Somewhere out in the night, a branch snapped, interrupting the fitful sleep of a young Faerie. Shivering, she snatched up her blankets and drew back against the comfortingly solid wood of her bed's headboard.
"Mama," she whispered, "it's gonna get me!"
In the next room, her mother and father slept on, far too used to the sounds of the night for a snapping twig wake them.
"Sssseliiinaa…" It wasn't the wind, she knew it wasn't, she knew it was her nightmare come to get her, to take her away.
"Mama!" Selina cried out in earnest now. "Mama help me, it'll get me!"
Her mother began to stir, and called out, "Is something the matter Selina?"
But Selina could not answer her mother, for the Bogie had got in through the open window and had clamped his bony fingers over the frightened young fae-child's mouth. Taking the silence to mean her precious daughter was alright, the faerie girl's mother fell back into the void of sleep, completely unaware of the Bogie that had entered her home and made off with her daughter.
From six other homes, six other Bogies stole away with six more captive faeries.
The Queen of the Seelie Faeries of Wyndmere sighed and held her aching, spinning head. So very much was happening, and she was so very nearly powerless to do anything about it. She dismissed the page who bowed himself out, having somberly handed her a small piece of parchment.
"To Queen Elizibea, Sovereign of Wyndmere
From the West Village Officials, of the West Village of Wyndmere
We of the court of officials hope this missive finds your Majesty in good health and wish it could come with better tidings. Last night, a most grievous crime took place. Our village has been the victim of kidnapping; seven faeries were stolen away last night somehow, with their families none the wiser. We have sent out searchers, again and again, without finding even a trace. Our sister-city in the East has informed us that they, too, have lost their townspeople in exactly the same manner. They have looked for the lost ones as well, but to no avail. Majesty, whoever they are, they have taken our children! They have also stolen away one of our own council, Lisha the city Flyer. We desperately seek your guidance and wisdom, O Queen, help us in our plight.
Most Respectfully Your Majesty's,
The citizens of the West Village of Wyndmere
"Page," the queen called to a faerie boy standing outside the throne room, "Summon my guards, alert Captain Lalo that there is an emergency which requires his immediate attention, and tell them to come at once to the Lesser Hall to sit in council with me." She gathered maps and charts of the surrounding lands and went immediately to the meeting place.
"Pray tell, Majesty, what is the emergency of this meeting?" Lalo, the captain of the Queen's Guard was instantly aware upon receiving the queen's message that something foul was afoot, and he intended to put a stop to whatever was threatening those under his protection.
"We are under an attack of a strange sort, Captain. The West and East villages have reported to me that several faeries have simply vanished from their beds only last night, and that the searchers they sent out have returned empty-handed. There were no footprints, no clothes torn on branches, no magical traces, nothing." Elizibea smoldered silently. She had thrice sworn to protect those whom she ruled and had proudly done so. She wanted to be out there herself, doing something instead of sitting here for the hours she knew it would take to organize sentries to keep watch over the towns, and more soldiers on foot, on horse back, and flying to search again. The council dispensed with all formalities and sketched out plans as quickly as possible, but for the queen nothing could be done fast enough. Her villagers were afraid to go to sleep at night, lest they wake and find their whole household gone or lest they be taken themselves and Queen Elizibea could do nothing to ease their fears.
Meanwhile, as the various sprites, pixies, spriggins, and faeries under Queen Elizibea's rule lived in fear of unknown monsters, the Fallen Faeries continued their work gathering and training their army. Finally, revenge would be had. Finally, the rightful rulers of Wyndmere would reign once again.
"Please! Please, master, I beg you! I will bring you entertainment, slaves, anything!" The pitiful Fallen Faerie was thrown so hard at the door, he broke through it. Shaking violently, he crawled away, unable to stand. The malevolent sentience manifesting as The Shimza wanted something with which to indulge in gruesome pleasers, to pass the time with. The Dark Faeries were desperate to please their master. They set out to procure slaves in the form of terrified faeries stolen from their beds. Only two had willingly come, and so escaped the terrible fate of their fellow faeries. They had asked to join this most noble cause, to join the rising darkness and fight for the Fallen. Mollyne and Star, of the East village of Wyndmere, had agreed to join the Dark Faeries' army. Their training commenced immediately, and they were quickly accepted into the ranks.
As the villages grasped the notorious reality that faeries they knew and loved were simply gone with naught but a feeling of unease and empty beds, they streamed into the palace to beg help of Elizibea, their Faerie Queen.
The afternoon audience with the queen had never been so full. Long lines of petitioners snaked through the throne room. All had the same problem, question, and plea. She tried to calm them as she told them she would do everything in her power to find the Lost Ones, and to protect her people. As an afterthought, she added that perhaps it was time to delve into the depths of The Orb. This statement was met with gasps as whispers broke out like hissing fires all about the room.
The Orb of Lazulo was legendary. Despite that, very little was known about it except that it was very dangerous, stolen from the very door of Oscurid, the stronghold of the Fallen Faeries, where The Shimza now swirled dark energies into a cloud of deception. According to the legends surrounding the Orb, a thousand years ago, the skies covered up completely and great lights exploded in the sky, while thundering booms shook the lands. The legend continued on, saying great magic was worked there, when a lone warrior defeated a most terrible and awesome evil. The Warrior-Fae then took the Orb of Lazulo back to the old palace in Wyndmere, where it has rested with each King or Queen, never used, never talked about inside the palace walls. The power of gossip and rumors has proved itself over the years, keeping the memory of the Orb of Lazulo a well-known and feared relic throughout the lands.
Elashai, one of the Queen's most trusted servants protested vehemently. She would never wish her queen to come to any harm. Queen Elizibea smiled slightly at the heartwarming display of loyalty and affection in her servant's wide, dark eyes. She assured Elashai that she would only use it as a last resort when all other ways had been exhausted. Elizibea then went to her meeting hall, where she summoned two captains of the guard. She went over what she wished of them and laid out intricately detailed maps to go over any possible areas that had not yet been searched. It was only hours later, as she sent them off, that Queen Elizibea had a distinct feeling that they would not be successful, and that perhaps some of her men might not return. She went off to her sitting room and, for the next hour and a half, flitted from one thing to another. Sewing to embroidery to nervously fixing the drape of the curtains, and right back to needle work, nothing could hold her interest for long. Sighing again, Elizibea told herself sternly that she had known this last rescue mission would take the better part of two days, but she also knew there was a faster way. The queen debated whether or not to take that particular course of action, and finally came to a decision when she found herself rearranging the curtains again. She went to her bedside table, got a small golden key from a secret compartment, and then departed to her private chambers, where not even her most trusted servants were allowed to set foot.
A/N: Well, I don't really like the letter, I was hoping to make it sound official and stuffy with an undertone of urgency and I don't think I got it.
As always, everything is subject to change! I really appreciate everyone's help, it means so much!!