The Curious Leaf: Voyage to the Moon 003

TCL Cover“The moon is a mirror, as it has ever been. What is below, must be above. And what is above, must shine down below.” He glanced at the sky and stiffened. “Already I have lingered longer than I ought. The night is nearly gone. Eat the cheese or not, it is your choice. Only remember that what is promised must be given, one way or another.” With one last quiver of his whiskers, the mouse scampered off, his silken robes flapping behind him.

“The stories my keeper used to read to me,” Kya said, eyeing the bit of cheese that was beginning to melt in her hand, “were filled with dire warnings against eating food from Faerie.”

Hearthorne brightened at the mention of her home. “Really?”

Kya let her nervousness seep out in a small laugh. “Yes. They said that eating the food of the Folk would steal your soul, bind you to the Realm, and empty you instead of filling you. Of course, I’m not sure how that works with plants.” Kya furrowed her brow. At her heart, she was still a small flower of only three seasons who was not content to stand upon the windowsill. And yet, there was something else. Something small and foreign nibbling at the corners of her heart. Different and strange and . . . lovely.

But the stories had things to say about that too.

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Secrets of the UnderWhere: Welcome to the UnderWhere 002

sotu002The Crown Prince’s eyes widened, for they were of equal height, and both had a mop of unruly curls that hadn’t yet decided if they were going to be brown or gold.

“Bring the creature to me,” the Crown Prince ordered, raising his miniature scepter before he turned and scrambled back into his litter. The golems stood as one, and began the long run back to the Castle Under, while the Lord Mayor looked on with envy.

Now that was power.

“Well, you heard the Crown Prince,” the Lord Regent said, grinning. His teeth were every bit as yellow as his eyes. “See that the creature is delivered safely to the castle in a timely manner.”

Mutely, the Lord Mayor nodded. He was going to have to round up a committee to deal with the human child. The crowd, meanwhile, shifted restlessly and were already edging away.

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The Curious Leaf: Voyage to the Moon 002

moonmouse

Kya frowned at the moonscape stretching out as far as her eyes could see. It wouldn’t be fair if they had to leave now, not when they’d only just arrived. But like its earthly counterpart, the moon had its rules and regulations to keep it spinning straight and true.

“I’m afraid we didn’t bring anything with us,” she said, regret weighing down her voice. “We didn’t know we were supposed to bring anything.”

The mouse shook his paw at her. “What sort of guests arrive—uninvited I might add—without a gift for the host?”

Hearthorne strained against the force of her roots keeping her down in one place. Never before had she appreciated the ability to move even a single step to the side. But now that she no longer had any feet to step with, she would have to make do with what she had.

“What offering?” she asked again, her petals spread wide against the coming day.

Kya’s frown deepened a little. Hearthorne didn’t seem at all surprised to hear about the offering.

The mouse straightened, though his nose continued to quiver at them. “A wish or a dream is the usual fare.”

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Secrets of the UnderWhere: Welcome to the UnderWhere 001

SotUcoverThe monsters in the UnderWhere were not happy.

It was one thing, being monsters and all, for the occasional visit up to the OverWhere, also known as The Great Up There. Or, more rarely, the OtherWhere, the ElseWhere, or the NeverWhere. Visits to the EveryWhere were so rare as to never have happened outside of myth, legend, and happenstance, so you really couldn’t count it.

And yet, in light of recent events, perhaps the EveryWhere wasn’t quite so imaginary after all.

“What,” the Lord Mayor of the UnderWhere demanded, “is that doing here?”

A murmur swelled through the gathering of UnderWherians as they shifted uneasily in place. In all the history of monsters, shadows, and nightmares, the UnderWhere had never before been breached by a child.

Until today.

This very moment, to be exact.

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Secrets of the UnderWhere Officially Launches

SotUcoverWelcome!

Mark your calendars. Every Thursday we’ll be venturing to the depths of the UnderWhere where monsters and nightmares and all sorts of shadowy creatures are real.

In general, UnderWherians tend to avoid the UpThere and the OverWhere like the plague. After all, those two Wheres are notorious places to find things like mortals and *whispers* grimmer things like *shudders* children.

But late one night, in the middle of the Grand Mayor’s speech, the Prince of UnderWhere arrives in all the Pomp and Ceremony an UnderWherian of his stature deserves. He has come with an impossible task, and no is never really an option–not if you want to keep your head about you.

But once the prince leaves and the crowd clears, a singular creature is left behind. A creature that looks remarkably like a small, grubby, human child . . .

New secrets of the UnderWhere will be posted every Thursday beginning on 21 May 2015. (barring the occasional dragon problem). If you’d like to keep up to date, subscribe to this blog (top, right column) and get the updates delivered to your in box.

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