Misplaced Souvenirs

(Part 1 – My Suburban Muse)


"It's a very odd place to live!" the inhabitants of the great fairy world of Elfame would tell you if asked. Those who reside there live their lives in peace for the most part. Enjoying their work they share with their fellow gods and mystical beings.

The world itself is nestled in it's own little part of the 616 universe. Quietly residing in a part of the galaxy known as 'The Fairy Knoll', Elfame has been the home of the Muse for longer than time can imagine. It is believed to have been created by the true God of Fairies, Oberon the 1st. No one really knows for sure as it is one of the great mysteries of the universe but rumor has it, Odin (for some unexplained reason) knows if it's true or not but has never divulged that information in his almost 2,000 year reign as the 'All-Father',

Suffice to say, the Muse are not the only beings that inhabit this world.

Elvens, Brownies, Gnomes, Sprites, Treants, Mermaids, Centaurs, and literally thousands of others mythical, and fantasy type beings live on this planet. It is a place teemed in fantasy. Draped in huges forests, and dotted with cities that range from the size of a metropolis, to small rural towns nestled cozy on a country side.

It is a place steeped in a rich history of peace, and vivid lore. As a whole, Elfame is a world of wonder that can reach even the most distant parts of one's imagination.

But not all of Elfame is drenched in beauty and wonder.

There is one place. A place that only those of the dark heart dare tread.

Hence how it got its name, 'The Dark Heart of the Wood'.

At one time, it was known as Pendlehaven, the oldest, and largest of the great forests of Elfame. But, now it's a place of eternal darkness. Where mist and shadow play about among the trees.

In it's center is the kingdom city of Nazzeraan. Within the confines of it's great and dark city walls, resides the Lord Marshall of the Philosophy of Secrets, Vagabond Dream.

How to describe him? Well, for starters, he's tall. Standing well over 6 and a half feet tall. His hair is black. Jet black, except at the tips which is a bright purple. It's short at the bottom and lengthy at the top. Somewhat dangling lazily in front of his eyes. Speaking of which, his eyes are quite stunning. First off they are black, as if the pupil fills the entire iris. Surrounding his eyes, is a black tattoo that is basically tribal in design, with various arrow like points running along his forehead and down the side of his face. His skin is incredibly pale. Not white, but very close!

His build is thin. Not a sickly or gangling kinda thin, but rather an athletic type of thin.

His clothes are what makes him though. First off, he is always dapper. He wears a black button down silk shirt, with a high collar and ruffled sleeves.

It is accompanied with a sharp, long than normal, deep purple colored vest. It has what looks like a Gothic black design running through it with 3 silver buttons.

This is matched with a pair of pin-stripe, jet black slacks that are slightly rolled up at the bottom, and pair of black leather, side buckled shoes. They have a slight heel to them and attached to them are a pair of silver spurs in the shape of a curved pitch fork.

Covering his wardrobe is a very odd looking trench coat. Odd because it is made of several patches of cloth. Each piece of cloth ranges from a shade of mid-toned gray, to a deep black. But, it doesn't look raggedy, but instead it looks elegant. Although the patches are absolutely discernible from each other, they nonetheless, work together to make a stunning design. A beautiful trench coat, with a high collar and wide sleeves.

Finishing off his ensemble, he carries with him a shiny black cane. Mounted on the top of it, is a large, beautiful red jewel. It glows and glimmers with a mysterious, almost dark and malevolent energy.

Many have said that the power of the crystal jewel that sits upon his cane, was forged from the fire breath of an ancient and powerful Great Wyrm known as Bolis the Wise. If this is true, then this would make the cane itself well over 5,000 years old, as no one has seen hide nor dragon scale of Bolis for at least that long.

One final accessory that Vagabond only wears when outside of the Dark Heart of the Wood, are a pair of thin, small rectangular lens shaped, dark blue tinted sunglasses. They have no real significant purpose other than the fact, he cannot stand sunlight as it hurts his eyes, and they look cool!

But today he sits in his darkened chambers. One of the few place in which he finds peace.

He calls this place his, 'sanctuary', and for a thousand years, he has called this place, home.

Within it these chambers he resides. Its walls are painted in black, and adorned with several overly large bay windows, where long black veiled and transparent silk curtains hang, and slightly wisp languidly in the cool breeze.

It's massive space is dimly lit by several small spheres of florescent light orbs that encircle the center area just below the cathedral style ceiling. On the far wall, facing Vagabond about 30' away, is a massive plasma screen. On it, are several hundred smaller screens, each one broadcasting a different video of the following: acts of criminal violence, pornography, industrialism, war, abuse, destruction, and anything else that one would consider disturbing or horrifying. Each video feed plays continuously. All In vivid color and realism. The only thing that seems odd or out of place, is that with all of the graphic imagery being shown, there is absolutely no sound coming from any video being broadcast whatsoever...no nothing, just dead silence.

Sitting in a large throne made of deadwood and stone. Vagabond sits there quietly. He does not speak, he does not utter a sound. It appears that something, is on his mind…

"I never thought this day would come so soon...yet here we are.

And what am I to do? I cannot avoid it. I cannot evade it. I cannot pass over it. I can not wish it away...I must face it and handle it accordingly.

But how?

How do I handle, the impossible outcome?

The first layer of the shell has been broken. The mind has been compromised…

2 more layers remain…

Now it's only a matter of time before the next one is broken. The question is, when?

How much time do I have to prepare for this inevitable outcome?

Damn you Balthazar for this curse you placed upon me, my life, and my kingdom"

Vagabond steadily taps his fingers upon the crystal of his cane. He stares mindlessly at the screens before him. He pays no attention to any of the scenes that are being broadcast before him. He just continues to ponder the situation before him, "Now you have placed me upon a crossroads of which there is no turning back, and a choice must soon be made…

And I have no time..."

Just then there is the sound of a click of a door handle, followed by the slow creaking of the large gothic chamber doors opening. A figure then enters, and closes the doors behind them. The sound of clicking heels can be heard echoing off of the black hardwood floor, approaching the center of the room, where Vagabond's throne resides.

The figure, bathed in shadows stops just before entering the light at the center of the chamber room.

Vagabond doesn't acknowledge in any way the presence of another being now in this room with him. His eyes do not move, nor does he show any kind of bodily gestures whatsoever.

In this awkward moment of silence, the figure begins to speak, "It would seem that you are bit contained with your own thoughts Vagabond." The voice is of a young girl. Probably around the age of like, 15 or 16. Her voice is soft yet she has a way

Vagabond says nothing, but simply continues to sit there silently, and stare off into the distance.

"The longer you contemplate a solution to this situation, the longer it will take for you to realize that there is none." She hesitates for moment. She knows that what she has to say next may infuriate him, or it may put him into a deeper state of depression...at least that's the way it looks to her anyways. One never knows when dealing with Vagabond.

She then takes a deep breath and says with a forced monotone voice, "You cannot escape your destiny."

At that moment she steps out from the shadows.

She is a young girl by appearance. Looking no more than what her voice led on to what was expected, of that being around 15 – 16 years of age. She is short, standing no more than 5' tall. He hair is long and strait, and it's color is a vibrant alabaster white. A total contrast to that anything else in the room, including Vagabond.

Although young in appearance in her face, she is very adult like in her body build and proportions, almost to the point that she could pass for a grown woman.

Her eyes are a deep set blue and are as wide as quarters. Her skin matches that of Vagabond's, but not as pale. It would seem that she gets a bit more sunlight then him!

In her hair she has a black lace bow with long thick ribbons hanging from it. Her top is a basic black shirt. It fits her well but it's still basically a t-shirt. Her dress that she wears is form fitting as well and falls just below the knee. Accompanying this are long white lace ruffles that flow and hang from the sides of the dress. They move to and fro as she walks with long strides in a pair of knee high, chrome buckle pair of black leather boots. The bottoms of the boots are at least 3" thick all the way around, adding a little more height to her overall appearance.

She steps forward, closer to the throne. Vagabond still remains silent.

"Vagabond...you know what's to come…" she tells him.

She looks down to the floor, there is an obvious look of frustration on her face, "There are reports coming in from all over the realm that everyone has felt the breaking of the first shell." she says in monotone voice.

Replying in the same manner, Vagabond says with his deep voice, "I know."

She continues, "The news is reporting the Whispers of the Muse has begun..."

"And they would be right." Vagabond says.

She closes her eyes incredibly tight as if to fight off tears. Pursing her lips, she breathes in, she holds it for a second, and finally breathes out. She then says to him, "The All-Father, the council of Magic, the Officials, your people...and me, are waiting for a reply from you."

Vagabond stays quiet for a moment. He then speaks, "Tell them..." he thinks again for a moment, "Tell them to eat cake."

The girl instantly looks up at him with a complete look of shock on her face, "What?"

"Tell them to eat cake." he repeats.

"Vagabond," the girl says with a bit of reluctance in her voice, "you cannot tell an entire kingdom, let alone the All-Father himself to go and 'eat cake'!"

Without a single movement or show of emotion, he simply says, "I just did."

She knows that Vagabond is a being who is incredibly hard to deal with. His demeoner is generally cynical and sarcastic, which tend to turn most others who try to communicate with him completely off. They either end up walking away pissed or try to punch him the face. The one thing he isn't though, is a liar. He is adamant about the truth, and it's one of the few good qualities he has. This also kinda hinders him as well though, because if he believes in something, he usually tends to be really stubborn about it. To the point that once his mind is set on a decision, it's highly doubtful that he will change it. She has known him for far too long to see him change his ways now. So, it's at this point she really doesn't know what to say, except to murmur a quiet, "As you wish..."

Vagabond then asks her, "Is there anything else?"

The girl just shakes her head in befuddlement and replies with a simple, "No..."

"Good. Go and alert the All-Father that I wish to request a meeting with him as soon as possible." Vagabond tells her as she gets a surprised look on her face, "Tell him I am well aware of the situation at hand, and the repercussions of my actions should I attempt to divert or avoid my fate. Understood?"

She again lets out a soft but exasperated sigh, "Yes..."

"Good." he says, "Now totter off my little Debutante and deliver my messages please."

The girl silently scoffs his requests, but without argument she just says, "As you wish." then turns and walks back to the chamber doors.

As she grabs the latch, she stops and turns back to look at Vagabond still sitting motionless in his throne. The light of the large plasma screen casts silhouettes of him throughout the entirety of the large chamber. Her eyes seem to well up as they reflect the ghostly and haunting image. Opening the door, she turns and walks out, closing it softly behind her.

Pulling the chamber door shut, she walks out into a massive hall. It is decorated much in the same decor as Vagabond's chambers. Several large black and purple colored banners, embossed with the herald of the Nazzeraan kingdom, hang majestically from the high ceilings throughout the entire area.

The herald is of a black heart, surrounded by a ring of thorns. On the outer edge of the thorns are 3 symbols set in a triangular formation around the entire image. One symbol is on the top, with the other 2 on the bottom left and right. They represent the Trinity of Life: Mind, Body, and Soul. It's unknown who made the herald or why the Trinity of Life was given to them, but whatever the reason, it remains one of the great mysteries of the Realms.

The girl stands there for a moment, collecting what thoughts she pulled from this encounter.

Attempting to process any kinda thought or solution to this whole matter!

Just then her train of thought is broken as a girls voice speaks out to her, "Well?"

The girl quickly looks up with a gasp, "OH!" she says, "Dammit Momo!"

Momo is a fairy with bat wings (yes, not all fairies have fairy wings!). She's about 3' tall, and has long hair, like really long. It goes past her butt! The interesting part of her hair is that the left side of her hair is black, and the other side is red. She has her hair done up in ponytails, which makes them both a different color.

She wears a black silk button down, short sleeved dress that rises just about the knees. The dress itself has 2 long zippers running down the front of the dress. She as well wears knee high black buckl-up boots.

Like most here, her skin is somewhat pale, but to offset this, she has deep red eyes. A rare sight for humankind, even rarer in beings of a magical nature. Momo considers herself a work of art, even down to the piecing in her bottom lip!

"Well?" Momo says again, "Did you get it?"

The girl looks confused, "Get what!?"

Momo flutters up to her face, "His reply!? DUH!"

The girl then clears her throat, "Oh, heh, that..." she nervously replies, "Um, yeah, about that..." the girl then turns to her left and begin walking across the hall. Her shoes echoing throughout the entire place.

Momo caught a bit off guard, flies off to catch to the girl, "Well what did he say?" she asks her.

The girl continues walking and takes a deep breath, she then sternly replies, "He says, to go and eat cake." The girl can't believe what she just said.

Momo flying along side of the girl can't help but look absolutely confused, "Wait, what did he say?"

The girl stops walking, turns and looks at Momo, "Go, and eat, cake..." she tell her with a solid tone in her voice.

She turns back in the direction was facing and starts to walk away.

Momo, just hovering there, is speechless. She then says quietly, "Debutante, I can't tell them that..."

The girl stops walking, answering to the name of Debutante She doesn't turn around, she just bows her head, and closes her eyes, "I know..." she forcibly replies, "But you have to...I have to..."

Momo just continues to hover there. She then shakes her head, and simply says, "Ok..."

Debutante sighs, lifts her head up, and walks away, with Momo watching her disappear into the darkness.