How I learned to stop worrying and become a witch!

New Blog Headers - 9

Gwyneth:

The dreams aren’t stopping, but they are changing. I’m not always myself in them. Or I’m playing out incarnations that are so far away from my actual life that their outcomes seem irrelevant to me. Maybe that’s what it is to look at things through the dispassionate eye of the Unseelie. This one left me with a good feeling: even though the dream protagonist was definitely me, she wasn’t operating in some way that seemed to want to teach me some kind of lesson, for which I was grateful.

I woke up in the late morning with this dream completely alive in my mind, so the first thing I did was go someplace where I could write it down.

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It was gonna be the best Christmas ever.

It was gonna be the best Christmas, ever. But then Jamie said, ‘Did you talk to the fucking fairies, Gwen? Did you? Because they will fuck our shit up, and then where will we be?’

And I’m all, ‘No, Jamie, I didn’t talk to no fairies: the stuff just fucking appears, and I am thinking, “Gosh, we will have a really cool storybook Christmas, just this once”. I swear, I didn’t talk to none of them. I don’t know why they follow me around’.

And then Ella gets into it, and she’s all, ‘Oh, look, little miss princess priss; the tree I put up in the car ain’t good enough for you, so you gotta go kiss up to some fairy prince, let him put his nasty tongue in your mouth or something, all so you can have hot chocolate and candy apples?’

I start to cry. ‘No, no, no! It just fucking appeared! What do you guys want me to do, burn the shit? The grass is too dry for that. Might as well eat the goddamn candy apples.’

Jamie folds his hands. ‘Fucking long-haired witch’, he says, and his voice is all hissy.

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‘I ain’t no goddamn witch!’

‘I ain’t no goddamn witch!’ I reply, and I’m angry now, even though I’m still crying. ‘Y’all need to get off my fucking case. It’s a few cups of hot chocolate, some cookies, and a basket of apples. Jesus fucking Christ, you’d think the world just ended.’

‘You need to keep a grip on your language and stop talking about the Lord’, Emma says, speaking of prim and prissy. ‘And I seen you looking at the witch’s house’, she adds. ‘I know you been there’.

Jamie just stares at me.

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I can feel myself folding in.

I can feel myself folding in. I know this ain’t going nowhere. ‘I ain’t been to the witch’s house’, I repeat. ‘I ain’t’.

‘You and your long yella hair’, Emma teases. ‘Someday, somebody gonna push you into a river, and then you gonna become somebody’s fiddle’.

‘I ain’t nobody’s fiddle’, I said.  And then I just stomped into the car.

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Fucking fine. If that’s what they want from me, then fine.

Fucking fine. If that’s what they want from me, then fine. I find mum’s old scissors: they’re a bit rusty, but they’ll do, and I start chopping my hair off, crying buckets the whole time. I’m vaguely conscious of Emma and Jamie coming in and telling me they’re sorry, they didn’t mean it, they just didn’t want me to go eating fairy food and they were scared of the candy apple tree and the hot chocolate and the cookies, but I just keep on chopping.

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In the end, it’s uneven and I wrap this old Gryffindor scarf around my neck to hide the ends.

In the end, it’s uneven, and I wrap this old Gryffindor scarf around my neck to hide the ends.

‘It don’t look that bad’, Jamie says. ‘You don’t have to be wearing that scarf. It’ll grow back in just fine. I’m sorry, Gwyn’.

I just look at him.

Emma says she’s gonna test out the candy apples to see if they’re poisoned because she’s got a strong stomach. I just shake my head. ‘After all that, you’re gonna eat the goddamn apples’, I say.

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Well, fuck that.

Well, fuck that. I dry my tears, go outside to the candy apple tree, and I have two apples and a parfait before the other two can follow me out of the train car, yelling all the time. I smile. ‘That tasted good’, I say. ‘Real good’.

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‘And you know what?’ I add. ‘Fuck you both. I’m leaving’.

‘And you know what?’ I add. ‘Fuck you both. I’m leaving. You just try to survive round here without me cooking and cleaning for the two of you; just try not to get picked up by the dults from the village when I’m not here to keep you safe and look like I’m twenty when I’m only fifteen. You just fucking try’.

Emma’s in tears. ‘Gwyn, you can’t go!’ she cries. ‘You done got magicked by something was in those apples! You don’t know what you’re saying!’

Jamie stares at me with his arms folded. ‘I can look twenty’, he says.

‘Fuck you, Jamie; you’re only twelve, and you’re scrawny’, Emma retorts.

But I already have my back to them. Their squabbling fades like the horizon behind me.

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And that’s how I left my little brother and sister and became a witch’s apprentice.

And that’s how I left my little brother and sister and became a witch’s apprentice. I just walked into the wood, toward the twinkling lights of the witch’s house, and I knocked on the door.

I don’t even know what happened to those two brats. And you know what? I don’t care.

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Catwa, Destiny
Ears: Mandala, Steking Ears, Season 5
Eyes: Mesange, First Date Eyes (Omega appliers)
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Enya, Powder NEW! (Omega face appliers, Maitreya body appliers) Body appliers available at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main Store!
Hair: Wasabi Pills — First four photos, Romy (Available at ULTRA!) Last four photos, Aspen (Available at The Forest!)
Jacket: DE Designs, Dana (Available at We ❤ RP!)
Jeans: Zhora Designs, High Waist Jeans Blue (Maitreya Applier)
Boots: Paper Moon, Huck Boots

Post-Apocalyptic Train Car: Death Row Designs, Post Apocalyptic Holiday Set, COMING SOON from Death Row Designs!
Tree Table, Tree Chairs, Hot Chocolate, and Cookies: Moonlight Shadow, Snack Tree Gacha (Available at Enchantment!)
Candy Apple Tree, Chair, Side Table, Candy Apple Cushion, Basket of Candy Apples, and Candy Apple Parfait: The Looking Glass, Candy Apple Tree Gacha (Available at Enchantment!)
Sparkly Grass: Happy Mood, Sweet Garden Grass
Three Ash Trees: Jian, Ash Tree (triple)
Green, Brown & Lavender Grasses: The Little Branch, Wild Grass
Twisty Tree: Rivendale, Faerie Tree
Surrounding Forest: Studio Skye, Enchanted Woods

Poses: An Lar, from Woodland, Chaos, and All That series

Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my LumiPro. I never create post-apocalyptic worlds where it’s nicer to run away and be a witch than take care of your kid brother & sister without it!

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Midnight at the Fair Maiden

New Blog Headers - 9

Gwyneth:

I continue to be plagued by strange dreams, dreams in which I am someone else, in a completely different world, with a completely different life.

I remember as a child reading a series of books by Diana Wynne Jones, about a series (well, several series, actually) of worlds in which there were varying degrees of magic and tolerance for magic. In every world, there were different versions of oneself, the only exception being in the case of special nine-lived enchanters, who had no cognates in other worlds. This, apparently, was how they got these nine lives. Anyway, I became fascinated with the books at first because there was a character named Gwendolyn, a name close enough to Gwyneth to spark my imagination. As I continue to dream my way through to whatever lesson these experiences are going to give me, I suspect I am getting glimpses of my lives in other worlds. Or maybe I just read too much speculative fiction as a child.

This dream was memorable, mostly because it included Dyisi, and “I” had no idea who or what she was! And oh, the things I thought about her, about Fae, about the world! I can’t imagine being raised in such a society, where a difference like pointed ears or a pair of horns means you’d be treated differently by everyone. No, wait. I can imagine that. I was raised in such a place. Even my own history becomes mutable, what with all these alternatives to consider.

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She came in right at midnight.

She came in right at midnight. I was cleaning off the bar, just about ready to head home.

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“We’re closed”, I said, without looking up.

“We’re closed”, I said, without looking up.

“Ah, but I have come so far”, replied a heavily accented voice, and I didn’t recognise the accent.

When I looked up, I couldn’t believe what I saw.

“I am just needing a few things”, she continued. Her glasses obscured her eyes, but there seemed to be a light glowing behind the lenses. And she had glowing horns. And a tail, and… yes, hooves. And for some absurd reason, there was a white crow perched on one of the horns.

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I took a step back. “You’re not allowed”, I said.

I took a step back. “You’re not allowed”, I said. I lowered my voice: someone could be listening. “You can’t be here, if you’re not human. You’re illegal”.

“Illegal, am I?” she asked. “Why’s that?”

“Because of the Betrayal”, I said.

She shook her head. “Never heard of him”, she replied. “I am called Dyisi”.

“Gwyneth”, I said. This prompted a sharp laugh from the horned woman. “The betrayal. You know. When the Faerie said she’d keep us safe, but she broke her promise and so was turned to stone?”

“Was she now”. The woman—Dyisi—didn’t seem very impressed. “I’m no Fae; I’m a Satyr”.

“Doesn’t matter; you’re still illegal”, I said.

“Ah, well”. She tilter her head up to me. “I wonder if you’re not illegal, too?”

I shushed her with a gesture. And I could feel her reaching out with some internal power, to get at me, disturb my glamour, take me down with her. “You need to go”. I’m afraid I used my overbearing barmaid voice, the one I have to use on the old men, every night at half eleven, to get them all out of the door before twelve, so I can clean the place and get home before night workers’ curfew, one o’clock in the morning.

“So be it”, she said. And then, I kid you not, she just became more and more transparent until finally she disappeared.

So I finished what I was doing and locked up. Couldn’t stop thinking of her, though.

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You have to bash the pub door with your hip. I give it an extra push with my elbow.

You have to bash the pub door with your hip to close it properly; I like to give it an extra push with my elbow, just to make sure it’s locked. It’s a good thing the village has a curfew: the prince is afraid we’ll all be eaten by vampires, because of the betrayal, so nobody is allowed out on the streets after pub closing. Nobody but the barmaids ever see the ridiculous dance we have to do to close the pub door. I think the curfew’s funny for two reasons: first of all, if he were really serious about the vampire thing, why not make it sundown? And second, why make the only people in the village who have permission to be out after pub closing the pub girls? Aren’t we the most vulnerable? Anyway.

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Who was this “Dyisi”?

Who and what was this “Dyisi”? She had no fear of walking as a … different sort of person. She seemed surprised that anybody would.

How is that even possible?

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I mean, people everywhere know of the Betrayal.

I mean, people everywhere know of the Betrayal. We just happen to be the lucky (and by lucky I mean not) village on the edge of nowhere where the legend actually happened. People don’t visit us much because they fear they’ll be tainted with the stink of the Betrayal. All my uncles and aunts moved away long ago, and none of them can understand why my mum and dad stayed here to raise me, being what we are. Mum and Dad say it’s so I have to stare at her every day and learn my place in the world, since our kind are given to hubris.

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And they’re right.

And they’re right: having to look at that, day in and day out, would give any Fae (I feel funny even to say it: I’m meant to say “girl” whenever I mean “fae”. Or “boy”) cause to worry. See how her back is turned on the village’s High Street? That signifies how she failed to protect us when the Dark Fae came to steal our children, a century ago now. She is the only place in the world where we see an actual depiction of a Fae. They (we) are prohibited in every city, every town, illegal in artwork, and of course the penalty for being one, or being any member of a race not human, is death. I look at her pointed ears and remember how mine sometimes used to show, back when I was young enough not to keep the glamour up in my sleep. I can still feel the bruises on my bottom: Dad takes glamour very seriously, even if we’re not meant to know other things can be done with magic.

I walked down the lamp-lit street, mindful of every dark corner: who knows what could be lurking there, Mum says; I don’t know why you work in that place, she says, when we have a perfectly good toy shop that any girl would love to work in. The money, Mum, I say. It’s the money. She can’t think why I need money, but I can: Soon as I can afford transport, I’m getting out of here. Somewhere far away.

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I was still thinking of Dyisi when I reached our house.

I was still thinking of Dyisi when I reached our house. It’s at the other end of the village, even though that means about a five-minute walk. Mum thinks it’s the end of the earth, and she’s always waiting up for me, and she’s scared because the pub is on the edge of the forest, “and you have no idea what horrific things take place in there,” she’ll say. One day I’m going to walk all the way past the forest to the ruined castle and see if it’s really haunted. When I’m twenty-eight. By that time, I’ll have saved all the money I need to get out of here, and I’ll carry it all with me when I walk to the castle, just in case, as the stories say, there are other, less human, ways of getting out of the village.

For a moment, I wondered what kind of creature Dyisi was, but I knew it would be pointless to ask: I’d be up against the court of Mum and Dad, and I’d have to wait ’til I’m thirty to get out of here, because they would make me quit my job at the pub tomorrow if they knew a creature with glowing horns had walked in, presumably out of the forest, and just fucking disappeared from inside a well-lit pub. Maybe that’s how Fae get around. Maybe they can just think themselves anywhere. Tomorrow I’ll try thinking myself into the  bathing chamber before Michaela. She thinks she’s so special, dating the son of the mayor. Wait til their wedding night, I think, and it makes me smile. I bet she loses her glamour when he puts it in her, and that’ll be the shortest marriage in the history of the village. Mum and Dad will say they didn’t know, she must be a changeling, and the whole village will go onto alert, and we’ll have martial law for a few months like the last changeling scare, but after she’s executed, everybody will forget.

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And so, into our house I went.

And so, into our house I finally went, after checking to make sure Dyisi wasn’t following me. Maybe she is some kind of evil spirit, and I only thought I saw her. Maybe she is some piece of me that I didn’t know existed because Mum and Dad don’t tell good little girls these things. Maybe Mum doesn’t have pointy ears beneath her glamour: maybe she has big glowy horns and a twitching tail!

I had to put my hand over my mouth to stop myself giggling when I came in and saw Mum.

“You’re home late,” she remarked.

“Nelson puked on the doorstep again,” I explained.

“That old arse. Well, he’ll die soon enough.”

So will we all, I guess. But I’m not going to die here.

Style Cards:
Dyisi (full style card will come eventually)
Body: Maitreya
Hair: No Match, No Lime (available at Hair Fair! Hair fair is open until 31 July!)

Gwyneth:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Lelutka, Stella
Eyes: Soul, Sidhe Eyes
Skin: 7 Deadly s[K]ins, Maren, Powder (Available at Mesh Body Addicts, open until 29 July!)
Hair: Barberyumyum, 78AHF  (available at Hair Fair! Hair fair is open until 31 July!)
Clothes: Faida and Fallen Gods, Mythiara Rogue, Royale (Available at The Epiphany!)
Necklace: glYph, Miraculous Necklace, Purple
Boots: Lassitude & Ennui, Bernadette Boots, Grey (Available at We❤ RP!)
Poses: PosESion, from the 100 poses for $399 set currently on sale at their Main Store

Setting:
Sim: Private Sim
Buildings, pub, village, doors, streetlamps: Death Row Designs, Dangarnon, from the 2016 Fantasy Faire sim of the same name.
Statue: Death Row Designs, The Last Hope, a two-of-a-kind item offered for auction at the 2016 Fantasy Faire
Village Paths: Happy Mood, Dirt Road
Trees: Studio Skye, Enchanted Woods

Pub Decor:
Bar: Fetch, Lyla Bar
Elk Head: Medieval Fantasy, Elk Trophy
Deer Head: Medieval Fantasy, Deer Hunting Trophy
Cider Bottles: Jian, Hillside Orchard
XXX Barrels: Jian, Hillside Orchard
Unicorn Head: Nomad, Unicorn Taxidermy
Shelves Behind Bar: Serenity Style, Five Minutes Shelf
Wine Bottles Atop Bar Shelves: Aphrodite, Wine bottle collection
Purple Bottle on Bar: Morgan Sim Designs, Stowaway Fae’s Shot o’ Rum Bottle
Artwork Behind Bar: Lilith’s Den: Yrdrasil Axis Mundi
Bar Torches: Death Row Designs, Dangarnon Torches

It is such a pity Dy and I didn’t play a longer scene in the pub, but it was bedtime for her! I’ve kept the pub intact up on the platform where I create such things, so you may see more of No-Fae-Allowed Village Gwyneth’s life in the future, if only so I can show you things like the amazing polar bear statue in one of the corners and the beautiful tables sourced from Noble Creations and Tia.

Yes, I am one of the two people who won the DRD Last Hope Auction at the 2016 Fantasy Faire, and every time I look at that statue, I think of the Fantasy Faire, my beloved husband (whom I lost to cancer in January), and my hope that one day little donations like mine will help to make a real change in the way we treat cancer, leading to a complete cure, for everyone. I am deeply in awe of the amazing DRD team, who created one of the most inspiring objects I’ve ever seen in Second Life or any other life, and one that I’m proud to say graces and will grace my every living space in SL, be it RP, creative office, or OOC hangout. Unlike its purpose in this work of fiction, in reality this statue represents hope, the hope we can give and the hope that goes on before us, hope’s everlastingness, its raw power, and sometimes, its sadness. 

Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my LumiPro. I never create entire villages on a 1/4 sim sky platform for, um, one photo shoot, without it….

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Not Cheating!

On9 Contest Shots BLOG - 1

This is just how Faeries surf!

This is my entry for the June On9 Photo Competition.

In-World Name: Gwen Enchanted

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Catwa Helena
Ears: BentBox Sylvan Ears
Eyes: Soul, Sidhe Eyes
Wings: Soul, Oree Wings
Skin: Lumae, Eirtae Dolce Summer Sky, T5 (this month’s Group Gift at Lumae!)
Feet: SLink Pointe
Dress: Lakshmi Raffia, Color Pack 3 (featured at this month’s On9 event)
Hair: No Match, No Fooling (featured at this month’s On9 event)
Necklace: Baubles! by Phe, Peacock Necklace (featured at this month’s On9 event)
Anklet: Alaskametro, Jess Fringed Anklet, Color Pack Jungle (featured at this month’s On9 Event)
Surfboard: Bad Unicorn, “Rocket” Summah Surfboard
Recognisable forest tree in background: Jian, Dryad Hideaway
Forest Sim Design: Dyisi Oppewall
Pose: Infiniti, Dust In the Wind, 1
Lighting: Windlight: TOR Sunset, Barcelona; Model lighting: LumiPro

I’m making a concerted effort to credit the great pose creators whose work I use in my blog posts. I haven’t been doing that, mostly because I use an Ani-Mate Pose Hud most of the time, and so I cycle through poses very quickly. From here on out, I’m going to try and make sure all poses are credited, not only so that folks know where they might find them, but so I myself can remember which ones I used!

Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my LumiPro. I never enter photo contests without it!

I do promise to get back to story-blogging soon! I just wanted to show off this photo; I think I did a pretty good job. 🙂