Beyond the Sphere

The bright orange light caused King Rabletop III to run into the Great Hall. Queen Ellimayee swiftly followed. In the centre of the room stood a strangely-dressed woman, with green skin.

“Who are you?” Demanded Rabletop, with as much force as he could muster.

Mrs Sinster spun around quickly, causing her to feel dizzy. She wobbled on her feet, and Ellimayee dashed over to stop her falling. “Husband, quickly! Fetch some water! Here, take a seat.” Ellimayee helped Mrs Sinster to sit down, where she immediately felt better.

“Thank you dear. I’m not used to this portal travelling, although you think I would be from where I’m from.”

“And where is that, visitor?” Rabletop returned and thrust a goblet of water into Mrs Sinster’s hand. “Husband! Please! Cannot you see this woman is unwell? Look at her colour.”

“No, dear, I’m fine.” Mrs Sinster said, after taking a sip of water. “I’m usually always this colour! I’m a demon you see.”

“Husband! What have you done this time?”

“This has nothing to do with me, Wife. I can’t simply conjure people up from thin air you know. Nor demons.” Rabletop left the room in a huff.

“I’m Mrs Sinster, dear,” Mrs Sinster explained as Ellimayee sat beside her. “I’m looking for a key, the Key of Kamra. I’ve been sent here as here is where the key is. According to the map.”

“I’ve never heard of such a key. The key of what? Kam Ra?”

“That’s right, dear. It is here, you mark my words.” Mrs Sinster smiled. She placed the goblet on the side of her seat, but too close to the edge and it fell to the floor. “Oh bother! Sorry, dear!”

“Do not worry, it’s only water and it cannot damage marble. The Key of Kam Ra sounds like it has something to do with our God of the Sun.” Ellimayee bowed. Mrs Sinster followed. “But the Kam part seems misleading. Km refers to the colour black, so you appear to be searching for a key to the black sun.

Rabletop returned to the Great Hall with a scroll. He pulled up a heavy marble cube in front of Mrs Sinster and unfurled the scroll atop the cube. “I was listening outside the chamber.” Rabletop began to explain.

“What he means is ‘eavesdropping'” Ellimayee interrupted. Mrs Sinster smiled timidly.

“Anyway,” Rabletop ignored his wife, “I think this is what you seek.” He pointed to the centre of a roughly-drawn sky map. “This is my map of the Consternations. This part,” he tapped the centre of the drawing, “where there is nothing, is actually something. In the centre is a big black star, and this nothing keeps everything in place… until it sucks everything in.”

“So it’s a black hole?” Mrs Sinster said, trying to be helpful.

“No. It is a black star. Like our Sun,” Rabletop and Ellimayee bowed, “only black.”

“And it’s in the centre of the galaxy?” Mrs Sinster asked.

“No. It is in the centre of the Consternation.” Rabletop started to look frustrated. “Must you always question my words?”

“Ignore him, Mrs Sinster. He thinks he is always right. Your description of nothing sounds much better than a black star of all things. Here, take the drawing, if it is what you seek!”

As soon as Mrs Sinster touched the map, she was surrounded by a bright orange light and vanished, along with the sky map. She managed to fit in a quick “Th” before vanishing from view.

“Well, that’s gratitude for you!” Rabletop complained. “And that was my only map of the Consternations. I will have to create another now.”

“Constellations, husband. And she must have really needed that map for something…”

And that’s another part completed and another artefact found. The tale will be over long before Hallowe’en at this rate! Links below are to all of the parts so far!

Part One here.
Part Two here.
Part Three here.
Part Four here.
Part Five here.

The rough wood of the table’s surface came to Gemevere’s attention. She sat upright on the bench and stretched her neck, hearing it crack at least six times. “Blarmey!” she said. She stretched her back, and her spine cracked again, at least ten times this time. “Flippin’ ‘eck!” She rubbed her eyes, and noticed the Hempsty, Katherine and Æthelstan were still fast asleep, Katherine snoring loudly as she lay on her back. “Blarmey!” Gemevere muttered once more.

She walked around the tavern. Everything looked in order. The front wall was in place. She could see the door was locked, and through the window she could see several villagers milling about. She walked into the room at the back of the tavern, which was empty. She looked around at the various barrels which were placed around the room. Another door led into the kitchen, so she walked through to have a look around in there. The larder door on the far side was wide open, so instinctively she closed it. The wooden table in the middle was neatly laid out with plates and bowls, all stacked ready to use. An oven stood next to the larder. Gemevere walked over to it and touched it. “Storn cold.” She said. She turned around and headed back out of the kitchen and into the barrel room. She jumped as she saw the red-skinned man appear out of a sudden orange light in front of her. “Eeek!” She shrieked, which was unusual for Gemevere.

“‘Oo the ‘eck are you?” Gemevere asked as the man faced her.

“My name is Mr Sinster. I believe you can help me to find an object I’m searching for.” Mr Sinster offered his hand to Gemevere.

“Arm not fallin’ fer that ‘un!” Gemevere pulled her arms in close to her body. “There’s a lot o’ strarenge things ‘appenin ’round ‘ere today.”

“You do have the oddest of tongues!” Mr Sinster commented.

“That’s rude!” Gemevere replied. “Comin’ from one with a pointy tail.”

“I am a Kraa demon. I mean you no harm, my fair lady. I’m merely trying to obtain one of six items from a list that must be found by Halloween. A map has sent me to this location, which means that you must know of the items whereabouts.”

“You expect me to believe all that? A map sent you? Oh, yer mean yer followed a map.” Gemevere tried to translate what the man was saying.

“No, a map actually sent me. It has points upon it which reveal the name of the item we seek, and then sends us through a portal to the time and place the item will be hidden in. Which is how I arrived here.”

“OK then,” Gemevere still didn’t believe Mr Sinster. “Prove it. Tell me where y’from.”

“I’m from 2020. From a town call…”

“2020? This is 489. Yer tellin’ me yer from thousands o’ years in the future?” Gemevere interrupted. She remembered Katherine’s coins which were also from almost two hundred years in the future. “Orr Kare, Ah’ll believe ya. Wha’s the item yer want? Bear in mind we doorn’t live ‘ere, and aren’t from ‘ere.”

“Oh. That may be difficult then. I’m looking for a pyramid. A round pyramid.”

“A round pyramid? ‘Round ‘ere?”

“This is where the map sent me.”

“We’re in a room full o’ barrels. There’s nothin’ in ‘ere that looks like a normal pyramid, lerralone a round ‘un!”

“I can see that.” Mr Sinster looked around the room. All of the barrels were the same shape, although not all the same size. “The map sent me directly here… perhaps it sent me to you.”

“Me? I doorn’t ‘ave any pyramid… oh.”

“Have you realised that you know where it is?” Mr Sinster’s eyes widened.

“Not really. It in’t a pyramid as such, but it’s me ‘at. Me cone. It’s out there, under th’tarebul. But yer carn’t ‘ave it.”

“Please, dear lady, I must have it. The repercussions aren’t even worth pondering. We must get all items together by Halloween, or else.”

“Or else what? An’ who’s ‘we’?”

“Mrs Sinster and I have been sent on two missions. Well, the same mission but for two different people, one in HR and the other an Angel. One for chaos and one for joy.”

“Doorn’t know what an HR is, but I do know an Angel. Gabriel ‘is name is. Cairm to me the nart before I decided to become Lairdy… never mind.” Gemevere clamped her mouth firmly shut.

“Gabriel is the Angel we are working for. He’s sent us on this mission, to replace HR’s mission, but HR needs us to complete her mission also. It sounds complicated.”

“Naw, it mairks perfeck sense t’me. Jus’ doorn’t believe we’ve both met Gabriel. Oh go on. Yer can ‘ave me cone.”

“Thank you dear lady. Tell me, please, what is your name.” Mr Sinster’s face lit up with a broad smile.

“‘Ave you ‘eard of Lairdy Reverence from your time?”

“Lairdy Reverence?”

“Lairdy.” Gemevere paused and opened and closed her mouth on slow motion. “Lairdeee.” Gemevere exaggerated the second syllable.

“That’s what I’m saying ‘Lairdy'” Mr Sinster felt confused.

“Lay Dee.” Gemevere broke the pronunciation down a little further.

“Oh. Lady Reverence!” Realisation shone out of Mr Sinster’s face. Gemevere’s face now lit up with a smile. “No. Should I have?” Mr Sinster watched the expression vanish from Gemevere’s face.

“No. Not yet.” Gemevere corrected. “But yer will. The Legend o’ Lairdy Reverence will become legendary. Circles’ll be talkin’ about it fer years to come once it’s art there.”

“So you are Lady Reverence then?” Mr Sinster smiled once more.

“I am. But yer can call me Gemevere. Arm Gemevere Inxlsis in this garb. Arm Lairdy Reverence in me other clobber an’ me crown. Oo… me crown’s in’th cone. Ah’ll ‘ave to shove it in me frock!”

Gemevere and Mr Sinster walked over to the table where the other three were still sound asleep. Gemevere reached under the table and retrieved her hat. She pulled off the ribbon and handed the cone part to her new friend. She promptly snatched it back, and with a slight giggle took out the tiara and tucked it into a pocket in the front of her dress. “‘Ear. Teck it before ah chairnge me marnd.”

“Thank…” was all Mr Sinster could say as he touched the hat, before he was engulfed in an orange light and disappeared before Gemevere’s eyes.

“Charmin’!” Gemevere said. She looked at Hempsty and the others around the table, and decided to join them in sleep once more. “With any luck, when Ah wairk up, me cone’ll still be there an’ this would’ve all been a dream.” She used the ribbon from her hat to make the table top a little more comfortable as she settled down to sleep.

Not that there’s any order or timescale or anything sensical about the Sinster’s quest, you can find previous parts in the links below. The next part will be along soon enough!

Part One here.
Part Two here.
Part Three here.
Part Four here.

Mystic K’Sandra peered into her ball
Seeing a figure, red-skinned and tall
Confused and bewildered, head-pecked and flapped
When upon her door a loud knocking rapped

She opened the door to see the red-skinned male
Demon with horns and long swishing tail
“Tell me dear stranger, why do you come”
As she shielded her eyes from the bright midday Sun

“I search for help, some sort of guide
I have travelled far and have travelled wide
Over mountainous lands and through portals galore
When suddenly I found myself outside your door

I search for six items which must be found
I know not the location I know how it sounds
This desperate quest has one month to complete
Or my partner and I will feel the heat”

Mystic K’Sandra welcomed the traveller in
Sensing the urgency of his quest within
“Tell me your name, and I can find you the truth
As befitting an unusual demonic sleuth”

He said “I’m a Kraa demon, with the name of Sinster”
That was enough, his truth had convinced her
To obtain the list of the items he sought
So she took from him the list that he’d brought

She laid out a parchment, ancient and curled,
And scattered tea leaves, which created the world,
Upon which lay spaces with red circular spots
Six of them scattered, not polka dots

“Here are the places of the items you seek
Touch the dots and the parchment will speak
The correct name of the item and actual time
Will enable you in turn for each item to find.”

Mr Sinster thanked K’Sandra for being so kind
Saying “This will save a great deal of time!”
K’Sandra smiled and wished him well as he went
Back through the portal whence Gabriel sent

So, they have their map and that is that. Where next on their quest will we find them at? The next part of the Sinster’s quest will be along soon…!
Part One here.
Part Two here.

“There’s nairt as sorborin’ as a clompin’ grairt paw smashin’ through a wall!” Gemevere managed to shout whilst dodging a couple of flying stones.

“That’s more than a paw, my cousin!” Hempsty disagreed. “Verily that is a hefty claw!”

“Claw paw! Sairm thing!” Gemevere said as she ducked behind the table again. The dragon’s face reappeared through the hole and spewed forth another burst of bright yellow flame. “Ooh ‘eck! That’s gerrin’ ‘otter!”

“You don’t need to tell me, Gemevere. I think my left eyebrow’s singed.” Hempsty smoothed down his left eyebrow as he sat with his back to the table. “Cousin, if ever there’s a time when we need the assistance of Lady Reverence, I would hazard a guess at now being one of those times.”

“I can’t, ‘Empsty. Me crown’s back in the carriage.”

“Surely you do not need the crown to access thine abilities?” Hempsty looked at Gemevere’s forehead. “Surely they come from within?”

“Surely they do, ‘Empst, but me disguise dunt.” Another bright flame burst over their heads.

“Gemevere, there’s only you and I here. Those two are asleep, and how anyone can sleep through all this racket is beyond me.” He looked over toward Æthelstan and Katherine who were in exactly the same positions as they were before all hell broke loose. “And as for that Ursulondix, heavens knows where she’s disappeared to.”

“Yeah…” Gemevere pondered. “Funny that.”

As if on cue, Ursulondix appeared once again from the room in the back. “Oh, me days!” she declared as she saw the carnage. “I thought one of you’d fallen from your chair when I heard the bang out back.”

“‘Ow ‘eavy do you think we are?” Gemevere wasn’t impressed. “There’s naw ware we’d mairk that kind o’ noise, even if all of us fell off the chairs at th’same tarm. Does this karnda thing ‘appen often around ‘ere?” she thumbed towards the hole in the wall behind her.

“No, deary. Not very often. Here, have some wine.” Ursulondix brought over the carafe.

“Wahrn? At a tarm like this? Are you fer real???” Gemevere couldn’t believe what was happening.

“Now cousin,” Hempsty said, “Remain calm.”

“Calm?! We ‘ave a dragon tryin’ to cook us fer its breakfast, and she appears from nowhere offerin’ wahrn. No, that’s it. I’ve ‘ad enough.”

Gemevere stood up tall, and tore off her gown, revealing her tight-fitting bodysuit and body armour. She loosened the sash that draped more freely over her right shoulder. She turned to face the dragon.

“Lady Reverence!” Hempsty said, looking at the puzzled look on Ursulondix’s face. “Where did thee come from, and what have thy done with Gemevere, my cousin?”

“Eh?” Gemevere realised what she’d done. “I’ve tarken ‘er outside, villager. In the blink of an eye.”

“No you haven’t.” Ursulondix said sternly. “You’ve just taken off your skirt. I watched you do it.”

“Naw, barmaid, I ‘aven’t. It just looked that way due to all the commotion.”

“Nonsense. You look exactly the same as you did with the skirt on. Even down to the red rosy cheeks.” Ursulondix didn’t believe a word Gemevere said.

“Now look, barmaid. I ‘aven’t time to argue with you o’er what you think and what you think you may ‘ave seen. There’s a dragon outside what wants sortin’ out.” Gemevere noticed how red her cheeks were in a shard of glass that reflected her face as though she was looking in a mirror.

She made a move to fly out through the hole in the wall and stopped. There was no hole. The wall was intact. Hempsty was slumped forward over the table, in a similar pose to Æthelstan at the opposite side of the table. Katherine mumbled something across her chairs, but settled down again.

“I knew there was something about you.” Ursulondix said, looking intently into Gemevere’s eyes. “It took longer to get the truth out of you, but I did in the end. You cannot keep secrets from Ursula Sundown.”

“Ursula Sundown? Mother Skipton from Skipton Forest!” Gemevere was confused to notice she was still wearing her robe. “Eh?”

“I sensed you in the Forest, deary, so I followed you. We with power must stick together you know.”

“Sorry, love.” Gemevere stretched. “I doorn’t know what you think you saw, but I’ve jus’ ‘ad a really crazy dream.”

“A dream?” Ursula scoffed. “Nonsense. You cannot fool Mother Skipton. When next we meet, you will need to use your power well and wisely. Now I know you and have found you, I will do so again. Sleep now, child. For when your journey resumes you will need all of your strength.”

“Give me strength!” Gemevere sighed as she watched Ursula turn herself into a raven and fly toward the tavern door, which opened by itself as she approached. Gemevere then promptly slumped forward onto the table and joined her three travelling companions in their deep sleep.

***

This is the eighth part in the Reverence storyline. The previous seven parts can be found in my Storylines menu.

Locke collected the three Gifts of Time
And held aloft the Felteryme
She ran her finger across golden dials
And looked upon memories that made her smile

The Lover’s Stone came into view
With happy and painful memories too
She couldn’t bear to look away
As time presented her wedding day

In bright Moonlight shone clear blue eyes
From her lover’s face, young and wise
The gaze bore deep into her soul
And now as then she felt truly whole

Tears fall down Locke’s radiant cheeks
As she hears the words her husband speaks
“My dearest Locke, what wonders you bring
To make me, Kailan, feel like a king”

We’re taking another break from the Epic now, but remember, all previous parts are included in my Storylines Menu, if you’d like to read the story so far!