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Old 05-10-2006, 02:07 AM   #311
Estelyn Telcontar
Princess of Skwerlz
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Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: where the Sea is eastwards (WtR: 6060 miles)
Posts: 7,532
Estelyn Telcontar is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.Estelyn Telcontar is battling Black Riders on Weathertop.
The morning after the wedding dawned, as mornings are wont to do. Had the festivities taken place at any other location than the Blessed Lands of Valleyum, the site would have been wreaked with havoc. But either Manuël had waved his pipe over the scene and removed all signs of debauchery, or whatever was in that pipe caused the sight of those present to blur – and if they did see any mess, they no longer cared.

The list of guests had grown thin – the Velour, who were immune to any aftereffects of carousing, had put on their water attire, shouldered their sürfbôrds, and gone to enjoy a fine day at the beach. The newlyweds were nowhere to be seen, and it must be assumed that they were out checking the real estate possibilities for a nice cottage in Valleyum’s suburbs.

Merisuwyniel and Gravlox had packed their belongings for the journey back to Muddled-Mirth, and Squire Windsor was attempting, more eagerly than skilfully, to assist them. Now the Elven couple stood before Yawanna, conversing earnestly with the Green Goddess.

“It’s not quite a luxury liner,” she said, “but it will get you back to the Eastern lands safely enough. Are you sure you wouldn’t rather stay here? You alone, my dear Merisuwyniel, uttered no wish, and I would gladly fulfil one if you so desire.”

The Elf shook her golden locks most becomingly. “I thank you,” she replied, “but my desire is to return to the lands of my people. I do have one wish though.” She hesitated, then, encouraged by Yawanna’s friendly smile, continued: “I have grown accustomed to leading others on this quest. I would like to have a realm of my own to rule, so that I can go on telling others what to do more conveniently. Of course it would be for their own good...” Her voice trailed off.

“Naturally!” the goddess exclaimed. “That would be just the thing for you! And it’s no problem to arrange – you see, Saladriel and Celery have no heir, and as the daughter of her sister, you are the next of kin to them. Are you willing to aid her in this task?” she asked, turning to Gravlox.

He stood tall and erect, his weapons gleaming at his side. “I will strengthen the defenses of Topfloorien with my military experience. Together, we shall see the Hidden Realm prosper and its malls expand. Our combined wisdom will make it a refuge for those who love the finer things of life.”

“There will be another task for you to fulfill,” Yawanna added. “For lo! the kingdom of Grundor lacks a king, and the only heir to the Lord Denimthor, Proctor of Grundor and Guardian of the Porcelain Throne of Minus Teeth, has perished in this most perilous quest. Denimthor is old, and when he is no longer, the people will be lost as sheep without a shepherd. And yet it is known to the Velour that the line of the kings of Grundor has not yet completely failed, and there is one who has the right to claim the throne.”

“Who is he?” Merisu exclaimed. “I would love to meet him.”

“Oh, you already have – he’s here,” the goddess replied.

Merisu and Gravlox both looked in the direction she showed them, but they could not see a potential king, only Hal, still stupored after the night’s carousing. Puzzled, they looked to Yawanna for explanation.

“All that is cold does not shiver,
Not all those who squander are posh.
One arrow is left in the quiver,
One garment returns from the wash.

From the gutter a king shall be woken,
The blight of his shadow shall flee,
Renewed shall be denture once broken,
and white crowns restored all shall be.”

Merisu and Gravlox were even more puzzled by those cryptic clues. “But what does that mean?” the Elf asked.

“The language is archaic and his character barbaric,” Yawanna said, “but there can be no doubt – that ancient poem promises the return of the king to the Wight City. And Halfemption is the last in the line of Noodleorian kings of old.”

Merisu gasped. “But he looks – well, not so fair as his brother looked, though he feels more...”

“But darling,” Gravlox rebuked her gently, “remember that I looked very foul when we first met, and yet you preferred me to the handsome Halfullion.”

“He does not yet appear kingly,” Yawanna admitted, “but that is where you come in. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to aid him – as a matter of fact, your first hurdle will be to get him back to Muddled-Mirth safely and soberly, then to train him for his task until you can find a way to introduce him to his people so that they will be willing to accept his kingship.”

Merisu’s beautiful violet eyes lit up with the religious fervour of a woman who is about to reform a prodigal. “We shall help him to rebuild the city of Minus Teeth,” she proclaimed, conveniently forgetting that its destruction was the work of the Shambles-Ship.
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