Glad you could join us for the next philosophical episode of Elliot’s Adventures. If you’re new here, you can catch up by returning tothe beginning, and reading really fast…
They fairly ran through the Bowls of Death meadow, but even if they had flown through it, Elliot couldn’t have shut out visions of the terror Cassandra endured there at the rebel Spike’s bidding. So why did his thoughts take an unbidden fork in the road?
My love is alive today because Arturo killed Spike. I believe with all my heart that he deserved to die — but was it justice?
Might it have been better to incarcerate him for the rest of his life? Maybe they could have put him to work repairing all the damage he’d done. Maybe it would have brought the families whose lives he’d ruined a sense of satisfaction to see him serving their needs.
Entering the Freelands, Elliot witnessed rebuilding everywhere he looked.
It wouldn’t have undone the deaths he caused, but is it really better that he isn’t here to help set things right? Families mourn, and then they have to repair Spike’s devastation.
What might Cassandra think?
But right now, he needed to speak with someone else.
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In his dream, Elliot reclined on a bed of rose petals in a field of jasmine. He could feel Cassandra’s kisses on his lips.
He woke on the floor of the bower in Fen to find her wiping the last of his regurgitated breakfast from his mouth. The scent of jasmine drifted in and gagged him. Rolling onto his side coughing more violently than the ancient wasp, he caught a flashing glint of brown surrounded by feathers in the doorway.
Shifting impatiently from foot to foot, Pierce, the hawk who’d brought them back, preened a chunk of glistening, ocher something from his shoulder, and fixed a smoldering one-eyed stare on Elliot.
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“Well if it isn’t Vernon the Valet-ison,” Spike sneered, reclining on a curved leaf, attended by an impossibly handsome young wasp. “I hafta admit, I didn’t expect her to send you. Arturo, bring our guest something to eat; he’s looking a little peak-ed. Or is it ‘piqued’?”
He looked Vernon up and down as the blushing Arturo, eyes downcast, sped off in the direction of the battered butterfly. “Sit,” Spike instructed, “let’s catch up.”
“I don’t have time to indulge you, Spike. Show me the Princess so I can report back to the Queen before she wonders what happened to me.”
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“Cassandra!… Cassandra! Can you hear me? Where are you? Are you all right?… Cassandra!” Elliot charged over the mossy ground, first in one direction, then in another, frantically calling as the shadows stretched deeper into the woods and the eastern sky darkened to cobalt.
“Cassandra…” his hoarseness whispered away to nothing as he slumped to the ground and wept.
“Excusé moi?” a smoky voice rasped, “I cannot help but wondair eef you are een need of some kind of asseestance.”
Glad you could join us for the next revealing episode of Elliot’s Adventures. If you’re new here, you can catch up by returning tothe beginning, and reading really fast…
“You’re the friend who told King Arnie that Lady Persephone had gone to the Deep Woods?” Elliot asked Queen Lilian with quiet respect.
“I am. We’ve been friends all our lives. When the Prince and I were children, we often played together while our parents talked about Kingdom business. As youths, we sat in their meetings to learn about being rulers. But I didn’t tell him everything — Persephone asked me not to tell him she was pregnant.”