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| Category: || Fantasy Fiction |
Posted:|| May 17, 2020 Views: 322|
Chapter 36 of the book The Piper
Revelations of Fae Grove
"The Piper, part 36"
Piper is a young musician whose grandfather has passed away, leaving Piper an orphan to be raised by the music guild where he is an apprentice. After the funeral, Piper returns alone to play his flute at his grandfather's grave, and a Fae appears--a creature considered swift, strong and deadly--and compliments Piper's flute playing. Captain Burkehart comes to the rescue and escorts Piper back to the castle. During the next few weeks the Fae (Redd-Leif Summerstorm) approaches Piper on several occasions and says he has some secrets he needs to share, but each time they are interrupted by a vigilant Captain Burkehart. Meanwhile, Piper continues his musical education under the direction of the popular performer Master Braun, including traveling with a performing troupe. A wolf attack leaves Piper separated from the musicians and in the hands of Redd-Leif Summerstorm who tells Piper he is half-elven and Piper's elven mother (Melodica) is alive and wants to see him. Redd-Leif then leads Piper into the faerie realm where Piper begins to learn about his heritage and the magic in the music he wields.
End of Previous Chapter
"If it helps any, Piper, I've had several human friends. It can be risky, especially if you travel between realms, but it also can create a special bond." Redd-Leif reached over and put a hand on Piper's shoulder. "Follow your heart, my boy. It will be the best judge."
Piper looked up at Redd-Leif. "Rupert's always been fascinated by fair folk. He should accept I'm elemental."
"Will he keep it secret if you ask him to?"
"I believe he will." Piper bit his lip. "As far as the magic...I only found out about it a few hours ago. I'd like to learn more first."
Piper looked toward the cottage. Rupert was standing on the veranda waving at him. Piper waved back.
Redd-Leif watched the emotions warring on Piper's face. It's all so new to him. He isn't even sure what he believes himself.
Lynx stepped off the path and edged his way over to a knoll that overlooked Moonbow Meadow. "We're here," he announced. His eyes gleamed with pride as Piper closed the last few strides to stand beside him. "Spectacular, huh, Piper?"
Piper surveyed the valley below them. Wow. It's huge. Far bigger than I imagined. It's like drawings I've seen of the ancient Roman amphitheaters, minus the seating, of course. And the basin is enormous. The grass is so green and even, like a carpet covering the entire area. No doubt the elves use magic to make it grow just the right length to give it such a well-groomed appearance.
Lush trees and bushes surrounded the meadow. As he'd noticed since entering the faerie realm, some plants were in full bloom while others were loaded with mature fruit despite it being spring. The fragrance of evergreen trees mixed with those of the flowers and bushes, filling the air with wonderful scents. The waterfall on the far side of the meadow shimmered in the twilight as the water tumbled over the rocks and cascaded to the pool below.
Elementals of all ages were playing games in groups, strolling along various paths, chasing each other, or sitting on the grass chatting. Pixies were performing aerial acrobatics to amuse themselves and others. A few faeries flitted through the air creating a luminescent glow that trailed after them in the twilight. Piper smiled at the sight. I bet that's what they call faerie dust.
"Well, what do you think, Piper?"
Piper stood in silence a moment more as he took in the scene. "I have to admit, it looks like something...out of a faerie tale."
"Yes!" Lynx chortled in victory. "I knew you'd like it. It's my favorite place. But you haven't seen anything yet. Wait until the moon comes out. Then you'll see the moonbows that give the meadow its name. They're like rainbows, only because they form at night they are called moonbows. And wait until you see how many of them there are."
"I'm already impressed."
"Yeah, it's hard not to be." Lynx pointed to a spot at the bottom of the slope. "Look, there's Master Crescendo and his wife. Is that your friend Rupert with them?"
Piper nodded. "Yes, that's him." Suddenly, he felt a knot growing in his stomach.
"I guess this is where I leave you then. I see some of my friends down in the meadow playing a game of Mischief." Lynx took a few steps and then paused to look back at Piper. "Call out if you need anything. I won't be far. Good luck. I hope everything goes well with your friend."
Me, too. "Thanks, Lynx. Have fun with your friends."
Lynx started down the slope at one angle and Piper at another. When Piper was about halfway down the slope, Rupert turned and looked up. Rupert waved, said something to Master Crescendo, and started up to meet Piper.
When they were within a few steps of each other Rupert asked, "Is everything alright?"
"Of course." Piper's brow furrowed. I hope I don't look as nervous as I feel. "Why wouldn't it be?"
"I just wondered why you had to go back to the Summerstorm home this afternoon."
"Oh, that. Melodica, that's Redd-Leif's wife, fixed a special dinner, and the family had friends over. They wanted me to play some music for them." Partially true; I did play for some of the neighbors who dropped by. The real reason I went back was to have them help me figure out what to tell you and how.
"Yeah, the same thing happens to me at Crescendo's cottage. It seems the elementals like our music. We're celebrities."
"Probably, just exotic."
"Outsiders from another realm, a curiosity. They don't see many humans."
"Maybe, but I like the attention."
"Must be the performer in you," Piper teased.
Rupert grinned then pointed across the meadow. "We should head down to the waterfall. The moon will be rising soon and you'll see how the meadow gets its name."
"I've heard a lot about it from Lynx so I am excited to see it."
"So, how is it, staying with the 'royal family' of Elfhaven?"
"What do you mean?"
"I hear Fae are considered royalty in the faerie realm because they are the most ancient race. All the fair folk descended from them somehow. Since Redd-Leif Summerstorm is the only Fae to be seen in decades, they think of him as elite among the elementals."
"Really? I had no idea. They've never mentioned it." Piper thought for a moment. That's why the guards called me "prince" when I entered the realm. "Maybe that explains the cottage."
"Cottage? I've heard it's more like a mansion."
"That's an understatement. I think the Summerstorm cottage has more rooms than Castle Welf, and the craftsmanship is amazing. A stand of trees has been enchanted to grow into the shapes needed for rooms in one-half of the cottage, with beautiful balconies woven of live vines and branches. The other half of the house is formed from enchanted rock that flows back into the mountainside. The Summerstorms have a lot of visitors and like to make everyone comfortable. Honestly, I wouldn't be surprised to find they have rooms underground for those that prefer it. I'm staying with the family on the tree side of the cottage. I'll show you around when you come over."
"I'd like that." Rupert hesitated when they came to a fork in the path they were following. "Let's cut through Fae Grove. It has the most remarkable trees."
As they continued toward the grove, Rupert pointed out elementals that he knew, mostly musicians, but also healers and other elementals he had met. They paused to watch the elemental youth playing Mischief, and Piper cheered when Lynx scored.
When they entered Fae Grove, starlight shone through the leaves of the trees creating a dappling effect that flickered due to a slight breeze.
Piper gazed about him trying to take it all in. "The trees are remarkable. Even better, the light is dazzling."
Rupert turned to Piper and gasped. "Piper! Look at your skin. It's got a silver-blue tinge to it." His eyes grew wide. "You must be Fae."
Piper looked down at his arm. His skin gleamed silver-blue. He gulped. "I...I..."
Rupert burst out laughing. "Oh, Piper, you should see the look on your face."
Piper stared at Rupert.
Rupert doubled over as his laughter increased. When he finally caught his breath, he said, "All the elementals come here to pretend they are Fae. Look, even my skin is silver-blue in this light. I must be Fae, too."
Piper gawked at Rupert. It was true; Rupert's skin glowed silver-blue as well.
Between breaths Rupert continued, "Everyone's skin is silver-blue here. It's something to do with the light in this meadow. Moonbows and silver-blue skin. Maybe there is some kind of spell on this place; or maybe it's just a freak of nature that the light is different here."
Piper forced a slight chuckle. "Very funny, Rupert." Time to find out if I still have a friend or not. Piper took a deep breath and blurted out, "What if I told you, I truly am half-Fae?"
"Yeah, sure you are." Rupert gradually stopped laughing and his smug expression slowly dissolved as Piper remained solemn. He whispered, "You're serious?"
Piper nodded. "I am."
"Redd-Leif Summerstorm is my father; his elven wife, Melodica, is my mother."
Rupert gaped at Piper for a full minute. "That means you're...you're an elemental."
"Yes, it does."
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|The book continues with The Piper, part 37. We will provide a link to it when you review this below.|
Cast of Characters
*Piper = A musical apprentice, just turned age 15.
*Rupert = A musical apprentice. Piper's friend, age 14.
*Grand Master Raymond Acker = Head of the music guild. Piper's grandfather. Recently deceased leaving Piper an orphan under the care of the music guild.
*Captain Burkehart = Captain of the Guard at Castle Welf
*Redd-Leif Summerstorm = A Fae
*Master Braun = Troubadour recently promoted to the rank of Master in the music guild at Castle Welf
*Sheba = an enchanted creature in wolf form
*Melodica = an Elven female
*Master Raven = Elf; master hunter
*Lynx = Ten-year-old son of Redd-Leif and Melodica Summerstorm
*Serein = Six-year-old daughter of Redd-Leif and Melodica Summerstorm
*Master Crescendo = Elven High Mage, First Sage of Music and Song
* Lady Spring = Wife of Master Crescendo
Elementals, also called Fair Folk by humans
*Fae = Oldest of the elemental races. Known as strong, swift and deadly by their enemies. Characterized by white hair and skin that shimmers silver-blue in direct moonlight. Usually taller than humans and muscular.
*Elf = Most numerous of the elementals. Often slightly taller and more slender than humans.
*Pixie = In their normal form they are six inches tall with wings, but they can change size to as large as humans or as small as a faerie.
*Faerie = Vary in height from one to three inches. Wings vary and can appear to be like those of dragonflies or butterflies.
Fair Folk = Name given to faerie races by humans. Refers to elves, Fae, faeries, brownies, sprites, gnomes, dwarfs, etc.
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