Chapter Six

The horizon was the perfect scene for a painting. The sky was a wonderful color blue, with just the right ratio between cloud and open, unblemished sky.

Below, light green grass growing high was riddled with weeds that looked like flowers. The rolling prairie gave a sense of distance.

Yes, it was perfectly picturesque. Things were just right. It was relaxing scene, lush and natural. Of course, these superlative descriptions were only the thoughts of someone who did not have to walk through it.

Tihohara glared. This one was going to take awhile. Much, much longer than the swampland, but at least she could count on a leech-free trip this time.

Beyond the prairie (Of course, saying this is like saying, "beyond eternity.") there was the jungle, which would be more dangerous than any other portion of her journey.

The jungle was filled with a different species than fairies, a primitive tribal culture that feared strangers. They had more ways of camoflouging themselves than a make-up designer for a movie and an army seargent combined, and were handy with weapons.

They all seemed to have advanced training of Ko-lin, the age old technique of fighting with very thick sunflower stalks. They also seemed to have a rather full library of moves, both useful and unnecessary show-off moves.

Tihohara wasn't ready for it, really, because she had no weapon. But she had ways, she would make it. And she would start her sly plan just before it was necessary.

Tihohara wasn't too bad with a Ko-lin staff, but alas, she saw no sunflowers, or anything to use as a substitute. But she wouldn't need it.

+^+^+^+^+^

The excessively large white leather chair leaned back, with the sound of someone shifting around in, well, a leather chair, the squeak of something that needed to be oiled, and then a deep sigh.

Linata had been working for about two hours, making one version, deciding it was no good, and starting a different version, deciding it was no good, etc.

She had finally managed to write an address to the people that pleased her. Though there was still some cleaning up to do, she wasn't about to tackle that now. She had been sitting here long enough already.

Her head felt dull, the exact thing one would expect after writing for two hours. Her hand hurt, too, specifically the middle finger of her right hand. For some reason, her fountain pen had an uncomfortable area that dispensed ink where it was not needed just below the rubber grip, which she never properly used.

She put the finished product in a much longer tray drawer above the opening for her legs. You would think she would have lots of pent-up energy, but it had taken so long, her energy had gotten bored and had started a nap.

She went downstairs once again, to be greeted by Plant. "The High Rulers have some things to give you," she said, taking Linata's hand and walking her over to the behemoth living room.

+^+^+^+^+^

Tihohara was quickly getting bored with nature. The prairie never looked any different. Grass as far as the eye could see ahead, trees to the side. If you entered the trees at the right spot and walked enough, you would end up in the jungle.

Things were just too boring. At least the jungle would have some interesting scenery: vines hanging down, moss covered fallen trees, a pool or two.

But here, Tihohara was surrounded with nothing. There was nothing to look at, nothing to do. She decided to change direction and enter the jungle early. Of course, this meant she had to start her plan early. And she could start it as soon as she got to the edge of the jungle.

It was a still a long walk over there, but within the time of forty-five minutes she reached the beginning of the jungle.

She bent down and took some mud, then slathered it on all exposed skin and somewhat beyond. After the mud was layed, she looked one of the natives in the area.

To make it more effective, she took more mud and wrote symbols on her dress with it. After all, why would a native wear non-native clothing?

She entered the jungle and there were trees as far as you could see. These trees were thin, but off in the distance you could see extremely thick trees, maybe twenty feet in diameter by the farthest point.

In fact, the further she walked, the thicker the trees were. It must have been because of the reproductive process of the trees, giving off seeds that start more. And every year the jungle would spread a little bit more into the prairie. Maybe eventually, there would be no prairie.

+^+^+^+^+^

"Ah, High Ruler Linata!" Said West. "We have some things to give you, things that all High Rulers have,"

"Plus one original gift," Said Snow, smiling at the box she was holding in her lap. "Open this small one first," She handed Linata a small, ever-so- slightly rectangular box in a wrapping paper imitating a china pattern.

Linata tried her best to preserve the paper. She always did when the paper was pretty, and now she would unwrap even the most hideous and obnoxious wrapping paper. She was sure she was being judged by her grace and maturity here.

It was a little doble-sided dome thing, only not quite a dome. There was a chain attached to a little hole up at the top, and she flipped it open. There was make-up with a mirror inside. It was a compact. The bottom part seemed very over-sized. It appeared to made out of pewter, and on top there was a gold design.

"Flip that part up," Said South.

Linata pried that piece upward and saw numerous things capable of holding pictures in the shape of a circle. They were all empty.

"It's to be worn around the neck," said Rain. "Thank you," Said Linata, putting it around her neck. She accidentially touched her butterfly marking and three tiger swallowtails flew out and landed on her head. Linata blushed.

Rock, who looked like a statue, gave Linata a large cloth sack. "It's everything you could possibly need for your desk," Linata peered inside to see a dizzying number of writing utensils.

"And open this one," Said Snow with a smile. It heavier than Linata had ever expected. She unwrapped the box and opened it, to find a winged baby goat with silver horns. "Baaaa," it said. Linata was confused. How was a goat supposed to help her with her duty?

"As a pet," said North. Ah, it wasn't supposed to to. The goat was extremely cute. "Thank you for it all," said Linata, still holding the winged goat, who was starting to chew inquisitively chew on her hair.

"I'll go stock up my desk."

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Authoress's Notes: Yay, another chapter for you the readers! :::Looks at her scant five readers::: Well, at least SOME people are witnessing my genius.

Crème_Neko: Um. Thanks. I can barely decipher that, but it's all good. ^.^

Arriana Wings: Thank you. It turns out the part you like is also similar to something in Peter Pan.

Silver Sprinkles: Thank you! But could you update your story soon? It's interesting, and it's shame to see someone with a good story get caught in an early rut.

Kiyume: Thanks. I have no real clue wg=hat you mean with the chronological ordr, but okay. Moving on.

Misty Dragon: Thank you for your quick response to my request. I'm glad you like Tihohara. But I always preffer writing Linata's scenes, personally.

Pop quiz: What color is Linata's bedroom?