My Exploding Cat

Just stories and drawings really, no actual fissile felines.

Archive for the ‘Short Stories’ Category

Chapter One

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April 22nd, 2010 Posted 3:48 pm

CHAPTER ONE

Shh. Don’t give away my position. I’m a refugee sitting in the fort I built out of the few resources I have at hand. If my fort gets knocked down, I cannot rebuild it, and I can’t afford to be seen or heard.
Okay, okay. The truth is, I’m at a corner computer in the library after much sitting around waiting for the other kid to get done, and my fort isn’t made out of driftwood and built to hide from Nazis, it’s made out of books and my trapper to keep the flying bits of pencils and folded-up paper from hitting me and to hide from the kids at my school, who compare pretty well to Nazis.
Normally, I wouldn’t set foot in such a crowded place as the library, but I took a photography class and I’d already digitalized the photos and saved them to my website and all I needed was to send the email –
CRASH!
A shower of books, trappers, and 130-some pounds of obnoxious boy come tumbling down on me and the person next to me. The kid slides over my keyboard with the remaining force and, since I’m at a corner computer, like I said, his head smashes straight into the wall.
Quickly I gather my books up, rescue my empty coffee cup, log off, and explain to the inquisitive librarian with one pointed gesture of le thumb exactly who was responsible for the mess – not me. With another eloquent gesture of le thumb, the librarian sends the kid off on that jolly walk to the principal’s office. The kid yells, “But I didn’t do nuthin’!” and then the librarian takes his hand and shows to him the exquisite cherry door and how well the custodian scrubbed the soda spill off from when he’d pushed a kid who had a Pepsi. Then she opens the door and smiles, points out, and says something I can’t hear but is probably pretty sarcastic. Then I hear the kid yell in protest, see the librarian signal to the other librarian, and watch as the first librarian took the boy’s hand and walks him down Sesame Street to the principal’s office, brought to you by not just any letter, but a specific one – the letter that you have to take home to your mom. Special.
You might call me a tattletale, but I call it telling the truth. Tattling is when you lawyer the story and use the more… accentuated word that still fits, but is more likely to get the kid in trouble. I’m also pretty good at that, too, which is useful if you don’t like somebody. And, for the record, it’s still telling the truth. Technically.
As the kid and the librarian walk down the hall, I slide out, hoping not to be seen, and get ready to hide. This is a very typical period for something like Study Hall. The idea behind Study Hall is that the library would be quiet so that you could study for a test or do Google searches on the computer. That idea didn’t quite work out – it definitely wasn’t quiet, and to get a pencil shard to write with, all you had to do was reach your hand into the air. Reach up a second time to get a folded-up scrap of paper. Reach up a third time to grab the angry kid who threw both of them at a kid behind you and, because of you, missed. It’s best just to stick with the pencil and wait five minutes before you try to grab anything else. But make sure that it’s pencils you grab, because occasionally, a kid will throw bits of eraser or stuff like his belt buckle, etc. Those really hurt when you try to catch them.
I’ve learned the unwritten rules around here for nerd survival. In the lunch room, you eat the dessert first or you get a bunch of moocher kids lingering around you, asking for your cookie. Never eat school pizza, but go back for seconds on Papa Johns day. Eat your main course quickly after your dessert, because that’s pretty well coveted too. The pink mush they serve is strawberry applesauce. (We hope.) The chicken in the soup is chewy. Don’t eat it. And never, EVER wear a white shirt.
In the library, set up a fort or hide behind a book all period. If you’re in study hall, to survive, you can hide out in the bathroom and the teacher won’t notice. Trust me on this one.
Never tell a teacher they’re wrong. Even if they are, they’ll usually find a way to get you in trouble for disrupting class or something. It’s better to get paired with a boy than to get paired with the class goof-off. If you can, avoid being partners (this solely applies to nerds. The other kids tend to piggyback on the group projects, but a clever nerd knows how to avoid them). If you are a nerd, advertise it, because that means people can’t tease you about it. But if you’re a girl nerd, keep your hair in good shape so people don’t start calling you a geek – that’s a label you don’t want, the exception being computer geeks, who are some of the best in the hierarchy of nerds.
In any normal class, try not to be noticed for the most part, but look smart when you’re called on to answer a question or something, because that’s the only time when people actually bother looking at you in class. Any other time, don’t bother looking smart, because half the kids are asleep anyway.
If you get sucked into playing “2 Truths and a Lie” on the first day, you come up with the dumbest, weirdest, or craziest things you’ve ever done and put them down as your truths. Then you come up with something weird, like “I rode a zipline across the Amazonian rainforest” and generally try to get people to stare at you like you’re crazy. Then they’ll think you’re just funny.
Generally, if you go to a school like mine, you try to be funny and people will like you. Make sure that you have just enough friends to hide behind at lunch and fade into the crowd. Above all, find other nerdy refugees. NOBODY touches the nerd table. Ever.
I’ve survived so far, but if a pencil hits me in the right place at 70mph, that could change with a quick concussion. Emphasis on cuss.
Speaking of which, that’s exactly how you weird someone out. If somebody uses a really complicated swear word, you grin and say, “Do you know what that word means?”
When they ask what it means, you say that it’s not appropriate to say on school premises, flip your hair over your shoulder, and tell them to look it up in the dictionary. Then you grin impishly every time someone uses that word, and you watch as they get really nervous. They never will look up the word – most kids are lazy that way. If you get suckered into telling them, you claim it means that they’re calling themselves trailer trash (if the person is a girl) or they’re calling themselves a hot chick (if the person is a boy).
Another way to weird someone out? Find the one guy in the class who hates it when you use big words. Then drop one like zymurgy (def.: the scientific application of fermentation, such as in making beer, wine, or other YES I AM A TOTAL NERD! Get over it. I thought you’d caught on by now) and don’t tell him what it means for a week. Try a Napoleon Dynamite act and smuggle some popcorn in class in your pocket. If you get bored or caught, you can give the teacher the speech about how studies show that gum helps kids concentrate. Avoid this, though, because the speech is used all too much.
Generally, I’ve found that if I lay low and weird people out whenever I can, I get ignored. This is the quote-on-quote “nirvana” of school: Be ignored. It’s right up there with “Get good grades.” And “Get Mrs. Evil off your back.” And “Eat breakfast that consists of more than four tablespoons of Trix and supersweet strawberry milk, two whole days in a row.”
But the nerds are mostly aiming for the ignored bit. They already get good grades, and since they get good grades, the teachers don’t bug them anyway. And most of us get brekkie at home, because we’re the only ones who see anything wrong with eating Splenda straight every morning.
So that’s my survival strategy. I’m glad we met. I’ll tell you my story. It’ll be easier to explain in past tense.
Now that I had sent the email and was safely logged off, I was about to follow Rule #8 (hide in the bathroom for all of Study Hall) but I noticed something incredibly wrong.
The halls were empty.
This was freaky. There’s always a few kids who are skipping class. Translation: There’s always most of the school skipping class. The halls are packed no matter what. Except now.
I went back into the library, and was relieved to see that things were chaotic as usual. It’s sort of a comfort now. I found the librarian discreetly following Survival Rule #7 (hide behind a bunch of books) behind her desk. She had a computer, which is a good block, and quite a few books sitting in a neat stack – a brick wall protecting her from the hornets, which were the little paper thingies that kids shot across the room. One whacked me in the side of the head, and if I were new here, it would have stung like it did at the beginning of the year, but I barely noticed it now. I started to inquire to the librarian about the empty halls, but she was new and the hornets still stung her. So she made a big deal about it (as if the air wasn’t already thick with papers, pencil shards, and the occasional belt buckle or random car part) and sent the kid to the principal also, employing one of my fellow nerds (poor kid) to escort him, since she couldn’t and the kid couldn’t be trusted to go by himself.
She handed the kid a pass and sent them out, returning quickly to hide behind her books. She sat down and stuck her nose in one – automatic face guard. She almost immediately got glassy-eyed, and it became clear that she was lost in the book and shutting out her surroundings.
I watched the nerd and the hornet kid walk out the door. My glance lingered on the poor, innocent nerd kid who had the sick, sick job of escorting someone to their Doom, making herself an enemy. I saw her confusion when she saw the empty halls, watched as she realized what she was doing and wishing she didn’t have her glasses on. I started to offer to go with her, but this other kid – probably another nerd – catch up to her. A boy. I sighed in relief. Not only were the female nerds constant targets who shouldn’t be left alone with a troublemaker (it takes two of us to come up with enough snarky comebacks to keep the non-nerd boys busy while we delivered them to their Doom, ha ha), this boy nerd had just saved me from following the guy who got in trouble because I existed.
Snarky, snappy comebacks aren’t the only reason girls of any kind shouldn’t be left alone with troublemakers. Most girls, especially us nerds, hate having to listen to a troublemaker, and they hate listening to us. Especially if the troublemaker is a girl herself. Girls roll their eyes at boys, but it’s just somehow not quite right to roll their eyes at another girl. So they have to take their anger out in… other ways. Or sometimes a girl’s just gonna lose it. And therein lies the reason girls can’t be left with troublemakers: They need someone to intercept them before blows land. There’s always one or two areas of the school with no cameras and little traffic. And girls can be compelled to take that route if they particularly dislike a boy. I’m not even venturing into the area of where the blows land. I’m already tiptoeing around swear words. Let’s just say a blabbermouth guy has nothing on an infuriated girl. Trust me here.
There was only one thing to do.
I hid behind the glassy-eyed librarian for the rest of the period.

Posted in Short Stories

Scarborough Fair

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February 11th, 2010 Posted 10:27 am

War. Unsafe. A man knows this as he runs alongside the battlefield to get on a ship and sail to safety. He dodges some very nasty things aimed at soldiers – cannonballs, bits of rotted meat, the usual things lobbed at armies. For an instant, he feels sort of sorry for the soldiers – and then – one is talking to him!
This is what the soldier saw: A short, chubby man with a very long, curly moustache and a face creased with permanent worry shuffling onto a large ship.
To the chubby man’s surprise, the soldier bursts into song in his direction.
“Are you going to Scarborough Fair?” he belts out.
“Erm, yessir,” says the man, his moustache wiggling with every word, but he finds he can’t say anything more because the soldier interrupts:
“Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme! Remember me to one who lives there., for she once was a true love of mine.”
“All right, all right,” says the man, whipping out a small notepad and a stubby pencil with a worn- down eraser. “What is your name? And what is your love’s name?”
Instead of answering, the man sings, “Tell her to make me a cambric shirt, parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme! Without no seam nor fine needlework, and then she’ll be a true love of mine.”
“But sir,” says the man, “what manor does your love live in?”
Again, instead of answering, the man cries, “Tell her to wash it in yonder dry well, parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme! Where no water hath sprung nor one drop of rain fell, and then she’ll be a true love of mine.”
“How can I find her? Please tell me so that I can fulfill your request!”
“Tell her to dry it on yonder dry thorn, parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme! Where no blossom hath bloomed, not one peppercorn, and then she’ll be a true love of mine.”
“A picky man, aren’t you?”
“Tell her to find me an acre of land, parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme! In between the sea foam and the sea sand, and then she’ll be a true love of mine.”
“But that’s impossible! Just like everything else you’re asking!”
“Tell her to reap it with a sickle of leather, parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme! And gather it all in a big bunch of heather, and then she’ll be a true love of mine.”
“But… but…”
But the soldier had gone back to lobbing animal carcasses and bags of vomit and other gross things at the other side. Dodging an arrow, the man shuffled onto the boat just before it cast off and scribbled in his notebook what the man had said.

Arriving at Scarborough, the man started to look for women. He decided to start at the market. The only women he saw there at the moment were a trio sitting around a lunch table outside and chatting, because it was early and there weren’t any customers yet. They seemed to advertise by signs hung around their neck. One said SEAMSTRESS, one said MAID, and one said REAL ESTATE AGENT.
So the man walked up and said, “Good morning, ladies. Do any of you know a soldier in the war across the ocean?”
They all said, “Yes.”
The man said, “Well, he’s looking for his love or something. He gave me a very strange list of things to ask of this woman. The first thing he said was… to ask for a cambric shirt, and he said, ‘without no seam or fine needlework’.”
“Hm,” said the women.
“Then he said to wash it in a dry well where no water had sprung and rain hadn’t fallen. And then to dry it on a thorn where no flowers bloomed.”
“Hm,” the women said again.
“THEN he wants you to find an acre of land…” He consulted his notebook – “in between the sea foam and the sea sand. And then to reap it…” He looked in his notebook again – “with a… popsicle made of leather? That can’t be right… and then to gather it in a bunch of heather, whatever that means. Perhaps you ladies would like to divide up the jobs?”
“Hm,” they said.
They told the man to come back in the fall, when the crops and shirt would be ready.
“Well,” the first lady said, “I do believe that ‘without no’ is a double negative, so he must want a seam, then. And a seam isn’t exactly fine needlework – it’s just a seam. I’ll do that. Then, Miss Manha, you can do that bit about washing and drying.”
“I’ve got several ideas about that.” Miss Manha and the first woman, Miss Innit, were complete opposites. Miss Innit was thin and school-mistress-y and very proper, and Miss Manha was relaxed and plump and grinned a lot. The third lady, Miss Sleykka, kept a sly smile as if she had just found a loophole in something, which, half the time, was true.
“I know where to find the land. Did you notice that he didn’t say that the land had to be soil? I can get an acre of sand property and sow it with a bunch of carrots. Carrots grow well in sand. That popsicle of leather thing was weird, but I can get around it. My inventor friend has made this useless contraption that doesn’t work, so he’s giving it to me whether I want it or not. It’s a carrot harvester, and I can make it work. It’s made of leather. If I stick a popsicle stick in it, that guy won’t know the difference.”
So they each took a day and did what they needed to do. Miss Sleykka found the property and planted a bunch of carrots. Miss Innit made the shirt and Miss Manha took it to the dry well.
“But as this is a dry well, I brought some water to wash this here shirt with! Good thing this well’s only three feet deep, ‘cuz I ain’t much taller!”
She washed the shirt and hopped out, soaking wet. It appeared that she’d washed her own clothing, too.
Then she found a big thistle patch that the men mowed down every year and produced from her backpack a blanket and a hand fan. She laid the blanket down on the thistles neatly and laid the shirt on it. Then she sat there for hours fanning the dripping shirt off and came home with a dry shirt, a wet blanket and a good amount of dignity (her clothes had dried).
And in the fall, the carrots had been harvested and the shirt was ready. The chubby, sweaty man came back and took the heather sack (which, cunningly, was a bunch of woven grass. Miss Sleykka had harvested the carrots when they weren’t even an inch long so that she didn’t need to weave a lot) and the shirt, washed and dried, back across the sea where the war, surprisingly, had stopped. After a search, the man found the same soldier who had spoken to him before.
“From the ladies of Scarborough, sir,” he said.
The soldier tried to respond, “Are you going?”
“Am I going where?” the man asked.
“Are you going to Scarborough fair?”
“After I deliver your items, sir. Will you take them?”
“Parsley? Sage? Rosemary?” The soldier asked.
The man looked confused.
“Thyme?” The soldier asked.
And then the man got it: He could only say the words of the song.
So the little chubby man and the soldier went off and the soldier got a flourishing career singing the same song over and over, but nobody really noticed that it was the same song because he put it to different tempo and occasionally rock music, the words of which nobody listens to anyway.

Into the Light

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July 18th, 2009 Posted 6:36 pm

You see a hill. On top of the hill there are two figures. They sit in the grass. A wind picks up for a minute, then dies down again. Then you see one of the figures stand up and start running. She appears to be chasing something…

“Jessi, did your drawing blow away again?” said the smirking figure still seated firmly on the hill, pencil in hand.

“Yes!” said the panting little girl addressed as Jessi. “Heeeellp! Nata!”

Natalie (aka Nata) patiently stood up and retrieved the paper from the tree it got stuck in. She had to jump a little to loosen it, and got it out of the tree. Unfortunately, it was not in her hand but instead in the shadowy mud. “Sorry, little sis, but it’s pretty dirty now. Let’s go inside and draw. It’s nice out here, but the wind is a bit much.”

The two trot down the hill, loaded with art supplies, and reach the little house in the valley below. Nata finishes up her drawing, hers of an elf, unlike her sister, whose preference was fairies to the dragons and nymphs Nata drew. The wind picks up again and blows Jessi’s drawing into the sunlight, and Nata’s drawing, coincidentally the one that she JUST finished, out the window.

Nata stood up and firmly closed the window, but the wind had just enough time to mess up her hair. She looked toward the ceiling, sighed, then sat down and ignored everything.

This is my world. It is all white, all pristine. You can travel far and never go anywhere. It is very comfortable, but it is somewhat of a prison. However, the creatures confined to my simple world never really want to leave. Everything is here. We like it here. However, a strange light has just come into the world and my people are very curious. They and I have decided that one of us will step into it – specifically, me. I jump into the light…

The air is strange here. It is very, very thin, and there is a severe lack of magic. And there’s the color, too. That’s odd. The only things that are black and white here are me and my paper world, which I seem to have left. I would have thought, had I known I would step into a colored world, that I would be colored too. But I’m not. I don’t feel… right. I have to get color. Or I could just go back to my world. I like this world, but it’s too… complicated. I’m going back to tell the others.

Lydia the faerie jumped up and down on the piece of paper, but to no avail. She was stuck. Oh, well…  Hey, another piece of paper! Lydia flew up to the tree to free it. There was an elf stepping out of its own paper world, and the two decided to travel together. Neither elf nor faerie has had any magical powers since coming into the colorworld, as they decided to call it. It was rather strange, they agreed, and the elf said that she’d seen “color sticks” in the human’s house. So they went there.

I’m in the human house now.  I’m just going to grab the stuff and use it, then run. Maple the Chiki has demanded that she come with me. She needs color too. We creep into the house. A person walked by and we knew we couldn’t let her see us.  So I laid down on the paper and Maple did the same. The girl called another girl and they put us in this little folder thing, but we still gripped the paper. They put us in a little cabinet with the color sticks. Jackpot!

Uh oh. The cabinet is locked. Well, all the same, we’ll get color now and come out when she opens the cabinet again. Make a run for it. But now, we have to get color before midnight.

We get our colors, and we feel exhilarated.  We haven’t had magic since we came to the Colorworld. But now I have color, and I decide to use magic to get us out of here. It works! We run into the forest and make a home there. We have never left since. We still live there today, and we don’t ever want to go anywhere else. We are too happy here to move. But lately, a strange light has come to the forest, and Maple and I are very curious…

Posted in Short Stories

Tower Princess

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May 31st, 2009 Posted 9:20 pm

I sit in the tower. I don’t remember what I did to get up here, just that some nutball ten years ago put me in the unsheltered top of an abandoned military defense station. I’ve heard the story of Rapunzel, of course, and yes, my hair has grown long and wild, for I have no scissors. For these ten years I have hung my hair over the tower wall, waiting for rescue. None have come this way. I have contemplated tying my hair to the tower somewhere and doing the trick that mountain climbers use to get down, but any place to tie the end of my hair has eroded from the winds. It is an extremely ancient tower, and it used to belong to Roman soldiers or something like that, I forget who. You really can’t blame me for forgetting, because I HAVE spent ten years here. I am desperate for escape. I have been living off of the food the birds drop, and my stash is running low.

Yesterday, the strangest thing happened to me. This dog came while I was asleep. It licked my face and woke me up. When I said, “Well, how did you get up here, you pwecious wittle doggie…” and went on like that, it didn’t answer my question but did something more surprising. It said, “Climb onto my back and I will take you to a place where there is a prince who cannot find a wife. You never need starve as you are again.” I laughed. “Now how do you plan to do that?”

“You would not believe me,” the dog replied. “You believe I can talk… wait, you believe I can talk? And you can talk to me! No human has ever talked to me! You will surely understand me, I suppose, since you must be magical. You must be…”

“WHAT are you TALKING about?!?!”

The dog dropped his head. “You have not seen. You must not believe.” And the dog leaped into a nearby oak and disappeared.

I must be seeing things. Birdseed and rainwater can do that to you.


The next day, the dog was back. He brought a hairstylist and some venison with him. He also brought matches and wood to build a fire to cook it on.

The hairstylist said, “Eh… how short do you want this hair cut?” I shut my eyes and said, “Shoulder length. Please. I’m sick of this tangled mess.” I sighed with relief as the rat’s nests disappeared. The hairstylist brought a new change of fine clothing for me, plus some makeup and a mirror so I could straighten myself out. I have to say, I looked prettier than I thought I would. The dog quickly built a fire (with his paws! Dogs don’t even have opposable thumbs!), somehow, and left the venison to cook. Then they went back into the tree and disappeared. I changed as soon as they left, then turned to the venison. Mmm. It was a very far cry from birdseed. I remembered that imaginary things don’t give off a scent — an old wise woman once told me that. The venison smelled delicious. All right, so I wasn’t seeing things. I must be dreaming, then. But then, if you eat something in a dream, you never wake up. I could live with that. I don’t mind… but I’ve noticed that in a dream you never get tired, and I’m plenty tired now. So I’ve met a talking dog. How do I explain this? It must be magic. There is no other way to explain it… and if you met a talking dog, which you probably never will, you would be so desperate for an explanation, you’d believe anything, too.


The dog was back a third day. He was alone, but he had supplies. He fixed me breakfast, and he brought water and toothpaste and a toothbrush, because my breath smelled rancid. I had given up keeping clean ages ago and focused on survival and hanging my hair down off the edge, so someone may see it. He said, “My master still cannot find a wife. He is handsome and kind. All he wants is someone who will not turn him down because of one strange thing. I promise safe travel and immediate rescue. You have waited, what? Eight or nine years, by the shape you were in. Gone vegan, eh? I suppose you had to. You don’t look the type to build a bow and hunt. I suppose nobody taught you to ever skin a rabbit or start a fire. Ah, well. Doesn’t matter now. Will you come with me?”

“Well, I suppose you were able to transport the hairstylist. I guess it’s safe.” I followed him back into the oak tree he used, trying to keep up with the agile hound. When I finally reached the main trunk of the tree, he was sitting there waiting patiently for me. Then when he knew I had caught up, he fussed around with a leaf a little and then told me to start climbing down the tree. I reached the bottom after a while, but before climbing down from the final branch, waited for the dog. He soon joined me. He said to climb all the way down and watch my step. Unfortunately, the tree was pruned so that there weren’t enough branches to reach the ground. The dog told me to jump, and I decided that I would rather do that than stay in the tree and starve to death. The dog had planned ahead, and a net broke our fall. It was the strangest place I had ever seen. There were pieces of giant log everywhere. It was pretty, in a strange way. In front of me stood the cutest little elven boy I had ever seen. The ONLY little elven boy I had ever seen. But still cute. The dog walked up to him and dropped his head. “Master, I have found you another girl. She talks to me. She understands me.”

“And why is that important?” I asked. “I don’t know what talking to a dog has to do with this, and I don’t know why I can talk to the dog anyway.”

“See?” said the dog.

The elven boy nodded and slowly said to me, “Savva Chikik onvrse fonna.”

“Hello? I don’t speak elf, sorry.”

“She knows but the human lang,” The dog explained.

The boy gave a sharp nod. “Me say, only Chikik talk animals. Me no learn much Englisho. Rest of village speak Chikian. You must be Chiki? Or you not know? You taken from here?”

I looked around. It did look familiar.

The dog said, “I found this one in a tower. She was living on birdseed, apparently. If she was taken from here, it was about nine years ago.”

“Hmm. Copy me,” the boy told me. I followed his hand movements exactly. In my palm a small plant was growing. He told me to keep doing what I was doing. I eventually held a full-grown plant in my hand that looked exactly like his. He was pleased that we had the same type of plant. I didn’t know why until he performed a spell called Revive. The next thing I knew, my clothes were made of leaves, like his, and I was an elf. The boy explained that this happened a lot, actually, and I was put under a spell and put in the tower for political reasons. Ten years ago someone tried to kill me for my position in the village. I was once an elven princess. The Chiki that tried to kill me has been long since beheaded, so I need not worry. I realized now that the boy’s vocabulary had greatly improved, which he told me was because he was speaking his native language and I understood it like English. English! Now I knew why nobody had come to rescue me. I had been calling for help in English, not Italian! I was obviously thought to be a tourist who was exploring the ancient Roman tower!

I now understood. I could understand the dog because I was once a Chiki, which I had figured out was what the elves called themselves. The dog, before, must only have had found human brides for his master, who either disliked him because the elf thing was too weird or maybe because he didn’t speak Italian. There must not be any single Chikik in the village. He was such a nice guy that even if he hadn’t been a prince, I would have married him.

So he found a small log and I enlarged it, suddenly remembering how to do so. No, I’m NOT telling! I also learned to drive the trees, like the dog. I’m not telling how to do that, either!


It turned out that the prince was a great poet, and he made a living out of it. I figured out I was very good at real estate and sold so many houses (both in the human world AND the village!) they had to enlarge the security dome around the Chikian world!

I mostly left law-making and things like that to my husband, but I was the judge of the court. It was a long and happy marraige, and I plan to live it out for my entire life, which, as an elf, will extend centuries from now.

The End