“My Name is Chaos 2”; Chapter One, Part Two

“You don’t look so hot,” said one of the team members as she sat down next to me. I was sitting on the three steps that led into the barracks, and badly wanted a cigarette. What? Think death sticks aren’t available in hell?

“I’m cold,” I snapped, though it absolutely wasn’t the case. We’d just finished doing the days’ push-ups and running around, but I just wanted to sit and think. Alone. Which, pointedly, was not happening.

“Really? It’s not that cold today,” she said, looking around at the snow piles around the barracks. Grouchily, I had to admit that it was no longer ‘freeze in your nostrils cold’, being merely ‘freeze the toes off’ cold. Friggin’ weather.

“It was sarcastic,” I grumbled. “I’m just-” and I shrugged.

“Oh,” she said as if that was a shocker. What? Did they all think that I had a resting grouch face?

Then, to my shock, she put an arm around my shoulder. “Chipper up! It’ going to work out! What’s the problem?” and she gave me a tight squeeze.

I glared at her. Hugs were just not a thing in hell → unless you were Lucifer. But were those hugs nice? No. But she didn’t get the hint. So I heaved a sigh. “I want to go home,” I grumbled lamely, because I wasn’t sure how to explain the giant mess I was in. My girlfriend was a psycho, I’d betrayed my family, and I was trapped by the military. By FoxFace in particular.

“Oh,” and she gave me another squeeze/rattle that was supposed to be comforting. “We all do, you know. But if we don’t do this, there won ‘t be a home for anyone, you know?”

I grumbled and didn’t want to listen. Sure, whatever. Poor humans pity poo poo. I wanted my mess to be over with. At least they didn’t have to deal with all the stuff that was happening to me.

She had a genuine smile on when I glanced at her. “It can’t be that different for you,” she was saying. “Is it?”

Girl, you have NO IDEA, I wanted to yell. But something clicked in my head. Bella did want to destroy the Pure Lands. I did have to do this to take care of those Buddhas and that lovely place.

So I squared my shoulders, mustered myself together. I could mope about my seeming eternity of servitude later. Right now, I had a girlfriend to save, and the Pure Lands to keep pure. A lot of stuff to do, really!

And hey, something would probably go screwy in FoxFace’s plans regarding me. That’s just the way things seemed to be going.

So I smiled at my war-buddy. “You’re right,” I said cheerfully.

I mean shit, things couldn’t get much worse, could they?


They day we were set to captured Bella, you could feel it in the air that something was brewing. Did Bella know? Was she waiting for us with bated breath? I could imagine her, standing there with a hand on her hip and that leash in hand, just waiting for me to show up.

Of course it was a stupid vision. Bella wouldn’t stand that long if she could sit and be regal. And what would she do with the leash? Whip me? Come on, Chaos.

But still, as we all geared up I was nervous. This was Bella we were talking about! My girlfriend – and then, only then, as I was putting on a chest-piece of bullet proof armor, did I think that hey, maybe she didn’t think of us as a thing anymore.

I almost dropped the armor.

Rattling myself mentally, I went back to putting all this crap on. A fellow soldier checked me over, we all nodded at each other, and we were ready.

My heart was hammering in my throat as we entered the lab in single file, all decked out in our gear and with vizors on. I just had the feeling that something was about to go terribly wrong. Like, really, really, wrong.

As we lined up in the room with blinding lights I realized I’d forgotten to roll my new dice. Great, Chaos. Good job, dumbass.

One by one, we were given a pill.

“It’s new!” Leo was saying happily. “The pill should reduce the nausea effects and allow us for greater precision as to your transport!”

We all swallowed dutifully. Then, “Good luck,” said Leo as he flicked a switch that was attached to his tablet. The room lurched.

How the hell that tablet worked was beyond me. But the next thing I knew I was zooming through the void, and reapparating – in a living room.

“Jesus on a fucking stick,” I cursed as I spun and recognized Bella’s living room – and the dozen or so rifles pointed directly at me. Held by vampires, of course.

Look to the left- look to the right – I didn’t need to look fucking up and down to see my team was nowhere to be seen. I held my hands out. “Good job,” I congratulated both Bella and Leo under my breath.

A high pitched laugh rewarded me. Bella was at the opposite end of the living room, directly behind the line of her cronies. Safe, as usual.

“Choas, so nice of you to drop by,” she said callously. Then she burst out in laughter.

I didn’t know what to do. So I just stood there, hands out and wondering how this had gone so, so, utterly bad.

“I don’t think your new boss understands how magic works,” Bella drawled as she stepped forward. Then, with a gleeful grin from Bella, I felt a ripple through the room. She had sent a silent message.

In that split second, I could have zapped myself away with FoxFace’s sigil. But something stopped me. Bella was right there! So close!

I wanted to stay with her.

And so I was thudded full like a pincushion full of flying needles. One or two jammed in my throat, the rest (courtesy of the vampire’s poor aim) landing in my armor.

The room swerved and the floor smacked up the meet me. But hey, this time I was padded with armor and a helmet so it didn’t really hurt. But right before the darkness took over, I noticed something.

Through the mass of vampires, there was someone standing beside Bella. Someone who was tethered to her via leash. They had deep blue hair.


I came to feeling pissed off. Angry and hurt in a terrible way. Of course I remembered why the instant I opened my eyes: the problem was right there. Bella, with a new slave at her side.

Yeah, he was older than me by a fuckin’ year or two, had a pretty face, was paler than me by two shades, and had a lovely tilt to his large eyes. Probably from some east asian pantheon or something.

Oh yeah, and What the Hell? He was wearing a collar just like I used to, complete with the little bottle of blood on it. He was even wearing black, like me!

I wanted to bust his face in. He looked bored. Like he couldn’t give a crap about where he was, or what was happening. How dare he?

I, on the other hand, must have been turning all the shades of purple and pissed off. I was strapped down (Again?!) to some sort of table. This must be the laboratory in their center, because the room felt, looked, and smelt clinical.

“Hey Chaos,” Bella cooed. I melted as she stepped forward to stand by my side. Her fingers trailed down my cheek to cup my chin. Then her nails dug in. I winced, but really, I didn’t totally mind the pain. It was the look in her eye that bothered me. She looked sad, miserable even.

“You could have stayed away, you know,” she whispered.

“They sent me,” I whispered hoarsely. “I have no choice.” And she knew that!

Bella smiled softly. It broke my heart, and I was sure hers was breaking too. “I love you,” she whispered before stooping over me.

We kissed. At my side, her fingers caressed down my hand and our fingers laced together.

For an idiotic flutter of a moment, I thought everything was going to be okay. We were together now, right?

Abso-fucking-lutely wrong.

Bella drew back with a satisfied smile to her lips. “Send her away,” she said, the order not intended for me at all.

The other one, the me-replacement, stepped forward. I gave him a dirty look but he didn’t look likehe cared two bits. He just stepped to my side, then turned to Bella who was walking away. “Where to?” he asked, and damn! He even had a nice voice. Fucking not fair.

Bella whirled towards him. “Where you came from, you idiot! Do I have to tell you everything twice? Just do it!”

Version 2.0 tilted their head to the side in acceptance. They lifted their arms above me, then closed their eyes.

I was expecting a spell. Fireworks and impressive displays. I was hoping for failure of the most spectacular kind, though. For their magic to not match up to mine.

Instead, I felt my very soul being seized in a firm grip. Then, with a jolt, I was catapulted through space.

Like, really! It was full-out trippy and better yet worse than any traveling I’d ever done through a portal. I was whole, but whizzing through galaxies and dimensions and I felt immortal and timeless and –

Wham. I landed in a soft fluff.

My eyes opened and there was a ceiling. I was in a bed. And beside me, laying serenely in pillows and blankets with a small smile on, was a woman.

“Dreaming of Lights”; Chapter One, Part Four

Turning around on the ledge, I looked into the void.

Behold, a poet would have said, the void looked back.

Well if the void looking back was a thing, it went ‘Boo!’ at me. Because right then, as I was turning around, the wind buffeted me and I saw, far far beneath me, my Aaliyah whacking away at three sprites that were surrounding her. Worse! There was a ring of spirit creatures, our classmates, around her and watching.

My blood boiled. How dare they make fun of Aaliyah! How dare they leave her helpless against three sprites!

I lunged from my perch, my thoughts full of rage and no such thing as common sense. Careening, I sped on recklessly as fast as I could.

It was about halfway there that I realized they were cheering her on. Aaliyah whacked out one sprite, then another, and the third cowered in fear. More cheers. Aaliyah was flush with victory, and our classmates were pounding the earth in support of her.

It was her glorious moment and I, shooting through the sky like a fluffball of idiocy, realized I was about to make a joke out of it by ‘rushing to her rescue’.

Cursing loudly in my head I tried to slow down. It was the worst pilates class ever. Clench those buttcheeks! Flap the wings – oh not that way!

I found myself cartwheeling, flapping, and, I’ll admit it, shrieking my lungs out as the world spun and the earth came closer.

For a horrid blink all I saw was Aaliyah zooming up to me, spinning with the earth – and then something green flashed over me.

Snap! Giant teeth caught me and I was squished by a soft tongue – then unceremoniously spat on the ground. A giant set of claws pinned me to the earth and a snarling jade snout shoved into my face, complete with golden mane and horns.

I froze. My heart pounded in my chest. Jade. Jade dragon, my classmate. Oh, how embarrassing.

Looking left, I saw a horde of creatures staring me down in dismay. Looking right I saw more classmates – and Aaliyah’s shoes.

What is it?” Aaliyah’s voice asked. A stick prodded towards me.

It’s me!” I tried to squawk, twisting and flapping.

Is it dangerous?” my classmates murmured.

It’s looking right at you,” the jade dragon said to Aaliyah.

Of course! Because – “It’s me!” I shrieked, willing myself back to humanoid form – and that did it.

With a crackle of magic over my limbs I was suddenly human again. The giant paw snatched off of me in surprise and I scrambled to my feet. “Aaliyah!” I gasped, grabbing at her arm. “It’s me!”

To my horror, she recoiled. Everyone took a jump back. Terrified that I hadn’t de-bloomed properly (or whatever you call it), I looked down at myself and patted myself. I looked fine. I was clothed (yeah!). “What?” I looked up, then around.

The jade dragon shimmered, then turned into the slender and graceful girl she was. Tall of legs, beautiful and icy, she glared at me. “You bloomed,” she said coldly, as if it was a capital crime.

I looked down at myself, then back at Aaliyah. She looked shocked as well, but in a good way. “You bloomed!” she said, reaching out to tentatively pat me on the shoulder. “Congratulations!” And then she drew me in for a hug.

If the day could have ended there, it would have been blissful. For that moment I was in Aaliyah’s arms, pressed against her chest. I felt her heart beating against mine. We were surrounded by a ring of students who, sure, were looking on. But they weren’t being rude or cruel. I even assumed they were admiring.

Then, yeah, reality struck. Aaliyah drew back. I stepped back as well, not wanting to be the creeper who clung to her. “So – you bloomed?” she asked.

I looked down at myself again. But before I even got the chance to say something, the jade dragon laughed. “Into a crow. God, what a useless thing. Carrion,” and she snorted. Then, gagging, she waved a hand at her mouth. “Ugh,” she made a face as if tasting something disgusting. “I tasted dirt.”

I wanted to punch her. Aaliyah stood bravely beside me – but the other students laughed. The jade dragon turned away and dissolved into her slender and oh so elegant friend group. The other students, guilty of having laughed and not wanting to associate with us much longer, turned away.

With a sigh I turned to Aaliyah, about to give her my usual speech. “Ignore them,” I began before she held up a hand.

You’ve got to tell the teachers,” she said, her eyes unreadable. Wait- was she sad? “This is going to change everything.”

My stomach fell out. No.

But yes. In a rush of breathlessness, it struck me. I bloomed. I could go on hunts now. I could easily get into the universities with my marks without having to plead that I was an exceptional case. Better yet – I could get a job.

I was no longer just like Aaliyah.

It was a realization that took on its own presence as I sat in Mister Murney’s office, then in the nurse’s office. It clung to me like a wet sweater, crushing me into myself. After hearing the words ‘exceptional’ and ‘how did you do it’ over a thousand times, I was finally walking home with Aaliyah.

Then, again, “How did you do it?” Aaliyah looked at me in wonder.

I shook my head. “I just – it happened.” And that was all. I wasn’t stupid enough to tell anyone what had happened. Who ever heard of eating a spirit? Of, of, infusing it up through your arms? That was crazy talk. So I just kept shaking my head. Shamefully, I told Aaliyah what I told all the others. “I was getting attacked by a sprite. I tried to move back, and I tripped and fell weirdly – and I was a bird.” I looked down at my shoes. “And that’s it.”

Oh,” was all Aaliyah said, softly. She too looked down at her shoes. And that, was that.

We walked in utter silence after that. We parted ways with a wave and a lame “see you tomorrow” that we echoed back at each other. Then, I walked home.

“My Name is Chaos”; Chapter Twenty, Part Two

“So, you told her?” FoxFace said so calmly.

I chewed my cheek. I looked anywhere but across the desk, where FoxFace was sitting. I sat on my side of the desk in her office, hands bandaged, blood washed away, and a glass of water at my side. But the last thing I wanted was a silly drink.

Bella had tried to kill me. For real now. She’d set the vampires upon me, after having me smear blood on my neck. Yep, just so they knew where to aim. Uh, she’d put a lot of thought into getting me eaten? Like, who did that? And why?

The worst part was that I knew why. What had she said again? ‘I can’t let them have you’? Jesus fuck, what the hell? Did she think I would turn on her? Or did she think that now I was merely a liability?

But how could she want to kill me? I was her big squeeze! We were lovers and after everything we’d been through, she just – sicced her vamp squad on me?

But she loved me. I knew that for a fact. I’d felt in through her power. She loved me.


I jumped, then scowled at FoxFace. “What?” I snapped.

“I am speaking, and you will listen,” she said in a tone that demanded respect. Well, request denied. I lounged back in my chair, crossing my arms over my chest. I stared her down, challenging her to… I didn’t know what. But I hated her. It was all her fault. She had taken the collar off me, broken my bond with Bella, and nearly got me murdered.

“Listen,” said FoxFace. I rolled my eyes to the ceiling. She took in a sharp inhale. “Do you really want to do this the hard way?”

Go on, show me, I goaded her silently. I refrained from saying that, at least, but I left my eyes up on the ceiling. What-ever. Talk away, girl, you can’t force me to listen.

FoxFace took a deep breath. Then, in a low murmur, she spoke.

“Your eyes are wide, your ears are open. Your lips are sewn shut, your body is still. Look at me, and listen.”

Oh, fuck, I thought as I felt my head tilt down and my eyes focus on her. My ears strained to hear whatever she had to say and – try as I might – I couldn’t move. And my mouth was definitely shut tight.

Fuck me.

Pleased with her witchcraft, FoxFace clasped her hands on the table between us. “Now that I have your full and undivided attention, I am going to say something. And I’m only going to say it this once.”

I would have nodded, but that wasn’t really an option anymore.

“Now Chaos, I’m going to let you in on a secret. I run this whole ‘dealing with the mumbo jumbo’ project. I own you. And if ever you want to not be owned, and have freedom to dilly dally your day away, I highly recommend you- mmm, stop being an ass?” She smirked, pausing before adding. “You can nod.”

I distinctly refused to do so. No nodding from me – though I really got her point, and was busily trying to think of a way out. Maybe I had to… kill her? That wasn’t really my thing though. Killing too many incarnates could turn a soul demonic, and I really didn’t want that.

I wished I had my dice. Decisions were hard to make when you didn’t know the outcome before hand.

“So,” she said sharply. “Here’s what you want to do. In order to get on my good side you’re going to bring me Bella, unharmed, fully functional, and in one piece. Try and pull any stunts, warn her again – I know you warned her, that’s probably why you had a horde of vampires trying to eat you – and you will see what I do to spirits that disappoint me.” She nodded curtly. “Permission to speak freely.”

“Fuck you!” I snapped the moment my jaw would work again. “You don’t-” get to boss me around? I rethought my sentence. “I’m the child of the Grim Reaper, and of Life. You don’t want to get on my bad side. My family will come for me.”

FoxFace’s eyebrows rose. “Do you take me for an idiot? I couldn’t have picked a better soul to take possession of. Your family is neutral in all aspects and refuses to meddle in affairs. They will let you rot. And my sources tell me that you have no one who will come to your rescue, point blank. You have no alliances. So do you want to try that bluff again?”

I gritted my jaw. How the hell did she know so much? Weren’t mortals usually all scared of the Grim Reaper and thought all spirits were boogie men or something like that?

“How do you know so much about me?” I scoffed. “And what makes you think you’re right?”

FoxFace gave me a deadpanned glare. “My sources don’t lie.”

“Sources?” I sneered. “Who are they?”

FoxFace cracked a rare smile. “Don’t you wish you knew?”

I scowled – then thought of who I needed to help me. Lucifer. If anyone knew how to weasel your way out of curses and hexes, it was the man himself – or herself, depending on Lucifer’s mood.

So I put on my dapper charm, snapped my fingers, and fixed all of my problems just like that. Ha ha. No.

“Lookit,” I said calmly, trying to think of ‘what would Lucifer do?’ as a way to come up with a great lie. “I have an idea.”

“Is that a rare thing?” FoxFace asked so seriously it took me a minute to catch it. But once I did, I put on a plastic smile.

“How about I go catch Bella and bring her to you?” I said in my suave tone. “And here’s how I’ll do that. I’ll go to the spirit world, catch her, and bring her back.”

FoxFace looked completely unimpressed. I cleared my throat, trying again. “This means you help me get to the spirit realm.”

FoxFace steepled her fingers between us. “You think you’ve got a friend who will rescue you from me? Or do you really think you can outrun me?”

Uh, neither? Because Lucifer is no one’s friend?

“I have your blood,” she said coldly. “You’re not outrunning me. So just get Bella, and bring her here. How complicated is that?”

I pressed my lips together. My mind spun. Trickery was not my strong suit. “Look,” I snapped. “Just send me to the spirit realm. Can you do that?”

“Tell me why,” she said, mildly amused. “Because I know Bella isn’t there. She’s in this plane, and seems intent on staying here.”

I leaned forward across the table. “That’s because she wants to get three portals together to get into the plane of nirvana. She-” I paused, not sure how much to say or what to say even. It’s not like Bella had unveiled her massive plan to me. “She wants to get there,” I finished lamely. “So,” I took a deep breath, biding time to spin my lie. What could impress a witch? “I’m going to get Lucifer to help me,” I said outright.

I swore I saw FoxFace smirk. It egged me on. “With him, I won’t get hurt and you will definitely get Bella.”

FoxFace unsteepled her fingers and lay her palms flat on the desk. “You think you can get Lucifer to catch Bella for you?”

“I can be convincing,” I said, feeling rather successful.

FoxFace smiled nastily. “Go ahead then. I’ll have a portal made for you to the underworld. But-” she pointed a finger at me. “If you don’t bring Bella back this time, there will be consequences.”

I snorted. “You say that like I’m irresponsible.”

She raised her eyebrows. I decided it was best not to add any more comments to that mess.

“Of Adelaide and Shadow” Chapter Seven

Well, as fate would have it, Adelaide was getting along quite well for a woman, er, chipmunk, without an army. She was doing so well, she found herself cackling and saying “It’s almost as if I don’t need an army!”

Whoever told you that you needed an army in the first place?” asked the soft-spoken oracle from behind her.

The pair were in a dark alleyway. Behind them was a large barrel upon which the oracle was fastening a lid. At his side was a large pole with a net at the end, the sort one could use to catch fish. Adelaide was at the end of this pole, weilding it more or less well.

I did!” she said, giving the barrel a small chipmunk kick. “I thought I couldn’t do anything without an army.”

Well, you certainly seem capable all on your own,” said the oracle sweetly as Adelaide twirled the fishing net about herself.

March! March! March!” cried out another series of frog guards that were marching down the road.

Hah!” squeaked Adelaide. With a thrust she twirled the net, and slung it out into the road. With a final “March!” three frogs were caught up into it. Four others tripped on the pole and landed on their noses. Those behind were startled, but they could barely say “March?” before their compatriots were hefted up into the air.

Adelaide, grunting from the effort, swung the frogs up – and tipped them into the barrel that the oracle opened for that purpose.

With another “hah!” several more frogs were caught up!

March- rubbit- attack!” croaked the lead frog as their compatriots were once again hefted up into the air and away into the barrel.

Help!” said the frogs from within the barrel.

Ah ha ha!” said Adelaide the chipmunk, twirling the fishing net and bonking several frogs atop the heads with it.

The frogs charged. Left and right the fishing pole struck, laying about and laying the frogs flat upon their rumps. On the count of three, all was still.

Adelaide made a satisfied ‘hmph’ sound and set the net beside her. The oracle nodded and said “Good job, your highness,” and he began plucking up the limp frogs from the earth and dropping them into the barrel. On occasion one or two of the frogs that were already within the barrel tried to leap out, but the barrel was too deep. Within several moments there were no frogs left in the street. The oracle fastened the lid upon it once again.

Now!” said Adelaide. “We shall put that barrel in the dark of the alleyway. Once I have conquered the kingdom, I shall have them sent away.”

Very well,” said the oracle before tipping the barrel onto its side. With a push and a shove he began rolling it down the alleyway. Thumps and exclamations rang out from within.

Ouch!” “Eech!” squealed the frogs from within. Adelaide and the oracle paid them no heed. They knew that the frogs were of a complaining sort of people. They were not truly being hurt more than a scuff or a bruise.

Once the end of the alleyway was reached, the two set the barrel in a dark corner where no one would find it. The frogs, sensing they were about to be abandoned, set up a clamor and began making a ruckus of ‘rubbits’ and even shouted out ‘help!’.

Adelaide knocked on the side of the barrel. “If you are quiet, when I send you away you shall have rations for the road. Honeycakes,” she said.

The frogs were silent. Not even a ‘meep’ was heard.

Adelaide nodded, satisfied. The oracle was impressed. “What a diplomat you are,” he said sweetly, happy that the frog’s fate was not too sour.

I learned from the best,” said Adelaide with a sniffle. For the thoughts of her parents being dead. Ah! How that hurt her little heart. How it still sent tears to her eyes and mad her heart grow heavy. But it also strengthened her resolve. It made her certain that she must be the one to reign now. There was no one else to do it but her.

But she still had no army! What was she to do?

That busied her mind all night. She thought and thought while walking the dark alleyways with the oracle at her side. She wondered and pondered while snatching up frogs and bargaining them into silence. Then, as the first glimpses of dawn shone on the horizon, a realization came over her.

It was not glistening and shining but a calm, hard, and truthful fact that she became aware of.

She did not need an army.

What? What is a princess without her army? Well, as it turns out, very capable.

With her fishing pole in one hand and the promise of honey cakes in the other, Adelaide was rounding up most of the Frog King’s army into barrels that she stole from around the city. Once that army was out of the way, all she would have to contend with were the Frog King’s personal guards. That, and the Frog King himself.

As dawn broke across the city of Farfadel, Adelaide was cool. Adelaide was calm. Adelaide felt neither exhaustion or frustration. She was ready.

We are going to take over the castle,” she announced to the oracle.

Oh?” said the oracle, proving just how mild-mannered and unshakeable he was. “Alright then.”

And so it was! Great reader, powerful one of vast imagination, imagine as you will, this scene.

A chipmunk! Gloriously decked out in the brightest of reds and deepest of black armor. Her chin is high, her eyes are flashing with determination. One hand is on her hip, the other is on the fishing pole. Her tail is up and fluffed, ready for whatever may come.

At her side stands the oracle, a figure so slim and so calm nearly everyone (certainly, you too) underestimates him. His eyes are brilliant, his hair floating like streams of smoke about him.

Ah! The sun shone upon them. Ah! They were brave and glorious! Ah! They were noble and righteous-

We’re going to sneak up through the sewers and kill the Frog King when he isn’t looking,” announced Adelaide proudly to the whole city.

Well, perhaps not so noble or brave…

Oh?” said the oracle gently. “Are we?”

Adelaide’s round and fluffy ears pricked, hearing something in the oracle’s gentle tone. “What?” she asked, turning to face him. “Did you see something different?”

The oracle smiled kindly. “I see you and him having a great and glorious final battle. You will win, of course. Do not fear.”

Tish-tosh,” muttered Adelaide. “I am a strategist and a plotter, not a chivalrous buffoon. I will do no such thing. I am small, and must put the advantages to my side. We shall sneak into the castle.”

Must it be the latrines though?” winced the oracle. “We will not be able to sneak upon anyone if we reek of that.”

Adelaide considered again. “I am a chipmunk,” she muttered. “I could scale the walls.” Then, looking over the oracle, she said “I could hide inside your sleeves and you could enter the castle by saying you’ve seen something the King must know.”

The oracle frowned. “Me? But I am not the king’s oracle!”

Adelaide chuckled in a very chipmunk-y way. “Do the frogs know that?” she asked.

Now there was a little problem however. You see, the King and Queen of Farfadel did not have an oracle. Hence, Adelaide and the oracle did not know what they were impersonating. They drew upon their imaginations, rumors and tidbits, and they scavenged around for whatever might look mystical and empowering.

A scarf went missing from a windowsill. An orange vanished from a cook’s shelf. A book was snatched up from a door left ajar. Some beads and baubles went missing from an abandoned stand – and there it was.

As the sun rose and beat down unusually fiercely upon Farfadel, the oracle presented himself at the castle’s gates.

His long black robe was doused with fairy glitter that itched at the nose. His ears were hung about with several earrings of red, green, and orange. As his ears were not pierced, they were hooked atop his ears and left to jangle as they would. His long ashen hair was no longer visible. In its stead, three scarves of blue, green, and yellow were cockishly draped and fluffed atop his head. His pale face was adorned with several charcoal squiggles and markings here and there, along with more fairy glitter. Some of the glitter had gotten into his eyes and turned them quite red and dangerous looking.

In his left hand the oracle was holding a thick volume. It was a book on plums and the preservation thereof, but they had doused it in the last of that fairy glitter and now it looked very respectable and venerable. In the other hand the oracle held the orange.

Why the orange?” he had asked, perplexed as Adelaide shoved it into his hand.

I do not know,” Adelaide said. “And neither will they. So they will think you are powerful.”

And it worked.

The oracle drew up before the guards at the gates. His eyes flashed red, his entire robe glittered and sparkled in the light of the sun, and he was made up of almost every color imaginable. Standing on one foot, he balanced himself and held out the orange to one side and the book to the other.

Also, Adelaide was sitting cross-legged atop his head with her eyes closed, pretending to meditate.

Great beings of infinite solitude,” intoned the oracle, glaring down at the shocked frog guards that were beign slowly blinded by all that glitter. “I must partake of your leader and meeteth with him.”

The frogs blinked. They looked at each other. The oracle continued.

For I! I am the King’s oracle!” and he stamped his foot to the ground so he stood powerful and strong. In a fantastically overdone gesture he thrust the book forward and the orange behind him. “Stand back! For I am the King’s oracle!”

The frogs blinked. Small flakes of glitter trailed through the air. Adelaide peeked one eye open to see how it was going.

Glitter landed in the frogs’ eyes. They blinked, and began tearing up most painfully. This, they believed, must be the true power of this strange being.

So they hopped aside, muttering under their breath “Oracle, oracle.”

Hah!” With an arrogant sniff the oracle marched on by.

Into the castle he strode, Adelaide silently cheering. On and on he marched, straight into the empty courtyard. Straight up the great big steps and to the great big doors. He pulled them open with a loud creak, and marched on in.

There, the halls were silent. The air smelt of stale bread and unwashed floors. There was no pitter-patter of servants doing lazy chores. There was only flap-flaps in the distance of marching frogs.

To the left,” muttered Adelaide. “He is most certainly in the throne room.”

And so on they went. The throne room was not far. Past the turn, up a tiny flight of stairs, and past another giant set of doors- that was guarded by over a dozen frogs.

Rubbit!” they said in a very menacing way, pointing their pointy spears at the oracle.

I am here to see the King!” announced the oracle imperiously. “For I am the King’s oracle and he must hear what I have to say.”

The frogs looked at each other. Their leader went ‘rubbit?’ and shrugged. The shrug was repeated and the frogs hopped aside, pulling the door open as they went. Obviously they were not very motivated for their guarding job.

With head held as high as it could go, the oracle marched on through. Straight into the throne room.

Oh my,” squeaked Adelaide.

Oh,” said the oracle softly.

Rubbit!” intoned the giant frog.

For the Frog King was now as tall as any human! As wide as any elephant! He sat like a large wobbly wart atop the King’s throne, his sides spilling over the chair. His chins wobbled and his beady eyes glistened as he looked the pair over.

Oracle?” the frog King said, his huge mouth flapping open and shut with a smacking sound. But what was worst of all was the smell! The room stunk!

It was putrid, it was petrifying, it was pungent, in the worst of ways. It was nearly enough to make one faint.

But the oracle was too mild-mannered to say anything about the stench. “Why yes, I am an oracle,” was what he said in his sweet tone. And he lifted up his hands.

Adelaide bounded down, landing squarely on the book. “Give me that orange!” she ordered before plucking it from the oracle’s grasp.

Rubbit?” croaked the Frog King, his huge eyes focusing upon Adelaide.

Tremble in fear, you horrid creature!” squeaked Adelaide, drawing her sword and thrusting it forward in a dramatic gesture. “For I, I am the Princess Adelaide! I was once your betrothed and now I shall be your murderer! Lay down, and let me slay you!”

Unfortunately, the Frog King was not that verbose. He merely heard a shrill “bla bla bla” and noticed that the tiny chipmunk was holding what looked like a very fancy toothpick. He thought that it would be quite useful.

Also not fortunately, the frogs on the other side of the door suddenly seemed to recall that their job was to guard their King. Upon hearing “bla bla bla murderer bla bla slay you!” they used their small iota of intelligence and realized that he was in danger. With a bang the door burst open and the dozen or so guards spilled through. They waved their spears and shrieked curses in their frog-language (“ribbut”, if you really must know).

And so the moment was. Adelaide, standing upon a book, sword pointing at the King. The oracle, pinned from behind by a dozen guards.

Oh! The suspense! Oh! The danger! Oh! ….

Look, a cliffhanger.

“Of Adelaide and Shadow” Chapter Six

In her mountainous castle hidden deep within the rocky crags that jutted forth on the mountain range, the Dark Queen of Mysteries noticed all this.

Goodness gracious, something is happening over there,” she said. And once more, she determined to keep hers and herself well and out of it.

Woefully, that was very much what all other Great Beings said to themselves … save for a feisty new being by the name of the Fire Lady.

Goodness gracious, something is happening over there!” she cheered, shaking her hands in the air. Just then, she hovered as a mist above the rocky chasm wherein she dwelled. Deep down lay her castle, settled within the very lava of the earth. She, being the Fire Lady, could travel through flame and fire and see all. And she liked what she saw.

Trouble trouble too-da-loo,” she said gleefully, diving down to ride a tumbling current of air into Farfadel. Sparks danced in her wake and her ashen hair waved in the wind. Chains jangled about her hips and her long coat rippled like smoke about her.

Through firepits she popped, spying here and there upon the misery of the common folk. Oh! She was gleeful! Oh! She was excited! For she knew that these whispers of malcontent rode the winds of change. And no one loved change more than the Fire Lady.

Trouble trouble toodle dum,” she hummed before spying – a chipmunk? What? She turned right about in the torch she was floating above. And sure enough, why! She spied with her little eyes a chipmunk.

In armor.

With a sword.

The Fire Lady blinked again and cocked her head to the side in amusement.

The very tired chipmunk marched up to the torch bearer- a farmer upon the farthest edges of Farfadel who was ushering his sheeps into the barn for the night.

Kinsman!” squeaked Adelaide, planting her hands her hips.

What? Who is there?” and the farmer whipped about, jutting his torch before him. He looked all round with his beady eyes- and saw no one. This gave him quite a fright, especially as Adelaide kept talking.

Kinsman!” she squeaked, bouncing up and down with a chirp. “I am your Queen!”

Oh good lords!” squealed the farmer, thinking that some evil spirit was upon him. He turned round and dashed towards his house, tripping as he went and sliding upon the damp grasses. A spark hopped off his torch and landed in the grass. There it sputtered.

A tall flame rose, and in it stood the Fire Lady, regal and sneering.

Well hello, chipmunk,” she said, stooping to look down upon Adelaide.

Adelaide put her fists on her hips and looked up as proudly as she could. “I am Queen Adelaide! Who might you be?”

I am the Fire Lady,” cooed the Fire Lady, extending a finger of smoke to tickle Adelaide’s chubby cheeks. “And you must be the princess Adelaide.”

Adelaide scowled as hard as her little chipmunk face could. “I will be Queen! I have an army! And a prince beloved! I will rule Farfadel!”

Oh? Will you?” and the Fire Lady smiled tenderly. For she, the Queen of Passions, was the power behind burning love. She knew too well the sacrifices one would make for those they held dear. So she nodded to Adelaide.

Your spark is strong, little one,” she said warmly. “Need you anything?”

For a moment Adelaide paused. Then her face softened. “A horse,” she said lamely. “I cannot walk all the way to the castle fast enough. I must meet my beloved and rescue my parents from the Frog King.”

My, my, quite a lot for someone your height,” said the Fire Lady, amused in a warm and gentle way that she had not been in some time.

I can do it!” said Adelaide. “My prince and I have great plans for Farfadel!”

Ah, thought the Fire Lady. You are the spirit on the winds of change. But she loved change, and so she loved Adelaide instantly. She nodded, patting Adelaide a little thumpily atop the head. “Of course you can do it,” she said gently. “And I shall help you do so.”

You- you shall, Great Lady?” asked Adelaide, surprised. For many a Farfadelian feared the most volatile of the Great Beings, thinking her temperamental. They were wary, saying that her volatile spirit was too strange for their gentle lands. Well!

I shall spur you on your way!” cheered the Fire Lady, giving Adelaide a final thump atop the head. Then, straightening, she plucked Adelaide up in one hand. With the other she blew down the door to the barn.

Within, an astonished band of sheep, a plucky old horse, and a terrified goat looked out.

Behold!” cheered the Fire Lady, lighting a giant (and completely unnecessary) flame in her hand. The poor animals frighted and even Adelaide was startled. But the Fire Lady strode boldly into the barn. Her footsteps left smolderign marks on the hay, her breath was steaming smoke.

With a thud she dropped Adelaide atop the goats’ back. “Hold on tight!” she cheered, whirling her arms so the air swirled and caught up around them like in a windstorm. Sparks flew, and beyond, lightning flashed across the sky. The animals were quivering in fright. The spirited goat had had enough. With a bolt and a ‘be-e-e’ of fright, the goat sprinted out of the door. Adelaide bounced, caught ahold of its horns, and flapped in the air above the goat as it ran. And ran. And ran.

For the firestorm that had begun did not abate. Instead it was chasing the poor goat, whooping and cheering and roaring as it ran. Adelaide squealed as the fire cam far too close. The goat shrieked. The road itself seemed to scream in terror as the burning fire bolted after them. Farfadel careened around Adelaide as she waved through the air, still clutching for dear life atop the goat’s horns.

Then, by some magic or other, the goat ran straight into the city of Farfadel.

Now, gentle reader, it takes a solid day atop a strong horse to get across Farfadel, and more so if your horse is lame or blind. A goat, no matter how terrified, could only have crossed such a great distance by virtue of magic. Physicists, those silly people who rely upon mathematics and numbers, would conjecture that the heat of the fire created a vaccuum effect which sucked the city of Farfadel closer and straight up to the running goat. That is quite silly. Of course it was magic because the city of Farfadel was not one of those lands that moved. Farfadel was firmly rooted.

However. We can argue the virtues of Farfadelian physics another day. Suffice to know, dear reader, that all of a sudden! With a rush and a boom! A sparkle and a dash! The Princess Adelaide, nay, the Queen Adelaide arrived in the capital city!

And no one saw it.

Quite literally.

As the goat crossed the city lines, there were no guards holding post at the gates. As its tiny hooves pitterpattered across the stone walkway, there was no one about to hear it. As it drew to a heaving and snorting halt – well there was no one around!

Where is everyone?” asked Adelaide, looking about. Her words echoed back to her …

And then there was a rustle.

A shuffle.

A prying eye peeked out from the shadows, brilliant and golden like the sun.

Well hello,” whispered a man’s voice, soft and silky. “I have seen you coming.”

Supposing that he was speaking about the giant column of fire that had chased her here, Adelaide nodded. Well, she told herself matter-of-factly, Queenship begins now. So she straightened her back, looked down her small nose, and declared “I demand you show yourself!”

And he did.

With a silky rustle, a tall and slim shape moved out of the shadow, not so much seperating itself from it but stretching out from it. He was a man, tall and spindly, with ashen grey hair that hung down past his hips. It reminded Adelaide of the Fire Lady’s. His face was tender and smiling, his hands bony as he reached for Adelaide.

Hello,” he said before poking her on the cheeks.

With an outraged sound Adelaide swatted at his finger. What was with everyone and her chubby cheeks? “Ah! I am your Queen!” she squealed. Then, pointing a finger up at him, she demanded “Kneel before your Queen!”

Ah, yes,” he said in a silky voice. “Where are my manners?” And he sunk down upon one knee before the chipmunk Queen, bowing his head.

Adelaide nodded, satisfied. “Rise!” she squeaked.

The man did, pressing his lips together to stifle a smirk.

Now!” Adelaide shifted to stand upon the goat, looking left and right at the deserted street. “You must tell me what is happening around here!”

Well your highness,” the man said sweetly, allow me to introduce myself. “I am the Oracle of the Dust road.”

Adelaide nodded. “I have never heard of you,” she announced.

The man laughed softly. “Many have not. But I saw your arrival, and before that I saw the arrival of your prince, and before that the arrival of the frogs. Tell me-” and he hesitated, lifting a finger. “Would you like to know what happens next, my Queen? For I can tell that you truly are the princess Adelaide, which not many other would.”

This gave Adelaide pause for thought. Were this many truly an oracle of good strength, she ought to keep him by her side. Especially if he alone could verify that she was indeed herself. “What is it you want, oracle?”

He sunk down upon his knee once more, this time keeping his gaze level to hers. “I see myself in the Great Halls of Farfadel, beside the throne upon which a Great Queen rules contently. I wish to see those days – and my future that comes from it. For I see a beatiful woman dressed in red and I should very much wish to meet her.”

Red? Adelaide thought, rolling her eyes. Red was such a common color! Everyone loved red! Why, her prince and her both wore red! Narrowing her eyes, she hoped that he didn’t fancy her prince, unwittingly thinking him a princess.

But the honest face of the man, and his powers to recognize her, swayed her to keep him by her side. “Very well,” she declared boldly. “If you are to prove your powers to me – and I should very much like to see you prove them – I will have you stay by my side. Now answer my questions! What has happened to the good people of Farfadel in my absence?”

The oracle smiled sadly. “They have fled the great city, your majesty. Some still hide in the darker streets, as do I. For the frog soldiers have conquered the city since the,” and he hesitated, then plunged on. “Since the Frog King ate both your parents up.”

He what?” squeaked Adelaide, horrified.

The oracle bowed his head, nodding miserably. “May they rest in peace,” he murmured.

Adelaide reeled. Her gaze cast around miserably. She had never intended for this to happen! It was all that hunters’ fault! Why, if he had not taken her away, they would have rescued her parents before this horrid event! And yet – “where is the Denerspellian army?” she asked. “Have they not taken over the lands yet?”

The oracle shrugged as if he had not given them much thought (which he truly hadn’t). “I suppose they ate their fill and left. They were seen charging away a few days ago, straight back into the forest whence they came from.”

Adelaide wept bitter tears. No parents! No family! No army! What was a Queen to do without her army?

Well, she dried her whiskers and straightened her back. Conquer is what she would do! “Very well!” she chirped. “Oracle, you and I shall take back this city!” And she drew her little sword. “Huzzah!”

Huzzah,” cheered the oracle softly, waving his hand gently in the air. “Now we ought to go hide before the patrols find us.”

The patrols?” chirped Adelaide.

Why yes,” the oracle said gently. “The frog patrols.”

March!” “March!” “March!” “March!” cheered on the little frogs as they hopped and bounced down the dark streets, their spears slung over their shoulder. Little steel caps sat on their heads and toothpicks in their belts should things come to close combat.

That’s them?” asked Adelaide, peering out from behind a shed.

Oh yes,” said the oracle softly. “And their toothpicks are very sharp.”

Humph,” said Adelaide, watching as the frogs turned round the corner and disappeared. “Well we shall have to do something about them.”

Hmm,” the oracle said, tilting his head to the side.

I need to regain the throne!” muttered Adelaide. “and I need an army!”

But where was she to find one?

Things, at just about that time, were going terribly for the prince. By virtue of a piece of meat trailed through the woods the hounds had been led in a very large circle. The army, following the hounds, was thereby being led along by a piece of meat on a string.

Worse, the prince was dreary, dismal, and even dejected. Thankfully he was also determined, decided, and definitely not going to give up. Yet his army, oh my, was feeling dull, disenchanted, and even … damp on account of a fine drizzling of rain that had begun to fall. What was the prince to do?

My armor is going to rust!” whined a footsoldier who already had so much rust on his armor he looked orange.

My sword is going to rust!” complained another soldier armed only with a spear.

My feet are cold!” said a soldier with a club foot.

It feels like we’ve been walking in circles all day,” said one of the few sensible souls in that army. Promptly, everyone hushed that soldier.

That’s enough of that kind of complaining!” roared the commander, still hopeful for a promotion. “We’re obviously not where we started off today and -”

They are right however,” said the prince coolly to the commander. “We must halt!”

Halt!” bellowed the commander, thinking that maybe if he shouted loud enough he’d get the promotion?

Halt!” said the lieutenants.

Halt!” said the corporals.

Halt!” repeated just about everyone else.

What are we doing?” asked the houndsmaster, turning around in confusion.

We stop,” said the prince. Then, dramatically combing his beautiful hair back from his face, he looked his army over. “Dear soldiers,”

Oh goodness, said the forest, another sweet monologue. And the trees and the birds and the bees leaned in to hear the prince’s sweet voice.

We have been travelling hard and long. I do not know why the route is so difficult or long. I do not know where it is leading us. But I know my beloved is at the end of it,”

At that the elves in the forest looked to the ‘beloved’, also known as a fat slab of meat. The elf holding the meat held it up and made kissy faces at it.

And we must find her,” pleaded the prince.

To which, the elf gave the meat the most sorrowful gaze and held it close to their heart. Another elf gave the first a small smack on the back of the head.

Let us set up camp, take shelter, and bide until tomorrow,” said the prince sorrowfully. For he feared every moment him and Adelaide were apart was a moment she was suffering. He feared for her heart, her well being, and for whatever dastardly things could happen to a chipmunk in a glass bottle. Suppose she got too hot? Suppose she was thirsty?

Ah, that night the prince wept sorrowful tears in his tent. Ah! Adelaide, Adelaide, he thought. She was all he thought of.

And from not so far off, the prince was all the other prince thought of.

Ah, look at that silhouette,” said the elf prince, looking at the silhouette cast upon the side of the tent by the lamp within.

Sheer’a, his commander, coughed into her elbow. “That’s the houndsmaster’s tent sir. The prince is in the other one.”

Oh,” said the elven prince, his ears perking at the sight of – the dark tent wherein the prince was actually sleeping by now. “How lovely.”

All the elves within rolling distance rolled their eyes. The elf prince took another heaving sigh, and sat down on a fallen tree trunk to watch the dark tent. His elves, dark as the pitch of night and blending into it, set up their own camp around the other camp. By virtue of being dark as the pitch of night and blending into the forest as only elves could, they tripped mightily over each other and bumped over each others’ toes in the process. It was a bit disenchanting, but mercifully no one but themselves saw it.

The night passed gently. The elves slept in fitful rotation in their camp, and the humans slept lightly in theirs. The rain pitter pattered softly above all, streaming down tree trunks and slithering across the earth in tiny rivers that sunk into the ground.

The next morning the rain had ceased. The sun rose, its rays glinting off raindrops that clung to leaves still. The human guards cried out “First light!” and went around awakening their fellows.

The elves stretched and yawned silently. Panther-like, they slunk closer to the humans to watch as the day developed anew.

The prince rose, combed his hair, and stepped outside of his tent. Ah! These first-born rays of sun glowed gently upon him. Ah! How the trees wished to stoop and caress his hair with their branches. Ah! The elf prince sighed and propped his elbows in some sticky sap as he watched.

Dearest everyone,” was how the snarky prince began his monologue.

And “Kidnap him,” was how the other prince ended that monologue.

It took everyone by surprise! The elves took a moment to think of how to do it. But once they had their minds wrapped around it- the surprise passed on to the humans.

Hark!” shouted a lookout as the elves slunk from the forest like dark shadows with pointy swords.

Ah!” squealed the commander, for once forgetting about his promotion.

Bow wow!” cried out the dogs, knowing that these were the people with the good meat.

The prince lifted a hand. “We come in peace-” he started, knowing that the elves of this land were usually sensible. How often had he travelled these parts and not encountered a problem?

Greetings,” said the elf prince, raising his own hand in return to the other, more beautiful, prince. The sticky sap on his elbow glinted in the sunlight. He walked forward stealthily, smoothly, with his eyes fixed cat-like upon prince Shadow. “I know what you have come for. And I know you shall not find it. For you see-” and here the elf prince showed his slightly villainous nature by monologuing and laying all his plans bare as only villains do. “I have led your army and yourself on by a bit of meat. Your hounds followed, and now you are hopelessly lost.”

All hope is not lost!” said prince Shadow fiendishly with a determined, dastardly, and devout look to his eyes. “I will find my princess and-”

Oh, I do not want to hear you talk about her ever again,” the elf prince said with a most effeminate flip of the hand. “Shoot him,” he ordered.

What?!” yelped the prince, reaching for his sword.

In vain! Alas! Woe! Tarnations and damnations! The very effeminate hand flip was a secret gesture amongst the elves and it meant ‘shoot him’.

Fortunately, the elves were armed with blow guns set with stunning potions in the barbs. With a whirring fwump!, one elf placed a blowgun to their lips and the prince was shot in the shoulder.

For a moment he staggered. Wooziness claimed him. His limbs grew weak. His soldiers watched in horror as he grew limp and fell- straight into the awaiting arms of the elf prince.

Ah Romeo, Romeo,” sighed the prince as he hefted the other prince up into his arms. With hearts in his eyes and love in his heart he walked over to Shadow’s horse and placed him upon it. Then, his eyes flashing with royal determination, drive, and dastardly… oh bother. He was motivated.

You can go home now!” he announced to the Denerspellians. “I shoo you away!”

This prince (Not to be confused with the other prince laying unconscious upon the horse) was not quite that good at monologues. The Denerspellians looked back at this prince, blinking.

What are we shoeing?” asked the houndsmaster.

The prince,” muttered the commander, wondering who was going to give him a promotion now.

Ugh, I just can’t stand this,” said the pampered royalty that was the elven prince. “Look, someone get rid of this army. Hurry up now, I don’t have time for this.” And he tossed his own glorious silver hair over his shoulder and looked haughtily down at his commander.

Sheer’a refrained from rolling her eyes. Then, she snapped into ‘dealing with humans’ mode.

Arrrr!” she said, crouching down and bearing her teeth. “We’re going to eat ye’ all!”

Arrr! Munchies we have!” repeated the other elf soldiers, crouching down and bearing their teeth.

Run! Run and hide!” said Sheer’a, shaking her fists before her like she was squeezing out invisible juice. For extra effect, she rolled her eyes up into the back of her head.

The Denerspellians cocked their heads to the side.

What are we doing?” asked the houndsmaster.

I do not know,” said the commander quietly.

This usually works on most bandits,” said Sheer’a, a bit embarrassed as she straightened her hair. “Uhm, follow us. We shall see you home.”

The pampered prince rolled his eyes and sniffed. Then, quite happily, he looked over his hostage. “Ah, Romeo, Romeo,” he muttered under his breath. With a light hand he caressed Shadow’s hair. Then, taking the reins of the horse, he began to lead it away. Similarly, several elves took it upon themselves to lead the Denerspellians home – and the two parted ways.

Now, you see, both the prince and the princess had no more army. My! What are either of them to do?

I’m Still Writing!

Today, as it stands, I’ve written 3,000 words. I’m so pleased and proud of myself just for that, but it was also words in a Farfadel novel that I’ve been blocked in for some time so -> I’m unblocked! And usually when I get unblocked in one story I get unblocked in several so YAY!

Also, I feel like I’ve discovered a coloring style that suits my style. It’s simple, childishly so even, and yet I feel it suits Farfadel. I like it a lot more than when I add in more shading and stuff (which I always find ends up looking tacky).  So behold, Queen Adelaide everyone (again!)

And yes, y’all are going to be getting more pictures from me as I try and figure out this style!adelaide horse close up.jpeg

“Of Adelaide and Shadow” Chapter Eight

Prince Shadow awoke feeling woozy and sore. With a groan he sat up – only to discover that he was in a bed with the sheets and blankets tucked up over him gently. He was no longer in his armor, instead being dressed in a light sleeping tunic. By the scent of flowers and perfumes, he had been bathed and his hair had been washed.

Blinking in astonishment he looked around. The room was sparse, a small round thing with a domed roof. The rock it was hewn into was a light grey. Sunlight streamed in through light purple curtains.

Gingerly the prince moved. Oh, his body ached. Oh, how there was a sore spot in the middle of his back.

But the prince was stubborn and so he moved, dressing himself with a set of clothes and boots that had been set beside the bed. Then, he stared down the dozen elaborate hair pins that were atop the bedside table. There was even haircombs with gems set in them for his use.

What on earth are these all for?” he muttered to himself. Choosing the plainest comb and pin, he set about pulling his lovely hair back into a braid. That being done he pinned his hair up so it was safely out of the way.

After all, he thought, who knew what sort of horrid and dastardly adventures were about to happen? The last thing any adventurer needed was to have hair in the way!

Now ready to face the day, the prince stalked to the curtain. He brushed it aside and ah! How the light glowed gently over him! How the mountain cried out happily at seeing his face!

For beyond this tall window was a balcony, and beyond this balcony a courtyard, and further yet was the valleys and peaks of the craggly mountains.

With a gasp the prince realized he was in the Dark Queen of the mountain’s castle. Or a section of it at the very least. For where else would there be such a magnificent view?

Drawing the window open, he stepped cautiously out onto the balcony. Warm air greeted his face. Soft music drifted on the wind towards him. The scent of the forest filled his lungs.

Ah, what a lovely moment it was.

Then – he looked to the left.

Oh,” he said, seeing someone looking back.

Hallo,” said one prince to the other. For there sat the elven prince on a cushy velvet pillow, strumming a guitar. His long silver hair was coiffed in long braids that hung down his back. His tunic was simple but elegant in shades of green. His fingers were glimmering with gems as he played.

You kidnapped me,” announced prince shadow, gripping the railing in fury.

Oh don’t be so dramatic,” sighed the prince who was known for being the most dramatic thing on this side of the mountain.

My beloved awaits for me to rescue her!” snapped Prince Shadow. “And you’ve gotten in my way!”

The elf prince strummed louder. “I don’t want to hear about her!” he called over. Then, stopping his music and setting his guitar aside, he rose to his feet. In three steps he was at the edge of where his balcony ended and Shadow’s began. “I’m your beloved now,” he announced.

That’s the stupidest thing I’ve heard yet, and believe you me I’ve heard a lot of stupid things. Now give me back my sword and armor.”

No,” said the elf snobbishly. “Aren’t you too sore to wear any armor?” Then, he added with a sneaky grin. “Have you any pain in your back?”

The prince scowled. Ah, he thought, the ruffian hath laid a curse upon me! But for all his sneakiness and cleverness, he was honest. “Well yes,” he admitted. “What spell have you cast upon me?”

I placed a pea underneath your mattress,” said the elf prince most smugly. “I heard only the most refined and noble of human princes can’t sleep unless they are on the softest of beds.” The elf grinned victoriously. “This makes you worthy to be my betrothed.”

Prince Shadow scowled, straightening his back. “Ah, it is but a miserable little back ache. It does not prove a thing!”

The elf prince grinned. “It means everything!” And then, perhaps just to be irritating or perhaps he truly was attempting to woo the prince, he sat back down on his pillow and began to play a love tune.

Oh bugger!” said Shadow, snatching at some moss off the wall and holding it to his ear. “Stop playing!”

Hey!” squealed the moss. “Lemme go!”

Ah!” the prince yelped and threw the moss at the other prince. The moss, which was a talking moss native to the talking marshes, landed with a soft thwump on the guitar. It oozed and squelched down to sit atop the elf prince’s knee. There, it hummed and began to sing along (just to irritate prince Shadow).

Prince Shadow threw a tiff. He marched back into his room, shutting the glass door that led onto the porch. He yanked the curtains shut as well!

But still, just to irk him, he could still hear that elf warbling on about their unending love. And still, he heard the moss singing along ‘sha la la’ in the background.

Prince shadow pulled out his hair pins and shook his hair down (for all glorious and dastardly villains think with their hair down and framing their face most evilly). Hair now suitably evil looking (and gloriously beautiful and glossy in the darkened room) he began to pace. And plot. And plan.

Finally, he tried the door to his room. Just to be sure it was locked.

It was.

Then he went back to pacing. And planning. And plotting.

After the third ballad was crooned to him from across the balcony, he came up with a plan.

It was a most dastardly plan. It was reckless, it was bold, and it was glamorous, er, uhm, brilliant.

So the prince set down and began tearing the bedsheets up into long and thin strips. This was harder than it seemed, as the seams were quite strong. But he channeled all his princely frustration into the ripping thereof, and he soon had quite a number of long strips. These he then began to braid together.

Picture if you will, gentle reader, the dark prince sitting in the shadows, smirking as he twisted and wrenched the fabric together. Beyond the curtains the sun was setting and shadows were creeping up the walls.

Just about as the prince wound the last braid and knotted it shut with a frustrated yank, the strumming stopped from the other balcony. The moss finished its last ‘sha la la’ and there was the sound of someone clearing their throat.

Will you be coming for supper?” called out the elf prince. “My parents are expecting you.”

Prince Shadow yanked again on the knot just to be sure it was tight. “No!” he called out. Viciously, he imagined himself kicking a number of royal elves in the buttocks.

Why?” whined the elf prince, his voice closer. “They’re going to imagine you don’t want to meet them!”

‘because I don’t’, mouthed Shadow. Then, he straightened and walked to the curtains. With a villainous sigh he composed himself and tossed his luxurious and quasi-hypnotizing hair over his shoulder. Then he brushed the curtains aside, pulled the glass door open, and marched on out.

It was a good thing he had chosen to do it too, for the elf prince had one leg slung over their railing. “Oh,” he said, “I was just about to come say hallo-”

Prince Shadow took him by the shoulders and pushed him back onto his side of the balcony.

Oh!” said the elf prince, completely miffed. “You’re acting like you don’t like me.”

Oh, woe, thought prince shadow, pressing his lips together tightly. Then, with a glamorous sigh, he put the second part of his plan into action.

First, he swept his hair from his face. Ah, how the dark elf prince swooned, dazzled by such beauty.

Listen,” Prince Shadow said in a most sweet and seductive tone that he could manage. “I need to be alone tonight.” And, for good measure, he combed his hair again from his face. “Men like I, who are so sensitive of heart and skin, we must be left to meditate upon things.”

The elf prince merely blinked, oblivious to all but how beautiful this mesmerizing creature was before him. Shadow might as well have been listing the virtues of one ox in the marketplace for all the elf prince noticed his words.

Shadow smiled sweetly, leaning forward across the railing towards the elf. “So you are going to leave me perfectly alone tonight? You won’t send anyone to disturb me? I really need to be alone.”

Of, course,” said the elf prince as he leaned forward with stars in his eyes and heart a-flutter.

Great! See you tomorrow!” and Shadow whirled away so fast his hair whipped the elf prince in the face. With a dart and a duck he was back into his room with the door and curtains shut.

The elf prince sighed and plunked his chin into his palm. “He likes me,” he murmured, staring off into the distance where his beloved had just been.

In his room, prince Shadow was gleefully holding a series of keys he’d just stolen off the crown prince’s belt. Holding it to his chest, he stifled a villainous chuckle. He combed his beautiful hair back from his face, and began to plot some more.

Now, as the elf prince skipped off to supper with his family and the stars began to shine in the sky, the dark prince by the name of Shadow had several plans in his head.

Firstly, the dark and nefarious prince wanted to rush out the window and be free! But he knew he would not get far without a sword, or armor. So he must find a way to get some.

Now upon this, he thought and thought and thought. And then he thought some more. As a plan of the most cruel and dastardly sorts came to fruition in his mind, he tiptoed to the wall on the side of the prince’s room and pressed his ear against it. There, he waited for some time.

Finally, he heard the sounds of the elf prince returning from supper. He was alone (perfect!, thought prince Shadow) and he was soon laying down with a creak on his bed.

Prince Shadow smirked. He hid the series of keys in a pocket in his tunic. He combed his hair back and stuck a very sharp hairpin in it. He selected a series of three other hairpins and placed them in his belt. Then, he stepped out onto the balcony.

Much like the elf prince had done earlier on, he slung himself over from one balcony to the other.

A cool breeze gusted over the prince, ruffling his hair and setting it to dance in the wind. His face reflected in the glass, and it was beautiful and almost innocent looking. Beyond, the curtains were drawn and so prince Shadow could not see into the room.

He tried the door, and it was locked fast. So he knocked gently on the window, calling out “It is I,” in a very soft and gentle voice.

There was a rustle and the sound of footsteps. The curtains were brushed aside, revealing a most perplexed prince. He unlocked the glass door and pulled it open.

What are you-?” he started, but prince Shadow put a finger to his lips.

Shhh,” Shadow said. Then, trailing his finger down to the elf prince’s shoulders, he pushed him backwards into his room.

Eyes widening, the elf prince moved like a happy puppet. Shadow shut the glass door behind them and drew the curtain. Just in case guards might look up. Then, he drew the sharp pin from his hair.

With one glance around, he saw that this room was much like his own, except that it was not quite as empty. There was a chest of clothing, a hand stand, and a very large and comfortable looking bed. Shadow smirked at the sight of the bed. He pointed at it with the hairpin.

I am going to tie you to your bed with your shirt,” he announced in a whisper.

Alright,” said the elf prince most naively.

Shadow smirked.

Moments later, Shadow was still smirking. “I told you I was tying you to your bed,” he said as he sat down on the edge of the bed.

Mff!” protested the elf prince who, indeed, was tied to the bed posts by virtue of his torn-up shirt. He was also gagged by virtue of a piece of shirt as well. He aimed a kick at Shadow and badly missed.

Now,” Shadow said, reaching into his pocket. “If I recall well, you had peas placed in my bed. A thing I am quite sore about,” he muttered viciously while drawing several dried peas from his pocket. These were the ones that had been placed under his mattress and which he had discovered while plotting and rummaging around earlier on. “And since you are such a curious elf,” he stooped over and lifted the side of the mattress. “You shall find out if your skin is as thin as mine. There!” and he tossed the peas under the mattress. “Have a good night!”

Mff!” said the elf prince in horror, knowing full well that he too would have a sore back by the morning if he slept on peas.

Shadow chuckled darkly to himself and let the mattress down with a thump. Then, sweeping his glorious hair from his face, he marched to the chest and began to rummage in it. Several moments later he found that the sword he was looking for was directly beside it.

I’ll be taking this,” Shadow said, taking the sword and its belt and tying it around himself. “And this,” he said, stealing a magical chest plate that made one look most manly and handsome. “And this,” he said, taking the shoulder pauldrons that magically never mussed one’s hair or snagged them in any way. “And this,” he said, taking arm bracers that magically … something or other.

Then, dressed and ready to run for his life and that of his beloved, prince Shadow drew open the curtain. But first, he, like all true villainous people, had to monologue.

Good bye my not-so-beloved,” he snarked, executing a bow. “Rest well!” And then he drew the glass door open and crept out onto the balcony.

The elf prince rolled his eyes and hmphed in disdain.

Outside, the moon was glowing gently among some fluffy clouds. The air was now crisp and cool. Gentle breezes rustled through leaves and carried the scents of the forest to the prince.

It was the perfect night for an escape.

The prince let down his rope of braided bedstuff. It was long enough to trail onto the grass of the gardens. With a gleeful smirk he thought himself so lucky.

And then, just as he swung himself off the porch and began his descent – the moss started to holler.

ALARM ALARM! The hostage/guest of honor is escaping! ALARM! ALARM! He’s braided a rope of bedstuff and is climbing down from the porch! ALARM! ALARM!”

The prince cursed. How he hated talking mosses!

So the prince scurried down that rope as fast as a snake! He scurried, he rushed, and he darted out into the dark garden.

Within moments a series of elven guards arrived upon the scene, their armor glistening in the moonlight and their lovely hair shining as well. Swiftly, under the clever orders of Sheer’na, they encircled the gardens and began to ruffle through the bushes.

The prince, meanwhile, was up in a tree and observing all this. Oh, how lucky he was, he thought. Unless they thought of looking up, he would still be able to sneak away.

And then he leaned against the mossy tree trunk.

ALARM! ALARM!” shrieked that moss. “The handsomely dastardly prince is up in this tree! ALARM ALARM!”

Oh, goodness. How the prince hated talking mosses. How he also hated blow guns as another sleeping dart thudded into his neck, narrowly avoiding the armor he wore. As wooziness and sleep claimed him, he fell from the tree with a thud.

When the prince awoke, he was tied to a bed by virtue of – not his shirt – but by what looked like very solid rope. He had been stripped of the armor and there was twigs and leaves in his lovely hair.

Several guards stood about the room with cross expressions on. Amongst them, with the most unhappy expression of all, was the humiliated elf prince.

The prince had a tunic on, but there was no clothing that could hide that look of damaged pride.

Prince Shadow looked at him guiltily. “I suppose you won’t let me tie you to your bedposts again?”

Augh!” the elf prince shouted, snatching up a pillow from the bed and beating Shadow about the head with it. “You horrid, stinky, awful, thing!”

There, there,” muttered Sheer’na, pulling the flustered prince away from the bed. “You said yourself he told you what he was going to do.”

But, but!” wailed the elf prince while Shadow spat out a mouthful of feathers.

Hush,” muttered Sheer’na. “Please be quiet until your parents arrive.”

Parents?” squawked prince Shadow.

Yes,” said the elf prince smugly, holding the pillow to his side. “You have broken our law by attempting to leave without permission – and so they will judge you harshly!”

A sense of dread settled over prince Shadow. What was he to do? For the Dark elves of the mountain were known for being cruel and just as mysterious and strange as the Great Queen who ruled above them. What sort of punishments would they reserve for someone … attempting to leave?

Ah! How Prince Shadow wondered!

And Ah! So shall you. For behold! Another cliffhanger.


Who Am I?

So I’ve gotten some new followers lately on social media! Always a great thing! And, as is customary, I’ve decided to do a ‘who am I’ post, just to introduce myself to all these lovely people who have decided to follow me. This post will be doubled up on my Instagram.

So who am I? Well I’m an author, vicious mental health advocate, and a self-dedicated pagan priest. And as it comes to writing this post, I’m stumped. I don’t know what to say, really. How can I summarize myself? It’s like describing a box that you’re stuck on the inside of. But I’m going to try and tell you what’s inside the box.

First things first -> I love writing. Writing once saved my life, keeping me from my suicidal ideations. So I don’t take my stories too lightly, let’s put it that way. I love them, I love writing them, and I really care about making them good and reaching people with them.

Second things second -> I’m pretty darn spiritual. I live my religion, Wicca, and can get really intense about it. Which is why getting called by various spirits can sometimes make life confusing, but hey. I do my best. I’m part of the monastic movement in polytheism, as well as the wave of self-dedicated priest/esses, as well as those who cover their heads.

Third things third -> I no longer cover my head full-time, but do cover and dress up and makeup for ritual occasions. Why? Because I feel called to. So I do. That simple. I kind of wish I had the inner strength and calling to cover full-time, because sometimes it really does feel good to cover. But hey, that’s not today.

Fourth things fourth -> I am a fierce mental health advocate and domestic abuse survivor and feminist. I try and tie all these together, but I mainly rail against nasty esoteric views that poison paganism in regards to mental health. As someone who survived mental illness and had an especially hard time due to these beliefs that were impressed upon me, I really really get up in arms about mental illness rights and poisonous outlooks.

Fifth things fifth -> I actually do have a sense of humor, and am really kind. It might not show, but I generally make people laugh IRL and do my best to make them happy and smiling whenever they’re with me. So as much as I might come off as a hardass online, it’s just because writing’s my best medium and the swiftest way for me to clearly lay out my thoughts. But when it comes to taking care of people? I’ve literally had a stranger come up to me during a street festival and ask for help in regards to their mental health, and I kept in contact for months trying to help them.

Sixth thing? Just in case none of you know – I am transgender! That means I am going from being a woman to being a man. So when you refer to me, it’s he/him. 🙂

Fun facts!

  • I like wearing fake piercings, doing makeup, and doing my nails on occasion.
  • I love gardening, but gardening does not always love me!
  • Similarly, I love drawing, but it doesn’t always turn out the way I want it to! Which leads me to the fact that…
  • I’m pretty harsh on myself when it comes to stuff I care about. I’m not really a perfectionist, but I want my stuff to be good.
  • I’m terrible with colors. I just have a really hard time coloring in a picture, understanding how colors work, and pairing up complementary colors together.
  • I love my puddy cat. We snuggle lots (as my instagram feed testifies).
  • I love baking. I’m generally pretty okay at it too!
  • I tend to break coffee machines. No joking, we used a french press for a few years because I broke three coffee machines in a row, no idea how. They just – broke.
  • I try and play guitar. Try being the key word here.
  • speaking of which, the first song I tried to learn was the ‘chocobo song’ from final fantasy, just to irritate my wife (she’s heard that song too much!).
  • When I was young and watching disney movies, I always wanted to be the villain. Especially Gaston. I never wanted him to die haha.

“My Name is Chaos”: Chapter Seven, Part One

Not to be a pain buuuut – I’m really loving this story now! It’s super interesting to me, and I just want to keep writing it and writing! I’m so excited to explore Bella and what she’s up to! I’d love to hear some feedback on her, and especially what happens in the chapel here. Let me know what y’all think! I hope you’re having a nice day 🙂


Speaking of cold, it was cold. Very cold. Icy cold. Freeze-in-your-nostrils kind of cold. Mist up and freeze on your face cold. And there Bella was, wearing a bomber jacket styled winter coat, jeans (with zippers and chains on the side!) and a black wool hat. She had a large smile on, as if she just couldn’t get enough of this white crap everywhere as we walked down the road. Ugh. Also, she was wearing an eye patch to cover her red eye. I was wondering why she was wearing the stupid eye patch when she began talking.

“Your friend Mark tried to run away last night,” she said so happily that I almost didn’t understand the meaning of her words.

“He what?”

She turned that simple smile to me. It looked so pure. It felt pure, like she didn’t have a bone of malice in her body. “Oh, he’s been restrained so he won’t hurt himself,” she said sweetly. “Don’t worry.”

“Hurt himself?” I echoed, almost stopping in my tracks. What was that evil-person code for? Were they torturing him?

“Oh, he was very distraught,” she said before heaving a sigh. “It’s unfortunate.”

“What’s unfortunate? What have you done with him?” I tried to run up before her but she held out an arm, winding me in the face as I tried to pass here. I doubled over, clutching at my poor nose. There were snorts of derision from the troupe of vampires around us. When I looked up, Bella had come to a stop next to some funny looking machines that were parked where the road was supposed to be. Were they motorcycles? Except they had skis on them…

“Skidoos,” she said as if reading my mind. “I guess they don’t have them in hell, do they?” and she plucked a helmet from one and handed it to me. “Watch your nose.”

I took the helmet from her, glaring barbs her way. I had half a mind to just unleash my powers and beat her to a pulp. But then I’d have to fight all her dumb minions and find the portal on my own. Hopefully this way she would lead me straight to it.

“Now you can ride with Mcfarlan,” she said, gesturing to the beefcake-in-charge from yesterday, who was popping his little head into his own helmet.

Grimly, I stalked over to him. He climbed onto the skidoo behind her majesty’s, and I followed suit. Disgusted, I took hold of the back of Mcwhatever’s jacket and hoped not to fall off. I’d been allowed to ride a motorcycle in hell, but it had been tricked so as not to bust speed limits. Like, you now you’re in hell when there’s speed limits on everything. Betcha there’s none of those in heaven.

We took off. Zooming through the city at daytime (without white crap in your face) was a totally different experience. The houses were bright and quaint around here, quickly giving way to shops and malls – and not a single car.

Well, there was over a foot of snow everywhere. Where would the cars go?

Instead there was other skidoos here and there, quickly switching to drive next to us, but always behind Bella. Pretty soon, I looked around and we were leading a whole flock of skidoos. The sound was such a racket. I wondered what the hell was going on. Was I about to be mobbed to death? A public execution of sorts? Was I breakfast for the starving hordes?

We drove up to a chapel. There Bella skidded to a halt, and the entire horde followed suit. I gawked at the number of vampires present. If it was a buffet, there certainly wasn’t enough blood in me to fill up everyone.

No, if this was her legions, then hell was empty of vampires right now. Because seriously, vampires have always been a protected species (don’t laugh) but there was so many right here.

The massive chapel was bursting full of them. They shrieked and squealed with joy as Bella came in, parting for her like the proverbial Red Sea, if the Red sea had still desperately wanted to touch Moses.

Arms were waving towards her. Babies were held out. The air was frenzied, frantic. The crowd closed right after her, blocking us from following her. Mcsomethingorother grabbed me by the shoulders and held me against him to keep me from getting torn from him by the crowd’s movement.

And that’s when it struck me. This was no army. There was no discipline, no ranks. Everyone was wearing civilian clothes and – I looked around at the screaming mouths to be sure. These were humans. We were actually a tiny patch of vampires, in a swathe of humans.

“Friends,” coeed Bella from the spot where the priest was supposed to be. The crowd silenced instantly. You could have heard a pin drop.

Faintly, someone began sobbing. Bella smiled sweetly in that direction. She had her hands on the book reading thing, and was poised to give a speech. I didn’t want to admit it, but I was really curious what she was going to say. Talk about herself as the savior of humanity or what? Vampires came in peace?

Bella began to speak. At first I thought I couldn’t hear her because she was mumbling. But then I realized there really was no sound coming from her mouth. Except I felt it inside. A strange feeling of peace invaded me. Words that made no sense began popping into my head, from some sort of angelic language. Enochian?

The crowd began to sway. I felt dizzy. The big hands on my shoulders held me steady as around us the world began to careen. The words began to hammer through me and I felt that feeling of peace intensify. Bella was walking forward towards the pews, moving her hands as if directing a chorus. The words pulsed through me and I knew I shouldn’t know them, but they took on meaning for me.

What meaning? I couldn’t put it into words. My body was numb and I was swaying back and forth with the crowd. The air pulsed around us. My eyes felt heavy and the light hurt.

The silent words began coming faster, rhythmically more and more intense. The meaning was overwhelming. It was something about peace and peace, but in such a way that… I don’t know.

Faintly, I heard sobs from the other side of the chapel. Nothing in me was disturbed. Iu knew they weren’t in danger, that nothing was in danger in this peace.

And then I cracked open. There was no other way to explain it.

It was if all of a sudden I’d broken beyond the limits of my body, of my own soul. I was no longer just me, a soul amongst so many. I could feel them, touch them. Ecstacy shone through me like a white light that radiated from within and I felt oneness with everything, everyone in this place. I could feel the energy on a different, more pure level than before. I was powerful enough to control the universe. I was beyond my own limits of existence. I could, I could –

I must have passed out. Because the last thing I remember was that pure, unbridled ecstacy. Then the next thing I knew, a voice was calling me.

“Chaos, Chaos,” a sweet voice was saying.

I felt my body being shaken, but it didn’t seem to fit me anymore. It felt foreign, like a dirty old sock you had to put on.

“Chaos,” and I recognized it as Bella. Bella! My heart thudded at the thought of her. Curiosity is what I told myself it was. In fact it was love. Adoration. Something in me craved her, because she was ecstacy.

I forced my eyes open, coming into my body and fitting into it dingily. Before me, Bella was grinning. She was patting my cheeks. At the sight of her, my soul flipped. Bella! My hand reached out and snatched at her, a strangled cry in my throat.

“Shhh,” she caught my hand and pressed it to her shoulder. My breath came ragged as emotions flooded me like a chemical rush. I knew that if only she willed it, I’d be back in that state-

“It’s alright. Stay with me,” she was saying gently and my mind had no choice but to focus on her words. I wanted them so bad. “You went under deep, didn’t you?”

I released a ragged breath. Somewhere, alarm bells were ringing in my head, but I had no idea what was happening. I’d never heard of anything like this. All there was was this feeling, and Bella. She who was taking my hand in both of hers now and squeezing it tightly while giving me such a comforting smile. “You’re okay,” she said in that sweet tone.

I gulped air. My body didn’t want to stay like this. I was like an addict needing another rush, craving it. But as Bella squeezed my hand and I looked into her blue blue eye, the burning need began to subside.

“There,” she said. “there you go. Come on, sit up.”

I was lying on a church pew. There were a few stragglign humans here and there, but the church was now fairly empty. The big beefy dude was standing beside me, glowering down smugly.

Gingerly, I managed to sit up. I wanted to barf. I was sweaty, clammy. Bella crouched before me, grinning wildly now. “So?” she asked eagerly, like we were sharing a secret. “Are we that bad?”

I took another look around. I told myself to take my hand from hers, but couldn’t. I liked her touch. I swallowed, my mouth now dry. “What happened?”

Bella patted my hand. “Secret!” And she drew up to a standing position. “Come on.”

“My Name is Chaos”: Chapter Six, Part One

Ahhh, I love this section. I really get into characters like Bella. They’re what I feel I do best. To me, they’re both relatable in their passion and sympathy and their flawed nature, as well as slightly terrifying on the flip side.

And, to surprise myself, I did a pencil and paper drawing instead of on the computer, and I like it much better! Maybe I’ll just give up on computer drawings for a little while. I’m not sure why, but I’m so much more impatient on computer colouring.

Anyways, enjoy! For all those who are wondering whether I’ll ever get back to mental illness topics, yes I will!  I just love fiction writing, haha. Is there any topics you’d like me to discuss about mental illness? Let me know!


We entered a room that was large and somberly lit. Like the rest of the house it was all polished wood and paneling with a chandelier lighting it. Against one wall sat an upright piano. A fireplace crackled against the other wall. And there, in a deep comfy oldsie-styled chair, was a figure.

I wanted her clothes. There was buckles on the turtle neck collar, on the sides of a slightly corset-styled waist, down the sides of her jeans, and on the sides of her knee high boots.

When she turned her face to us, I forgot about her clothes though. First things first → she had the same haircut as Al. Really? Chin-length hair, minus the bangs. Except her hair was light reddish chestnut brown instead of jet black.

Second. I nearly jumped out of my skin, I was so shocked. She had one red eye (left) and one blue eye (right, obviously. What, did you think she had three eyes?). It was the mark of a Nephilim, one of both angelic and demonic descent.

“Hi,” I said, lifting a hand. Whack! The big beefcake smacked me on the back of the head with a hand and lowered my hand with another.

The madam/mistress/boss in charge of it all smirked. “Let her be,” she said condescendingly. She waved a hand at us. “Actually, you can all leave. The kid can stay.”

“But! Madam!”

She snapped her fingers in the air. “No buts! Go.”

The entire troupe of vampires bowed and crowed together “Namastay,” in varying varieties of pronounciations.

I blinked and turned to stare at them. Had I heard that right? But they were all filing out, glaring at me before shutting the door behind them.

I turned to her. The madam. She was still smirking while watching me. Elbows propped on the armrest, she flicked her fingers at me. “Come,” she said. “Draw up a chair. Namastay, by the way. Feel welcome.”

Nama-what? I blinked, wondering which pantheon she was from. From the skin tone, she should be something western. She was pretty pale, Irish maybe? But that namastay-

“I said,” she barked. I jumped out of my thoughts into a terrifying moment. Her red eye was gleaming and shivers crawled over my skin. “Pull up a fucking chair.”

I pulled up a fucking chair. Right to where she was pointing. Then I sat down in it. It was really comfy. Decadently so, but it didn’t help me relax one bit. No, really, she reminded me of my relatives. Or really, anyone of rank in Hell. Maybe a little archangel in her too? Who knew?

All bad mood vanished, she smiled sweetly at me again. “Namastay,” she crooned. “Good to meet you.”

“You know me?” I asked, ego inflating a little. Yeah! I was known! A smile crept over me.

“Not at all. Couldn’t place you in a crowd. But,” she flicked her fingers upwards. “I’m sure we’ll get to know each other well.”

I deflated somewhat. Oh, yeah. Well, not everyone knew the Grim Reaper had children, but uh… I tried to refocus myself. “So uh, who are you?”

“Direct,” she crooned. “I like that. Simplicity is a virtue.” And her eyes swept over to an immense painting that was draped in curtains. It was vintage- or not. It was a giant buddha, one hand in his lap and the other touching the earth. The gesture meant something, but I couldn’t guess what. It was serene, made to look like a vintage photograph.

Her fingers propped her chin, almost caressing herself. They were spindly thin, her fingers. In fact, beneath the cut of her clothing, she was bone thin. Almost unhealthily so. “I am a human,” she said softly. A direct lie if my eyes were telling me anything. “And that is how I interact with this world.”

“But you,” I pointed to my own eyes. “You’re nephilim.”

She smiled at that painting. “To the Buddha, we are all suffering, all in need of salvation.”

I glanced again at the painting. So serene. I looked back at her, who seemed wholly entranced by it. Our eyes connected and she smiled as if she pitied me.

“Buddhism is the ultimation of humans. All other things have been handed down from deities, spawning their will in this world. But Buddha,” she gestured to the painting. “Was human.” And her eyes lit up. “I love humans,” and her voice dropped to a whisper. “I’m going to save them.”

“Yeah okay, so you’re going to build a temple or what?”

“I’m going to save everyone,” she crooned, both eyes fairly glowing.

I fidgeted. Something about her seemed unhinged. Just a little. “Uhm, okay.”

She point-blank interrupted me with a clap of the hands. “We have a non-believer in the room!” And she smiled nastily at me. “You don’t care about the Buddha, do you?”

I smiled half-heartedly. “That’s not what I’m here for-”

“The Buddha would say that you,” and she pointed a finger between my eyes. “Are lost in the swamps of delusion.”

Yeahhhh, okay. I hadn’t met a preacher since visiting a lower level of hell, and hey, this sounded similar. “Uhm,”

“We’re all suffering,” she crooned at me. “We’re all in this together.” and she reached out and took one of my hands in both of hers. “Don’t you see that? Don’t you feel the pain, hear the screams of the world? It’s alive, we all are.”

And you, are a nutbag. I wiggled my fingers in her grasp. “Uhm,” I cleared my throat and ducked my eyes from her overly sympathetic glare. “What’s your name?”

She released me with one hand and snatched up a book from her handtable. “Bella,” she said with passion. “I am Bella.”

Twilight. That’s what she was holding. Twi-light.

She held the book out to me, voice riddled with passion. “This was my past life – I,” and she seemed lost for words. “You must understand past lives. Don’t you?” And then she laughed and looked at the book. “It is impressive, how easily humans write up the lives of others. Don’t you think?”

I think you’re off your rocker. But I smiled and nodded. That satisfied her. She set the book down. The hand that still held me caressed me with a thumb. She looked down at our joined hands. “And you, dear child, what is your name?”

“Chaos,” I said proudly.

“Chaos,” she nodded with a hum. “What a lovely name.” her eyes sparkled sincerely at me as she clasped my hand in both of hers. “I hope we can be good friends, Chaos.”

Yeah, no. But I nodded and forced a smile. “Yeah.” Alright, I wanted my hand back. I tugged, and she gave way. She held her hands to her chest, pressing against her heart while she beamed at me. “My heart is happy at your name,” she whispered. “I feel we shall be good friends.”

O-kay. Alright. “Yeah, uhm,”

“Are you tired? Hungry?”

“No, actually, I -” and I hesitated. How to approach this? Suddenly I felt the emptiness of my lack of a plan.

“Yes?” she asked sweetly.

I totally segwayed off to the side, so to speak. Let her keep talking while I figured out what I needed from her. “How did you get here? You’re not a vampire?” I gestured at the door. “And yet – you’re not their juicebox.”

She tossed her head back and laughed heartily. That took a minute. Then, brushing a tear from her red eye, she laughed at me once more. “Oh, you’re funny too! Oh, I like you.”

Uh. I almost yelped and jumped back, she took my hand in hers again so suddenly, snatching it from me to squeeze it passionately. “If only you could understand what we are trying to do,” she whispered. “But you -” and a finger waved at my third eye. “are not yet awakened.”

Okay, now I was curious. “Not yet what?”

But she shook her head, grinning. “You don’t need to know. You’re here for your lost minion, yes? Stay a while. Stay with us,” and she patted my hand and let go before kicking back in her chair and gesturing. “Maybe we’re not that strange to you. Maybe you’d like to join us.”

Excellent! “I’d love to stick around,” and snoop in all the corners and find your portal. Which she hadn’t yet mentioned, by the way, which was strange for a preacher-esque nut. Usually they went on and on about their evil plans. But she just cooed and clasped her hands beneath her chin and had hearts fairly bubbling from her eyes as she looked at me. “Our souls are attuning,” she said. “The desire to stay is just the beginning, my dear.”

Uh, yeah no.