It had been eighteen months since Maevis Etherwood, prima ballerina, had found her husband in bed with his mistress. Eighteen months since she was investigated for their murders, and subsequently cleared due to lack of evidence. Eighteen months since she retired from the world of dance, and seemingly disappeared…
To La-la land, I suppose. Heavy set matron Roberta Warren thought to herself, pondering the whereabouts of her ex-daughter-in-law. She always thought the girl was a bit flighty, as was her whole family.
She was sorting through some old things, again…bleached-white teeth ground together, beneath grimacing pink-stained lips. The creases around the corners of her mouth grew deeper. She growled, as her manicured hands clutched the picture frame. In it was the picture of a beautiful auburn-haired bride, and Roberta’s own blonde, handsome son Reese. She let out a grut, dropping the picture to the floor. Glass shattering!
She stood trembling.
“Now, dear.” Her husband Edgar said as he came into the room. He picked up the picture frame. The man had envisioned this scene over a dozen times this past year. “I’ll get a broom to sweep up the glass. Go have some wine, hun.”
“I just cannot stand to…to still see any remnants of her. To see her face again! To see…”
“Well, that’s a picture of our son, too Bertie.”
“Yes,” she said, “Making the biggest mistake of his life.” She put her hands on her hips. Shook her head, her blonde angled bob tossing from her frantic movements. “I never did like that girl! Never did approve!”
“Well, I always thought Maevis was a quiet, nice young lady….just…different is all.”
“She killed our son!”
Her husband shook his head, and put his arm around her shoulder consolingly. “Now dear…you know the truth is…”
“Yes, I know they really couldn’t prove anything…” She said, as her words started to trail off. She cleared her throat again. “But Edgar, you were a lawyer. You know there are more ways to murder somebody than by a gun, or a knife…”
“Yes, Bertie.” He said, “We’ve been through this…”
“She did something to scare them.” She continued, “To shock them. She had to have done something!” Roberta was shaking, again. “Reese was a healthy, young man. And, that Barbie or Bambi…whatever her name was? Well she was only twenty-two.”
“You really want to persuit this civil case, don’t you.”
“Yes, Edgar.” She said, “I cannot rest until we see her…and the rest of that crazy family, get what they deserve.”
Fiona Etherwood sat in her office staring out the picture window. Christmas was approaching, her busiest time of year…and the malaise was overtaking her. Fiona felt dizzy and weak.
The leaves were changing, as the Pennsylvania Hillside beyond the city looked like bouquets of Orange and red chrysanthemums. Seems like just two weeks ago they were bright green… She thought, pushing a lock of auburn hair out of her eyes.
Prototypes lined her shelves; dolls, handheld electronic games, lifelike stuffed animals that growled, barked, or purred when you rub their necks. She had broke two of Hutchens’ latest creations; she hadn’t meant to. She had just lost control, and they went sailing across the room…crashed into the wall.
She had drank some Yasminea tea during her coffee break, and had used her magic to restore them, erasing any trace of damage. And, with that…depleted more strength. She was now as sick as Maevis was a year and a half ago…
As sick as her parents had been, when he left the company in her hands…
It was happening again…
She did not want to alarm Cayden. It would lead to another one of those conversations about Cayden quitting school, to help her. They just couldn’t do that now–couldn’t afford to do anything else that would make them look less normal again, in the eyes of the wingless people.
She only had one Yasminea petal left at the office, tucked safely away in her desk drawer. She would have to ingest it before heading home.
Night fell in the trees, and goblins moved around freely. This time at night, they did not fear the young, powerful Queen. She was most likely sound asleep, in her castle in Oberia. They hoped she could not even sense them, frolicking about in the Hollow of Four Gates.
A portal was created, to reach the one who would revert things back to the way they were. To free the goblins from their perceived tyrany, so they could create their mischief–free to roam about in any realm. Even the Outer Realm, where they could cause the most trouble. Chibito, imp that she was, scampered out of a hollow, rotten smelling tree trunk…
She heard his footfall, which she would sense anywyere. He trepsed through the woods. Brown leather boots squashing fern, twigs, and errant berries. Until he stopped in the Hollow. Chibito ran to his feet, “Yes, My Lord.” She said, bowing to him. She had found a new master even Darker and more sinister than the first….