Thursday, April 20, 2006

Stories: Of Kyan and Iris

This is a taste of my story. Let me know how it sounds. Before Saturday, preferably. If you don't like it I might have to kill you.

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There was once a girl named Iris and no one knew why. Perhaps if this had been a normal story she would have been called so for purplish tinted hair or violet eyes or purple skin. As it was she was nothing like the other fairy children with which she grew up. In fact, she was almost normal. This happened to be because she was mostly normal in the human sense of the word. She had brown hair and green eyes and freckles and her knees turned in a bit that made her stand pigeon toed. She wouldn’t have been thought odd in any normal nursery today but, of course, if she had, this wouldn’t much of a story worth listening to. As it is, she wasn’t quite entirely normal if you consider what I just mentioned: that she grew up with fairy children. Fairy children are rather interesting creatures. They are all for a good laugh, mainly at each other’s expense. They give and they take equally well and a nursery is more a widespread romp than an orderly playtime. Iris fitted in marvelously with these children. They romped and played and had a merry time. It was rather different though because they all had splendid colors all over their bodies and Iris stayed a stately and rather normal looking brown. Her hair was a firmly matted mess as she ran speedily to keep up with her playmates. To sum it all up, Iris was a princess. Everyone knew it and princesses are special so in her country all the princesses and prince-lings were brought up by the fairies just in case they should turn out to be magical (like having unique sleeping patters or jewels coming out of their mouths or extordinarily long hair). Being with fairies was supposed to encourage this abnormal behavior but alas for Iris, she was not honored with such talents. As I said, she seemed quite normal. However, in this normalness she was an exquisitely charming and sweet little girl. And that is exactly why her adventure began.
One day, a woman came and asked to view the fairies. At that time there were only two humans being raised: Iris and another fellow that she didn’t know about. She was ten at the time. The lady said that the king and queen, Iris’s parents, had sent her to see how Iris was doing. She didn’t stay very long but placed a cold, chilled hand on Iris’s bare shoulder and looked deep into her eyes. Iris shivered and pulled away. The lady nodded to the head fairies (wise, gentle fairies who knew how to handle the mad romps of the fairy children) and left swiftly, her intricately embellished cloak sweeping grandly behind her. That evening the children rushed to their beds and pretended to be asleep. The head fairies weren’t fooled but left quietly as if they were. Soon everyone was quietly (or loudly depending on their boldness) slipping from bed top to bed top, flitting up in corners, whispering under beds, or conspiring merrily in the bathrooms. A green fairy, from head to toe, went over to Iris and whispered to her happily, what about, Iris could not remember afterwards. What she afterwards described it as was a sudden flash in her eyes. She tried to speak but wasn’t sure that her friend was understanding her desperate inquiries as to why everything had gone so still. After what seemed like hours of darkness, she opened her heavy eyelids and blinked confusedly at her surroundings. Had she opened her eyes really? Oh she had… yes… she could see a bit beyond her in the darkness and saw a small grate above her head… she felt around her and discovered stone walls that were rather cold against her skin and a strange lump beside her that she couldn’t quite make out. It was oddly cold. Rather unpleasant and it made her eyes heavy. She laid down and thought longing that she wished knew where she was…

The next thing she knew was that someone was rudely shaking her awake. She groaned and shoved the person or thing away. Surely this was just another vision like the darkness last night. She rolled over and found that the world was indeed the prison she had thought she had dreamed. It was a good deal brighter which made her blink fiercely against the prodding she was receiving. She finally sat up and declared:
“If you shake me one more time, I’ll kill you whoever you are.”
The figure didn’t answer. She finally looked at her rouser and found a boy no older than herself with tousled black hair and the blackest eyes she had ever seen staring at her. “It’s time to get up,” he said. “How did we get here? I’ve only just woken up and don’t know where I am. What happened?”
“How should I know?” she grumbled. It seemed to her rather bad sport to be woken up to find oneself imprisoned rather than dreaming of magical things. “All I remember is falling asleep and then here I was. I woke a few hours ago and found you, or I guess it was you. I only saw a lump.”
“That is all I remember too… where do you come from?”
“From the fairies. And so are you.”
“How did you know?”
“You’ve got that mark on your forehead. See mine?” she said moving her hair so he could see. “I’ve never seen you. You aren’t a fairy.”
“I’m a boy.”
“Obviously.”
“Well, I live with the fairies in the chay for some of the younger boy fairies.”
“Oh I see. I live with Adalira. She is my teacher.”
“Oh. I say, I’m Kyan. I should have said so before. I’m ten and not special. How about you?”
“I’m Iris,” she quietly replied. She suddenly didn’t know what to make of this boy. “Well, I’m not special either. They’ve tried many times to make some special skill come out but it hasn’t worked. I’m ten too.”
He didn’t really seem to listen but relayed a question that seemed to be bursting inside of him to get out, “Why do you suppose we are here? This isn’t anywhere is Faylinn [that is a country in fairyland] that I’ve ever been too.”
They stood and started moving around the quickly brightening cell. There was no door or window except for the strange slited grate above their heads through which the light was coming. It was rather cold and they were both in bare feet and little protection from the chill that was creeping into their skin. Suddenly as Iris passed under the grate above them, a load of cold, wet something came and landed on her head. She gasped in the shock. The boy ran over and started brushing it off of her rapidly as if it were acid that would burn her skin. When she was sufficiently free from the snow (though frightfully numb and shivering) they stood together and looked up. They could now see the sky above and a dark figure looming before the sun. It remained there for a moment and then disappeared. It immediately began to warm up though they huddled in a corner together because a strange fear had come over them. It began to wear away as the minutes passed and Iris stood up and began to pace unhappily back and forth. Kyan watched her silently. It began to grow dark again and their anxiety grew. They knew now that this was no trick of their fellow mates or their leaders. It was not April first. They were somewhere in the cold of winter in a prison of some sort being kept for a purpose they did not understand or know.

As I am sure that you, as my listener, have guessed, they were being kept because they were a prince and a princess. The evil ruler of the cold south had come back in a force great and silent. Froid she was: magnificent but not yet heard. This was her first and intended final stroke. She sat brooding on her dark throne, her long black hair streaming around her. There was a gleam in her eyes as she considered what her next move should be… should she keep the wretches for ransom… the price of their thrones. Or should she simply kill them and take over the kingdoms by force of arms… it was a question to be considered carefully because if she stepped wrong the ambitions of years would be lost… there was the girl to consider. What she had seen in her eyes had been quite a shock but certainly a force to be reckoned with. (for as I’m sure you can see, this was the woman who went to the fairy school and looked into Iris’s eyes. She had seen what she had expected and yet it was not pleasant to be proven right. There it was… those words written clear across that sang loud and clear… yes… what to do… and there she sat in thought as the skies above reflected her dark empty soul.

It began to snow and drifts began compiling around Kyan’s and Iris’s feet in the cell. It grew colder and wind started howling. All in all, it was not a pretty situation. Iris started to get numb and curled in a corner shivering. Kyan knew that he could not let her go to sleep so he made her stand up and they walked around together. They talked about growing up and what they remembered about their parents. Neither of them had been told much about where they came from other than that they would return to their homes on their eighteenth birthdays. That seemed forbodeing to Iris who had read more romances than Kyan had. Kyan thought it was a silly rule. He longed to go back to where he came from and meet his parents and learn to do human boy things since he seemed rather magically inept. There didn’t seem to be much special with him. She said that she was taller but he was certain that he was. Okay, then she was just his height but he was definitely not taller. That was eye level, he said. Ones height cannot be judged by eye level. Iris disagreed vehemently but Kyan was no longer listening. He was leaping as high as he could to reach the grate with his fingers. Iris scowled and said that boys never could pay attention (which was a broad generalization but not entirely untrue). He said he was trying to see how far it was to the grate. Iris declared that he was going about it all the wrong way and that if she could just stand on his shoulders she would be able to loosen it. He wouldn’t admit to the intelligence of this plan but remarked that of course it would never work because girls never had any balance. He did however crouch to help her onto his shoulders. He wasn’t able to describe afterwards what exactly happened but before he had even lifted Iris for very long, the grate came clattering down and Iris was standing on the ledge above their cell. They both looked a bit dazed and frightened but it was true. The next question was how to get Kyan out of there as well. Iris laid flat along the ledge and reached her hand down. Kyan’s fingers met hers and he scrambled up next to her. They looked down at the ten foot drop to the floor below and then at each other. No. It was impossible…
Kyan finally addressed the obvious. “What do we do now?” They had found themselves in this plane of cold iceyness with strange humps that appeared to be other grates. Above them was a dark, evil looking castle. It convinced them, if they had not been convinced before, that there was something terribly wrong and they might just be in the middle of it.

Saturday, April 01, 2006

She's left it up, Up, UP

Well, it has been lovely outside for the past two days. I hope everyone got the chance to go outside and relax and play in the sun. The rain sounded so nice on our roof last night. I love spring rain!

I have to go try on my dress!