The Curious Leaf: Voyage to the Moon 010

TCL CoverThe new queen gave her a smile like the edge of a knife, bright and shining and ever so sharp. “For the same reason you had to give up your roots to sprout wings. To have one, you must give up the other. Not all dearest dreams are willing to share.”

The queen turned and sat on her throne, her hair white and her gown silver once more. “It is a cruel fate, but one that all creatures share if they only dare to look.”

Kya looked down at the perfect moon apple that glimmered with a quiet light. If what the Moon Queen said was true, then she held perhaps the rarest and most dragonish of treasures in her hand. And the dragon himself had given her not one, but three. Entrusted them to her care.

And the seeds!

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Mira Morganstein: The Pink Lemonade Club 009

MMCoverA Scrap of Paper in an Abandoned Shoe

Dear Toadwart,

It is the unfortunate truth that I was the one who recommended you for this mission. This being the case, it is my duty to see that you are fit for the part.

You will, in the future, remember that we are here to act as guides, should the girl need us, to usher her into her position.

This being said, you will refrain from doing anything that would act to frighten her away. To this end, you will cease all talk of blood—no matter how relevant—and clean yourself up. You may be an imp, but you will be a well-groomed, soft-mannered imp who will in no way do anything, say anything, or portend anything that will jeopardize this mission.

Should you fail to meet your obligations—well, I could go into the details of the punishment awaiting you, but I will trust that you are sufficiently motivated on your own end.

I will be watching.

Bodkins

 

© 2014 by Danyelle Leafty. All rights reserved. Originally published in Curiosities of the Moon.


This is why minions are minions. They haven’t the head for eloquent threats, although they understand them perfectly well. 😈

Come back next Wednesday to see if something can be salvaged from all this Pink Lemonade mess. After all, a person only becomes eleventy once in their lifetime. Usually. 😉

If this is your first visit here, be sure to read the first installment of this episode. And be sure to come back tomorrow to learn a few more secrets about the UnderWhere.


The Faerie Thief: The Ruby Queen’s Garden 009

TFTcoverGwyn blinked slowly as what Lyra said started to unravel the shock cocooning her like a thick quilt. “On magic?”

Hysteria felt as though it was only a breath away. Waiting with eager hands to clutch at her with long, desperate fingers.

“Yes. Isn’t it wonderful?” Lyra gave her a hug that squeezed the breath right out of her. “I always suspected you had more to you. You have no idea how hard it was to wait. I didn’t want to tell you, get your hopes up and risk dashing them if I was wrong—”

Gwyn ignored the sparks of magic flowing from her fingers and grabbed her friend by the shoulders. “What are you talking about? And why here? Why now?”

“Who knows?” Lyra grinned bigger than she’d ever grinned before. “What matters is that you’ve found your magic at long last. Oh! The adventures we’re going to have! What would you like to do first?”

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Secrets of the UnderWhere: Welcome to the UnderWhere 008

SotUcoverWednesday and his mother exchange a look while the child babbled something that sounded suspiciously like an affirmation. His mother sighed, and patted their Ember on the arm.

“Perhaps you would like some nice, soothing tea once we’ve cleaned these two up.”

Great gran shook her head impatiently. “Don’t patronize me, missy,” she growled. “I was doing the work of ten while you were still in diapers. I know what I saw, and I saw what I know. That creature has been here before, sure as I’m the Great Ember.” She set her jaw and glared at Wednesday’s mother with unseeing eyes.

Wednesday shuffled his feet and glanced at the child who had taken an interest in the beads and feathers hanging down from the polished knob of his great-gran’s staff of office. He grabbed him before the child could catch a particularly bright feather. Messing with the Staff of Office was not a mistake any monster child ever made twice, and it would be easier for them all if they could avoid any of that particular sort of unpleasantness.

“We are just passing through,” he said. “The Prince ordered that the child be brought to him by teatime.” He gave his mother a sheepish look. “The Lord Mayor assigned the task to me.”

His mother gave him a surprised look, but didn’t press the issue. “Very well. Do you have enough time that I could put together basket for you? You never know what mischief the roads might be up to. Better to go prepared.”

Wednesday nodded. “Yes, thanks. Just have to get the saddles.”

His mother led their Great Ember back to the house while Wednesday led Glop—he shook his head at the child’s new name—back toward the stables.

Glop followed him, alternating between hopping and skipping. All the while singing softly, “Nain, nain, nain,” as though it was a charm or a hidden delight only he could see.

Wednesday frowned. What was it about that name that made his thoughts flutter with a swirl of night-colored feathers not unlike those of the Lord Regent’s black thought? And why did he have the sinking feeling that teatime, like as not, was only going to be the beginning of his troubles, but not the end?

. . .  TO BE CONTINUED . . .

© 2015 by Danyelle Leafty. All rights reserved.


Come back to the UnderWhere next Thursday to see what other complications arise. After all, it isn’t often that a child finds his way into the UnderWhere on his own–if you aren’t counting a small, stuffed bear that is more slime and stuffing than bear by this point. It isn’t by accident that a Great Ember is there to meet him either, or so we would hope. :)

*Author’s Note: This story of a monster and his boy in a faraway place called the UnderWhere has been the most stubborn and intractable of stories in recent storytelling. It first ambushed me nearly a year ago, and after that initial meeting refused to say a word. Being an author, I soldiered on. The Story, of course, watched with hooded eyes, smirking to itself as it watched follow false road after false road. After nearly a year of this back and forth, it either grew a sense of conscience or exasperated enough to finally start talking.

And, oh, how it has been talking. As Storyteller, I must accept the fact that I will never be able to perfectly capture each thread and texture of it. There will be bits and pieces I either fail to convey adequately or forget to tell entirely, although I shall do my best to tell the story as best as I can. But the more I trek along in this UnderWhere, the more its world and history unfolds. It isn’t often that the world itself catches my whimsy and wonder. Though the path to this point has been long, it was worth it for all that’s coming. :)

If this is your first time, be sure to check out the first installment. And, if you’d like, dip your toes into the other stories. On Mondays, we’re exploring the moon with an enchanted flower and her–well, that would be telling. On Tuesdays, we’re off to the Garden with Gwyn who is hopefully avoiding the wrath of the Ruby Queen, and on Wednesdays we’re meeting with Mira as she discovers her destiny to become the Queen of the Nearly Dead Fae. No zombies. Promise. 😉

Have a great weekend!


Mira Morganstein: The Pink Lemonade Club 008

MMCoverMira blinked into a slow eternity as her brain tried to make sense of what she had just heard. “Were you speaking to me?” she asked, as politely as she could. She glanced around, making sure this wasn’t some boyish prank. But her street was strangely empty, save for herself and the talking hairless cat.

It made a sound of exasperated annoyance. “Do you see anyone else around?”

Mira shook her head, wondering for a moment if her brain was rattling about inside her skull. Was she dreaming? Hallucinating? Suffering from a concussion?

First the old lady, and now this thing, whatever it was.

The creature tugged on its ears that were round and decidedly not cat-shaped. “Great Barnaby’s toads!” If it weren’t clinging so tightly to the branch, it might have been dancing in place with impatience. “Don’t you know anything?”

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