Thursday, July 19, 2012

The Mutant



If you walked out the front door of my house, you would find yourself on a street paved with gold dust. Every tree that lines it blooms with pink diamonds.  The bridge down the way spans a river that runs with liquid silver.  The tinkling of tiny bells fill the air.

Oh, the bells. Those damn bells.

I suppose it's a bit of an understatement to call this a house.  It's more than a house.  It's Parliament. It's the courthouse. It's the jailhouse.  It's a castle.  But, I guess it's home.

I'm Abby. From Nebraska.  But this?  This is Fairyland -- and I am its reluctant queen.

Today, I wasn't walking out my front door. I wasn't strolling along the golden lanes. I wasn't picking diamond bouquets, and I wasn't swimming in the crystal cool of the river.  No, today... like every day... I was holding court. Miserable boring court.

A trumpet blew right in my ear and I waved it away. "Do you have to do that right there?"

A fairyman flew out of the reach of my hand, his trumpet dropping to float inches above the floor. "I'm sorry, Your Highness!" Philip bobbed in deference. "I have been working on projection." His countenance took on an air of hurt.

I smiled. Philip was my favorite fairy.  He once told me that, when he was a fairyboy, he could never make more than a peep come out of his trumpet, and his many siblings always teased him terribly over it.  His newfound volume was a subject of great pride.

"I'm sorry, Philip.  Let my annoyance stand as proof of your talent. And how many times do I have to tell you to call me Abby?"

"Yes, Queen Abby!"

I sighed and whispered.  "Abby.  Just Abby.  Now, why are we trumpeting?"

Philip pulled himself up to his full 9 inches and announced the arrival of a new visitor. "Ladies and Gentlemen!  Lord Ronaldo, here to bestow his good wishes upon our fair queen!"  And again with the trumpet.

I rolled my eyes.  If I had to sit through one more pompous miniature fairy lord trying to impress me with his tricks and aerial gymnastics, I was going to scream.

The door opened and a figure entered the room.  This was no miniature fairy lord.

He had six inches on me, easily. Have you heard "tall, dark, and handsome"? He was that.  He had straight black hair The ends brushed against the collar of his jacket as he walked forward. His eyes were the most brilliant green I'd ever seen, framed with gorgeous black eyelashes, and I found myself sitting taller under his gaze. He wore dark blue jeans (where did he get those?? I'd kill for a pair of jeans) that sat lazily on his hips and the chambray shirt accentuated the hard lines of his torso.  I definitely sat taller.

"You're Lord Ronaldo?" I could barely keep the stammer out of my voice.

"He most certainly is NOT." The offended voice came from behind the man of steel, and a fat little fairy came puffing to the front. "I am Lord Ronaldo.  This is naught but my younger brother, Kevin."  He lowered his voice in apologetic confidence. "He's a mutant."

"Indeed." I muttered. "We could use a few more of those around here."

Mutant Kevin winked and the faintest smile quirked at the corners of his mouth as his older brother began his series of probably-impressive tricks.

And THAT is where the story begins.

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