Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Dragons of the Valley - CSFF Blog Tour Day 3

Since I ran out of time yesterday, I wasn't able to post all of the manuscript that I received from Nella about Lady Peg's interview on the Lore and Legend Radio Station.  So, although my original plan had been to do a post on dragons today, I'll post the rest of the interview instead in honor of the last day of the Christian Science Fiction and Fantasy Blog Tour for Dragon's of the Valley!

Once again, I'd like to remark on the creativity of Donita K. Paul's characters!  She did a wonderful job creating memorable characters that are unique both from each other and from those in other stories.  If you'd like to read about Lady Peg or the other characters mentioned in the radio interview (except Nella of course) in their best form and original setting, be sure to pick up one of Donita's books - either the The Vanishing Sculptor or Dragons of the Valley.  

That said, I'm pleased to present...

Part Two

I stood and stared in surprise at the strange person who had caused such a frightful disturbance in the peaceful studio recording room.  “What exactly is going on here?  Who are you?”

“Ah my dear young lady, I hope you will excuse us.  I simply can’t imagine what went wrong!  I do believe I fell asleep… bad idea that, falling asleep while whirling!  Dangerous!  No telling where one might wind up… speaking of that, where exactly am I?”
Lady Peg picked herself up off the floor and dusted off her clothes.  “Tsk tsk, Fenworth, you’re as unnerving as my husband appearing like that!  It’s not natural, being in one place one moment and in someplace entirely different the next… all that dashing about surely cannot be good for the digestion.  I do hope you wait a goodly time after you eat before you go twirling!”
“That’s whirling, my dear Lady Peg – though I must admit there is a decent amount of twirling involved.  Isn’t that right Hollee… Hollee?  My dear girl where did you go?”  The stranger started patting down his robes as if he had lost his wallet.
Whirling.  Twirling.  I shook my head in disbelief.  Just when I thought it couldn’t possibly get any worse, there were two of them!  “Look,” I shouted.  “Who are you and what are you doing in here?”
The strange person stopped searching the studio and turned to face me.  “I, my dear, am Fenworth, bog wizard of Amara.”  He swept his hat from his head and bowed elaborately. 
I shrieked and Lady Peg looked distinctly uncomfortable as a large brown spider dropped from his hat and skittered away across the floor. 
“Now, if you'll excuse me.” Fenworth plopped the hat back on his head.  “I’m looking for something.”
“Oh, is it another quest?”  Lady Peg queried anxiously.  “I do hope you haven’t pulled Tipper into it this time.  She has so many responsibilities now, that she really can’t go dashing about in this unseemly fashion.  Not that it is unseemly for you to go dashing about – I’m sure that is your prerogative if you should so choose – and I certainly meant nothing derogatory in referring to your whirling and twirling as dashing about!  But after all you do move rather quickly!  And surely it is also a mother’s prerogative to worry about her daughter – this certainly is not unseemly!”
“Yes yes of course, Lady Peg.”  The wizard nodded and waved a hand dismissively.  “No I did not take Tipper with me.  And although I am on a quest with a rather tight schedule at the moment, I was simply attempting to locate my traveling companion… I seem to have misplaced her somewhere and I can’t imagine where.”
I tried to speak but Lady Peg spoke first.  “Misplaced!  Oh dear, how dreadful.  I remember the time I misplaced my hair brush!  I knew that it was misplaced rather than simply lost.  Being misplaced is somehow so much worse than being lost! When something is lost, than there is always the hope that it can eventually find its way home.  But when something is misplaced, it’s simply not where it’s supposed to be and you just can’t remember how it could have gotten from where you last supposed it to be and where you cannot find it now.”
I realized that my mouth was hanging open and quickly snapped my jaw shut. 
Lady Peg scarcely paused for breath before she launched into another speech.  “So when I misplaced my dear hairbrush, I thought that I had simply lost it at first.   But as time went on and it did not turn up, I knew that it was misplaced.  So I started searching.  I even enlisted my dear Verrin Schope and our friend Bec – the grand parrot, you know – to help.  And at the very last, do you know how I found it?  By remembering where I had misplaced it in the first place, in the last place where I put it!  So perhaps if you could only remember where you misplaced your traveling companion in the last place you placed her, you would be able to find her!”  She beamed rather than smiled now. 
Fenworth ran a hand through his beard, sending a pair of inch worms tumbling to the ground.  “Yes, I’m afraid that’s just it, Lady Peg.  I can never remember the last place.”
By this point in the conversation, the two seemed to have completely forgotten that I even existed, and I was so completely befuddled that I didn’t dare remind them.
Lady Peg looked bleak and she lifted her hands in defeat.  “Oh my, you have got a problem Wizard Fenworth.  I simply don’t know how I can help… If only my husband were here – he is so incredibly clever and he has so many skills, though I cannot say that all of them are practical.  But he is very useful when it comes to locating things that were misplaced and cannot be found. I’m sure he could think of a solution to this dilemma.  Yes, he’d locate your traveling companion in no time!”  Then she brightened up.  “Oh, I do have it!  It as in a solution… not your traveling companion, I still don’t know where she is.  Poor girl. It is odd, isn’t it how things are always in the last placed you look?!  I wonder why that it.  Just think about how much time you could save, if only things were in the first place you looked rather than the last!”
I shifted impatiently and before I knew what I was doing I blurted out a question.  “Lady Peg, if you please, what is the solution you came up with for Wizard Fenworth’s dilemma?”  Perhaps if she told him the solution, then he would leave and I would be able to carry out my interview assignment as if nothing had ever happened.  After all, we were running out of time. The radio station couldn’t play music forever.
“Solution?”  Lady Peg stared blankly at me.  “Solution… oh yes, I do know a simply splendid solution.  Verrin Schope taught it to me – I told you he was clever didn’t I?  Well, I take it back.  He is not clever, he is a genius.  Or perhaps I should say he is clever too… in addition to being a genius!  In any case, he is very smart and he taught me a brilliant solution for the dressing of wounds!  It requires…”
“No no Lady Peg.”  I shouted to be heard about her chattering.  She turned to me with a shocked expression on her face.  “The solution to Wizard Fenworth’s problem!  That’s what we’re looking for!  He lost his traveling companion.”
“Oh no dear,” she shook her head with a patronizing smile.  “I believe we’ve already covered that.  Misplaced… he misplaced his traveling companion, he didn’t lose her!”
“Yes, yes, of course Lady Peg.  But…”
“And since poor Dolly is misplaced, the only way to find her is by looking for her!  That I believe is the best solution to this situation, and it doesn’t involve dressing wounds which is even better!  Wounds are always a result of war, and I don’t like war.  Well.  Hello!  Dolly!  Are you here dear?”  She called, clapping her hands together as if summoning a dog. 
There was no answer.
She turned back to Fenworth and me.  “No, I’m afraid she’s not in here.  Poor Dolly, I can’t imagine what became of her.”
“Not Dolly,” Fenworth corrected.  “It's Hollee.  She’s my assistant... supposed to help me keep track of things, but somehow, since I keep misplacing her, it doesn’t help much.”  He sighed wearily and brushed the dust out of his robes.  A chameleon clambered down and scampered away.   
I turned to the wizard.  “What do you suggest we do?”
“Well, if it were entirely up to me,” he replied, “I’d suggest a tea break.”
“A tea break?”
“Oh yes.”  He nodded emphatically.  “Tea… it’s good for the memory, restores the thinking capabilities!  It is rather difficult to think when your stomach won’t stop growling.” 
Lady Peg gasped.  “Oh!  Don’t even mention those dreadful creatures!  They have such vulgar manners.”
“Growling, Lady Peg.  My stomach was growling.  The creatures you’re thinking of are called grawligs.”  He pulled his hat from his head and reached inside.  “Now, if I can only locate my tea cup… Oh!  I do say!  How remarkable!  Hollee my dear, I’ve found you at last.” 
The figure he pulled out of his hat was small with a wild crown of hair on her head, and glowing… light.  She immediately started dashing about the room, turning summersaults, and cart wheeling, knocking over everything in the room that had remained standing after the wizard’s entrance, finally skidding to a stop in front of Fenworth. “Oh, I’m so stiff!”  She chattered, looking up at him with a half amused half indignant smile on her face.  “I’ve been locked up in your hat for hours. That’s the fifth time you’ve done that to me!  How can I help you remember, when you can’t remember where I am?”
“Terribly sorry, my dear.”  Fenworth sighed.  “But, you’re just in time for tea.  Come, do sit down.  I hope you’ll join us Lady Peg, and you… oh dear, I don’t believe I got your name.”  He nodded at me.  I watched in bewilderment as he sat down at the desk, and began pulling tea making supplies out of an empty-looking sack that he took from his sleeve.  A tea pot, cups, saucers, spoons…
“No, no, no.”  I said.  “Look, this is going too far.  I have a job to do…”
Lady Peg cut me off.  “Tea!  Oh how very civilized.  What a splendid idea, Wizard Fenworth, carrying your tea set around with you like that!”  She sat down. 
My patience finally ran out.  It had been ebbing for the past hour or so, and I finally exploded.  “Please!  This is getting ridiculous!”  I shouted.  They completely ignored me.  “Fenworth!  Lady Peg!  Hollee!  Somebody listen to me, please!  This is a studio and I’m working right now… we’re supposed to be on the air!  You can’t have tea right now!  Come on all of you, up, get out of here…”
Then my gaze fell on the microphone lying on the floor across the room.  Wait… was it on?  I glanced quickly towards the door.  The green “on the air” sign was still lit!  “No!”  I gasped, running towards the microphone.  “No, it’s recording!  Quick!  Cut transmission!  Cut transmission!”  
I grabbed the microphone up.  "Um, thank you for listening!  This is Nella with Lore and Legend... signing off!  
I pressed the switch and the light on the door blinked off.  Surely this can’t be happening… my first day on the job!  I stared back at my three strange guests, seated around my table calmly sipping tea as they chattered pleasantly on about the weather without hearing a word that I said.  I saw the list of questions I had so carefully prepared scattered across the floor and I shook my head.  Time to find a new job... I am not cut out for this!  
Turning, I walked through the door and closed it behind me.  
My three guests didn’t even notice. 
I wonder what to do now... I strode slowly down the long hallway to exit the Lore and Legend station building.  Perhaps I'll turn novelist!  Surely that will be easier than what I’ve just been through!
I pushed my way through the revolving front doors and stepped out into the street.  Nella of Lore and Legend, signing off.  

The End

~ A Servant of the King

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  1. Gillian, this was outstanding. I'm so impressed by how you caught the voice of each of these characters. What fun! Though I have to say, I'm sorry to miss what you have to say about dragons.

    Love all three posts.


  2. *Mwahahah* That was unbelievably confusing and excellent. Great job! :D You captured them perfectly.

  3. Thank you!

    @ Becky: Yes, I should have liked to do a post about dragons... it would have been fun! But I guess it will have to wait until next time!

  4. Readers have been after me to have a scene in which Lady Peg and Wizard Fenworth meet. Now it has been done, and done well.

  5. Funny stuff, Gillian. I really enjoyed this. I wonder if we'll be hearing more from Nella in future tours.

  6. @ Fred - Thanks! Hmm, I hadn't really thought about it... good idea! I guess we'll just have to see! :)

  7. Nella's interview with Lady Peg and Wizard Fenworth has been posted on Donita K. Paul's website under the fan fiction title: First Day on the Job!


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