((The following has been written with an eye to finishing up the re-lifing story of Gem, begun four years back. To know where things stand, one might want to read the beginning of the tale, which can be found in the Catacombs, currently, in the folder "Den of Iniquity" and in the story starts, "Home again, home again, Jiggety Jog", parts 1 and 2. Thanks to the muns of the chars who have joined in, those being Jack Scott in black, Benjamin Piers in blue, Lirenel in brown, Necromesh in dark red, Nicholas Maddox aka Madoc Morfryn in green, Desdenova VonTombs in orange, and Erevan Illesere in olive. It is time to finish?the rest of the story (with respect to the great Paul Harvey). ))
"To market, to market, to buy a fat pig,
Home again, home again, dancing a jig;
To market, to market, to buy a fat hog;
Home again, home again, jiggety-jog;
To market, to market, to buy a plum bun,
Home again, home again, market is done."
by Mother Goose
After that most enlightening and marvelous experience, Gem had been reluctant to part from Jack. She walked with him now, on the way to the Red Dragon Inn, having stopped off at the market to get her some food for she had been sharp-set after that bout of loving. Bathed, fed, and feeling incredibly mellow and calm, she was laughing softly at something Jack had said. There was then a change. It was something subtle, something slight. She didn't notice it, not right away. But the air that swept past them no longer was scented of the sea, nor did it have earthly origins. It was chill, cold, and not just in temperature.
Jack sensed it right away. The change to Jack immediate as the snarl that ripped out from between his teeth. He yanked at Gem to move her behind him. The ribbons of his coat shuddered and grew darker. Their breath steamed.
Along the wall behind them, for they had entered an alley, where they almost touched with backs to the wall fine fingers of frost crawled, climbed, descended, did both, forming a line unnoticed between Gem and Jack, until it suddenly was rising up in a sheet of ice, thick and solid, some several inches thick, trying to surround them both, to separate them. Gem was caught by her feet before she could do anything much at all, the ice clamping around her sandaled feet, for she was still in a dress, gleaned from her wardrobe at the hidey hole. Struggling to break the grip of ice, she reached for twin daggers which swept into her hands from the sleeves of her dress. Eyes wide and wild looked around, trying to find the threat. "Jack..! What is it?"
And then came the one, The One who sought to rule all things, all that he could pull into his considerable reach. Madoc Morfryn, the king of the Unseelie Court, twin brother of Oberon, came walking out of a cloud of white mist that was tinged with red, and his hands were held up, ready to launch spells at Jack, should the need arise. He laughed. "Calm thyself, Knight. I but need to speak to the little - elf." His lip curled. Elf was not what he had been going to say.
That little taste of Faerie was enough to ground Jack and let him shed the cursed glamour he was forced to wear everywhere else. Feathers sprouted in his hair and along his brows. Talons grew from his fingertips and his elongated toes. The ribbons of his coat split and feathered and crawled up his arms, turning his skin dark. They blackened and threaded around him to finally form a pair of black glossy wings. The stars in his eyes merged into twin suns that blazed. Where he stood, the ice melted. "Then do it politely."