dammitmother: but yet you draw not iron (Default)
Toby's Dreamscape is a twilit garden, branching gravel paths, strange flowers (though an abundance of roses), and a pale sliver of a moon hanging above--a Cheshire Cat moon, like a smile without a cat. It's the sort of golden twilight fairy stories are made of and--as in all the oldest tales--there are things in here that bite, claw, or smile as they draw the knife, hidden among the roses; lighted piksies, wild and incomprehensible, rose goblins, memories, always the blood-red roses, and more. In the center of the garden is a tower, locked unless you're given permission, and surrounding the garden, a low wall made from the same stone as the tower. Both wall and tower seem to glow dimly, a steady illumination in the half light.

Down the garden paths, which flowers you follow determine which memories you find.

Follow the glass roses and you will come to a cul-de-sac garden with a bench, lit as if by sunlight from above. The flowers here are made entirely of glass and scatter the light like prisms. Cut your finger on one, and a woman with pink hair, strange sap-colored eyes, and skin pale as marble appears to fuss over you, her name is Luna, and she is kind, if strange.

Perhaps you prefer normal-seeming blood red roses, with their thorns. Follow this path as far as you can, and the wines will catch on your clothing, pulling you in, keeping you out, who can tell. There's a woman, further in, with dark hair that shimmers like an oil slick, her great and terrible beauty blunted by the thorns she seems to be trapped in. She does not seem to see you, but speaks of a secret she must keep safe, of deth by iron and betrayal, and that you must help her. Help her with what, she never says.

Take a turn towards the scent of tall stalks of rosemary under a willow tree, where a pool of salt water laps. Distance is strange, here, kelp waving underwater in such a tiny pond, the horizon farther than it should be, the roar of an ocean in this one small space. Wait here, and a man will come, with seal-dark eyes, and hair spotted like a seal's pelt. He will likely not speak, but his presence will be reassuring.

Japanese maples and lilies of the valley lead you down a path to a quiet koi pond, the big fat fish swimming in serene, never-altering circles, the drip of water coming from somewhere. Here is a woman in a deep blue kimono that seems to move like water, her skin pale with a blueish cast. When she speaks, it is in Japanese, untranslatablee here unless you know it. If you do, she speaks of a woman named Amandine, her dearest, and that it is getting so cold, and she does not know what will happen to all her charges, if it keeps getting colder. She speaks of rivers and water, and probably won't make much sense at all.

A path lined with stately holly bushes (nicely kept, the spikes shouldn't bother you) leads you to a house of the sort that line the streets in nicer parts of San Francisco. It looks a bit like the one Toby lives in here, but better kept, the garish colors of the paint muted by moonlight. Open the door to a cluttered living room, and you'll find two people. One, a woman, May, who looks like she could be Toby's sister, her hair dyed mad colors and chopped short. She and her girlfriend, a tall woman who looks to be of Indian descent, regard you warily, but generally friendly. May speaks of Toby as a sister, Jasmine, the dark-haired woman, does not speak to you, only to May. Two Siamese cats sit here, sometimes, and disappear without warning, along with a rose goblin.

Bright splashes of calendula (marigolds) outline a path to a room lit by candlelight, holding three woman: One is October herself, looking less fae and more half-human, lying on the floor, unconscious or dead, it's hard to say. One is the woman from the tower, Amandine, distracted, searching the walls for doors that do not exist. The third looks like a fifteen-year-old in coveralls and a flannel shirt, curly hair the color of oil bound in electrical taped pigtails. Unlike most people, she'll talk to you, and not vaguely either, demanding to know why you are here, informing you it's a dream, telling you how to get out. If you want to find Toby, the real Toby, and your intentions are good, she'll tell you. She's not kind, by any measure, but at least she's paying attention to you.

There's a path lined with the dusty yellow blossoms of rue bring you to a front room that looks like a flophouse. Broken glass is on the floor, graffiti lines the walls, and there are several people propped about the room, silent and staring. Twins, a boy and girl with eyes green as apples, in a haze of glittery sweat. The girl holds a silver knife, the edges cutting into her palms; the boy holds another, the blood coming from his palms black and sluggish. A man with purple eyes with strange, starburst pupils glares at you, a gun in his hands. A girl with golden eyes glares at you, sitting on a rough-hewn wood chair, arrows laid across her lap, their tips glittering poisonously. Another woman, in a sleek black catsuit, looking amlevolent and beautiful, holds a vial full of gray liquid. None of them speak. The only sound is a rustling, like that of dry leaves or wings. Go through to the back, in an office, and you might find Toby's picture on a bulletein board full of pictures, but, while back there, the place will burst into flames, and you'll either have to leave the dreamscape and go to another, or perish.

Following the cheerful, out-of-place daffodils brings you to a kitchen, where a teenage boy with blonde hair that shades toward bronze, with very pointed ears, very handsome, Quentin--probably messing with the coffee maker. Just don't let him break it. He'll talk about Toby as a knight, his knight, and offer you coffee. If you stay more than a few minutes, three cats (one Abyssinian and two Siamese) and a rose goblin will wander in. The Abyssinian will turn into a cait sidhe boy, looking nothing much like Tybalt except in the way he bears himself. Very princely. He's a bit more suspicious, but won't harm anyone unless provoked.

Bright orange Zinnias and red poppies line a path that looks more and more like the Adstringendum most people are familiar with, a beaten-up, weathered old bench in the midst of a vegetable garden. Anyone from Adstring can appear here, and anyone entering this part from Adstring will not be bothered here by other memories from other parts of the garden. Rose goblins pass through, every once in a while, and regular cats, but that's it.

Go further into the deepest shadows you can find, that smell like pennyroyal (minty, but unseen) with grass underfoot, and you'll eventually come out in a very strange place, like an alley, blocked up with stacks of crates and mattresses, the orange sodium-vapor glow of a streetlight above. Stay here and you'll eventually find yourself the scrutiny of dozens of cats, appearing from nowhere, staring silently. If Tybalt appears here, you may go to his Dreamscape.

Go to the tower and place your hand upon the wood of the door or the cool of the stone. It has no lock, but cannot be forced open. You can perhaps persuade it to open to you, if you don't mind negotiating with an inanimate object that doesn't talk back. If Toby is with you or she has given you permission, the tower door will open. In here are hazy memories of a far-off childhood:

One, behind big stately double doors just inside, is a ballroom (much too big for the tower) filled with beautiful fae in even more beautiful dresses, and a small changeling girl with gray eyes on the arm of her mother, tall and blonde so beautiful she's almost terrible to look at. None of the people in the ballroom speak to you, and the flickering light of the candles placed everywhere hurts your eyes, when normal candlelight shouldn't. There is food here, faerie food, and wine, and you can eat and eat but never be sated. You could get stuck here forever, if you're not careful.

Another room, past a smaller, simpler door, is filled with children, fae and half-fae, little girls with rust-colored fox tails, centaur boys, rowdy and laughing, children with eyes the color of pippin apples who trail glitter after them. This room is friendlier, the ceiling painted blue with fluffy clouds, the carpet like soft grass. The children will want you to play with them, babbling at you happily about everything and nothing, as children will. There may even be, out of place, though she doesn't act like it at all, a little human girl with ash-blonde hair, playing with a friend her age, with honey-gold eyes and pointed ears.

In either of these places will sometimes be a man with fox-red hair and honey-gold eyes, who is caring, and will speak to you kindly, though he seems busy.

There's a hidden room, the door blending into the walls almost. This is a normal little girl's bedroom, filled with stuffed toys and a rocking chair and a little bed, a low table with a teaset on it. An entirely human man sits on the bed, looking at the doll tucked into it in place of a child, sadly. He will ask you where his little girl has gone, and tell you that it's time to go to sleep. You won't get much more out of him.

You won't get much concrete information out of anyone here, but it might be a nice way to while a few hours away.

Go to the wall, and try to leave, and the man with fox-red hair and golden-honey eyes will try to convince you to stay, if you are friendly, or force you out, if you are hostile. Whatever you do, do not fight this man, he is likely to not look kindly upon it. If you leave, the golden light swiftly grows into dawn, too bright for you to handle, and you move to another Dreamscape.


dammitmother: but yet you draw not iron (Default)
October "Toby" Daye

September 2015

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