Tag Archives: Fairy Tale

You Are Mine! (A Tanka Poem)

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YOU ARE MINE!

Something comes at night
Holding breath; no creaks, no sound
Covers drawn up tight
The moon peers in my window:
It, illuminated so

Saying: “You Are Mine!
From this night forward, believe
We are meant to be.
To the underbelly, fly
Nothing wicked to deny.”

Covers off, so tossed
A soft sprinkling of dust
Anticipation…
My mattress far below me
A smile lights up my being.

Out the window, soar
Swoop and laugh forever more
Reach the stars above
Quick! The morning sun comes fast
What is left behind?

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Author’s Note:

From Wikipedia:

Tanka consists of five units (often treated as separate lines when Romanized or translated) usually with the following pattern of onji:

5-7-5-7-7.

The 5-7-5 is called the kami-no-ku (“upper phrase”), and the 7-7 is called the shimo-no-ku (“lower phrase”). Tanka is a much older form of Japanese poetry than haiku.

About 1300 years old (I’ve seen 1200 too, so..why quibble), A Tanka has been hitting the poetry rounds lately.

This is my first Tanka, and I based it on a well loved story (see the tags if you don’t see what I was playing with).

ADDENDUM:

This is what cosmic synchronicity is about: I got, on Friday morning (the day after I wrote this), an email from The Purple Treehouse that their poetry prompt to express a different poetic form,  this week  to write a “WAKA” for you to think within 5-7-5-7-7 syllables and let your love know, how much you love…  or, one of its’ forms:

Chōka consists of 5-7 Japanese sound units phrases repeated at least twice, and concludes with a 5-7-7 ending.

The Tanka, as described above, which allowed a bit more expression

“There are still other forms of waka. In ancient times its moraic form was not fixed – it could vary from the standard 5 and 7 to also 3, 4, 6, longer than 7 morae part in a waka. Besides that, there were many other forms like Bussokusekika, Sedōka, Katauta etc.” (copied from The Purple Treehouse)

So, now I’m linking this piece up to their site and poetry blog hop. Please click on The Purple Treehouse link and take a look at the other poets expressing this poetic form. I Hope you like it.

The Golden Princess: An Un-Fairy Tale

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Once upon a time…King Midas touched his daughter and she turned into gold.

His despair was genuine, as was his outrage, all swiftly turning into self-loathing and shame. He fled his court, wailing at the travesty brought upon him by his golden touch. He never returned.

The Golden Princess was left behind. The hand that had reached out to her father in his anguish was still outstretched. Her still face reflected the the concern she had for him, her shoulders slightly hunched; all immobile. Except…

She was aware.

Aware of all that went on around her. The King’s advisers tried to keep decorum, waiting (in vain) for Midas to return. That lasted only so long. A bloody power struggle for the rule of the land ensued, as the only true heir was a lovely gold statue.

Whatever gold items that had been left behind were taken: either to support the efforts of the warring factions, or stolen to create a new life somewhere else. The Golden Princess was the last artifact of The Midas Touch remaining in one piece.

She was aware of all the plotting, the treacheries, the betrayals. She heard her father both cursed and praised, although the praises were for the gold he created. She heard grief about her own loss, from servants and from lords, and she heard some of the tales of those who wished they had bedded her…and more.

Awareness was a curse unto itself.

Time passed. Long giving up counting the days and nights, she knew not how long. Moved around now and then, new faces appeared, new voices heard. They long since stopped calling her Princess Marygold. The Golden Princess became her own legend.

The worst, or so she thought at the time, was being placed into a dark room. Hearing the bolt and lock clack and snick so loudly, she remained in darkness for an uncountable determination. She screamed and cried and wailed and keened…all inside her golden self.

No one heard. No one heard anything of her for a very long time.

Voices. Loud yells…and screams. Clashing of metal on metal, explosions shook her, waking her out of her stupor. “I’m here. I’m here!” she wanted to bellow. She wanted light, freedom, release. It had gnawed at her.

She was aware of the sound of the lock being broken, of the bolt driven back, of the door flung open and torch light coming in. The joy she felt at these things, taking in the unknown faces. The men, battered and bloody, whooped and grinned when they saw her. She heard shouts of “The Golden Princess!!” from these men and then outside of her imprisonment.

Lifted up and out, with great effort, the men brought her up to the throne room. Or, what was left of the room. She was aware there was blood along the way, bodies strewn. Damage…damage to the walls, stairways crumbled, light streaming in from what had been the west wall of the hall.

The Golden Princess was placed down in a shaft of light that streamed in from the gaping wound of the castle. The men talked continuously, starting at her, running their hands all over her. All over her. They stopped only when one man yelled to them, as he walked over and they parted for him, going to  knee.

“Please,” she thought with urgency. “Please, find a way to release me.”

In a language she was unfamiliar with, he spoke to his horde. They brayed in unison at times to his speech, the rest of the time they were rapt in attention. When he was done, as one, they stood, and cheered, cheered, cheered!

If she could have shed tears, a dam would not have been able to hold them. She did not know these people, but to be in the light, to not be so alone…

They removed her from her castle, her home and prison of so long. She was aware of being put on a cart and moved, screaming inside when a covering was placed on her, again hiding out any light. She was aware of the voices, the animal noises, the movement of the cart, then being hoisted off the cart and brought inside.

She was aware when the covering was taken off, and she was equally aware of the immense heat around her. A cauldron, large and blackened, fire raging underneath it,  took up a good part of the room. New men surrounded her, black with soot and grease and sweating.

Their rough hands brought her to the edge of the cauldron. She was aware of their laughter, their horrid, filthy jokes. Vile, vile men, they handed her with no care. They dropped her on the floor, and her outstretched hand…her outstretched hand…one of them took red hot glowing pincers from a smaller smoldering bin, and she was aware as he took great care in separating that hand, at the wrist, the thinnest part.

She was aware of the noise it made as it hit the floor.

Great peals of laughter surrounded her now. The hiss and noise of the fire and cauldron goo mixed with the glee of the men. Many hands now were on her, and again she was aware she was lifted. A count started; they all joined in, and what she assumed was three, they tossed her.

She was aware of the hands letting go. She was aware of the short flight in the air. She was aware of the horrible heat. She was aware of the splash she made, and the sinking down, and the melting away, and she was aware, aware, aware…

She was aware…they found a way to release her.

 

2011 in review

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The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2011 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Syndey Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 18,000 times in 2011. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 7 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

My Life On The Amazon!

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“Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun.” — Mary Lou Cook

ANNOUNCING…

My very first solo eStory on Amazon

My first solo eStory!!

Flash Over is only the first (hopefully) of my ePublications. I hinted at this before, and now it’s the start of the reality.

Thanks to the fine people at Trestle Press I now have an eStory published that is not part of an anthology. It’s 4,000 words long, and it costs just $ .99. I get 70% of that, so…yeah, the more the merrier. Won’t you make me merry? 😉

Product Description: Seth had been devoured by fire. What does a man do when the life of flame becomes as real as his waking life? When the sound of fire is the beat of his blood through his body? When what he sees he lives?

You can find it at Amazon: Flash Over

I have two more stories published, both in charity anthologies, supporting Doctors Without Borders through Ethics Trading (two great ladies: Thank You Sarah & Catrina). You can find them on my brand new Amazon Authors Page. Two volumes, both $3.99, and both support a worthy cause. Please give them a try.

After Dark has my paranormal luv tale of two Trolls and the Ferryperson who tries to come between them. Tongue in cheek fun, with some punnery from me.

Seven other authors make out this wonderful volume of paranormal fun.

Only $3.99; proceeds go to Doctors Without Borders!!!

Dawn of Indie Romance was the first anthology I have a story in. Redhead Riding is, yes, a romance, from ME. That might surprise those who enjoy my creepy stuff.

Again, seven other writers lead to a great book.

As above, Only $3.99; proceeds go to Doctors Without Borders!!!

More to come as I journey down the Amazon.

Video Trailer 2: The Rule of Three Blogfest

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Join Us In The Rule of Three Writers Challenge BlogFest!

Final Day to Sign Up: Monday October 3, 2011

I am co-hosting an exciting creative writing blog challenge, and I hope you will join the over 40 writers participating!

During October 2011, venture into the shared world of Renaissance (information below). You will create three characters set in that world: any genre, any time period. During the course of four weekly postings you will craft your tale where your three characters interact, or not, winding up in one great cumulative story. Each Friday, you will be given a set of prompts to move you along until you reach your climax. There is the chance to discover new writers, see a different side of ones you already admire, and hopefully have tons of fun doing this: you might also win some prizes (listed below as well). Read on!!
REN3<a href=”http://wp.me/P1mecg-bV”><img src=”http://i1190.photobucket.com/albums/z451/Jc_Martin/RuleofThreeshield.jpg&#8221; alt=”REN3″ width=”242″ height=”242″ /></a>

Grab this code for the badge created by the wonderful Portia Burton, Concept by the equally wonderful Lisa Vooght

The Shared World: Renaissance

An outpost town in the middle of nowhere, but many routes (the TARGE, KRIS, and VILLEIN are the largest of routes, but not the only ones) pass through or by the town. The SCHIAVONA  Desert is encroaching on one side (to the West), a once lush forest (the CULDEES) lies to the East and South. A large river, the ESPADON,  runs through the forest of ASSART (to the north) but it is not close by. The ROUNDELI Mountains are also to the North, far, far away, and when you look towards them you don’t know if they are an illusion or not. Closer by are the smaller hill chain, the MAIN GAUCHE and the MINOR GAUCHE, that fed the mining, creating caverns (the KASTANES)  and passages (one particular passage is known as  HERIOT’S PASS) lie underground.

The town has had a number of identities throughout it’s history: A trading post; a mining town; a ghost town until it was rediscovered; a thriving community; the scene of a number of great battles; the scene of one great tragedy (that led to it’s Ghost Town standing); a  town of great joys and celebrations, and so much more.

At this point in time, there is a general population of 333. A mixture of a community. It boasts families that have lived there for generations upon generations, but they are in the minority, and are not in positions of power. There are traders who have come back here, at the end of their many travails, to settle in. The new families and power players have taken this as a last refuge for themselves, hoping to rebuild lives torn apart on the way here.

EVERYONE has a secret!

Welcome to Renaissance.

Enjoy your stay.

For Full Guidelines & List of Prizes: Click Here

Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list…and:

Announcement: The Doll is a horror novelette by J.C. Martin that has only been read by a limited audience so far. It will be FREE for anyone who signs up on the Rule of Three linky list. We will email participants on the linky list with the direct link.

My Teaser Stories Set in Renaissance:

Renaissance: Prissy’s Story

Renaissance: Jewel’s Story


Under the GoblinTree

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(c) Kasey Sorsby  Tanglewood Thicket Creations

Laundry swirling, almost  done, now the Goblins shall have their  fun!

The piles of mismatched socks were strewn about the Goblin abode, stolen by the nightmares O’ so bold.  Dancing and cavorting, each Goblin took a sock,  had a bite, then threw that sock behind in pure delight. What follows, then, is quite a mess, for chewed up socks can cause distress, and Goblins-tall and large and tiny and small-are not beyond to have a brawl; when the Goblin lair is all astir with bitten socks at the roots of their Fir.

Jareth came down off his throne and said “Enough! Desist with this feast, you shiny ugly little beasts. Can’t you once, come washing day, leave the stockings in pairs, you horrid Fae?”

Like struck with lightning, or a strong stiff boot, the Goblins ceased and looked at their ill gotten loot. They sniffed, they snarled, their eyes darted around, but eerily, without much sound (well, no sound a Human would hear; for that they would pay quite dear), but the Goblin King, he heard quite well, and around him the noise did swirl.

“Sock!” they shouted. “Sock galore! Pairs you know we all abhor! One by one, one by one, the gathering of sock must be done!” They chanted, they howled, they threw a fit, and on the pile of sock they did sit, and fume and fuss and sang quite sadly (and Jareth thought, “yes, and quite badly”).

Palm to palm, not in a kiss, but The Goblin King did ask but this: “I will not begrudge you this delicate treat, but press upon you: You Must Be Neat! This kingdom mine in which you dwell, the roots reach down but the socks do swell, and cuts the essence of the earth, so keep it neat, Goblins dear, be of good mirth.”

Nodding “ayes” and neatly stacking, the Goblins to a one went cracking. When done was done, and no more a mess, a small Goblin changeling with one curling tress, approached the Goblin King on his lofty throne.

“Hmmm?” he murmured to his drone, “Look what comes near. What shall we hear?”

Silence.

“Well?”

“Your majesty, come what may, ’tis soon for us a special day…the mortals up high do talk like days of yore, on September 19th, their calendar marking, for sure. May we not partake of the sock that Pirates favor, so that flavor we may savor?”

Jareth smiled, for the joke he knew, but allowed his Goblin to continue through. Straight man to Goblin, he nodded his noggin’, and asked “What sock be this, my fine young Goblin miss?”

The Goblin grinned with a toothsome mien: “Arrrrgyles, my lord, one and the same!”

All the Goblins laughed uproariously in glee as Jareth put the little one on his knee.

“Dance, Goblins, Dance!” he commanded quite profoundly, and all through the night they danced true and soundly.

Are not you he? (*Updated)

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He was that merry wanderer of the night, the despoiler of milk and beer, the prankster, the goblin, the puck…and she could not take her eyes off of him as he cavorted in front of her, boasting of his deeds, swelling with pride at his misdeeds, and his being falsely obedient to his king. The fae watched and listened, and sunk her fingers into the flowery beds and ate their nettles, and lapped up the nectar. They were as delicious as he.

Her gaze never left the hobgoblin while the King and Queen of the Fae, Oberon and Titania, hissed and danced around each other. Her Queen called for her attention, but it was the first time she could not truly obey. Robin Goodfellow-for that was the puck’s true name- leered and cajoled, goaded and swayed, all the time following his liege while mocking those around him. While sometimes mocking his king, behind his back.

Peaseblossom, fairy and attendant to the Queen of Fairy Land, was pleased as much as she was afraid. Oberon could be foul and full of wrath, and a fight between the two factions were not at all what she was feeling at the moment. To fight the Puck, yes, but not in the way the King and Queen of fairies fought. Not with anger and petty jealousies, but…a tumble through these woods? Aye, that was a fight to think of.

What? Tatania was whisking them all away? NO! No…yes, she must obey. She loved Tatania with all of her being. She was goddess, nymph, perfect divine, and it was Peaseblossom’s duty to obey, to serve, to give her all. So, she left in the train of fairies, attending to their Queen in her vexation.

She found the bower of eglantine and musk-roses where Tatania rested, and cleaned it of the stray leaves and wild life that snuggled down in her bed. Singing her to sleep with her brethren, Peaseblossom sent a fairy kiss over her Queen’s head, set a guard to watch o’er her, and off she went into the night, in search of her good fellow.

Finding Robin with Oberon, Peaseblossom winced and made herself smaller than small. She saw the king take something from Puck’s hand, saw him smile with evil intent, and then was he gone. Robin’s malevolence was apparent, but it gave her no heed as she intercepted his flight.

Wherefore doth thou go, master. I would ask for some time with thee.”

Puck had a witticism on the tip of his tongue, but held it when he looked in her eyes. “Your wish, M’lady, is mine. Whither away?

O! O, what a night.

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The exquisite pencil drawing is by a very talented young woman Portia Burton.  It has been a  pleasure making her acquaintance on FaceBook, as she is truly a lovely soul.  This story is dedicated to her, as much forthe use of the drawing as for her love of Shakespeare and her intelligence, humor and grace.  If you’d like to contact her for art commissions, her email is:

  • portia786@hotmail.com

*AUTHORS NOTE: I was SO immersed in directing “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” this summer that when I came across Portia’s art, the two seemed to fit so well. I already knew she loved the play, and most (if not all) things Shakespeare, and AMND IS my favorite of all his comedies. When writing this, I forgot: not everyone is so in love with the play.

For those not in the know: this is set in Act Two, Scene One and part of Act Two, Scene Two through the eyes of one of the fairies. Peaseblossom is the first of the four fairies named in the play, the others being Cobweb, Mustardseed, and Moth (or Mote, depending on who publishes), and since she was named first, I chose that to be our fairy who meets Puck (or Robin Goodfellow, which is the character’s real name; a Puck is it’s own mystical thing; he’s also mentioned in a variety of ways, goblin, hobgoblin, etc.) and sets up the conflict of the play between the King and the Queen of Fairy Land, the magical forest in which they dwell. In the play, Shakespeare does nothing more than say: enter A fairy...

I hope this helps in the enjoyment. Maybe it’ll stir you to read &/or see the play. If so, let me know. I enjoyed this trip into seeing the same story through a different point of view.

Kitsune-Mochi and The Bara Oni

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Part One: The Kitsune-Mochi and Tora Baku

Part Two: He Does Not Dream

Part Three: Kitsune-Mochi and The Bara Oni

The bramble hugged Hisoka the tailor’s body, his blood pooling on the ground as the prickly shrub tightened around him. He had screamed when it first began, then plead for help, then looked into the eyes of the beautiful rose woman before him, gasped three times, and died. Keikyoku, the Bara Oni, smiled, dipping her toes into the red liquid. She closed her eyes, head back, threw her arms open, and sang as she drank in his essence.

Chiyoko, the Kitsune-Mochi, and Fox had watched all of this occur in silence, sitting on a rock out of the way. Fox looked around him, licking his lips, hoping Bara Oni would leave some fluid for him to lap up, but he knew that wasn’t going to happen.

The Bara Oni stopped singing once all the blood had been absorbed. The roses that ran across her body grew deeper in color, standing out against her milk white skin like a beacon of life. The rose petals were moving of their own accord as she lowered her arms and turned around to face Chiyoko and Fox. Her smile did not waver.

“Did this please you, Kisune-Mochi? Was this all that you wished?” sang out the Oni.

Chiyoko nodded. “Hai. It was well done.” Fox ignored them, cleaning himself as they ignored him. “He knew, at the end, did he not?”

Taking root where she was, the Bara Oni nodded. “He knew, when he looked into my eyes, all that brought him to this. He was not a good man at all.”

“No, he wasn’t,” Fox chimed in. “Chiyoko, I could have done for him. Why did we need…her?”

“Hush, Fox. She is our guest, and has done a great service. Honor her, or no salmon tonight.”

“Hmmpphh,” Fox swished his tail, licking his lips as well at the thought of Chiyoko’s preparation of salmon and wild onions. “I am sorry if I did offer you any offense, Bara Oni.”

The demon stared at him with wide red rimmed eyes. “The tailor will make a fine addition for Maoh Mikoto in his Oni realm. Do you wish to join him, Fox?”

A slight shudder passed through Fox, but he would not let it show. “Try what you will, Keikyoku. You are no match for me.”

“Enough of this pissing contest! The two of you!” Chiyoko demanded. Both Bara Oni and Fox turned to the Kitsune-Mochi and bowed acquiescence. “Good. There is no need for this. Fox, we have many, many more vile ones to take vengeance on. Your nature will remain sated. In this case, it was good to enlist the help of our honored guest.”

“I saw what he did, as he died. It was good of you to call me for this. I am in your favor, and will come again when you call. Farewell, Chiyoko.”  The Bara Oni faded away, leaving behind an exquisite Blood Rose bush with hungry thorns in her place.

“What about ‘Farewell, Fox’?” he humphed.

“HUSH! You are too full  of yourself today. This was just, and you know it. Hisoka killed many, many women. He lured them to his home, raped them, then slit their throats in his back garden, feeding their blood into the soil and burying their bodies in patches, where he later planted rose bushes. This one belonged to Keikyoku. Now Keikyoku owes us a favor as well, and our allies grow. This was handled in the way I deemed it proper. Do you not agree?”

Fox sat silently, staring at the glistening bramble where the body of the tailor was encased. “Salmon?” he asked, finally.

Chiyoko sighed. To keep her familiar happy, he must be fed. To keep her powers ready for what lay ahead, he must dine well. “Yes, Fox, yes. Let us go catch and prepare our dinner. Come.”

The Kitsune-Mochi rose and walked east towards the river. Fox stared after the witch, then, when she was out of sight, padded over to the rose bush and tore out one of the largest roses, chewing it up and spitting it out. A thorn pierced his nose, he yelped, and a drop of his blood fed the bush.

“Hmmpphh,” Fox said, as he sauntered off towards his soon to be prepared meal. The Bara Oni savored her meal of Fox blood.

The Kitsune-Mochi and Tora Baku

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Chiyoko had bribed Kitsune, the trickster fox, with his favorite food, a freshly caught  kunimasu salmon that was ready to spawn. A rice ball, expertly made, sealed the pact. Chiyoko gained her familiar: Kitsune’s magical prowess was hers, as she had wished for. Spirit Fox hissed his displeasure, but still licked his whiskers clean.

“What do you wish of me, Kitsune-mochi? You have fed me well, and must now continue to do so, if you want my services. Tell me your story, and we shall dream together such cruel delights.”

Chiyoko told him, as she prepared another fish…

Nobou had not lived up to his name. He took what woman or girl he wanted, all the time professing his deepest love for me. I accepted, at first, the shame he brought upon me, for I truly believed in the love he professed. I did  believe his lies, until he ruined Fumiko, my younger sister. Nobou crushed her delicate beauty in an afternoon by the still waters of  Saiko lake, near Mount Fuji.

Fumiko tried to fight his advances off, to the regret of all. She was found unconscious, bloodied from head to delicate toe, naked and feverish from infected wounds.  Fumiko drifted in and out of delirium for close to a week, uttering only “iie Nobu…iie!” once, before she drifted away into the shadow lands of Yomi.

What little law was practiced was of no use to my family. Nobou had been seen leaving the village the morning after Fumiko was found, in “quite a haste”, or so it appeared to the farmer who passed him by just as the sun was rising for the day.

“Masanori-san,” I said, gaze averted and bowing to the farmer.  “Did you talk to Nabou? Please, did he say where he was off to?” Masanori the farmer only shook his head and continued working in his field. Four days later Fumiko was dead, and I approached the farmer again, with the same result.

Two weeks after the funeral ceremony, my mother passed away into Yomi as well. Father took off after Nabou a day later, in a rage like I had never seen before in so gentle a man. Weeks passed, then a month, then two…and my father has never returned. I decided that to have the justice that was deserving it must be mine to deal out. I returned to this spot off of Saiko Lake, where we found Fumiko. It is March, when the kunimasu salmon would spawn, and I set this plan in motion. Great Fox, you are that plan.

As a child I  had sat at the feet of my grandmother and aunts, listening to the tales of the Kitsune-Mochi, the solitary witch who plied the trickster fox with food. Thus, fox became their thrall, and the evil and vengeance that would ensue from such a pairing. Instead of frightening me, as it did Fumiko, I had dreamt of having that power myself, and woe to any who would  hurt me or those I loved.

Chiyoko’s tears of the telling mixed into the preparation of the second salmon, and this doubly satisfied Kitsune as he gobbled up this treat. “Chiyoko, your wish is mine now. Come, let us find this Nobou.”

For two years, two months, two weeks and three days, Nobou escaped Chiyoko’s wrath. The story of the fox witch reached him no matter where he went, his name attached in waves of threats and horrors to be visited upon “The Man Who So Deserved His Fate!” Changing names did not deter their coming, nor clothing nor disguise nor distance. Always coming closer, always leaving others whose evils were as great crushed beneath the power of the Kitsune-mochi! Those stories grew in those two years plus, each one driving more fear into Nabou’s dwindling soul.

It was on that third night that Chiyoko and Fox caught up to Nobou. Fox, as directed, disguised himself as a woman of such exquisite beauty that none were immune to her lure. Nobou was easily entrapped, and set to have this delicacy as his own. But, Fox played his part well. Fox pushed and pulled, flirted and flared, delicately balanced demure and distance with demand and desire. Enjoying the dance, Fox led Nobou through the illusions of love like one never experienced before.

As Nobou slept, Chiyoko, with Fox’s powers at her command, drew to her Tora Baku, the dream-devouring Tiger spirit. “What is your wish, Kitsune-mochi? What pleasures can I assist you with?”

Smiling, Chiyoko brought Tora Baku to the sleeping world that Nobou floated through.  “Take his dreams of wanton pleasures, O great Tora, O great one, and eat to your own pleasure. Leave him the horror of his deeds, leave him the blood and fear and shattered lives, leave him the gaping raw edges of despair and pain and suffering. It is his want, his needs, his blessings upon himself.”

So Tora Baku ate the dream life of Nobou, and was more than pleasantly sated. Nightmare upon nightmare visited Nobou in his sleep, and even upon waking the nightmares did not cease. No matter where he turned, no matter where he ran, no matter where he sought help, the nightmare of his life descended upon him.

Nobou took his life, what living shell that was left, and was mourned by none. His broken body, upon the rocks at the bottom of the cliff, fed the animals and birds, and it was just. No one found his bones for many, many years, and then only a few, for the rest were scattered by those who had fed well. Nobou’s slim spirit remained beside that cliff, and every now and then Fox would return to laugh at him and urinate on the spot where Nobou’s body had first landed.

Chiyoko, Kitsune-mochi, and Fox traveled together for a long, long time. They  created their own legends as they lived them.

Those stories are for another time.

Watch your sleep, for Tora Baku still prowls, and is hungry.

 

Holo Answers

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“Did that help in anyway?”

“Um, no. Not really. ‘Get A Life’ doesn’t really answer my question,” Bob was snide and crestfallen at the same time.

“Look, Bob…you asked me to solve your non-dating, abysmally alone and sad, sad situation. You kvetched about it for almost four minutes.”

“Kvetched?”

“Old wise prophet saying. Look. Let me see if I have this right. OK?”

” k.”

“Good. Don’t interrupt me: The All Knowing Head, moi, Will Answer All, Always.”

“You already said that when we started all this,” Bob retorted.

“Shhh…I said ‘Don’t Interrupt Me! Ahem…The All Knowing Head Will Answer All!”

Bob clamped up.

“Good. Just nod if I have the information correct.”

Bob nodded “yes,” with a silent “go on already.”

“Patience, Bob. Patience. Did not a wise man once say How can a society that exists on instant mashed potatoes, packaged cake mixes, frozen dinners, and instant cameras teach patience to its young?’

Look, you spend most of your free time at a computer or on your smart phone. You Google, Facebook, Twit, blog, re-blog,  comment on comments (and then sometimes re-comment), and you find yourself pining away for these abstract women from anywhere but face to face. You romanticize what it would be like to jet off to be with them, or visa-versa, and in no way, shape or form would you do anything about it. You live in your man cave and dream, hope, fantasize, get maudlin,  pine…yes…I know I said pine already. Get over it.

You, Bob, need to GET A LIFE. Capital letters and italicized. Get off the computer, go out and meet some real people, for Heaven’s and my sake. You whiners, always the same thing. ‘Wah…nobody loves me!’ Bob…love thyself first (and I don’t mean at night, alone in bed, under the covers). Get out of the house. Go to a meeting, museum, festival. Chat up some people.  Do not just go to a movie and call that ‘going out.’ Live. Splurge. Take some chances. You won’t know until you just walk up, strike up a conversation, and see what happens. The worst: she can mace you. The best: she’ll think you’re interesting. Maybe. I hope so.

Get a life, Bob. Get a live. Live. Now, go.”

Bob stared at the hologram projected Head In The Field. He sighed, nodded, put his hands in his torn jeans pockets, and walked away.

“Hey…you’re welcome!” The Head In The Field shouted out to Bob’s back. “Putz.”

Head yelled out “Next!”

Debbie forced herself up. Taking tiny supplicant steps, she found herself in front of The Head.

“I, The All Knowing Head, moi, Will Answer All, Always. What do you wish to know?”

“Well, um, I was like wondering if you could, um, help me with why I’m so alone? I look online all the time for the right guy, and, um…”

“Oy,” said The Head In The Field.