Toothiana Queen of the Tooth Fairy Armies

The Guardians: Book Three

by William Joyce

“Selfless like her father. Pure of heart like her mother. She was named Toothiana” (Joyce, 84).

Chapter Eleven

A big hullabo is made by the Lunar Lamas over Katherine’s lost tooth. Bunnymund is baffled by their reaction. As long as she’s all right, that’s what matters. Besides,

“‘[i]t isn’t actually lost. She holds it in her hand, and now she’ll grow another one. It’s all very natural and, frankly, rather ordinary. It’s not like she lost chocolate truffled egg or anything'” (68).

♥ for Bunnymund and his logic. I can relate to the way he thinks.

But the Lamas reiterate that the value of Katherine’s tooth is that it’s a “child’s tooth” (69). As a result “Her Most Royal Highness” will visit them, which has never happened and they are tremendously thrilled. Hearing this North, bless him, wonders “if this personage on this continent, [for] he’d likely stolen something from her in his crime-filled younger years” (69).

It turns out, no, he never stole from her for she is not simply royalty but is, in fact, ” ‘Queen Toothiana, gatherer and protector of children’s teeth!'” (69). Everyone seems skeptical or surprised except Bunnymund:

“‘Oh, her,’ he said dismissively. ‘She dislikes chocolate. She claims it’s bad for children’s teeth'” (70).

I love this dynamic. One, it shows he’s aware of her. Two, it shows how feels about her principles (and furthermore, what those might be — the value of teeth outweighs chocolate. The reason for this will be explained later). Third, it shows how he thinks of her. (We’ll learn what the Toothiana thinks later). And fourth, it hints at, when they do officially meet, how they might interact: diagonal interests but not necessarily in opposition. (I seriously love all the Guardians’ interactions.)

Katherine, North, and Ombric (who feels that he remembers hearing about her) are curious. Mr. Qwerty, the bookworm-turned-library offers to tell them about her. But the story actually starts with her parents.

Whoo. Okay. Feels time.

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Scarlet

The Lunar Chronicles

by Marissa Meyer

I started reading this and then stopped because I wasn’t compelled by Wolf as representation of the wolf from “Little Red Riding Hood.” This was mostly because he felt like a cliché: dangerous but still alluring. Plus, his status as part of a group with outdated wolf terminology turned me out of the story. (e.g. alpha, beta, etc.)

But once Wolf and Scarlet finally started on their way to Paris…the story picked up.

Spoilers below

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An Angel

THE DRY, DUSTY air billowed in his eyes. Gripping his spear, Tahiq leaned his shoulder into the sand-flecked neck of his horse. His loyal friend nuzzled his hair, pants lifting his flyaway tangled hair. After days riding against the Nehev Desert, man and mount were exhausted. His clothes were soiled by blood and dirt, his scabbard had been lost in the battle, and his saddlebags  — one of them anyway — had been cut from the saddle. But Tahiq had his gold; he and Nieves could return monetarily victorious to Hebran. Just another day and they would be home. Hot water, fresh food, a soft bed. And best of all to Tahiq, his angel Ghadila would be there waiting for him. And that was all he needed to survive through these skirmishes. The memory of his angel.

Written30 July 2014

Word count: 135

Inspireda 1,000+ wd snapshot into these characters’ lives

Fairy Tale Friday: Princess of the Tower

Rapunzel

and Other Maiden in the Tower Tales From Around the World

Since it’s May I will be focusing exclusively on Rapunzel or ATU 310 Maiden in the Tower tales.

Princess of the Tower (94-101)

ATU 310 Maiden in the Tower

So Princess Solima was put into a fortress by the sea by her father, the king, because she had no qualms about marrying a poor man. (Seriously, I should write a crossover with this fairy tale and Disney’s Aladdin.)

At this point, our tale transitions to the poorer people. None of them precisely know why she’s gone, and we learn that “[e]ven the laborers of the fields…heard the news” and that one shepherd was an especially thoughtful thinker. He would

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Blue Flower

BLOOD POURED BETWEEN Arohini’s fingers. It gushed in great crimson waves, as if an ocean had been lit on fire; its brilliance stained the grass and the sand.  The gentle murmur of the sea pulled her out of her reflections, drawing her eyes momentarily away from the man cradled in her lap.

His head was tilted sideways, so that he would not drown on the blood in his mouth. The side of Tanaru’s throat had been slashed, along with the deep gouges that covered his face and his forearms. One particularly nasty one had nearly ripped his arm off. A hunk of flesh had been severed and a fountain of red drizzled down his sleeve. It splattered the pale blue cotton like rose petals.

But these were not the worse of his wounds. That honor belonged to the one in the middle of his chest where his opponent’s sword had impaled him. Blood the color of wine gushed from the hole, while the shreds of Tanaru’s shirt were delicately becoming soaked. The midday sky was turning into a red sunset.

Arohini nuzzled his forehead, but his eyes remained close. Bending closer, she touched her cheek to his lips. His breath warmed her skin, but only faintly. She frowned, brows knitting. Lifting her left hand, she stroked his temple, breathing the syllables of his name against his soft hair. Tanaru’s one remaining eye creaked open.

“Ooo…” Leaning closer, Arohini murmured quietly, voice slurred with panic, “Stay with me, I’m here, stay with me, I’m here, I’m here…”

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Tears of Regret

“right now I’d give anything if I had only known, 
I would never touch you, hold you, kiss your face, feel your arms around me…
love will break your heart when you say goodbye
but love is worth the pain and all the tears you cry”

– What We Believe In

Sharp, pinching nails dug into her chest, as if fiery fingers could sear her heart apart so that only cinders would remain.

“I can’t live without you,” she sobbed, indigo ripples of frothy hair brushing against his bloodied chest. The gaping hole was still steaming, charred skin adorned with flecks of fried innards.

From his position on the ground, he smiled at her. The earth around him was black from the spear of fire that had struck him; nearby the long golden-green grass swayed like a peridot ocean.

Tears shimmered on the edge of his caramel red eyes as he swallowed, throat constricting. “Y’have to. I—”he coughed once, “can’t live like this.”

“But…” Her sorrow spilled from inside, a monstrous water-jug pierced by a single spindle. It gushed from her amaranth eyes, droplets cascading down her cheeks as her nose began to drip. “I can’t…”

His smile softened. The earlier grimace of pain and the quivering frown of sadness had dwindled; all he had left was a smile.

“Shur y’can. I know y’can. Y’can do the impossible.”

“Then let me save you,” she pleaded.

He flinched, golden tattoos tightening along his cheeks. “What…how’d…” But his voice was fading, faltering with the same determination as his breath…

Word Count: 207

Written: 1 August 2012

A/N: potentially part of a larger piece; I will see

Beside the Sea

THE SCENT OF the sea filled her lungs.

Fragrant with enough salt to shock her nose, Anath found the tensions in her neck unraveling. The muscles loosened, shoulders drooping, as she dropped to the ground. Fine yellow sand, sprinkled with molasses, stretched in all directions. The man beside her hesitated, shuffling his feet before he gingerly crouched beside her.

“How can you stand it?” he asked, picking sand up between his fingers.

Rubbing it together, a minute pout blossomed on Nkosana’s lips, as it refused to seep from his hand, as he had probably expected. Instead, his pout flattened into a frown, and the prince of Maliabeyo gently dried out the wet sand, until it drizzled back to the ground.

“There, you see?” he continued, brushing his palm onto his pants. “It will get into everything and clump together.”

Chuckling, Anath scooted closer to him, nudging him in side. Nkosana teetered, narrowing his deep brown eyes at her.

“I’d ask you to refrain from ruining my clothes, but that, I suspect, is too much to ask.”

“You’ve already done that yourself,” Anath snickered, plucking at his pants. The pale ocher cotton was stained with minuscule clumps of sand. “Or didn’t you notice?”

“Agh!” Falling onto his rump, Nkosana avidly tried to flick the sand away; his frantic gestures only spread it further, spilling into his lap. “Guh…I thought I dried it.”

“Oh, you did, but some of it was still stuck t’you hand,” Anath said, wrapping her arms over his knee.

“Aha! There! You see, it proves my point, perfectly! It will get into everything. It’s already gotten to me!”

“Oh, yes, the terrible, terrible sand,” she intoned, shaking his knee as she did.

“Hmph. You are teasing me.”

“Am I?”Grinning, Anath’s dark larkspur eyes twinkled mischievously, as if their petals had caught morning dew. She clamored onto his chest, shoving him into the sand.

“Agh! My hair! You!”

Shaking her head, Anath bent down so that their noses almost touched; wrinkling hers at Nkosana, she blew onto his forehead. Her breath ruffled his smoky, ebony hair, the thick strands momentarily waving back at her.

Written: 12 Aug 2012

Word Count: 354

Inspired: to see if I was still familiar with them and could still write their characters

A/N: The focus of this character sketch are Anath and Nkosana (name pending to change), individuals who seemed to come out of nowhere and disrupt one of my stories. Despite their story being in revision, I still feel that this captures their personalities honestly.

Legend of a Radiant Golden Love [Day 174]

ONCE UPON A time, a man and woman fell in love. It was a long process, but once it ignited, it blazed up like a resplendent golden glow. It permeated the fabric of reality, radiant and breathless happiness forming a nearly physical bond between them that the world could witness. Because of it, they – and their love – became part of the world’s story. A great change shook the seas that was their home and the man was at the heart of it. And she, though smaller in the grand shaking and shifts of their world, had played a role to help the man. Such a tiny story added brushwood to the blaze of their love; they were together and she had helped him against the enemy.

For as you should know, no great story, greatly loved by the populous, is without its villain. And here they had one – deceitful, ambitious, insouciant. The story went he had tried to tempt the woman to his side. She refused, of course, in favor of declaring support for the man she would fall in love with. But as with most stories, it was not as simple as that.

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The Book of Flying | “The Valleys of the Country of Death”

a novel

by Keith Miller

“’What is precious is beautiful'” (Miller, 229).

Right. So this chapter starts off with some lovely description (yay!). And Pico moves from the mountains into the desert.

As I’ve written before, I love deserts so Pico simply arriving in one is interesting to me. Additionally, this geographical stage of his journey reminds me of the Ordeal in the Hero’s Journey, where the hero faces death and, after overcoming it, obtains or receives a special item, gift, talisman, ability, etc. which is what the whole quest was about.

Similarly, the connotation of wandering in a desert, where Pico in effect abandons everything he’s brought with him so he’s stripped down to the barest minimum of himself, has a flavor of spiritual mysticism. The one who goes out into the desert. Whether this is an entirely true in practice, I can’t affirm, but in stories and philosophy books I’ve read, there seems to be a tendency of going into the desert as a means to remove oneself from the mundane necessities of the world.

Although, I don’t think this desire is dependent on going to a desert specifically; it’s probably more a way of life or thinking. And going anywhere that is more isolated from a busy living would be ideal. (And that’s not to say that deserts don’t house busy life and people, there just seems to be this trope of the desert as the frontier where everything is washed away.)

The book seems to follow this sentiment by stating that “[a] forest is mystery but the desert is truth” (220). I can’t help wondering if there’s a bit of Orientalism in there. Why is the desert so much truer than a different environment? But then I’ve never been in a desert, so I can’t comment on whether it’s scarcity of water or appearance would evoke any deeper sensibility of truth.

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Waiting By The Sea

THE WIND SWEPT her hair back, twining it into black knots and bearing the perfume of the sea on its invisible, ethereal fingers. Its bitter fragrance was sweet on her lips – crisp, briny, and invigorating.

Despite the chill, she daintily dipped her bare toes into the tide; the green-flecked surf stung momentarily until, after a few moments, the icy shock faded away.

Smiling, Sulann1 lifted her eyes to peer out across the vast limitless breadth before her. It tumbled over itself, rippling blue-charcoal velvet in all directions. White tipped waves danced toward her, wild lions tossing their manes as they ran to the shore.

A lion…my lion

She cocked her head, heart beating faster as the thought entered her mind.

His ship was to return at dawn. The rising sun had passed and the clear sky had overtaken the rose and golden paint strokes of sunrise.

Now all that was left was to wait.

Word Count: 159

Written: 13 March 2010 / Revised: 19 May 2014

Inspired: pirates and love

1 “humble lily/rose/lotus” from Paula (Latin) + Susann (Hebrew) or (Egyptian)