The flutterbee carriage door was finally closed as we readily approached the flying whale.
Typical Gweyne, being the very persistent leader she is, was adamant on ensuring that I knew everything about this new world that I’d fallen within. She held me up, to my own reluctance, to the small window shaft so that I could watch the coachman drive us into the whale. It was only then that I could see the city that sat on the top of the whale.
“Welcome to Galaxy,” Gweyne said smiling. She is very proud of the creature she knows so much about.
Galaxy is the name of the whale.
The whale’s back is covered in thousands of little round and circular pink, blue and purple buildings. They kind of look like mushroom heads and warts. People live on top of it! Gweyne also explained that the cities of Galaxy actually stretch far beneath the whale’s skin.
Tunnels and houses, schools and government facilities, fun parks and crop gardens are actually inbuilt into the living creature’s flesh and fat!
“More than half of the Galaxy Population lives inside the whale, not on top of it.”
I was expecting the whale to be living in antagonizing pain and suffering, but according to Gweyne, it doesn’t. Apparently, the living population actually tickles the whale’s stomach as folk pass through its systems.
The flutterbee flew calmly down to the whale’s right fin, where six landing platforms were constructed, each with its own rainbow colored tree for the flutterbees to eat from and shelter beneath. We landed. Gweyne opened the door. We exited. And from there I could see that four other flutterbees had landed on four of the other platforms.
Two very attractive mermaid guards approached the landing platforms and waited to escort myself and Gweyne inside. They wore very little. The male one was unnaturally muscular from head to toe, and wore only a seaweed skirt to cover his jewels! The female wore just as little! But had a seaweed bra to cover her very large breast.
They both carried silver scepters with a razor blade on top.
Gweyne introduced me to the guards after having me politely thank the flutterbee driver; his name is Gibbily Sibbley. His gut is large and saggy.
“Thank you for the ride.”
“You’re quite welcome,” he replied.
Gibbily Sibbley is also the FlutterBee Master. His work title makes him responsible for training the other flutterbee drivers, caring for the flutterbees, and raising them from cocoons at infant age. He also bathes them, and tends to any injuries that the magnificent butterflies might endure.
We, being myself, Gweyne, and the two guards, entered the whale through a hatch planted in the center of the creature’s fin. We climbed down a set of stairs and then followed a long hallway into the belly of the beast. All the walls are blue with red tubes, they’re filled with glowing red liquid, which is constantly pumping through and around the beast. I think the tubes are the whale’s veins, and the liquid its blood. The ceilings and floors are clear white.
We continued our way through the whale’s hallways, passing more and more of the semi-naked merman and maids with pointed sticks. Eventually, we walked into a large elevator room with a single hole in the floor and roof. Spirals of colored energy passed from the floor hole, through the room and up through the ceiling hole.
“Hold my hand,” Gweyne ordered me.
I held on as she dragged me into the colors. Whoosh…. We went shooting up through the ceiling, and through floors upon floors of hallways and elevator rooms.
It was amazing!
“This is only a pinch of the colors, sweet child. And it’s all that is needed to power this almighty beast, and make it what it is. The colors are magic.”
The colors sent us shivering through the last floor and into the literal belly of the beast. The stomach of the whale was alike to the rest of the whale, being transformed by the hands of man. It’s a large wide void of blue, black and purple. As we zoomed quickly higher, I began to make out – at what I first thought to far away scars on the whale’s belly – to be three dimensional buildings.
“Welcome to the Under City of Galaxy.”
Below me, I could see millions of little houses and walkways. The houses were blue, the skyscrapers yellow, the walkways pink. Buildings were built all around the place! Up walls, hanging from the roof of the gut, perched on what would be referred to as the floor. Some houses and buildings even floated and drifted on currents around the elevator shoot.
Drifting above – and zooming frighteningly towards the Heirophant and I as we rode the colored path upward – floated four colored glass walls, with scarcely any windows, no doors, and a multi-colored glass floor and ceiling. Thankfully, there was a hole in the floor of the glass floor – to stop Gweyne and I from meeting a gruesome and splat-like end – and through it myself and the Heirophant flew!
The inside of the glamorous castle was averagely plain despite its outer appearance. We only traveled through more and more floors and ceilings.
“This is the Colored Castle. It is where the Communions guests and higher representatives house themselves. You will be assigned a room here for tonight and probably a great many after that, depending on the councils plans for you. I live here myself.”
Soon enough, the castle came to an end, and the colors shot us through the ceiling and vertically up the black gap of the whale, until we eventually reached the top of the stomach. From there on we shot up through the levels of the whale and were spat out into another elevator room.
“Have fun?” Gweyne asked me.
“Oh… It was a little frightening.”
Gweyne laughed at that and assured me there was no longer a need to travel by colors. The two escorts came shooting into the room soon afterwards, and were spat out of the color lift, just as Gweyne and I had been.
“Let us continue,” Gweyne continued the tour through more blue, white and red hallways until we reached the Communion Courtroom.
Gweyne dismissed the guards at an arch-shaped door, and then led me inside. The room inside was circular and dark, with dark blue lighting. The walls were lined with purple flowers and passion fruit vines; they were in season and hung from the stems of the stringy plants on the walls, all purple and green.
In the center of the wide room stood two figures. Gweyne and I paced the room to meet them. There were no chairs in the council room, and so we all had to stand.
“Little Bee, this is Barte Bee, the Ruling Heirophant of the World of Shanahan and Treasurer of the Communion Council. He was born and brought into leadership in the 14th age. Now, introduce yourself.”
“Hello Barte.” I told him my name. “My mother was Busbernith Bee….”
“Ruling Heirophant of the World of Scorpio…” Gweyne interrupted. “She was born in the 7th age and came to hold leadership in the 7th 8th 9th 10th 11th 12th and the 13th age until her days of treason and abandonment. Little Bee here is our visitor, she fell through a gap in the cosmos.”
“Yes, hello, Little Bee.” Said the Heirophant of Shanahan. Barte is a funny looking fellow. He’s a living scarecrow, making him skinny with a pumpkin for a head. He wears straw hats and is known to chew on barley. His uniform is brown and black with a silver snake down the front. “I indeed know of your mother, my child.”
Next Gweyne introduced me to the other.
“Little Bee, this is Buckly Bee, Ruling Heirophant of the World of Chlorine, born in the 11th age and brought into leadership in the 14th age. He is currently the High Heirophant of the Communion Council. Introduce yourself.”
Buckly is scary and holds a stern, well controlled face. He has a large grey beard. His legs are two muscular crab legs. His robe is dark blue, light blue and has a golden snake embroidery down the front. I was so frightened by him I could hardly dribble “Hello.” But I did. And so he replied the gesture, as rudely as I did.
Gweyne continued. “And I Little Bee, am Gweyne, the ruling Heirophant of the World of Dobbingson. And am the acting Heirophant and higher representative for the worlds of Scorpio, Rexonia, Earth and Ezarco. I was born in the 7th age. Was brought into leadership in the 11th age. And have stayed in my position, where I once had the pleasure of working alongside your mother before her banishment, and have since remained in leadership until the present 14th age. Welcome to the Heirophant Committee.”
“Welcome.” Mumbled Buckly with sour lips.
“How do you do?” Barte bowed and swung his hat off, gesturing his etiquette. He then flipped his hat back onto his head.
And so the council began.
“So do you have it, child?” Asked the High Heirophant.
I didn’t understand and looked back to Gweyne.
“I didn’t feel it’s presence, Buckly.” Gweyne said.
“Very well, then. Does she know where it is? Does her mother still hold the dam curse of magic?”
“Little Bee.” Gweyne lifted my head up, to look at her while she was speaking. “Upon your arrival, when the folk learnt of your name and identity, the trees began to whisper, and soon the folk all over the worlds began to gossip. Talk and chatter has spread high and wide, tall and thin, and round and round the communities of the seven high worlds and the many lower ones beneath us. You’re as famous as your dear mother once was, and now her legacy lives on through you…”
“And the legacy of it.” Buckly interrupted. “Haste now, Gweyne. Stop babbling, we have places to be! Spit it out! Ask her if she has the dam pendulum!”
“Of course.” Said Gweyne. “When your mother ditched the Communion, she stole and took an object with her, known as the Pendulum of Cora, or as the peasants call it, the Pendulum of Youth. It is a green stone that hangs from a golden chain. So dear child, please advise myself and the council, have you any idea, where it is that the pendulum rests? Does your mother still have it? Do you have it? Do you know where it is kept? Have you ever laid eyes on the precious piece of jewelry I speak of? I imagine your mother must have been quite fond of it.”
The pendulum? Is that what this is about? I thought to myself.
“No,” I lied. “I mean yes. But I believe it still remains in my mothers room.” Well that was only half a lie. It wasn’t technically in my mothers room, it was in her mirror!
“Will Alfred be able to locate the traitors home?” Buckly asked.
“Yes. He should be able to do so.” Barte answered.
“Good. Then by my order of this council, we shall pick up the pursuit that the Heirophants before us foolishly paused, and we will find the traitor and her pendulum. End of counsel.”
Gweyne Bee is a witch. And Dobbingson is the home world to witches and wizards.
Buckly Bee is an octoman. And Chlorine is the home world to mermen, mermaids, octomen and octomaids.
Shanahan is one of the home worlds for the humans, though the werewolves and a great many other half-beasts live dominantly there. That’s where Barte was born.