look at you’, I said. ‘You’ve got your very own perch, nobody around for miles, you’re the king of the castle, aren’t you’?

Have you ever heard an owl laugh? It is disconcerting; I’ll tell you that. ‘I am in fact the god of the village’, he replied with absolutely no irony. ‘But you’ll travel farther than just here today’, he said—like he knew so much. ‘It’s dangerous to go alone. Take this’.

Yes, he really said that. And then I felt a soft weight in the crook of my arm, and there was a much younger little spirit fox, and this one was a beautiful purply-blue colour.

‘Oh’! I said. ‘You got me another fox’!

‘Another fox’? asked the owl. ‘Has another one come down from the forest, then’? He looked, well, as nervous as I could ever imagine an owl looking.

‘No, no; this is a white fox that has been visiting me in dreams’, I explained.

‘Oh, that one’. He nodded, as if he knew so much. ‘Well, perhaps you’ll see him again when you get up there’. He nodded toward a break in the wall. ‘Best get moving’.

And so I did.

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Up the long set of steps we went

And so we went out the gate and up a set of natural-looking steps that led up a hill (I don’t think it could be called a mountain) on a winding path.

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We came into a forest

We came into a forest guarded by two red foxes. That’s when my familiar fox appeared on my shoulder. ‘Watch those two’, he said.

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Mist in the forest

‘I can only watch one of them at at time’, I replied; ‘they’re too far apart’!

He snorted. ‘Oh, you’ve turned white now have you, little one’? he teased. ‘Any day now you’ll be calling me papa’.

The little one in my arms snorted.

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What are you telling us?

‘What are you telling us’? I asked. ‘Is that spirit fox for “not bloody likely”‘?

My (ha!) spirit fox laughed at us then. ‘Well, you’ll have to go on and explore without us’, he said. ‘We have some work to do here in the Kitsune Forest’, but you’ll see us again before long’.

It wasn’t as much fun to explore now that I’d had time with the foxes, but I won’t soon forget the beautiful market. It sounded every bit like a live market, except there was no-one there that I could see.

And when I woke up later, in my own bed in Faerie, both foxes were nowhere to be found. I am sure they will find me again; they seem impossible to avoid, after all.

Credits and Notes:

The Kitsune Tales round is still open at Enchantment until the 31st of this month! You’ll find so many lovely things there, some of which are shown in photographs above!

Items featured at Enchantment:
Dress: Les sucreries de Fairy, Yoko, Red Dress 3
Face Makeup: Venge, ‘The Legend’
Earrings: Bliensen + MaiTai, Kitsune, red
Cuddle Fox: Jinx, Cuddle Pup (in Spirit, then White)
Shoulder Fox: Harshlands, Mini Spirit Fox
Shoes and Socks: Exia, Akaru Zouri

Other items in this look:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Lelutka, Evolution Lake Mesh Head
Skin: DeeTaleZ, Flora skin for Lelutka in tone Celtic
Ears: Swallow, Elf Ears High Definition
Eyes: Anatomy, Fading Eyes
Hair: Kokolores, Kitten
Lipstick: The MARS, Apple Crush Dark

Location: All these photos were shot in the beautiful region of Kintsugi, Spirited Beyond. It is a stunning and contemplative build, presented on multiple levels, with some beautiful stories to experience as you travel through it. It’s currently featured on the SL Destination Guide, but there’s a link above for your ease of travel!

An Unfamiliar Path

I don’t have to tell you, because of course you already know, that my mythology, my fae essence, is rooted in the West. There’s a poetry to the land of my ancestors, be they my human family long left behind, be they the Shining Throng of the Sidhe, or be they the gods and goddesses from whom we are said to have sprung.

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Reappearance

I was not surprised so much as, well, interested, when the spirit fox came round again. Possibly my surprise was subdued because he visited me in the dreamlands. I’m rarely surprised in the dreamlands. Of course, if I say that I’m sure to be surprised soon….

‘Are you sure you’re comfortable like that’? I asked him. He seemed balanced precariously on my shoulder. 

‘I am a spirit fox’, he said. ‘Comfort does not concern me’.

I took this to mean that he was not in any physical body, or if he did have a physical body it was far away at this time. 

‘Do you like this garden’?

The question seemed out of place, but I answered it anyway. ‘Well, it’s different from gardens I’m used to’, I admitted. ‘I have seen gardens like this in pictures, but really, it’s very sparse, isn’t it? I like a bit more …. garden in my garden, I guess’.

When he laughed, it was like a circle of bells, nothing you’d expect to come out of a fox’s mouth. Then again, I wasn’t looking at him: perhaps the sound did not come out of his mouth at all.

I felt something cold on my neck and on my right wrist, and when I looked down, I could see that a silver bracelet with a stylised fox face had wrapped around my wrist. When I reached up to my neck, I could feel the same face there too. 

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Question of Trust

‘What is this’? I tugged at the bracelet and realise I could remove it; that helped a little. ‘Do we have some kind of a pact now’?

‘Oh, please; no’. There were the bells again. ‘I’m nowhere near old enough to force you to do anything’. He jumped off my shoulder and landed neatly on the ground. ‘See’? He turned around three times, dog-like. ‘Only one tail’.

‘I’ve heard spirit foxes can have more than one’, I started slowly. ‘How old do you have to be before you get more tails’?

‘Couldn’t possibly tell you’, he said. 

‘Can’t, or won’t’?

More bells.

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Come along…

‘Come on, then’, said the spirit fox. ‘We have a journey to take’. 

Credits And Notes:

Enchantment is open! The theme for this round is Kitsune Tales, and you’ll find some wonderful things there, a few of which Gwyneth is wearing in the photographs above.

Enchantment items featured here:
Spirit Fox and Mini Spirit Fox: Harshlands, Spirit Fox
Hair: HMH, F 135
Choker and Bracelet: RAWR! Kitsune Set
Dress: c*C*c,  Akayashi Kitune, in Black
Eyes: La Malvada Mujer, Alpha Eyes
Shoes: Eudora, Kitsune

Other Stuff in this look:
Body: Legacy 
Head: Lelutka Lake Bento Mesh Head
Backdrop: Ex Machina, Karensansui — Japanese Minimalist Garden

Photos shot at my home studio in Awenia. Alas, we’re not open to the public right now. 

 

The Rabbit Hole in Isle Of Shadows

I was feeling sad. After all, it was the last day of the Faire, and soon I’d have to take a portal back to Awenia and pick up all the pieces I’d left dangling for the last two seasons. I flew up to one of the clouds that hover over the Fairchylde in Isle of Shadows, and, well, OK— I just kind of felt sorry for myself for a while.

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Aaaaallll byyyyy myyyyyseeeeeeelf…..

I promise I didn’t sing that song. For long.

Of course, then I noticed how much there was to see from this vantage point….

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First of course, there was the Fairchylde Herself.

First of course, there was the Fairchylde Herself, and that just made me want to look farther and farther.

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Hello, teeth!

Hello, teeth! Haveit Neox’s beautiful snakes intertwining to hiss or kiss, possibly a bit of both.

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The Isle itself, with Siren’s Lore visible in the distance.

And then there was the Isle itself, with Siren’s Lore visible in the distance.

After that, well. A few more disturbing things caught my eye.

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Bunnies!

Bunnies! On a cloud! What could those nefarious little critters be up to?

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There were hordes of them!

There were hordes of them! Bunnies, everywhere! Could it be… Could it be the bunny energy was being generated by the Fairchylde Herself? I shuddered to think.

And then, I knew I must investigate further.

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Giant Bunnies!

Giant bunnies?! The reality was more terrifying than I could possibly have imagined.

So I did what anyone would do under the circumstances!

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I started to flee!

‘You don’t have to run, you know’.

It was a soft voice, barely accented, but I didn’t recognise the origin.

‘I don’t? But the Faire is almost over, and I’m being attacked by giant bunnies’!

‘No-one is attacking you. Calm down. I’m Kuro, and I’m taking you to your next adventure’.

‘My what’?

‘Your next adventure, Your Majesty’. The fox twitched its red eyebrows. ‘Here; let me jump up on to your shoulder’.

… to be continued.

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The Faire is Ending…. but Enchantment is OPEN!

Credits And Notes:
Location: Isle Of Shadows, sponsored by Seanchai Library and designed by Aelva & Emme Eales,  is one of 18 regions in this year’s Relay for Life of Second Life Fantasy Faire. You can visit Isle of Shadows, but you will have to do it before midnight SLT tonight, 10 May, 2020, because that’s when the Fairelands will fade back into the mists for another year.

Do not despair! The Faire returns every year, and on its heels is another one of my favourite events, Enchantment!

Enchantment item featured here:
Spirit Fox: Harshlands, Spirit Fox (Find it at Enchantment!)

Items featured at this year’s Faire:
Skin: Petrichor, Viscivorus Skin in Chrysatos (Find it at the Petrichor Store in Sirens Lore!)
Ears: Petrichor, Viscivorus Ears (Find them at the Petrichor Store in Sirens Lore!)
Outfit: Devious Mind, Fiora (Find it at the Devious Mind store in Zodiac!)

Other Stuff in this look:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Lelutka Nova Bento Mesh Head
Wings: Egosumaii, Fae Wings