Me brother, Kort, and I arranged to surprise our mum with flowers and a day with all her grandchildren together in one house. May Khaz bless her happy home!
A gnome decked out in a hat with lime and pink feathers, complete with a pair of tusks, waved delightedly.
“Wow, Vamen, where in the world did you find that topper?” I marveled at his newest head adornment. Outlandish hats are to Vamen what designer shoes are to human women.
“Got it from an angry jungle gnome. Long story.” He cackled with a dismissive wave. “How are you and Ringo doing — BY BONZO’S BRASS BUTTONS, IS THAT YOURS?”
I place me hand on the head of a blond toddler peeking out behind me robe. “This is Bael, our wee son, aye. He’s nearly two now. He’s off to stay with his ‘Opa and Oma’ while Ringo takes me on yet another fun-filled expedition.”
Bael gave a floppy wave and began quacking enthusiastically, his new favorite game. “Gak, gak!”
“Wow! I’ve been away longer than I thought. Sheesh, what else have I missed? Nothing big, I hope.”
Once upon a time, in a forest far away, there lived gentle, kind creatures. All the animals lived in harmony with one another. The land was green and peaceful until one day, a great evil spread throughout the forest. The trees and plants wilted while once gentle animals turned into rabid killers, turning upon one another. The spirits of the forest whispered no more. The ursine children of the forest fled into a tunnel and hid. All hope was lost.
Much time passed when a beautiful princess from a mountain of iron came riding through on her unicorn. She saw the devastation of a once majestic forest and wept. The princess sought out the creatures in the tunnel, offering help, but they turned away from her, not knowing if she was a demon in disguise. The princess had to find another way to help them.