The Greening

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The Guest House

So it may come as a surprise to you that I slept part of the winter away in the Guest House. This is a beautiful floating island house created by the architects at The Looking Glass, and it’s so cosy. I love the castle, but it’s so big! Now, of course, it isn’t drafty, because when Riven re-engineered it, she insulated it properly, right down to the cellar level, but sometimes I just like to be in a place where I can get up from bed and walk right over to the kitchen to do my toast, you know? Probably it’s a throwback to my former life in student digs.

Anyway, the winter just zoomed past, didn’t it? And then we were all at the Great Faire, where this year I did a lot of shopping and let other people tell their stories as much as I could. It was hard to let that happen sometimes, so I suppose you will hear a little of me in those stories if you look at them hard enough.

But the truth is, I have not been much in Faerie over these past few months.

So when I was awakened by a thump (hint: it was me being rolled out of my cosy little bed!) yesterday, I was not best pleased.

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I am not best pleased, I said.

I walked out onto the porch, squinting into the sunlight. “I am not best pleased,” I said.

You are not best pleased? How nice for you.

Uh, oh. I know that voice. “My Lady!” There are few people who would cause me to stop in my tracks and just wonder what I had done wrong, especially since my relationships with my parents (both sets) are somewhat distant at the moment. But of course, this was no person. “How may I attend you?”

Get your blasted Realm in order, for starters. 

I took a breath. But She was not finished.

Oh, don’t come at me with your apologies, and your I’m so tireds. I have just spent most of the night and half the morning retconning your little … wait a minute: do you even know what month it is?

“Um, June?” I said. There. I answered it right.

So it is. And do you know what I have removed from this little realm just this morning?

I swallowed. Then, there was that dizzying sense that you get when a Goddess is picking you up and dragging you several hundred feet to make a point.

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What did you do?

“What did you do?” I exclaimed, as I thumped down into the garden island, and none too gently.

Well, first, I got rid of the goddamned ice skating pond. Then, I got rid of the snow and made the grass regrow. Did you know you have animals on that farm across the water who are still hibernating? 

Oh, right. “Well, I have been really busy, and I guess I thought the Land would just….”

You thought. Really? When has a season ever happened here without your influence? This is a created Realm, Missy, but that’s no excuse to make winter eight months long! 

Eek. She called me “Missy.” She’s going to go full-on Welsh Granny if I’m not careful.

“I’m sorry.”

Sorry does not set the table, Gwyneth. Really. This is your realm; you must be more responsible with it. So. Last night and this morning, after I received complaints finally from some of the demifae in your Realm, I have been greening the place up: you get to do the farm, though. And that godawful city park. And I’m not touching the creepy carousel in the centre of town—what were you thinking with that one?

Again, there was that sense of dizziness.

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I looked over my shoulder.

I looked over my shoulder and saw the still-frozen farm island next to all the middle-of-summer things. “I really am sorry, Lady,” I replied. “It won’t happen again.”

See that it doesn’t. And don’t even think of trying to change yourself this summer. You’re stuck with standard sun kissed Seelie. No fancy hair colours, no special alabaster skin: none of that for you. This year, you get to feel what it’s like to have something imposed on you, like a season, that you cannot control. Perhaps then you’ll be more inclined to treat the smaller creatures in your Realm with something akin to compassion.

I hadn’t even noticed. “I have freckles!” Oh, please, no.

Oh, you poor thing. I guess you’re stuck with those until you decide to make a timely change to Autumn this year. 

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It does look really nice.

“It does look really nice,” I said, only somewhat sullen. “I’m so glad you put in the Shrine of Elistrae. I loved the one in Twilight Spring so much.”

Complimenting me isn’t going to get you out of this, Missy.

“No, My Lady; I didn’t think it would,” I said. “Trees look a little sparse on the garden island; shall I add more?”

It’s your Realm. I only micromanage you when I have to and when the well-being of other beings hangs in the balance.

“I really am….”

Stop apologising! I’ll not accept it, not until I see full-blown Summer here within the day and Autumn make a timely debut no later than twenty-first September; do you hear me? And on that day, there’ll be no silver elf hair for you either, Missy. You can wait ’til Winter again, and I haven’t decided if I’m going to turn you red or brown in September. That can be my little surprise.

“And the freckles?”

Don’t you like them?

I was afraid to answer.

Then, there was only laughter, at first harsh and then fading to wind as She eased Her Presence out of the Realm. Well, great. So much for summer sleep-ins. Guess I’d better go work on that farm.

Style Card:
Dress: Senzafine, Melody Dress (featured at the Vintage Fair, but coming home to the Senzafine Main Store this week!)
Body: Maitreya
Head: LAQ, Noelle Bento Mesh Head
Skin: Lumae, Elvi (in Tone 6). (All current skin lines are just L$100 at the Lumae Main Store!)
Ears: Lumae, Leevi Long Ears
Hair: Exile, Swept Away
Necklace: Rozoregalia, Alugim Necklace (Miss You)
Shoes: Cult, Moon Ribbon Tip Toes

Environment:
Location: Awenia Faerie
Guest House: The Looking Glass, Victorian Dream II
Shrine: Roawenwood, Shrine of Elistraee (special auction item from the 2019 Fantasy Faire)
Gazebo: The Looking Glass, Shrine Tree Conservatory (special auction item from the 2019 Fantasy Faire)
Coffee Wagon: Atomic, Witches’ Brew Gacha
Clock and Benches, RH Design House, Cafe in the Park dacha

“Woefully Underdressed”

As Fae Awenia comes more into focus, I’m spending more and more time in the newer parts of the Realm and letting others do the last-minute items in preparation for when the paperwork’s all filed and we have an adoring public to think about! So many mundane Realms have opened themselves up to the Fae community; I can’t think why there are there aren’t more places like ours springing up.

Anyway, I had been so busy working on the trees in our little residential settlement I had barely seen the town centre in weeks, so I made arrangements to meet Nathaniel at one of the new, posh restaurants off the village green. Bran assured me when he made the reservation that the place was now fully staffed with professional (fae) waitstaff directly from Nu Jyorck, so I was looking forward to m visit.

The moment I walked in, I knew which table had been reserved for Nathaniel and me. I was only a couple of minutes early, but he was nowhere to be seen (no big surprise there).

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“Madame, I’m sorry, but this table is reserved.”

“Madame,” said a soft tenor, “I’m sorry,” (he did not actually sound sorry), “but this table is reserved.”

“Yes,” I replied. “I know it’s reserved.” Oh, this was going to be fun.

The impeccably dressed waiter looked down at me. He had the soft features of a half-elf, possibly raised in a large enough city that his instincts about the blood wouldn’t be as well honed as ours in Faerie are. Or possibly he was just ignorant. He pasted on a smile. “Yes, Madame; we are expecting a very important guest tonight, and I’m afraid this table is reserved for that guest and their companion.”

I nodded. “Yes, I can see that,” I replied. “The table looks beautiful, by the way: well done.”

“And I’m terribly sorry, Madame,” (Again, he did not actually sound very sorry), “but I’ll have to ask you to choose another eating establishment for this evening. Our dress code is…” he searched his mind for a descriptor. “Well, you are woefully underdressed.”

I stood, and for the first time the waiter appeared slightly more relaxed. Perhaps he was relieved that I was going to comply with his request that I vacate the premises.

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“So,” I said. “I’m woefully underdressed for the establishment?”

“So,” I said. “I’m woefully underdressed for the establishment?” It was hard not to laugh. The poor waiter was now worried he’d got the town nutter. Which, I suppose, I am.

“That is correct, Madame,” he said. He was starting to act nervous.

There was whispering from the kitchen; I suspected there were those who knew me in the ranks, taking bets on how the encounter might proceed. I heard a soft titter. Nobody approached the table: it was just me and the waiter.

“So if I changed my attire?” I fiddled with the button of my jeans, just to make him more nervous.

His eyes went wide. “Not here, Madame!” he exclaimed. “But certainly, if you wanted to perhaps go home, freshen up…..”

I stared into the nearby candle flame. “You mean….”

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“I should look more like this?” I asked. 

“I should look more like this?” I asked.

And then of course the penny dropped. There were high-fives and guffaws from the kitchen; the waiter’s face turned first purple, then red. Before he could catch himself, he said, “Oh, shit.” He swallowed. “I’m … I beg your pardon, Your Majesty.” He went down on one knee.

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I moved closer to him. “Don’t worry,” I said. “Happens all the time.” 

I moved closer to him. He took a step back. “Don’t worry,” I said. “Happens all the time.”

He looked up at me and swallowed. “If you’re sure, Your Majesty.”

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“Of course,” I replied. “No harm done. Well, except for insulting your Queen, but that’s hardly serious, right?”

“Of course,” I replied. “No harm done. Well, except for insulting your Queen, but that’s hardly serious, right?”

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“It’s not as if there’s a painting of me here, yes?” I gestured casually to the painting of me on the opposite wall.

“It’s not as if there’s a painting of me here, yes?” I gestured casually to the painting of me on the opposite wall.

“Yes, Your Majesty, but you were…” He glanced up briefly.

“Yes, I know. Woefully underdressed. Tristan, is it?”

“That’s right, Your Majesty.” His knuckles were white against his britches.

“Bran!”

“Yes, My Lady?” My majordomo is so good about coming when he is called.

“This one needs to come and work for us, I think.”

The waiter (Tristan) turned even more pale.

“As you wish, My Lady. Come along, young Tristan.” Bran held out a hand to the young waiter, and when the fellow took his hand, they disappeared immediately.

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“What?” I directed my remarks to the kitchen now. “It’s hard to find good help!”

“What?” I directed my remarks to the kitchen now. “It’s hard to find good help! That young man was ready to toss a Fae Queen out onto the streets, in order to protect the experience of the Fae Queen! I’ll have him as a footman for at least the next fifty years.”

Just then, Nathaniel came into the restaurant, having missed the whole scene (not unusual). “Don’t you look beautiful, my love!” he said, his eyes warming as he smiled at me. “I feel woefully underdressed next to you!”

Now, no one does bemused like my Nathaniel, so when the entire staff erupted into hysterics, he was the most bemused Husband and Consort ever.

Dinner was excellent, by the way.

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Head: Vista Bento Mesh Head, Lia
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Helana
Eyes: Mesange, Sanford Eyes
Sweater: Noble Creations, Winter Furry Shirt (Available NOW at The Season’s Story!)
Jeans: Semller, 25 Point Jeans
Boots, Reign, Palia Boots
Hair: Analog Dog (natch!), Hannah (NEW in the Analog Dog Main Store!)
Posh Dress: Witch)O(Craft, Music of the Night Dress (Available NOW at Garden of Shadows Fair!)
Posh Crown: Shanghai, Nymph Crown

Restaurant Background: Cubic Cherry, Lovely Corner (Available NOW at The Season’s Story!)
Table, Chairs, and Yummy Cake: Kalopsia, Gold and Roses (Available NOW at Collabor88!)
Clock: The Plastik, Waine Clock
Sparklies: DDD, Wisp Spirits, Color
Trees: Roawenwood, Winter White Wedding Trees (Available NOW at The Trunk Show!)

Positively Faux Street

New Blog Headers - 11

The Amazing Catwoman:

Pocket Universes all have this feel about them, like they’ve been stamped onto a sheet of paper about a dozen times, only nobody’s bothered to re-ink the stamp. You spend as much time as I have in this business, you get to know them the second you step in to one.

Now, granted, not all pocket universes are bad. Some of them are perfectly decent club and shopping districts. Some of them are decent hideouts. In fact, I’ve even been to one or two pocket universes I actually liked. But the fact is, when you get hired to do a job in a pocket universe, you’re doing something illegal (almost always), or you’re doing something somebody doesn’t want somebody more important than they are to know about (always always).

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One thing I can guarantee: if you land in a pocket universe that has as its portal a pair of Big, Impressive Elfin Doors and you’re not then in Elf Land, it’s not one of the good ones.

One thing I can guarantee: if you land in a pocket universe that has as its portal a pair of Big, Impressive Elfin Doors and you’re not then in Elf Land, it’s not one of the good ones. Just a bit of wisdom from your old buddy TAC. Because damn. This pocket universe was really not one of the good ones. I could tell it the moment I stepped through the Massive Elfin Doors.

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And whether you’re in a good pocket universe or a bad one, it always takes a moment or two to get your bearings.

And whether you’re in a good pocket universe or a bad one, it always takes a moment or two to get your bearings, but that’s true of all portal travel. Worst portal sickness I ever had was on a trip to Manchester, I kid you not.

Anyway, the fixer had set me up with a place to stay, which was a blessing, since the whole PU (I love that abbreviation) seemed to be made up of one street of shops and a lonely little city park, bordered by forest on one side and God Knows What on the other.

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As luck would have it, it was upstairs from an art studio. Or maybe it was a gallery. I get those two mixed up.

As luck would have it, it was upstairs from an art studio. Or maybe it was a gallery. I get those two mixed up. Never gave a fuck about art anyway. I put my shit away and started to settle in for the night, but since I was meant to report for work in the morning, I figured I’d take a look around, see what there was to see.

As it turned out, there wasn’t a hell of a lot to see. Every place except the art studio/gallery/whatever was locked up tight, even the address I was meant to report to the next morning. Come to think of it, the clerk at the art studio/gallery/whatever hadn’t been there when I’d come back downstairs, either.

Great. I’m in a two-bit pocket universe with only one street, and the only unlocked building is a fucking art studio. Gallery. Whatever.

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The park was a disappointment, too.

The park was a disappointment, too. Not even a fucking bench. Just a lit up tree with lights all in it (because it’s never too early for Christmas in Pocket Universe Land), a big clock, and some weird statue of a girl apparently losing a battle with a dandelion. Awesome. I went back to my special room, probably the only living inhabitant of the whole universe, such as it was, and I just meditated until I fell asleep. Because damn. The least they could have done was bought me dinner, you know?

Fucking bright sunlight woke me the next morning. At least there was a shower, and since I was the only person in the universe, plenty of hot water, booyah. And when I got out of the shower, I noticed somebody had left a styrofoam cup of coffee (really? do they even make styrofoam in pocket universes?) and a shabby-looking croissant on the table in my room. Delish.

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They told me I’d meet my contact in the coffee shop.

They told me I’d meet my contact in the coffee shop. Luckily, it wasn’t shut tight in the morning: I hoped the coffee would at least be better than that swill I’d swallowed with the croissant (because fuck knows when I’d get another meal, you know?).

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It did not take me long to realise this was not the sort of coffee house I’d been thinking of.

It didn’t take me long to realise this wasn’t the sort of coffee house I’d been thinking of. For fuck’s sake, the whole place looked like some teenager’s dream of what an Amsterdam coffeehouse looked like, except of course the teenager’s from somewhere in Ohio….

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Oh, hell no. I turned to walk out.

Oh, hell, no. I turned to walk out. Figured I’d ring my fixer as soon as I could get a signal and let him know there was no way there could be any good work in a place like this.

“Tacey! Wait!” I stopped dead. Nobody’d called me that in years. And the voice was familiar. Jesus fuck.

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“Owen?” I stared at the fellow who’d materialised in front of me.

“Owen?” I stared at the fellow who’d materialised in front of me. “What the fuck do you want?”

Style Card:
Body: Maitreya
Head: LAQ, Trinity
Ears: Gauze, High Elf Ears, Naturals
Eyes: Avi-Glam, Elysian Eyes, Chocolate
Skin: 7 Deadly s{K}ins, Lexy (Freckled), in tone Chestnut (Available through 30 November at TWE12LVE. Additional appliers, including body appliers, available at the 7 Deadly s{K}ins Main Store.)
Hair: Emo-Tions, Maureen (available at Hairology!)
Top: Jangka, Hyperia Jacket (Available at We❤ RP!)
Belt Pouch: Noble Creations, Medici Pouch (A prize for the 5th Fantasy Cream Hunt!)
Trousers: Lassitude & Ennui, Hand-Stitched Leather Leggings (Maitreya Appliers)
Boots: JustDesign, Ara Boots in Earth
Ring: Aisling, The Good Wife
Necklace: Emo-Tions, Precious (Available at We❤ RP!)

Big, Impressive Elfin Doors: Violetility, Ultimate RP Door Elven (Stone)
Streetlight: BlackJack, Amsterdam Gacha, Streetlight (Available at 6 Republic!)
Street: BlackJack, Amsterdam Gacha, Straight Road (Available at 6 Republic!)
Art Studio Building: Death Row Designs, The Joint Coffee Shop, Coffee Shop (Available at 6 Republic!)
Art Studio Interior: Artisan Fantasy, Art Studio Gacha (Available at 6 Republic!)
Clock:Mistero Hifen,  Il Tempo Perfetto
Dandelion Status: Mistero Hifen, Dream 2
Light Tree: Happy Mood, Garden Tree 08 With Lights
Corner Trees: Roawenwood, Autumn Fire Tree (Available at We❤ RP!)
Coffee Shop Interior: Death Row Designs, The Joint Coffee Shop (Available at 6 Republic!)

Poses: All from An Lar, some from the Daydreamer Series, some from the Layna Series

Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my LumiPro. I never subject you guys to cliffhangers involving The Amazing Catwoman without it!

hairology-november   [NC] - Noble Creations - LOGO   7ds

“Nature always wears the colors of the spirit.” —Ralph Waldo Emerson

Gwyneth:

Gwyneth:

I felt … disconnected. The fact is, there’s so much going on right now. Nathaniel and I have barely bothered to act like newlyweds, we’ve both been so busy. And the children are, well. They are a challenge; let’s just leave it at that for now. I didn’t know what I needed to make this feeling of disconnection go away, so I went out into the Forest, because being in the forest often helps me find answers I’m seeking.

At first, I was still consumed by stress and discontent.

At first, I was still consumed by stress and discontent.

At first, I was still consumed by stress and discontent. So many things going on. Dyisi and Maric are both missing. Aoibheann is apparently a tiny ball of golden light. One of my children jumped on a demon’s back. Another of my children missed my wedding. And the third one apparently can’t be bothered to walk: she just flies everywhere.

I sank down onto the mossy ground in a clearing, closed my eyes, and just wished for peace and contentment. Just for a moment. I don’t know how long I sat there, just concentrating on my breathing and wishing, almost, that I could be back teaching summer courses in Cambridge and with the biggest problems in my world being how to juggle my marking load with the yearly schedule of LARPs and whether or not Richard would kiss me again. Almost.

Then, I felt a nudge at my right hand.

Then, I felt a nudge at my right hand.

Then, I felt a nudge at my right hand. When I opened my eyes, I kid you not, I was surrounded by animals. Deer, squirrels, rabbits, foxes, cats, a hedgehog, and even an odd little field mouse. The creature who’d nudged my hand was a young unicorn; I reached in my bag and produced the stash of nuts and seeds I take with me on these junkets into the Forest. Of course, then everybody wanted a nibble, so I was glad to share. And so were they. There wasn’t any fighting or carrying on about who got more than whom, just me and a host of animals sharing a snack on a summer day. I sat with the animals for some time, just enjoying the camaraderie.

As the day grew long, we all settled down for a nap, but unsurprisingly they were all gone when I awoke.

Now I still have just as much to think about....

Now I still have just as much to think about….

Now, I still have just as much to think about, but somehow my burden seems lighter, having enjoyed a long afternoon with some of the less-mentioned beings who inhabit my realm. Funny, while I was spending time with the animals, I wasn’t bothered by a single demifae demanding I come look after a garden, or any high-minded Sidhe Lords who think to bend me to their political will by use of clever words and flattery.

  1. Figure out why Aoibh is a little glowing ball;
  2. Find out what’s up with Maric and Dyisi;
  3. Teach Eilian some manners;
  4. Get closer to Drysi so she doesn’t grow away from me too fast;
  5. Teach Bronwyn to walk;
  6. Make sure Wren doesn’t feel left out;
  7. Seek out Janus and ensure his return to Faerie;
  8. Find my mother;
  9. Spend some quality time with Nathaniel;
  10. Begin planning the formal wedding, even though it’s not til next year; and
  11. Find some way in amongst all these important things to keep my Kingdom running smoothly and fairly.

Well. That’s not too much to do, is it?

This post was inspired by Alia Baroque’s brilliant PURE Eden skin and Persephone tattoo, juxtaposed with my discovery of these gorgeous {anc} bunnies. Check out the style card for specific credits and links!

Style Card:

Body: Maitreya

Skin: Fallen Gods, Pure, Eden (Wayward Carnival)
Tattoo: Fallen Gods, Persephone (flowering, soft) (Genre)
Crown: Lode,Snapdragon BIG (red)
Wings: Arhi big wings (rare)
Ears: Lumae: Leevi Long Ears
Eyes: Mayfly, Luminous Mesh Eyes (Borealis) (Wayward Carnival)
Dress: Cellar Door, Roman Tunic Red (The Secret Affair)
Hair: Analog Dog (Natch!) Molly (Hair Fair)
Necklace: EarthStones, Feuilles Lariat Necklace
Animals:
Bunnies: {anc} Cotton Bunny, Sugar (Wayward Carnival)
Foxes: Half Deer, Fennec Fox: Stargazer, Playful, Sleepytime
Cats: Fashionably Dead, Cat: Curious, Sitting, Standing Up
Unicorn: Culprit, UniQrn, Snow Leopard Baby
Hedgehog: Fashionably Dead, Hedgehog 1
Squirrel: Raya Johnson, Mesh Full Perm Squirrel
Mouse: Schadenfreude, Queen of the Field Mice
Deer: Just Animals, Deer 1 Standing
Mushrooms:
Half Deer, Dreamscape Mushrooms
Roawenwood: Tangleshimmer Grove Mushrooms
Landscape: Enchanted Forest Clearing, Studio Skye
Background Building: The Looking Glass: Enchanted Walkway
Spiffy photos taken with the indispensible aid of my LumiPro. I never stay home without it!