There has always been a fascinating allure to our meadow, itself more than just an assemblage of grass, flowers, shrubs, and trees, all a buzz with an incredible assortment of fauna, Fæiries and other curious beings. It seems more than all that, somehow more. It is primarily the magic of all these parts together that makes it so amazing but there's one more thing necessary to attain our meadow's level of creative perfection and that is location. Where it sits in the Universe. Not every spot can do this level of magic nor do a lot of the spots that can, do. When the rider said, “Can do,” it was understood to be in that spot particularly wherein it could be done. Couldn't be done in a swamp somewhere, pretty sure.
Anyway, this particular meadow said can do and did and there you go, a meadow of epic potential. We exist near the edge of its potentiality but manage to bask in it nonetheless, while drawing what we can of its magic. The muses walk through here naked and even the flowers move to the rhythms of a silent sound. We are seated beneath a Bodhi tree and occasional wafts of flower petals shower down from heaven. Holly, the meadow's loving mistress has served us tea and biscuits, the preferred treat of the meadow and we are jovial, luxuriating in the warmth of Father Sun, unaware of the passage of time.
This is, of course, where the action would begin, normally. Someone would arrive, say Windy for example, and deliver some sort of news that would require we take some sort of action and then away we'd go! Usually. Today this did not happen, signaling, well normally signaling, a red flag alert to our otherwise cautious minds. Today this also did not happen. With no message and no signal we remained in somnolent bliss.
Meanwhile, unbeknownst to us, the skies were filling with smoke and reverberating with the angry barks and bellows of war machines. The Orcs were leading an assault of Trolls against the cowering fabric of life after having forced the once protective polity into collapse under their corruption. The Grimn-Leapers have worked tirelessly behind the scenes helping to destroy the very society that had nurtured them, helping the shrieking Orcs and the marching Trolls bring it all down. It was almost too late when we were finally alerted.
I had slowly become aware of someone yelling at me in close range. Very close and my eyes shot open. Shaguti stood staring at me with that shocked look people get when they're shocked.
“Oh, uh, Shaguti. Gosh, uh . . .” I muttered, terribly disoriented, like I'd been awakened from a deep sleep. I was confused about where I was but could see chairs, like in the meadow, and the other Vanara waking the people slouched in them. I saw Ishmael sit up and shake his head. I looked at Shaguti.
“You have been mesmerized Lillow,” he said with a grimace. “A giant bubble was put over all of you! You were totally cut off until we got here.”
“Hadda break through the bubble,” Véebrishar added, walking up.
“Tough bubble too. Well made, took us hours,” Shaguti murmured.
“Meanwhile the Trolls are attacking and society is collapsing,” Véebrishar announced just as Ishmael and Jango arrived.
“Collapsing? Did I hear right?” Ishmael asked. “We're under attack?”
“I'm just now hearing about it,” I told him. “We were mesmerized, Ishmael.”
“Yes, we're under attack,” Shaguti confirmed gravely, while everyone else gathered closely around, staring in disbelief and horror. “Mesmerized, then attacked.” He paused, looking around at everyone, their eyes round and fearful. Then, looking at me he whispered, “The barbarians are at the gate.”
We knew what we had to do. It was time to visit the Emergent Sea.
Next, Part Two: At The Emergent Sea