My Daemon Persaon

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Sea Monster Discovered In Caledon Firth!!!

While paying parcel rents today, I discovered a new creature roaming the Firth of Caledon! I flew in to investigate...for a few moments, the creature paused and made odd sounds of communication to me, and swam off! I must investigate further!

Friday, November 30, 2007

I should suppose that after two months, it would only be proper that I write concerning the most important, life-changing event, that has ever occured to me in Second Life (or for that matter, real life)! That is, my marriage to the most wonderful woman I have ever met, Abigail Cordelia. Abi has deepened my life in so many ways. We have been married since September 25th, and amazingly, in the world of Second Life, were relationships tend to last on average about two weeks, our bond has gotten stronger each day. Every day with my Abi is a new adventure, as we journey through this Second Life together. Not only have we helped each other grow as individuals, but are we truly growing together as a couple! I thank God and Goddess for bringing this most amazing of ladies into my life, my brave Lioness, my dear wife, Abigail Cordelia! I can honestly say, that in all my years of life, I have NEVER been this much in love with someone, or love someone so deeply.
I love you, my wife!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

A Victorian Web Comic

First, my apologies to all for not having posted in quite a long while. I won't bore you with excuses or reasons, just know I am sorry.

Now, on to fun stuff. I have recently "discovered" web comics. I knew they were always out there, I just never bothered before to look at them. I have several favorites already, but one is of a particular interest to us Neo-Victorians. It is relatively new, as there are only 43 pages so far, so it won't take long to get up to speed in the story-line, which already is showing itself to be interesting (it's #1 on both Buzz Comix! and Top Web Comics), so that should be indicative that it has already created an interested public. It's called "The Phoenix Requiem" and is billed as "A Victorian fantasy story about faith, love, and a whole lot of ghosts." I invite my readership (if I even still have one), to visit the site at . Enjoy!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

The Journey to…the Mysterious Island - Amber's Part The Fourth : Chapter One

HOOOO! Finally finished the text! (I had to banish myself from SL temproarrily to do so!)

Rather disappointed in spilling my Uisge Beatha upon our unceremonius crash landing on Phillip. I shot a glare toward Gnarli's penguin, about to berate it. Observing it more closely, however, I quickly noticed its bloodshot eyes and ruddy beak. It was the penguin Gnarli gave me! I had been teaching it to drink during our trip, partly to amuse myself, and partly to keep it too drunk to make any amorous advances on me. I had learned early on that these penguins had more than a little curiosity of the female form, and so to keep it from creeping into my bed whilst I slept, I made sure it remained in an inebriated state. Inexplicably, it had escaped my room. While everybody started making a commotion about Kiralette being discovered on board, and had their attention elsewhere, I kicked another penguin in the direction of mine, successfully knocking mine off the ship and into the water, and leaving the other standing in the spot of the guilty. I wasn't about to get connected indirectly to the shipwreck. I was certain at least Darkling knew I was training the flightless fowl bad habits, and perhaps there were others as well.
Seeing that the decision had been made for as to where and when to come to shore, and as it was unlikely the ship would be leaving anytime soon (from my angle of view, I was positive that I saw a rather large piece of pumice embedded in the hull, though I could be wrong), I set about trying to locate Millie. I would need her to port all my belongings to the beach, as the penguin at this point was useless to the task. I could already see him stumbling down the beach, with a dazed demeanor, looking for only Goddess knows what. I located Millie in our cabin, muttering her usual Noster Paters and Avie Maria's, glaring fearfully at Braveheart/Persaon. He in turn was stretched out on the bed, totally unconcered at our fate, grinning and winking at Millie teasingly.
"I tell you, m'lady, that dog gives me the shivers! He's possesed by a Demon!" she rasped forcefully.
"A daemon, Millie", I corrected, knowing that the distinction was uselessly given, seeing the dull glaze of unfazed incomprehension in her semi-good eye as she stared back at me vacuously. I would have better success at teacheing the lecherous sailors on board the art of celibacy than trying to explain the concept of familiars to Millie.
"Never mind Braveheart, Millie," I mumbled while dismissively waving my hand, "we have more important things to which we must attend. Start packing our belongings and bring them to shore, and try to set up a decent camp."
"Aye, m'lady," she muttered, while giving Braveheart one last wary look. "I don't like this place," she continued, grumbling, "I had nightmares last night, of giant demon-rabbits."
Rolling my eyes at her, and curtly telling her to at least try to do the task correctly, I gathered up a parasol, hoping it might keep the ever-present ash out of my hair, and went seeking another bottle of liquor. As I could still hear Captain Jaques Sparrow cursing at his crew and arguing with Lord Bardhaven in the most flambouyant of manners above-decks, I ambled to the Captain's cabin, and with a light touch of magic, opened the primitive lock to his gaudy room, and acquired another bottle of his Port.
I disembarked the ship to a scene of chaos. Sailors and servants where everywhere, scurrying about setting up various tents and cabins. Lady Darkling was doing something, Goddess alone knows what, to some unfortunate (or maybe fortunate), sailor, lying on the sand. She looked rather preoccupied, so I thought it best to leave her be. The Duchesses were complaining about the sand in their shoes, but it was little bother to me. As partly Fey, I actually preferred to go barefoot. There is a special, magical connection to the earth going in such a manner. Finding a nice, shady coconut tree, I sat on the ground and leaned back, watching the goings-on. Bardhaven was setting him up a lawn chair with an big umbrella over it, observing everything keenly. Though he wore his sunglasses, and appeared to be snoozing, by the self-satisfied, barely noticiable smirk on his face, I knew his beady litle eyes were taking it all in. Captain Jaques Sparrow pranced about like some marionette controlled by Bacchus. The Duchesses were more concerned with setting up the grammaphone than their tent. Gnarli went wandering off in the jungle while Kiralette was "playing" with the fishies. For awhile quite a commotion was made when Dr. Oolon shooed away Lady Darkling from the sailor, and his fellows, giving Darkling frightened yet hateful glares, carried off the man, apparently passed out from strenuous "activities" with the Lady. Dr. Oolon exclaimed "Lepus Giganticus!", which created quite the buzz, and he, Miss Terry, and Lady Eva busied themselves with taking measurements of this depression in the beach. Whilst I am fluent in Latin, Greek, Hebrew, German, and several other lesser known tongues, and knew that Lepus Giganticus meant giant rabbit, looking about and seeing none around, I went back to surreptitiously sipping the bottle of Port. Usually Dr. Oolon's usage of the ancient languages was always correctly used contextually, unlike Lord Bardhaven. I thought perhaps too much sun and ash made Dr. Oolon a little daft this particualr afternoon.
As the day wore on, I noticed Millie got the camp set up to a semblence of civility. I walked over, and drew a circle in the sand around the tent. Muttering a few Sidhe words and passing my hand over the circle, I was satisfied the shield would keep both ash and mosquitoes out of my temporary dwelling. I could hear music from the Duchesses' gramaphone coming from their tent, accompanied with their gigglings.
Dr. Oolon and Miss Terry were seting up strange devices around the camp. Goddess only knew what they were up to. Dr. Oolon at one point during the journey made a great to-do of being a Time Lord, what ever that was. Time was cruel enough a Mistress, without needing a Lord, too. He had any number of queer gadgets, which once he decided he though he should to explain to me. I tried feigning a glassy-eyed look at the time, to subtly hint that perhaps he should expound his toys to one more interested and youthfully guillible. He didn't get the point, and rambled on. I discovered that he seemed to take an almost sadistic pleasure in appearing intellectually superior to others. And while I was fully within the realm of conversing with said gentleman on any number of topics, I had more important projects on my mind at the time....strip solitaire with my Tarot deck (I am an unabashed narcissist), and a bottle of Uisge Beatha. So I was forced to cast a spell to strengthen the pull of his eyes to my bosom, which got him to sputtering and blushing, and then looking sheepishly at Miss Terry, he finally wandered off with her, thankfully. Actually, I think Miss Terry pretty much made him leave. I like the good Doctor, bless his heart, but one can only take so much discussion on Daleks. As far as I was concerned, Daleks were most interestting when they made an appearance at a Duchess Rave, during the "Rocking the Tardis" song set.
Lord Bardhaven continued to purview his little domain. Indeed, his self-styled moniker fit him well, the Ruffian King. Because all the ruffian sailors and servants kow-towed to him like some sort of demigod, eagerly seeking the scraps he threw to them. The better-bred ones treated him with at best uneasy mistrust, at worst, respectful disdain.
My little penguin finally returned to my tent, pushing with his feet a wrinkled looking cocount, and "hronking" at me plaintively. Bending over, I picked up the coconut, and immediately smelt why pengui was upset. The coconut milk within had fermented, and he couldn't open it. Cutting open the nut, I gave him half, while I drank from the other, the pilfered port being long finished. Within the tent, I could hear Millie praying for deliverance from evil in her patience-sapping rasp, while Braveheart/Persaon snored louldy in the corner.
All the while, I could feel within the ground this throbbing...this music. Not the music wafting from the Duschesses' hut. But from the island itself. It filled me with a need. I got up and looked around. Seeing that we had foolishly set up camp on the leeward side of the island, which caused the pervasive presence of ash everywhere, I decided I needed to find a place of solace. I started to walk in a clockwise direction following the beach. Everybody being involved in their own little activities, I wandered off with no one knowing the better. Little pengui followed me, hoping for more to drink. I grinned to myself, knowing I have well-trained this one to forget about feminine charms. As I passed by Captain Sparrow's tent, I saw him passed out on his hammock, a half-filled bottle of rum precariaoulsy gripped in his left hand. As his senses completely left him and his fingers uncurled around the bottle, I deftly caught it before it had smashed and wasted precious alcohol, and moved on. As pengui and I marched onwards, I gave him a sip for every five of mine. He would gurgle and "hronk" happily, his eyes solidly fixed on the bottle in hand, and not my swaying hips. Well-tained indeed.
Eventually, as the sun was close to setting, I reached the windward side of the beach. No ash here! Happily, I discarded my clothing, and plunged into the ocean to wash off the grime. I could feel the rhythm of the island's music pull me. Donning just my lingerie, and leaving outer apparel behind, I walked forward along the beach, to where I felt a special tug at my soul.

I had found that for which my spirit yearned. In a little grove was a faerie mushroom ring! A place for me to match movement with my body to the incessant, hammering, pounding of the island's music. A place to dance to the God and Goddess!!!

In joy, opened up my inner being to the spirit world and danced!

And danced!

And danced!

I felt that inner connection make contact as I danced, uninhibited, and un observed. I felt free.

Pengui watched, and started to sway to. I had suspected it was from the drink.

Well, I soon found myself swaying too, besides my gyrations of worship. The ground itself was shaking, which was not unusal, because since we had landed, Phillip, being in a constant unpleasant mood, often belched and rumbled. "Damnable volcanic island," I grumbled inwardly, as I assumed the shaking a result of volcanic and tectonic activity.

Suddenly pengui "hronked" loudly! "Hush Pengui!", I admonished, "I'm out of liquor. We must await till we return to camp." At that point I heard a loud crash as a eucalyptus tree crashed beside me. A drop bear, which had apparently been watching me hungrily, awaiting his opportunity to strike, leapt out of the branches, and squealing in loud fear, ran off in terror up the mountainside. I saw something furry on my left side....easily as big as my country manor in the Moors. I saw a matching furry thing on my right side. They looked like giant....rabbit's feet...with incredibly long, wicked talons. Pengui squealed and moaned in fear, and spinning in circles drunklingly, fled to hide behind a particularly large mushroom. A low wail of panic arose in my throat as I looked up...and up....and up....into the eyes beady giant eyes of the most humongous hare I had ever beheld.....easily thirty meters tall! "Lepus Giganticus!" I screamed at the top of my longs....obviously to no avail, as I was several miles away from camp, and on the other side of the volcanoe!

The giant bunny looked down on me, and tilted its head in a funny manner. I heard a rumbling from deep within him....not a rumble of hunger...well, not the hunger of being desirous of food, even though it had fangs easily longer than I was tall....but the hunger of .....most frightenly....lust!

Mewling in fear, I felt my knees give out before me, but not before the beast could snatch me up in it's powerful paws. I shrieked, and shrieked again! I had lost all sense, and in my terror could not even begin to recall the most simplest of spells to defend myself! The beast lifted me up to his face. I was sure I would die! Tears streaming down my face, I cried fiercely, certain my body would soon find itself a giant rabbit pellet of pooh on this God and Goddess forsaken island.

"Damn Bardhaven!" I bemoaned to myself. Now angry, I spewed execrations at the giant bunny, Lord Bardhaven, Phillip in general, and even myself for allowing myself to get into this mess. I knew I was about to have my spirit rejoin the supernatural world. But I wasn't ready to complete the circle of the journey of life!

But instead of eating me, the giant bunny looked down at an almost tender fashion. He rumbled softly, almost seemingly smiling at me. With one long, curved, wicked claw of his index finger of his right paw, he poised it over my chest. "Oh Goddess," I cried, "Receive me with love!" Instead of plunging his talon into me, ending my life, he delicately pulled my bra top down, rumbling with pleasure. I looked into his face again, and could swear I saw him grin! I looked down and saw his this greater fear than I was before... I thankfully passed out.

I do not know how long I was out. All I know was that I awoke to much "hronkings" and squawkings! The giant rabbit still held me captive. I felt sore and abused, tore and bruised, ... yet only in my outer body...I knew I had not yet been violated....just brutalized from being held in the palm of this not-so-gentle giant. He was running and hopping fast, being chased by a throng of...could it be!....Gnarli's penguins, with my Pengui in the lead! (I could tell him by his red-rimmed eyes and ruddy nose!) The multitude of the little beasts were driving this monster into the the water! They were diving at him, squawking, pecking, harassing the rabbit continuously. The noise was incredible. Every now and then, the beast was able to punt a pengui into the distant jungle, mangling it against a tree, or an ignaceaous rock. But there were too many of them. The dumb beast tried to hold me close to its chest protectively, smothering me in its cloying smell of wild onions, garlic, and carrots. He wailed and thrashed as he ran deeper into the water, not knowing that the ocean was the perfect clime for a penguin. The further in he went, the more effective their attacks, the less efficient his.

Eventually they harried him to the island's shelf. There were no where near as many penguins as there were when the battle begun. The beach was strewn with them, as well as many floating dead in the water. But the deeper the bunny had fled into the water, the more they were able to wound him in the places that counted. Abruptly, the giant rabbit pulled me up to his face. He moaned, and looked at me....lovingly. Then I knew he was dying. It was at this point I felt compassion for this dumb beast. As I felt his fingers numbly let me go, the fire of life in his eyes dying out, I realized, if the penguins had not attacked him, and had me given the chance, I could have spelled him down to my size, and given him a human form, and would have had a man that a woman dreams that would do anyhing for them, without question, with undying loyalty. I rolled my eyes and shrugged my shoulders as he dropped below the island's shelf, releasing me. Oh well. No woman has ever been so blessed, nor ever will be.

The sun was rising. As I tread water, I could see our camp in the near distance. With an incredibly larger number of people than where there before. I thought i could see a large cast iron pot with smoke arising from under it. I cursed my luck at missing breakfast, and what appeared to be a party going on.

Out of nowhere, I heard a "hronk" and a splash! When I looked in that direction, all I saw was a ripple of water. Then there was another "hronk"! Another splash! Another ripple. I grew suspicious. After the third "hronk", splash and ripple, I started to count the penguins. They were disappearing rapidly! That is when I saw the fins of a hammerhead shark circling us. Suddenly feeling naked and vulnerable, I pulled my bra top back up. The penguins clustered around me protectively.

In the distance, I finally recognized that the Duchesses Gabi and Eva were in a cooking pot, surrounded by men wearing silly bowling shirts, dancing!

Looking at the shark making the waters roil about me and the penguins, I had the most bizarre thought...Not in the cooking pot, but in the broiling waters!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Cockatiel

I sense more than see the light. In the enveloping darkness, I open one eye, and look around. Still pretty dark. No matter. Outside I can hear the free birds starting to chirp their greetings to their family and friends. My neighbors, the lovebirds, and their children, also begin to rouse. I stretch one wing, and then another. Today would be a good to fly. To soar above the trees I see outside the window. I can feel a cool breeze against me, mildly tickling my feathers. But it's not the wind. It's almost continuous, and I have felt this breeze almost four cycles of the moon. I suppose another cycle or two, and the warm breezes will start. But I cannot fly. Not from lack of ability, but because of this cage. I curl and uncurl my toes around my perch. Not much else to do yet. I look in my food dish. Same thing I always have, put their by the big thing that from time to time intrudes into my little world. It gives me water, it gives me food. Sometimes it gives me something new and shiny to play with. Alot of times, the big thing is gone, for most of the day. That is when the little furry thing likes to sit on top of my cage, or the lovebird's cage, purring, and eyeing us hungrily. I have looked out the window, and have seen other little furry things kill the free birds. That which imprisons me also protects me. Thankfully, the big thing seldom lets the little furry thing in the house when it's gone. The big thing also has a big furry thing. Or had. I haven't seen the big furry thing for six cycles of the sun. I liked big furry thing. It left us alone, and once every cycle of the moon, these sirens outside would wail, and big furry thing would sing with the sirens, and I would join it in song. While the big thing sees to it that all my needs are met, I don't trust the big thing
My neighbors, the lovebirds, are a strange lot. But because they outnumber me four to one, I suppose I am The Stranger. I once saw the big thing playing around the box with the funny lights, and heard this music come from the box...."People are strange, when you're a stranger...." I often feel like that. I talk to the lovebirds. Sometimes they will talk to me, but mostly keep to their own kind. I'll sing to them, and often receive sharp rebukes from them. I like it when the big thing is home. Because it will sing with me sometimes.
Sometimes I feel despondent. I sit there. Big thing usually has a mirror in my cage. But I am smarter than to think it is another of my kind. Same food every day. Same water. I watch the love birds cuddle up to each other, both pairs. They look at me like I am different. I look different to them, I talk funny to them. They have someone, I don't. They don't always like or understand what I have to say.
Such is my life. I want to stretch my wings and be free. I want to feel that sense of belonging, that sense of community, the lovebirds have. But I am not like all the other birds, and they and I both know it. I want something different, new, exciting in my life. The same boring food, the same boring water. What is the purpose of all of this? I sigh and look around, as the dawn's light begins to stream through the window. This is how I feel, every day, to quote that song that big thing plays alot from the light box, "...nothing's fine I'm torn, I'm all out of faith, this is how I feel, cold and all alone, lying naked on the floor..."
Outside, the free birds begin their song. The lovebirds begin theirs. I look around. Big thing is still asleep. I make the decision. The same decision I make everyday. It doesn't matter my surroundings. It doesn't matter my condition. My body is trapped in this cage I can never escape. I am different from all those around me. But you know, it doesn't matter. My spirit can never be caged. Inside, I am free, and will always be so till the day I day. I might not be able to fly, but I am able to sing, according to another song big thing likes. Proudly I puff my chest, and burst forth into song. It's my own song, different from all the other birds. They can sing along, if they wish. They can listen contentedly, if that is their desire. They can try to whistle me down, drown my song. I will only sing louder. I can't control what happens by the hands of others around me, but I can control my reaction. I'll sing my own song till the day I die, proud to be me, different from all the others, yet with the same intrinsic value as big thing, big furry thing, little furry thing, the lovebirds, and free birds. And even though my heart may break, and tears stream down my feathered cheeks, I am still alive, I still survive, and wouldn't change who I am inside for the world. Pain will always be a part of life, but nevertheless I'll sing nonetheless. Bursting forth into brilliant song, I sing my heart out till big thing notices, awakes from its slumber, smiles at me in pleasure, and joins in!

Thursday, August 9, 2007

The Journey to…the Mysterious Island - Amber's Part The Third

[At Darkling's suggestion, I split the original post into three parts]
The tedious voyage continued for a couple days. Boring of Bardhaven after the first meal with the nobles (NOT that I bored of Duchess Riel or Duchess Loch Avie, but one can only handle so much of Bardhaven's self-aggrandizement), I decided to eat my further meals with the more "common people" below decks. One day, after I watched the poor wretches eating meal-worm infested hardtack while I munched slowly upon my Cantal, sipping rum I pilfered from the captain's cabin, I was more than amused by Mr. Gnarli's regaling of amourous dolphins. While asking him questions, as his and Dr. Oolon's gaze continuously settled on my bossom, I would swipe their full glasses of drink for my empty ones. Captain Sparrow had a notorious policy of charging by the drink. And by God and Goddess, being forced to endure this nit and flea infested vessel, manned by the most hideous of seamen, I refused to pay his charge for the bottle. When we returned Gnarli would be more than repaid with all the honours attendent to knighthoood. As for Dr. Oolon, everytime I pilfered one of his drinks, I would push to Terry a copy of a useful spell. My Lindens were short, but spells I had in plenty.

One day, I was standing on deck with the Duchesses, and Baroness Darkling, when heard from the crow's nest, "Land Ho!" "What a bloody fool," I thought. We could see Phillip from the Cay. I was surprised it took us this bleeding long to get there, considering I could ride and sail from Loch Avie to Regency in less than an hour. I suspected Captain Cousteuea Robin....ermmmm, Palance Bluejay, no, that's not it....Sprat, no, no....Jaques Sparrow, yes, that's the chap's name....that villeinous captain was going to get more than his money's worth, and sailed around the forking volcanic island nine or ten times before deciding to land. I took a sip of Duchess Eva's Uisge Beatha, which she so kindly offered me just moments before, when suddenly something unusually silly happened involving one of Gnarli's surviving penguins and the helm. I'm not sure exactly what, as I had been pretty inebriated the past several days, but suddenly we were grounded! Oh dear! I just spilled my Uisge Beatha!

The Journey to…the Mysterious Island - Amber's Part The Second

[At Darkling Elytis' suggestion, I divided my original post into three parts. Also there is a correctional edit in this post (sorry Qli, I fixed it now)].

Though hung-over, I awoke early. I knew I had to be in the Cay before Bardhaven's rented ship set sail. I knew it was called the Arranax...or was it Arrownocks, maybe it was the Adirondacks...goddess, I didn't know, and could really care less what it was called, I just knew to look for the only ship willing to set sail in broiling waters. I decided to dress in something naughty, something that drew attention to my buxom bossom...Goddess knew I had reason to do so (one of the reasons to read my "serious" intermission above). Then I went to the stables to see to it that Sean would get the carriage ready for the trip.

Well, that was a lesson in futility. Apparently Sean and Bernie drank too much the night before, and not only were both lads passed out stone cold from the Uisge Beatha, but somehow managed to break the rear axle of the carriage. Which managed to tilt over and crash upon my cask of Uisge. Sucking what little of the whiskey I could off the straw in the stables, I growled and cursed Sean and Bernie, and gave them each a kick, but they just stopped their loud snorings long enough to roll over and mutter deprecations in their sleep, before snoring louder than before.

Grumbling curses under my breath, I returned to the manor in no less than a foul mood. when I arrived there, there was a post from Dr. Darien Mason....a letter post-marked from the Caledon Regency Hospital....stating his search for Qli's mother Lucien, formerly known as Sumalee, from the Bloodtail Neko Tribe, and his desire that I would seek clues concerning her whereabouts! Apparently he believes there may be a connection between the various volcanoes of the world. He included this dagguerrotype:

Hot ash was floating everywhere, and there was crazy old Gott out in the pavillion yard with his hydrogen blimp, getting ready to make flight. Well, that in and of itself wouldn't bother me, because if the blimp exploded with him on it, that would be one less problem with which I had to deal. But the fact was, the fool wanted to take my babies for a ride. After a brief argument, I got the idiot to see that he could actually kill them. At which point he began to cry, and begged my forgiveness, and abandoned his plan.

Sighing deeply, I entered the manor, and there was poor old Millie, still hopping about like yesterday. Goddess, why is good help so hard to find? "Millie!" I exclaimed. As she did not know I was standing behind her, she veritably leaped in the air as if Bardhaven himself where there (and not a bad leap for an arthritic, hunchbacked, club-footed woman).

Trembling, she turned to look at me. "Oh m'lady, m'lady, m'lady...I had a horrible dream that Phillip would try to eat you!"

Again I groaned inwardly, "Goddess, why is good help so hard to find?"

"Millie," I said as patiently as I could, which was very little, actually, "Go to my room and pack my clothes. And my weapons. And while you are at it, scour every inch of my properties for any ounce of alcohol!"

"What clothes would m'lady desire?", she murmured.

I pondered a moment. I hadn't thought about that. But my musings were for just a breif flash in time. "Why all of them, of course, " I exclaimed, as if explaining to a child why it had to urinate IN the chamber pot, and not all around it, "I never will know what social circumstances will arise, and I rather have the appropriate wear and not need it, rather than not have the right outfit and need it."

She looked at me puzzled-like, not understanding my explanation. "Just pack the bloody clothing, will you Millie?! ALL of it!!" I exclaimed, "And ALL my weapons!....and, and....alcohol, every drop you can find!"

As I figured there were alot of "responsible" adults going with us, they would bring an abundant supply of all the other necessities, and I could always "glom" or buy it off of them. No sense in my bringing something someone else was going to bring anyways. Besides, it helped cultivate the idea that I was a sot that had no clue to the realities about me. But then I suddenly recalled that their food tastes might not be mine. "Oh yes, Millie! Don't forget to pack the Asiago, Romano, Parmesan, and Cantal cheeses! For that matter, all the cheeses!" One never knew if one of the Duchesses decided to have a cheese and wine tasting event along the way.

"Oh! And pack alot of bones as well!" I suddenly exclaimed (just another reason for my gentle readers to peruse the boring and "serious" backstory I wrote above).

Millie looked at me puzzledly, and asked, "Is Braveheart going as well?"

"Yes, ermm, I mean no, I mean....bloody hell, woman, it's not your job to question my orders! Just do it!"

Sensing that I was in a foul mood, which I have been in of late, she shuffled off in her odd, twisting gait to follow my demands. Meanwhile, I went to the kitchen, and acquired another bottle of sherry. I then proceeded to scourge all the furniture in the house, looking between and under the cushions for any lost Lindens or Caledonian pounds. Having found $53.28 L, I secured them in my reticule, then went to the stables to wake up the "boys". As they were still sleeping, I took a bucket, and scooping water out of the trough, rudely splashed them awake.

"Oh boys," I sing-sang unto them. Sputtering and cussing at first, when they suddenly saw it was me, they silenced their tongues. "Boys," I purred, in a sweetly menacing tone, "you have one of two choices." I took a swig of the cooking sherry.

"Yes, m'lady," they both stammered.

"You can either tell me why you disobeyed my orders last night, wrecked my carriage, and ruined my cask of Uisge can follow through with the task which I am about to give you," I offered demurly, smiling as sickenly sweet as rotted melon.

They glanced at each other, then the carriage, then the ruined cask of Uisge. Finally, they stammered almost in unison, "What do you wish, m'lady?"

As I had already determined from the train station, that travel by train was imposssible because the high ash level in the atmosphere negatively affected the operation of Caledon's premier public transportation system, and as my buggy was defunct, and as all my horses except Iontaofa were completely spooked by Phillip's constant rumbling and gaseous expellations, I needed a porter system. So saddling Iontafa, I rode back to the manor with Sean and Bernie in glum tow behind me.

Millie had finished packing by then, so I then got Millie and the two lads to cart the items for me. Millie's hunched back and wiry strength proved her to be a better porter than Sean and Bernie combined, even if she did shuffle along at a slower, if yet steady gait. Kissing my babies "good-bye", and threatening Gott with DIRE consequences to his blimp if my bairns even had a scratch on them when I returned, I again leapt into Iontaofa.

Once again I headed to the Cay. After a side-stop at Aldo Stern's Falling Anvil Pub to stock up on the Guinesss, a tedious journey ensued of listening Bernie and Sean accuse each other of wrecking "m'lady's carriage", and Millie muttering "Mea Culpa's", "Noster Pater's", and "Avie Maria's", we finally reached the Cay docks. I directed my underlings to load my goods on the good ship Lolly Pop, Adirondack, Arranox, whatever it bloody well was called, and by this time was too drunk to care. I got into an argument with a vendor who claimed I was too drunk for him to sell me Lava Lager...turning my back to him, I took a swallow of my "antidote" (yet ONE more reason to read my backstory intermission), and after a minute proved I could handle my liquor. He sold me the lager I desired. My Sidhe senses picked up Lord Bardhaven's idle comment about me being the "bearded lady". After looking in my pocket mirror, and seeing no facial hair, but indeed a dab (just a small smidgeon), of lager froth on my chin, I assumed the Baron was less educated than he purported, and meant, in childish English, to say "beered" I know that is not even close to recognizable to proper usage of Queen's English, but then again, I suspect his education is not as well-schooled as he pretends. His inability to appropriately to apply the correct Latin phrases for a given situation already proved that.

Sending Sean and Bernie away home with Iontaofa, I started down the dock toward the ship (at this point I was way too drunk to care what it was called, and even more drunk than to care about its crude sailors, and garish captain, who apparently thought of himself as some Wolf Larson-Blackbeard inbred offspring, sporting an eyepatch (which from time to time he lifted up surreptitiosly and peered at any woman he thought beauteous), with a plushie-toy parrot attached to his shoulder, which he would squeeze when a Lady passed by him, and it would say to them, "Awwrackkk ... your a pretty girl!". He called himself Capt. Jacques Sparrow. He wore a hat that was a hundred years out of fashion, under which dreadlocks poked out, and had a meat-hook duck-taped around his left hand. He claimed he lost his hand to a shark, but I could clearly see several finger tips poking out from under the tape. Even though his beard was black, I could see his blonde and grey roots. It seemed he and all his sailors were all preoccupied with my bossom, and even though I had a tinkling in the back of my mind why they should, I couldn't put my finger on it (YET another reason to read my boring and "serious" intermission backstory.

Shortly afterword, halfway up the dock, I ran into Lord Bad-behavin' himself (OOOPS! Did I say that outloud?), ermm, I mean Lord Bardhaven himself. He said some comments to Millie, which sent her into a frothing tizzy. Looking her firmly in the eye, I said, "Fertig Jetz!" and smacked her hard in the face. She fell to the ground, shuddered, said a Noster Pater, and looking at me with new awe in her good eye (bad one being sewed up), and rasped respectfully, "Thank you M'Lady!"

When I boarded, I heard Duchess Gabrielle ask the best question I heard all day. "Dom Perignon, anybody?"

Hastily raising my hand, and putting away my silver flask of cooking sherry, I took that which she offered. I tottered over to Gnarlihotep Abel. He was seated on an apple barrle. I knew that, as the barrel was clearly marked "Apples", even though I saw a tail swishing out of one of it more than numerous holes, more than is necessary in an apple barrel. Besides, I could smell apples wafting from it. I had determined I wanted one of his penguins. Not as a meal, mind you, as Bardhaven so clearly wanted, but as a porter. They seemed so much more deft at the task than Millie. After a prolonged wrangling bartering session, and in which he kept glancing at my bossom (in my drunken state I still couldn't figure out why), I finally convicned the young Gnarli to surrender me one of his penguins with the promise of not only a commission as a Major in my Bauerhoff Cavalry Homeguard, but the titling of knighthood, which would surely assure him of a future union with Kiralete, Bardhaven's ward. At the mention of knighthood for Gnarli, I could have sworn I heard a pleasant "mew" from the barrel.

The deal sealed, he ambled off. At this point I was hungry, and eyed the apple barrel. Looking around to ensure no one was looking, I opened the lid to pilfer an apple. As I reached in, I saw a red-headed Neko. Not Kirawell red, but Kiralette Red. The red only a good but mischievous kitty would have. She smiled sheepishishly and mewed. I smiled conspiratorily and winked back. At that point, I heard an "ahem", and quickly thrusting the lid home, turned to see Lord Bardhaven! Blessedly, I had grabbed an apple from the barrel already, and turned and smiling at him, in my most pretend drunken way (AGAIN, another reason to read the backstory!!!!!!), giggled rather inappropriately as he started at my chest continuoulsy (and laughing inside myself as I finally remmebered WHY he and everybody else was!), said most coyly, "Ahhhh, Baron Bardhaven!" He smiled brazenly, until I said in a mysterious tone, "or should I say "Dread Baron?"

He suddenly looked agitated, enough so that he didn't notice Kiralette's tail switching nervously from the apple barrel. But I did, and backed up enough to allow my voluminous gown to cover Kiralette's tail. I smiled in my most demure manner, and taking a bite from the apple, offered him a bite. He declined. I expected as much. We both often let on that we underestimate each other, but I suspected he suspected more of me than he let on, and vice versa. Finally summoning the strength to look away from my bossom (it was then I knew he had enough power to be drawn to my locket, yet had not enough power to discern why), he looked down at my trailing skirts.

"Lady Amber," he enquired as graciously as he could, "is that a tip of a tail I see peeking beneath your frock?"

Remembering the Neko blood that faintly ran through my mother's veins, I allowed my feline ears to grow just so, and pushing my luxurious raven locks out of the way, revealed them to Bardhaven. "Ahhhhhh, yes, m'lord! Did you not know I have a smidgeon of neko blood in me?"

Taken aback, the dark baron replied, "Why no, I mean yes...of course, Lady Amber...enjoy your a matter of fact, have another....", he offered, as he poured me a drink from his flagon and wandered away, more than a little confused, it appeared to me.

I whispered to Kiralette-in-a-barrel, "Your secret is mine!", as I ambled below-decks to find my cabin. On the way down, I ran across Dr. Oolon Sputnik. He seemed pleasanlty surprised to see me, and as he made small-talk finding our cabins, his gaze kept wandering to my bossom. Well, at least I know the spell works!

And at last! Just as the ship was about to set sail, Persaon jumped aboard and joined my side. He mentally gave me the report I needed to know. (AGAIN...that BORING, serious backstory needed). I glared briefly at Bardhaven conversing unsuccesfully with Captain Jaques "Cousteu" Sparrow. "The Ruffian King indeed!", I harumphed mentally!