Thistledown – Midsummer Bedlam 20 — Hanging by a Hair

Saturday, January 13, 2018

I’m glad to see you were able to come back to Thistledown.  This episode is a brief return to the point of view of Bedlam Thunder. 

Sparkler hands be the spark

Previously in the Etheraris Spiregris

To review episode 14 click here*.

River turned to the next page and the hair sparked, shocking me yet again.

 “Do you think this is the one?” River asked excitedly.  “A Perversion of Phantoms,” she read aloud the title at the top of the timeworn page. 

 At River’s words the long muskox hair fell limp against the page.  My hand dropped, resting against the page as Rhymer and I echoed River in stating the name of the spell.  All three of us happened to be touching the pages of the incantation as we spoke.

 “The name of the spell reminds me of how we were talking about learning whether people had disappeared from Thistledown.  Missing faeries being like phantoms,” River continued.

 The three of us exchanged a look.  It was spontaneous, a coincidence.  We didn’t mean to speak in chorus but as one we gasped.

 “A Perversion of Phantoms!”

 Abruptly the heavy volume snapped shut.  The periwinkle muskox hair was still within, like a bookmark.  The room spun wildly.  It was like looking into a kaleidoscope. 

 Then the world shattered. 

 Quickly I moved my hands away from the book and caught the hands of River and Rhymer. 

Thistledown

Midsummer Bedlam 20

Hanging by a Hair

Face in water blue

Vivid black.

How could black be vivid? I wondered dizzily as I spiraled.

Then I remembered that while black was the absence of all light, it was the presence of all color.  I supposed it could be vivid at that.

Though I could see nothing, the world around me seemed to toss and turn.  Nausea surged.  I tried to put a hand over my mouth, but something restrained me.  Then I remembered Rhymer Rainbow and River Mindshadow… and the Etheraris Spiregris

The magically charged periwinkle colored muskox hair was tangled around my wrist.  I remembered being snared by it just as the ancient tome snapped shut and the world seemed to shatter.  River had been trying to free me from the muskox hair, so she already held onto my arm.  If Rhymer had not reached for my hand at the same moment that I caught hers, I wouldn’t have been quick enough.

At first, I was blind.  It felt like I was falling, yet not moving.  After a while, I could see vague forms from the soft purplish glow of the special muskox hair.  I recognized the shapes as my friends.

Abruptly the sensation of falling became a sharp yank.  The three of us were jerked upward, but then the motion stopped.  I heard a scream.

August_Malmström_Dancing_Fairies

August_Malmström_Dancing_Fairies

“I can’t stay put.  Something’s got my foot!” Rhymer cried.

Even as I felt my grip on the rainbow-haired faery’s hand begin to slip, I felt River move so she could reach Rhymer’s other hand.

“By something woolled I’m being pulled!  I’m being wrangled, it’s got my ankle!” Rhymer gasped as her hand was yanked free of mine.

“Rhymer!” I heard River shriek, and knew that she had also lost hold of our friend.

I heard Rhymer’s muffled voice, but her words made no sense to me.  It sounded like she said the wool was sprinkled with lights that twinkled.

“River, you’re much faster than me.  Go get her,” I said.

“We shouldn’t get separated!” River exclaimed in a torn sounding voice.

River let go of my hand and I felt relieved, thinking she would try and help Rhymer.  I was an awkward flyer at best, and with my half-healed wing I would be a hundred times worse.  I couldn’t make the choice for River, but I felt she should go after Rhymer.

However, River merely shifted her hold from my wrist to my ankle.  Her free arm flailed as she felt around the darkness for Rhymer.

“Rhymer, say something!  Where are you?” she yelled.

“I’m still here,” Rhymer said with a grunt.  “But not for long I fear!”

Her voice sounded as if she was being forcibly yanked backward.

“You said ‘woolled’ ― did you mean something wooly has you?” I called.

Rope Bare feet Dark_eva-blue-42498

Eva Blue, Unsplash

“A vast wool rope.  I’m held too fast to cope,” she replied, but sounded farther away.

“River, if you don’t go now, it will be too late,” I sobbed.  “I can’t see her anymore.”

“Oh!” River cried in epiphany.  “I have it.  This way I can still find the way back to you.  Just don’t get untangled.”

Then River took off her belt and looped it around the periwinkle colored muskox hair that was firmly tangled around my wrist.  She held onto the other end of the belt.  Despite the awkward position it caused, she flew quickly in the direction we thought Rhymer had gone, but remained close to the hair that would lead back to me.

For a short time, I could see a vague shape that I knew was River, illuminated by the glow of the magical hair.

“River?” I called.

“I’m still following the muskox hair,” she replied, but she sounded so far away.  “I think I see Rhymer.  Maybe.  I’m not sure.”

I don’t know how to describe it.  Perhaps it had to do with my supposed “gift” as a seer.  Or maybe the air pressure was displaced by something large coming into our presence.  That’s how it felt ― like something else was added to the space where we were.

River screamed.

Then I heard a grunt, as if the air was knocked out her lungs.  I no longer sensed the large presence that came so suddenly.  It left as abruptly as it arrived.

“River?  River!  Rhymer!”

No one answered my calls.

The sensation of falling became more intense.  I felt I was moving faster, hurtling downward through darkness.

The End

***

 This Week’s Faery Namers

Click the links to reveal the identity of the namers.  Enjoy a visit to their fantastic blogs.

Rhymer Rainbow  https://whenwomeninspire.com/

River Mindshadow  http://www.authortranslatorolga.com/

Okay, I hear you yelling about the “cliffhanger” ending.  Is it really a cliffhanger if the character has stopped hanging and started falling?  I see that didn’t settle you down at all.  Fly over next time to find out what happens in The Crochet Circle.  Until then…

Hugs on the wing! 

 

 

Copyright © 2017 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene 

All rights reserved. 

This is a work of fiction.  Characters, names, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, locales, or events is entirely coincidental. 

No part of this work may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission.  Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights.

All images are either the property of the author or provided by free sources, unless stated otherwise.

 

Thistledown – Midsummer Bedlam 19 — Songbirds & Battleaxes

Saturday, January 6, 2018

Featured Image -- 21891

It’s a new year here in the blog world, and I hope yours had a great beginning.  This fae tale started in 2017, before Midsummer.  While months have passed for us, only a matter of days have gone by for Bedlam Thunder and her faery friends.  As winter’s cold nips I can pretend I’m in the warmer clime of Thistledown. 

I recognize that it is difficult to keep up with the details of this serial over such an amount of time.  Plus, some of you only started following recently.  So here are links for two episodes that would be good refreshers for today’s chapter — Episode 7, Doors and Doors*, and Episode 8, Shadows of Body and Mind*.  Events there should trigger your memory.  Or with this post, you can catch-up with links* to episodes 1 through 5. 

Previously from Bedlam’s point of view…

Finally Carver reappeared.  He held a huge copper ax…  Then Carver braced himself and swung the massive ax at the beautiful door he had created…  A sound like the entire world shattering filled my ears.

Thistledown

Midsummer Bedlam 19

Songbirds and Battleaxes

Fairy_Islands_1916_by_Ida_Rentoul_Outhwaite

Fairy_Islands_1916_by_Ida_Rentoul_Outhwaite

On tiny but speedy wings, Bob the hummingbird hurried to the cottage where he last saw Bedlam Thunder.  He knew something was badly out of balance.  Yet no matter how brave the heart, or how fast the flight, it was quite a distance for such a little bird.  Although Bob had to admit he had taken a detour or three.  It was no wonder his wings grew sluggish.

Far below, Bob spotted a faery with long dark blue hair.  Her wings were aqua with cobalt blue sparkles.  The hummingbird knew that was Holly Songbird.  Distracted by what he saw on the ground, Bob almost collided with Holly’s cousin, Poppy Songbird as she soared in playful flight.  Poppy back-winged and straightened her flower-shaped spectacles.

“Hi Bob!  Goodness, but you look all tuckered out.  Poor little guy.  You seem upset.  I wish I could understand hummingbirds,” she commented and stretched out a hand as she fluttered.  “Here.  Have a seat and you can fly with me,” Poppy said and Bob gratefully perched on her finger.

He got a tight grip and hung onto Poppy as she soared heavenward when her cousin sang a dramatic high note.  Poppy flew a daring loop and then performed a roll.

DCF 1.0

Holly Songbird was rehearsing for the big Midsummer party that Peaches Dragonfly was going to host.  However, Poppy was not performing.  She did the daredevil flying spontaneously, out of pure joy.

The two cousins were at the home of Carver Eastdoor, where he and Ivy Twinkle worked to re-create the amazing candy door that Carver had used a great copper battleax to destroy.  That act had somehow allowed Bedlam to return home from the colorless faery-verse when she inadvertently went there.  Bob worriedly wondered if something similar might have happened to Bedlam Thunder again.

The hummingbird darted to a nearby tree to rest.  He figured that he would get distracted by the small group of faeries and their work if he stayed too close.  He instinctively knew something was getting steadily more off kilter in Thistledown, and he was in a hurry to check on Bedlam.

However, hummingbirds can be flighty even when they have the best intentions.  He heard two male voices, Carver Eastdoor and Ivy Twinkle.  Before he knew it, Bob found himself listening to the conversation of the faeries. 

“You’ve certainly got the lift in your wings, Poppy,” Carver’s old friend Ivy Twinkle commented using a popular phrase.

Saks Fifth Avenue Christmas Dan Antion

Saks Fifth Avenue at Christmas, by Dan Antion

“It’s such a shame that Carver had to smash the first door.  But it was fun cleaning up all the candy ― not to mention eating it!” Poppy told him.  “Although I think that really was the only way to bring Bedlam Thunder back.  I can’t imagine being stuck in the colorless world she described,” Poppy added with a shudder.

She adjusted her flower-shaped spectacles and then turned to watch her cousin Holly begin to practice another song.

“I’m not sure my voice will be loud enough on the lowest notes,” Holly commented.  “Not if the crowd is as large as everyone expects.”

“No one will care,” Ivy Twinkle stopped his work hanging confections around the portal to tell her.

His eyes really did twinkle when he looked at Holly.  Bob thought perhaps Ivy was a little bit star struck.  She was one of the biggest celebrities in Thistledown.  Carver elbowed his old friend in the ribs and cleared his throat.  Ivy pretended not to know what Carver meant.

“Don’t worry,” Carver told the songstress.  “The acoustics will be perfect once everything is finished.  Thanks for getting the Dragon’s Nest band to help transport the stage to Peaches’ orchard.”

“The band is always happy to lend a hand.  After all, it’s for our performance,” Holly assured him.  “So, it should be us thanking you.”

Red Smoke_ Wong Unsplash

Warren Wong, Unsplash

Unexpectedly, something large and red barreled across the sky toward them.

“What in heaven’s name,” Holly began.  “I’ve never seen anything move that fast!  Is it a dragon?”

“It’s Field Yewwasp,” Carver said softly.  “Despite his size, there’s no one faster on the wing than the furry faery.  But I’ve never seen even him move so quickly.”

Field’s sense of urgency seemed to reach ahead of him.  Everyone stopped what they were doing and stood close together.

Carver’s toddler daughter came running out of the house giggling.  She couldn’t fly yet, but with every third step she fluttered upward.  It made for an adorable bounce-run.  Just as Field Yewwasp touched the ground and straightened his bright red coat, she barreled into him.  Field swept the tot up onto his shoulders.  She took his top hat and put it on her own head.

The child’s mother was not far behind.  She expertly detached the tot from Field ― although, he had to stoop down before anyone could reach the child.

“What’s wrong?” everyone asked in a multi tone round of voices.

Field turned serious eyes to Carver Eastdoor.  Carver’s brows furrowed suspiciously.

“Please don’t tell me I’m going to need to shatter another door.  This one’s nearly finished.  There’s no time to make another one before the Midsummer party,” Carver muttered insightfuliy.

“I don’t think so,” Field began in a noncommittal voice that did nothing to ease Carver’s mind.  “However, I saw that big copper battleax of yours in a vision.”

Thistledown had not known any sort of fighting, certainly not battles, in more generations than anyone could count.  The mere mention of the battleax elicited dread from the group of faeries.

Silence descended.

Bob had caught his second wind.  He darted into the sky, hurrying on his errand.  He was filled with worry about Bedlam.

The End

***

 This Week’s Faery Namers

Click the links to reveal the identity of the namers.  Enjoy a visit to their fantastic blogs.

Poppy Songbird  https://smorgasbordinvitation.wordpress.com/

Holly Songbird  https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCyWrV-dmm_oWHnc50YKSVnA

Carver Eastdoor  https://nofacilities.com/

Field Yewwasp https://thestoryreadingapeblog.com/about/

Ivy Twinkle  https://hughsviewsandnews.com/

Peaches Dragonfly  https://apuginthekitchen.com

Events are on the wing, whether large or tiny.  Fly over next time to find out what happens in Hanging by a Hair.  Until then…

Hugs on the wing! 

 

 

Copyright © 2017 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene 

All rights reserved. 

This is a work of fiction.  Characters, names, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, locales, or events is entirely coincidental. 

No part of this work may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission.  Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights.

All images are either the property of the author or provided by free sources, unless stated otherwise.

 

Thistledown – Midsummer Bedlam 18 — Top Hat, Doors, and Herons

Saturday, December 30, 2017

As 2017 wings to a close, I wish each and every reader a happy 2018!  I’m honored that you’ve stayed with me for another year.  Happy New Year!  May 2018 be filled with only good things, wonder-filled days, and peaceful nights. 

The vicious WordPress gremlins have caused many of us frustration, wasted time, and cost us viewers. Here’s hoping we don’t have to deal with that in 2018…  I know, it seems less likely than world peace.

Sparkles Winter Trees Kimson Doan Unsplash

Kimson Doan, Unsplash.com

A vision seems to be spreading through Thistledown.  Or perhaps it’s more than a mere precognition.  From far and wide, faeries (from past episodes) continue to return to these pages, pulling the threads together. 

From Episode 17…

The man got off the beastly two-wheeled thing.  With a disarming smile, he winked at Bob.  The hummingbird wasn’t sure what to make of him.  Then he bowed with a flourish.  The leaves decorating his helmet made a sharp swishing sound as they cut through the air…

Bob flew very close to Valley’s head.  He wasn’t sure whether or not Valley was in any danger from the odd strangers, but he felt distrust.  So, he stayed protectively close to Valley…

“That is a very unusual color for obsidian,” Valley remarked to Razorleaf as she led them toward her home.  “Do you mind?” she asked as she put her hand toward the pale grayish yellow gem.  “It seems to glow, ever so slightly.” 

Now, Episode 18…

Thistledown

Midsummer Bedlam 18

A Top Hat, Doors, and Herons

 

Abbey,_Edwin_Austin_Fairies

Edwin Austin Abbey, Fairies

In a flurry of iridescent feathers, Bob the hummingbird flew with all his tiny might.

Fleeting visions were shared by many.  The coincidental, synchronous work of several folks, all managed to link together for one moment in time.  So, a vision was reflected in multiple scrying surfaces across Thistledown ― and some elsewhere.

In her colorless hideaway, Fallow Blackmoon sat with her brow furrowed by concerned curiosity as she gazed into a crystal sphere.

Valley Hummer gasped as she glimpsed seemingly random things in an obsidian shard brought by an enigmatic man from another world.

Field Yewwasp and Catseye Glimmer inspected the health of a pond where the water, the fish, and even the birds were turning dull shades of gray or brown.  They saw the vision in the calm waters of the drab pond.

As Bedlam Thunder and her friends held tightly to a slender strand of magical muskox hair, Bedlam saw those seemingly unconnected things as they seared her mind.

***

Hummingbird Kunstformen der Natur 1904

Furiously fluttering, Bob the hummingbird streaked across an aqua blue sky.  Valley Hummer sent him to check on Bedlam Thunder.  However, the tiny bird was always easily distracted.  As he flew he noticed something odd happening on the ground below.  Bob tarried briefly.  Seeing two of the most respected faeries in Thistledown together, Bob’s curiosity got the better of him.  He quietly observed, perched unseen in the branches of the tallest tree.

With a long beak, a heron with cobalt blue feathers pulled at Catseye Glimmer’s pocket.  Even in Thistledown, herons were not usually so friendly.  However, Catseye had an affinity for the great birds.  His wife often teased him that it was because of the long legs they had in common.  He removed a treat from his pocket and tossed it to the heron.

“Some of his feathers have turned from blue to gray,” Catseye commented about the heron in a concerned voice.

A pair of sandhill cranes came to join the heron.  They also hoped for a handout, but were not so bold.  The birds made for an odd-looking trio.

Field Yewwasp hung his top hat on the branch of a tree, then he removed his well-tailored jacket.  He plunged thick arms into the dull water of the pond.  In a moment he had tickled a fish bringing it to the surface.

“That fish should be blue with a green stripe,” he commented, slowly shaking his head.  “Instead it is brown and gray,” he added as he let the fish go on its way.

The two tall faeries sat down on the bank of the pond.  It seemed that one was as perplexed as the other about the strange changes at the pond.

“I’m reminded of Bedlam Thunder’s vision,” they both commented at the same time, so they laughed, but their chuckles had a nervous edge. 

A_Moonlight_Dicovery_Thomas Maybank 1898-1912

A Moonlight Discovery, Thomas Maybank circa 1900

“It must be true then,” Field chuckled in a deep rumble.  “If we both spoke it at once.”

Then his expression abruptly turned serious.  Next to Field, Bob heard Catseye Glimmer draw a sharp breath.

Random images flitted across the calm water of the dull pond.

“I’m no seer,” the large person known as the furry faery began.  “Although any of the fae might have visions from time to time…  Did you see it?” he asked and Catseye Glimmer grunted an affirmative.

“Everyone knows you are the next thing to a seer, Field.  I don’t know if I saw as much as you, but there was a top hat, doors, and a heron.”

Field nodded.  He stood and retrieved his top hat from the high branch.  He hesitated for a moment but put on the bright red jacket.

“It feels almost like a summons,” Catseye remarked.  “But to where?”

“Ask the heron,” Field told him.  “You know you can commune with them when you really need to.”

Heron n others Winter Tim Price

Timothy Price

“Where are you going?” Catseye asked as Field’s russet colored wings unfurled.

“We were not the only ones called upon.  The doors…  I saw a glimpse of one thing you didn’t mention, a great copper battleaxe.  I’m going to Carver Eastdoor.  I don’t know why this should be shown to us, but whatever it is, he is needed as well.”

Then despite his size, Field Yewwasp darted into the sky, moving faster than any other faery could.

Bob the hummingbird spread his wings to follow Field.  Then he remembered his errand.  Bob abruptly knew a sense of urgency.  He hurried back on course to check on Bedlam and her friends.

The End

***

 This Week’s Faery Namers

Click the links to reveal the identity of the namers.  Enjoy a visit to their fantastic blogs.

Valley Hummer  https://jcrhumming.wordpress.com/tag/janet-weight-reed/

Carver Eastdoor  https://nofacilities.com/

Catseye Glimmer  http://photos.tandlphotos.com/blog

Field Yewwasp https://thestoryreadingapeblog.com/about/

Fallow Blackmoon  https://harvestinghecate.wordpress.com/

Thistledown — Midsummer Bedlam continues in the new year.  I hope you’ll fly over again next time.  Until then…

Hugs on the wing! 

 

 

Copyright © 2017 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene 

All rights reserved. 

This is a work of fiction.  Characters, names, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, locales, or events is entirely coincidental. 

No part of this work may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission.  Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights.

All images are either the property of the author or provided by free sources, unless stated otherwise.

 

Thistledown – Midsummer Bedlam 17 — The Scary Faeries Ride

Light ball ornaments Unsplash

Igor Ovsyannykov, Unsplash.com

Saturday, December 23, 2017 

Hello everyone, and welcome back to Thistledown.   Merry Christmas to those who celebrate and Yuletide blessings.  Though the winter solstice has occurred, time has not flowed at the same rate for the faeries in Thistledown.  I still haven’t managed to get them to their summer solstice!

I received an unexpected holiday treat from Robbie Cheadle!  She wrote a rhyming Christmas story, and gave Glare Phantasm a leading role. She even made one of her adorable, amazing fondant figures of Glare and Bob the hummingbird. 

Glare and hummingbird

When the narrator’s point of view shifted to that of Bob the hummingbird, I guess I should have called these posts Act 2.  I’m sure you are concerned about Bedlam, River, and Rhymer since they are presumably in trouble.  However, Bob the hummingbird has more to tell about meeting the “scary faeries.”

Maybe I should have made two episodes of this post… but the best stopping point would have made the second segment too short.  So pour yourself a cup of tea.  Or maybe you’d like something stronger, like some Thistledown agave. (For that episode click here.)  Either way, settle in for a visit to Thistledown.

Thistledown Girl

From Episode 16…

“Looking around, I would think you’ve invited us to a party,” the strange rider told Valley.  “But it felt like we had no choice but to accept the invitation.  In fact, it seemed a lot like a summons….”

“I’m sorry,” Valley spoke.  “I had no intention for it to be such.  The situation is urgent, and my casting must have gotten away from me.”

“I’m Glare Phantasm.  Do you mind telling us who you are, where we are, and why you’ve pulled us out of our home and brought us… wherever this is?”

Now, Episode 17… 

Thistledown

Midsummer Bedlam 17

The Scary Faeries Ride

Stunt_Pyrotechnics_Luc_Viatour

Sunlight caught the reflective edges of the decorations that were tucked behind the band of the green rider’s hat.  That was how Bob thought of him, since the hummingbird didn’t know the man’s name.  As he came closer Bob saw that the decorations were long keen-edged leaves.

His helmet was shaped differently than the others.  It looked like a hardened bowler hat.  The man’s gloves were generously decorated with bright green crystals.  A grayish yellow shard of obsidian depended from a cord around his neck.  He removed one glove and put his hand to the pale colored gem.  Bob was attracted to the stone, but he didn’t dare approach the stranger to investigate it.

“This is the place, Glare.  When I made our necklaces from shards leftover from the great scrying stone’s repair, I believed they would bring us here,” the green rider stated.  “Our arrival here was probably as much the stone’s doing as this woman’s spell,” he added in a tone that was at once ironic and soothing.

“What will happen to us, and them,” Glare Phantasm started but motioned to Valley Hummer.  “You said it would be like the apocalypse if you meet the doppelganger you mentioned.  Maybe the rest of us have a double in this sugary sweet world or maybe we don’t.  But you’ve seen yours, from a distance at least.  What happens if you come face to face with him?”

The man with sharp leaves decorating his helmet shrugged and smirked.  That earned him a glower from the one called Glare. 

Abbey,_Edwin_Austin_Fairies

Fairies, Edwin Austin Abbey, 1852-1911

(For more about Edwin Austin Abbey, click here.)

Bob thought he understood the reason for her unfortunate name.  However, that was about all he understood about the group of strangers.  He thought they all liked one another, yet conversely, they seemed to invite discord.  Their attitudes and reactions were beyond the hummingbird’s imagination.

When the man acted in such a sarcastic manner one of the other strangers caused her two-wheeled machine to roar loudly and rear onto its back wheel.  When the beastly thing sat back down, the remaining two riders removed their helmets.  The one with the unruly machine had rainbow streaks in her long dark hair.  She tucked it behind her ears in a mannerism Bob thought was a habit.

Looking at them apprehensively, Bob thought they seemed familiar.  However, there was something… something wrong about them.  Like the first two, they were not quite the people he thought they should be.

“Satellite, just ignore him.  Dah-le!  He’s always got to get a rise out of somebody,” the fourth rider said with a toss of her short jet-black hair.

“For all I know nothing at all might happen if we meet our doubles.  Seeing another me was certainly unsettling.  Maybe it was just my own surprised reaction, rather than a true foreshadowing,” he said, with a sidelong smile that seemed to infuriate the purple-haired rider. 

“But I have us covered either way.  When I repaired the great scrying stone, there were some shards leftover that didn’t fit back in.  As you know, the shards are the necklaces I made for all of us.  I did spell work on the shards too.  I think it will balance any ill effects of meeting a doppelganger,” the green rider told the purple haired woman. 

The man’s words seemed to mollify the angry Glare Phantasm. 

“You and your magic spells,” she muttered.

Young man glasses lights_jonathan-crews-194055

Unsplash

The situation didn’t seem quite as tense as it had been.  Bob stuck his tiny head out farther from his perch on Valley’s shoulder, half hidden in her hair.

The man got off the beastly two-wheeled thing.  With a disarming smile, he winked at Bob.  The hummingbird wasn’t sure what to make of him.  Then he bowed with a flourish.  The leaves decorating his helmet made a sharp swishing sound as they cut through the air.

Poison Ivy Razorleaf.  At your service m’lady,” he announced to Valley Hummer.

Satellite Frostbite,” the one with long rainbow streaked hair named herself, tucking a colorful strand back in place.  “This is Desert Firesong,” she added with a motion to the fourth rider.

“I think we have a lot to discuss.  Won’t all of you come into my home?” Valley invited the strange guests.

Bob held tightly to a strand of Valley’s hair, but he did not fly away.

Hummingbird Kunstformen der Natur 1904

Kunstformen der Natur 1904

“That is a very unusual color for obsidian,” Valley remarked to Razorleaf as she led them toward her home.  “Do you mind?” she asked as she put her hand toward the pale grayish yellow gem.  “It seems to glow, ever so slightly.”

The strangers stopped to watch Razorleaf and Valley expectantly.  The tension came back to the air and Bob prudently tucked himself back into Valley’s hair.  He didn’t know why those odd folks would have such a reaction.  Valley stopped, her hand half outstretched.

“Unless, of course, there is some custom among you about touching a gem.  I can understand how one might be concerned about the energy of another contacting such a stone,” Valley said.

“You can touch the stone if I can touch your wings,” Razorleaf replied in a teasing tone and wiggled his eyebrows for good measure.

Bob thought that was a bizarre thing for him to say.  Indeed, those strangers were odd folk.  They all giggled causing Valley to laugh with them.  Bob relaxed at the sound of her chuckle.

“I’m joking,” he said.  “You may examine the shard from my scrying stone.  However, touching wings seems far too personal to me.  I know they are real.  I met a girl who had wings.  She was called Bedlam Thunder,” he said and Valley gasped.  “Ah!  I see you know the young lady.”

“But your friends have not met anyone else from this world?  Just Bedlam, and her wing was injured?” Valley asked in a tone that was not quite a question.

Valley took a step to the side and playfully brushed her orange wings against the one called Desert ― the black-haired stranger who stood closest.  It was the lightest touch.  Desert looked surprised.  Then Valley fluttered high into the air and all the newcomers gasped.  The flock of hummingbirds zipped out of their concealment in the trees and joined Valley in her flight.  The strangers made sounds of awe and delight.

Bob flew very close to Valley’s head.  He wasn’t sure whether or not Valley was in any danger from the odd people, but he felt distrust.  So, he stayed protectively close to Valley.

Goliath Heron at Kruger National Park South Africa

A Goliath Heron, Kruger National Park, South Africa

After a moment of play with the flock of hummingbirds, Valley lightly settled to the ground.  Razorleaf pulled the leather cord over his head and handed it and the obsidian shard to Valley.  She looked at the stone for a moment.  Bob could tell that she was intently focused on the reflective surface of the gem.

“A door,” she murmured.  “A top hat…  Doors…  Herons…”

“What’s that you say?” the one called Satellite asked.

“I saw those things when I looked at the obsidian just now,” Valley murmured in a puzzled voice.

“When I was here before, an unusual looking door had just been shattered.  It was like the door was made from candy…  Anyhow, that act seemed to be what allowed Bedlam Thunder, and me, to access this world,” Razorleaf commented watching Valley’s expression closely.

“Please, come on inside,” Valley said and once again started toward her home.  “I need to tell you about somethings that have happened here,” Valley told the strangers in a tone that made Bob worry.

Valley led everyone into her open, airy house.  She paused to pluck some leaves from a vine that twined around the columns at the entrance.  In minute script she wrote notes.  Then she whistled a series of high-pitched tones.  Several hummers darted into the room.  Naturally Bob knew them, Zippy, Ziggy, and Zag.

A moment later, each of the hummingbirds flew away in a different direction, each bearing a tiny note.

“Bob, brave little heart, I know you are worried about Bedlam.  Take this note to the crochet circle,” Valley told the little bird and he flew as fast as his rapidly beating wings would carry him.

“Could I see that obsidian again, please?” Bob heard Valley ask Razorleaf as he winged away.Ruby-topaz_hummingbird_flying in Tobago

The End

***

 This Week’s Faery Namers  

Click the links to reveal the identity of the namers.  Enjoy a visit to their fantastic blogs.

Poison Ivy Razorleaf  https://hughsviewsandnews.com/

Desert Firesong  http://vashtiqvega.wordpress.com

Satellite Frostbite  https://firefly465.wordpress.com/

Glare Phantasm  https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/

Valley Hummer  https://jcrhumming.wordpress.com/tag/janet-weight-reed/

I hope you will fly back to Thistledown again next time.

Hugs on the wing!

 

 

Copyright © 2017 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene 

All rights reserved. 

This is a work of fiction.  Characters, names, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, locales, or events is entirely coincidental. 

No part of this work may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission.  Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights.

All images are either the property of the author or provided by free sources, unless stated otherwise.

 

Thistledown – Midsummer Bedlam 16 — Glitter and Glare

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Hello everyone, and welcome back to Thistledown.  Back in episode 11, artist Janet Weight Reed, graciously let me use some of her beautiful work.  You see, some of her magical hummingbirds have made their way to Thistledown.  The hummers stuck around. 

We left the story with a shift in the narrator’s point of view.  I should probably call these post-hiatus episodes “Act 2” because of the change in point of view.  Anyhow, Bedlam, River, and Rhymer are still “off screen” so to speak, and presumably in trouble.  We’ll get back to them, but today’s episode continues with Bob the hummingbird telling this faery tale. 

From Episode 15…

“I thought the girls would be in here, studying away,” Willow Rainbow murmured in a concerned tone.

“Based on these half-eaten cookies, I think they must have left abruptly,” Luminous Twinkle added.

Then Bob saw it.  The periwinkle muskox hair dangled like a book mark from an ancient tome.  Bob recognized the volume.  The faeries all saw it too.  They made a collective gasp.

The Etheraris Spiregris!

Now, Episode 16…

Thistledown

Midsummer Bedlam 16

Glitter and Glare

 

Bob the hummingbird wasn’t sure what the crochet circle meant to do to find Bedlam Thunder and her two friends.  The group was crocheting frantically at a long, thick something made from the blue muskox hair yarn.  It didn’t look like good nesting material, so Bob didn’t think much about the product of their effort.

However, the tiny bird felt sure the real situation involved more than the three faery girls.  So, he flew away and returned to the one he knew could best help him.

“Bob, your iridescent orange feathers brighten any room.  I’m happy to see you, but I’m a little surprised,” said Valley Hummer.  “I thought you were staying to look after Bedlam Thunder.  I really do believe she needs your help.”

The hummingbird bobbed erratically until Valley’s unique faery affinity with hummingbirds finally let her understand why he was upset.

“I think I know what the crochet circle has in mind,” Valley murmured.

Bob paused to hover in midair for a moment.  He had already forgotten about the faeries and their yarn.  He had returned to Valley Hummer because he believed she could make everything right.  Hummingbirds being a tad flighty, he had been distracted.  Again.

All the hummingbirds of Thistledown had flocked to Valley Hummer’s home.  They were innately attracted to her energy, and her strong emotion had drawn them from far and wide.  Brilliant plumage streaked and zipped through the air.  The tiny birds flew in agitated chaos.  However, as Valley’s mind settled on her course of action, the flight of the hummingbirds took on an intricate but orderly pattern.

“My heart wants to save those poor girls.  They didn’t mean any harm.  But the crochet circle is working on to help the girls…  And the greater good is Thistledown,” Valley said in a resigned voice.  “So that’s where we must focus, Bob.  This trouble was buried long ago and it reaches farther than anyone ever imagined.”

Valley’s orange wings vibrated with intensity.  She held a small wand made of fire opal and waved her arms.  Shimmering sparks of yellow and purple, shot heavenward.  The flock of hummers altered their movements.  As they flew, the birds seemed to collect the colorful sparks and wove them into a new pattern.  Valley made graceful motions with her wand, conducting the movement of the hummers and sparks. 

The brightly colored sparks coalesced into a vast iridescent sphere.  Valley made tapping motions with the fire opal wand.  Her wings beat to the same rhythm.  As she tapped, the sphere lowered to the ground.

Bob darted back, frightened when the sphere burst into flames.

“I’m not sure who we’re inviting, Bob.  They tried to let everyone at the bonfire think it was part of an illusion, but I recognized that strange woman who sat astride the fierce seeming vehicle that was propelled from the bonfire.  It was not an intended part of the entertainment of that night,” Valley seemed to speak as much to herself as to Bob.  (See that episode here.)

A round hole parted the center of the huge sphere.  A loud thing that roared like a lion burst from the opening.  It was much like the noisy thing that came through the bonfire.  It looked like a doubled version of a unicycle with a seat connecting the two wheels.  The rumbling sound came from the machine.  It sailed past Valley and Bob.  Then it skidded to a stop and turned on its back wheel as if it meant to challenge them.

The rider faced them, but the visor of the helmet concealed the person’s identity.  Bob heard a snort come from the thing.

Fires Bi-Colored jacob-kiesow-349451

Unsplash.com

Then three other similar creatures erupted from the blazing sphere.  The flock of hummingbirds flew higher into the sky, out of reach from the events on the ground, but still close enough to watch what happened.

Bob did not dart away with the other hummingbirds.  However, he flew to Valley’s shoulder and hid in her hair.  He peeped out cautiously.

All the riders wore dark leather, but it was offset by touches of bright pink, purple, or bright green on their boots, gloves, or helmets.  Their clothes were closely tailored.  One stranger appeared to be male while the other three were female.  Finally, the first stranger spoke.

“Ha!  I guess you can’t see me with my helmet and visor, huh?” a female voice chuckled in a self-deprecatory way.

She took off her glittering pink helmet.  With a shake of her head, long shimmering purple hair cascaded down.  Her face held a combination of humor, anger, and fear.  Bob thought that was a very treacherous combination.  It was dangerous in the way that confronting a wounded animal could be risky.  It didn’t matter that the animal was good or bad, its fear could make it dangerous.

Several chipmunks scampered up to the purple-haired stranger.  The little creatures seemed to think they knew her, but then they abruptly fled.  She turned her gaze from the chipmunks up to the festive looking sparks that lingered in the air after the sphere was formed.  Then she drew a breath that seemed to steady her nerves.  She turned a level stare to Valley Hummer.

“Looking around, I would think you’ve invited us to a party,” she told Valley.  “But it felt like we had no choice but to accept the invitation.  In fact, it seemed a lot like a summons.”

“I’m sorry,” Valley spoke.  “I had no intention for it to be such.  The situation is urgent, and my casting must have gotten away from me.”

Dah-le!  Ya think?” the purple haired woman snorted in a sarcastic tone.

A lopsided smile softened her sardonic words. 

“I’m Glare Phantasm.  Do you mind telling us who you are, where we are, and why you’ve pulled us out of our home and brought us… wherever this is?”

The End

***

 This Week’s Faery Namers

I’m sure you already realized that Valley Hummer is named in honor of Janet.  Although you might be wondering who the mysterious “scary faery” might be.  Click the links to reveal the identity of the namer.

Valley Hummer  https://jcrhumming.wordpress.com/tag/janet-weight-reed/

Glare Phantasm  https://robbiesinspiration.wordpress.com/

 

Special Note

Thanks again to artist Janet Weight Reed for the use of her wonderful art.  The post in the following link shows a beautiful collection of Janet’s hummingbirds click here.  If you want some of your very own, click here for her Zazzle store.

I hope to see you again next time.

Hugs on the wing! 

 

 

Copyright © 2017 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene 

All rights reserved. 

This is a work of fiction.  Characters, names, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, locales, or events is entirely coincidental. 

No part of this work may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission.  Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights.

All images are either the property of the author or provided by free sources, unless stated otherwise.

 

Thistledown – Midsummer Bedlam 15 — Hummers, Hair, and Hanks

Saturday, December 9, 2017

Welcome back to Thistledown, one and all.  We left Bedlam, River, and Rhymer in a fair amount of faery trouble.  I know you want to know what happened to the girls, but this episode switches to the point of view of another character.  I expect you’ll be surprised by which one.

From Episode 14…

Abruptly the heavy volume snapped shut.  The periwinkle muskox hair was still within, like a bookmark.  The room spun wildly.  It was like looking into a kaleidoscope.

Then the world shattered.

Quickly I moved my hands away from the book and caught the hands of River and Rhymer.

Now, Episode 15…

Thistledown

Midsummer Bedlam 15

Hair, Hanks, and Hummers

 

Ruby-topaz_hummingbird_flying in Tobago

A hummingbird with iridescent feathers in the orange hues of a sunset darted along a forest path.  Bob the hummingbird had brought Bedlam Thunder a magical muskox hair.  He had to admit that even with his communication skills, it took some doing, but he finally made her understand that the electrically charged hair would lead her to what she wanted most.

Or at least Bob thought she understood…  It was so hard to tell with girls.  However, Bob had let himself be distracted and he’d left Bedlam the magical muskox hair.  Once he got his priorities back in order Bob started tracking the faery girl.

Finally, he came to a yellow farmhouse with a thatched roof.  A small duplicate stood to one side of the house.  It was an elaborate chicken coop.  A chicken with multi-colored feathers squawked and clucked at Bob.  Clearly something was amiss.  Though they didn’t have nearly the same flying skills, chickens were just as flighty as hummingbirds.  Bob thought they were even more so, as he tried to make sense of the clucks and cackles.

Bob darted beyond the open door of the yellow house.  He knew Bedlam had gone inside.

Chickens at cottage vintage

“Well hello, little one!” Willow Rainbow greeted the tiny bird.  “My goodness, you surely do seem excited ― even for a hummingbird.  Did you mean to join our crochet circle?” Willow asked.

Her little joke got chuckles from Blossom Stargazer, Crescent Glimmer, Luminous Twinkle, Pepper Stargazer, and Tinder Willowtree.  They all sat amid what must have been a hundred hanks of yarn and almost as many crochet needles.

Bob recognized hanks of blue yarn spun from the hair of Blossom Stargazer’s muskox team.  That hair was not brilliantly magical like the periwinkle colored hair Bob gave Bedlam Thunder, but it was not completely without power.

He expected to find Bedlam inside the farmhouse.  Bob was certain something was wrong.  He fluttered into the room where all the spell books were.

“The hummingbird seems upset about something,” he heard Tinder Willowtree say.

The faeries got up and followed Bob.  The air in the room was heavily charged with static electricity.  It tickled Bob’s feathers uncomfortably.  He saw the hair on the women’s heads lift up.  Their wings rustled and Bob knew they sensed something too.

“I thought the girls would be in here, studying away,” Willow Rainbow murmured in a concerned tone.

“Based on these half-eaten cookies, I think they must have left abruptly,” Luminous Twinkle added.

Then he saw it.  The periwinkle muskox hair dangled like a book mark from an ancient tome.  Bob recognized the volume.  The faeries all saw it too.  They made a collective gasp.

The Etheraris Spiregris.

The End

***

 This Week’s Faery Namers

Click the links to reveal the identity of the namer.

Blossom Stargazer http://www.eloisedesousa.wordpress.com/

Willow Rainbow http://cerobinsonauthor.com/

Crescent Glimmer  https://annetterochelleaben.wordpress.com/

Luminous Twinkle  http://www.adelemariepark.com/

Pepper Stargazer  https://anotherfoodieblogger.wordpress.com/

Tinder Willowtree  https://www.etsy.com/shop/MurrayHillGlassArt/

I hope to see you again next time.

Hugs on the wing!

 

 

Copyright © 2017 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene 

All rights reserved. 

This is a work of fiction.  Characters, names, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, locales, or events is entirely coincidental. 

No part of this work may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission.  Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights.

All images are either the property of the author or provided by free sources, unless stated otherwise.