by ♫~ Kenword~♫
I am obliged to speak at Queen MonTika's garden tea pary. But what can I say?
Queen MonTika’s Tea Party
My eagerness to charge into the day was sparked by the red sky and the heat shimmers rising from my garden. A day like this always provoked the garnet rock mushrooms to burst from their marshy surroundings to become highly prized red pumiceous stones. My dogs, Alfie and Paris, were at the door growling a few words I had taught them years ago.
“Out. Out Marsden. Out.”
I was surprised by their enthusiasm. Usually after breakfast, they would rather sprawl across my bed until lunch. “Out” was an evening exercise, when Triem's heat is displaced by the thick fog that rolls in from the ocean.
The moment my back door was unlatched, it swung violently outward, as Alfie and Paris raced straight for the marsh. I chuckled and mumbled as I grabbed my beat up garden hat and slipped on my garden gloves and headed out to join my rowdy pals.
I watched with great amusement, as Alfie and Paris ran up to the top of a grassy knoll that overlooks my marsh. From that vantage point they detected the thing that was driving them to distraction in the house. It was obvious that it was centered in the marsh, where I expected to find my coveted mushrooms.
I hurried to the marsh, my curiosity peaked, and as I got to the spongy moss at the edge, I heard loud pixie voices. The sounds were shrill even for fairies and there was a current of fairy magic in the air that drew my dogs into the marsh.
“It’s Emera,” barked out Alfie, and of course Paris copied, but with his much deeper bark. They danced and frolicked out their intense curiosity for a moment, and then trotted off for more important adventures. I on the other hand, braced myself for a confrontation with a precocious fairy princess. On a mossy island surrounded by lilies, water chestnuts and sedge grasses was one of my prized garnet mushrooms. Seated majestically on its cap was indeed Emera, the Fairy Queen’s ambassador to Triem. She was adorned in green garments with gold trim and her translucent wings seemed to be dusted with a fine coating of gold.
She raised a delicate hand that radiated with the green and gold light that shot from her fingers. She used the brightest of the ten fingers to beckon me to her. I took two cautious steps towards her mushroom throne. As I did, three fairies materialized from out of the sky somewhere and dusted me with a pixie charmed magic coating. It wasn’t unexpected, but was, none-the-less, a shocking experience. My six foot frame shrank to be exactly Emera’s height of seven inches. And, as often happens with fairy shrinking dust, I was left suspended in air with only my barest linen essentials to cover my body. My hat, gloves and other outer clothing lay in a pile at the edge of the island. And because of this side effect, I found myself eye to eye with Queen MonTika’s emissary from Lillian Glenn. I wanted to stand firmly on the marshy soil. Instead I hung before Emera as though hooked to the sky.
“It’s nice to see you again big wiz,” Emera said. “I suppose you know why we’re here.” Her sweeping hand included the mischievous fairies who had dusted me and were now hanging in the sky at my side. I shook my head no.
“You didn't receive your invitation to Queen MonTika‘s Tea Party?” Emera asked. Her silver and gold flecked eyebrows arched to create a look that conveyed both suspicion and alarm. “It was to be hand delivered to you by our most trustworthy couriers.”
I shook my head no and attempted to decline the invitation, but my shrunken vocal chords could utter only a peep, like a new born bird.
The three fairies hanging next to me put their hands over their mouths and giggled, which gave away the secret of who was supposed to deliver my invitation. Fairies and trustworthy are not two words that go together in Triem.
“Well none the matter. Now Big Wiz, I’m sure you wouldn’t want to miss the grandest garden event of the year. You are, after all, the guest speaker. Bring him down here boys!” At her command the three fairies grabbed me and took me to Emera. Out of a gray oblong box she produced a gold tuxedo that glimmered with the high sheen of a million metallic threads.
Emera and her three assistants put me into the tuxedo in an instant. They added shoes and a top hat all made from the same metallic threads. They snapped my body into a mannequin pose and stood back to admire their handiwork.
Emera’s smile glowed with delight. She obviously wanted to laugh, but at the same time, seemed to approve of my grand appearance. “Oh ho,” she said, “Queen MonTika is going to love you!”
“So Marsden, when was the last time you took a fairy flight?”
I again tried to speak but nothing came out of my mouth but little peeps.
“Our guest speaker is having some technical difficulties Duncan,” Emera said looking at the fairy to my right. “Give him a bit of the potion from your flask.” Duncan reluctantly gave me a small vial that I knew contained a liquor I should not drink. My hesitation gave the fairies an opportunity to mock my cowardice and they stamped their feet and laughed mercilessly.
“Ok Marsden,” Emera said, “Consider that your in-flight beverage and you better hold onto your hat.” She winked at her assistants. Duncan grabbed my arm bending it at the elbow shoving the vial to my lips. Emera took my other elbow forcing my hand to the rim of my glittering top hat. The two other fairies took hold of my legs. With the propulsion power of four fairies we took off to Lillian’s Glenn at humming bird speed.
The force of our launch pushed potion from the vial straight into my mouth by way of my surprised scream. It burned the back of my throat, down my inner pipes, all the way to my toes.
Thirty minutes later we landed in Queen MonTika’s garden. My escorts brought me to the Queen’s table where she graciously took my hand and led me to sit beside her.
“Your Majesty,” I said, having found my new voice with the help of Duncan’s potent potion, “It is an honor to be here today. Thank you so much for your kind invitation.”
MonTika was no ordinary queen. Her wings and crown were inlaid with thousands of the most glorious jewels in the universe. Her manner was regal but humble, warm but reserved.
“I am glad you could join us Marsden,” she said, charm and elegance beaming from her doll like face. “You do us a great honor, and it is gracious of you to address the members of my tea party with your views on fairy and mortal relations.”
Being a mortal at my first official fairy event, I was certainly more than casually interested in the relations between us. Between mortals and fairies I mean. Of course I had thought about fairies and mortals. As grand wizard of Triem, where fairies were considered a torment and a nuisance, what could I say? Well it was no time to reveal the Triem line of thought on fairies that was for sure. What was it I could possibly say to this auspicious gathering of Lillian Glenn fairy leaders and dignitaries?
And as happens with wizards sometimes, as I asked the question the answer rolled up to my tongue and out of my mouth, “ Your majesty, may I sing a song to begin your tea party?”
Queen MonTika smiled her courtly smile and lifted her hands to the audience of fairy royalty.
“My family,” said MonTika, “Marsden, the Grand Wizard of Triem will now favor us with a song.” All the fairy faces turned from looking upon Queen MonTika to look at me. I steadied myself and revved up my brand new baritone fairy sized voice. With hardly any effort on my part, out rolled the sweetest notes and scintillating tones ever devised by magic to sing to my new friends the national anthem of the Lillian Glenn Fairies. There were tears in every eye, and some gentler souls swooned from their seats to lay in wonder on the garden lawn.
As I held out the final note for a count of twenty seven seconds, even Queen MonTika and her emissary Emera were entranced and filled with admiration for my skills as an orator.
At the end of the song, the fairy Tea Party came alive with cheers and applause that would have made even an American blush. I bowed with as much courtly grandeur, as I could draw up from within my soul, as the great queen of the fairies, MonTika, took my arm and whispered in my ear, “Of course you will be my escort to the Rainbow Ball tonight.” I felt my whole being suddenly aglow, certain that this was much more than an obligatory invitation. What else could I say?
“I would be honored your Majesty.”