Hi. My name is Rialian.
I am the scion of a wealthy Scottish Laird who lives in a huge grey castle on the moor. My mother, a high priestess of the Goddess, schooled me in the Old Ways and my Father, a mighty warrior and blackguard, taught me the skills of battle.
When I was but a wee lad, Instead of romping in the heather like the other children, I had to go to war. I earned my first set of warpipes fighting the English at the age of eight, defending my mother and eight sisters from dishonor. Or was I defending my honor from my sisters? I don’t recall exactly.
The fact that I won may have had something to do with my mother. Whilst she was plotting the demise of my father via his many allergies, she summoned a dark cloud to obscure the terrain during which time I bested the English (or was it my sisters?) Those dark clouds come in handy, unless, of course, you are trying to see something.
My father , meanwhile, escaped with his life, because by sheer luck he had been detained at a moat auction at which he bought seven used alligators. His propensity for attending and ransacking moat auctions and used armor dumping grounds was the primary cause of his life being in great danger from my Mother. My Mother, you see, required room to perform her mighty magics. And there WAS no room. My father’s habit was to take the spoils of his conquests and imprison them within boxes. He would then stack the boxes within each room of our Castle, until all rooms were filled. The worst such room is the Dungeon, otherwise known as the Basement.
Meanwhile, in keeping with Tradition, my two younger brothers travelled forth to distant countries to seek their Fortunes and avoid involvement in castle renovation projects. One of them became a Master of Dragons. At every opportunity, he proudly boasts that his fierce Battle-Dragons have “The Eyes that See All, and the Claws that Sink Into All” (most Battle-Dragon experts are favorably impressed by such imaginatively life-threatening descriptions, and it makes it much easier to seek one’s Fortune in strange lands). My other Brother, a famous Wizard, is involved in a project programming god on the internet. Both of my Brothers have thus brought much honor and fortune to our Clan.
But enough about them. Back to my story. A few years later, just as I was having the most fun, two of my sisters had an altercation with Mordred, laird of Dark Counsel. They fled silently in the night, and begged me to accompany them to a hidden castle at the foot of Saint Catherine’s Cathedral. The good Abbot of Saint Catherine’s Cathedral said that he would lend us some stained glass for our basement so that we could create a Temple of the Old Religion in our new quarters (I and my sisters always create a Temple of the Old Religion wherever we go).
We were extremely fortunate, as the Abbot who had preceded him would not have stood for the financial competition. We thanked him for his kindness and set to work. Soon we realized that we were under seige. The ex-abbot, who still harbored some bitterness, decided that there could be only one Abbot (him) and NO temple of the Old Religion. The unceasing thunder of many chariots rang in the air! We had no food or water! Our quarters were dark, and my personal cell was sparse and small. But being of stalwart and courageous stock, I was happy to do this small service to my Sisters, who had always meant the world to me. Meanwhile, Mordred, brooding in his castle, married him a wife and a daughter and lived happily ever after (people always get married and live happily ever after while I’m under seige from an ex-Abbot!!) We finally fended off our foes and the new Temple shone brightly as the Stars!
Since I had won a hearty parcel of land from the English (or was it my sisters), I could have gotten married and sired 15 children, 34 grandchildren, and 152 great grandchildren, all of whom look, act, and think exactly like me. I could have died a happy and peaceful death surrounded by babies and lilacs. But no. I had to move in with …. My Sisters!!!!!
My Sisters, as I expected, still harbored a slight grudge against me because I had won a hearty parcel of land from them (or was it the English) at the age of 8. I was held captive mercilessly in my small cell with nought but crumbs to eat and recycled water to drink. Whenever I left my room, I had to cross “the No-Man’s Land of Veg”. In this No-Man’s Land, no men were permitted. No thoughts were permitted. No walking was permitted. There was only the Grey Light and the Babble of a Thousand Voices. The thin walls of my cell often times did not prevent the Voices from reaching me. I had to fend them off with my magical skill and stereo. If I was ever caught in the No Man’s Land of Veg, I would be turned into a turnip. I began to spend much of my time brooding upon the Unseelie and Unseemly.
“This is really quite unnecessary,” said Sir Sadge, who was quite averse to being carried off by anyone, let alone by people he didn’t know. The leader of the elves nodded to Sir Sadge apologetically. “Yes, I know, she said. We should have invited you instead of kidnapping you. However, you did not realize the danger you and Rialian were in and there is no time to explain!! The Lost Elf Blade of Leonnar could only be reforged by the Great Lost Elf Lord whom we know as “He Who Brings Peace Wandering”. We have strong reason to suspect that your friend here is this one of which we know and speak. There are those who wish to slay him to prevent him from completing his Project.”
Sir Sadge licked his fur and meowed, as he was getting hungry and this was WAY out of his routine. “The only project Rialian has is to feed me and keep me company, ” he snorted. Then he went to sleep.
“Well, here we are!” said the Elves merrily. “Where?” chorused our heroes. The band of elves and their captives were standing at a three-way crossroads. A small white cottage stood at the crossroads. Across from the cottage, a stream babbled merrily in the crisp winter air. “Hmm. A crossroads of the Lady,” thought Rialian. His Mother, a High Priestess of the Goddess, had taught him these sorts of things.
“This shall be your new home for a while,” said the Elves. “You will be safe here for a time at least!” Then Rialian and Sir Sadge were dumped unceremoniously in a patch of ivy in front of the cottage, whereupon the Elves disappeared. Before they left, the Elves gave to Rialian a magical Box. They said, “If you ever wish to talk to us, just press the button on this Box and go to the Domain of the Elves. You will find us there!” With that, the elves left the confused duo to their own devices.
Rialian and Sir Sadge surveyed their patch of ivy rather despondently, wondering where they were and what they were going to do. Just then they heard a Roar. “REOWWWRRRR,” it went. “Oh NO!!!!” screeched Sir Sadge. “This is NOT GOOD!! Those elves have deposited us in the lair of none other than the dreaded Witch of the Crossroads!! That roaring we just heard is her Pet Monster, the horrible and feared ‘Oookie’!! He leaves a wake of death and mayhem in his path! He is the Arch Assassin of the Realm of the Twin Brooks!!! We’ll never escape alive!!!”
“Well, do you wish to stay out here in the Ivy and play with Ookie in the snow, or would you like to come in?” spoke a voice behind them. They whirled around, drawing the Elf-blade and a pair of fangs simultaneously. However, it was just a rather non-threatening woman with a large nose and long hair that needed a trim. “It’s all right,” whispered Sir Sadge, who had a knack of knowing who was a real threat and who wasn’t.
“My name is Poplar,” she said. “I need your assistance. You see, a mini-vampire has taken over the Turret of my cottage, and, although as vampires go, he is a semi-decent fellow, and although he does pay his fee regularly, I must be rid of him for my health’s sake, you know. Should you rid my domain of this mildly annoying purveyor of Flake Angst from Heck, I shall reward you handsomely.” Most cottages did not come with a Turret, but hers happened to come with one.
“We’re on!” cried the stalwart pair, visions of a warm bed and a bowl of cat food running through their minds.
Vampires, as it turned out, do not favor Elves too well, and they like Elf-blades even less (they give off a glow which, although not as deadly to them as sunlight, is liable to give the vampire an uncomfortable case of sunburn.) Presently, the vampire announced that for a number of Very Reasonable reasons, he had decided to find other quarters, and within a few weeks, he had left without incident. “That was almost too easy!” said Poplar. Then they went upstairs to investigate.
Four weeks later, they were finished cleansing the rooms of Dark Chimera, Wafting Shades, Strange Odors, Creeping Cromulus that seemingly came from nowhere, and other dross commonly left behind by the average vampire. The fact that this included a thoroughly desiccated Tree skeleton, three boxes of moldy glass vials, and a bin of ash did not surprise them. Suffice it to say that the Chariot of Chiron carried all of it off to the Land of the Dead, never to be seen again.
Finally, Rialian and Sadge staked a claim to the Turret, and after much grunting and monumental effort, erected an Impenetrable Portal to prevent the Arch-Assasin Ookie from climbing the tower and performing unwelcome marauding in Sir Sadge’s territory.
“Well, I guess that wasn’t so easy after all,” said Poplar when they were finally done. But she was so happy about how her house felt and looked now that an Elf lived there, that she completely forgot about the vampire and other problems common to being surrounded by two-dimensional idiots, and began to sing. Which she had not done in years. To be continued…
Oh, sorry, got carried away. That was the wrong lifetime. It is also the wrong person writing it, but that is a different issue that you will have take up with my ghost-writer and signifiother. Well, back to the present.
In the semi-consentual reality that we call the Real World, I am a case manager in the Department of Social Services of a county in Maryland . I do my best to determine if reunification of children removed for various reasons from their families is, in fact, a possibility. This usually occurs, as I am following the plan for reunification, which is the first choice we are supposed to look at.
I am with a new pilot initiative called Families To Families, which is to attempt to change the system towards a more workable form. This seems to call for more interaction between all parties and this will hopefully fix my personal problem with the system…the limbo children are put in, sometimes for years, while some “parents” play the system.
Hopefully, this initiative will speed up decisions while giving the parents a reasonable chance to clean up their acts. Feel free to contact me if you wish to hear more on what I do…The above may seem harsher than I intend, but it has been a rough week, and I am not feeling my normal levels of compassion. I also realize there are many more issues that I would need to touch on to give a true picture, and perhaps later I will amend the page to reflect this…It is not all that cut and dried.
In my spare time (which, depending on my week, is limited indeed) I tend to be hanging out with friends and/or girlfriend causing serious warpage of main-stream reality, or reading to improve my knowledge base/mind/wickedness quotient. On weekends, I can probably be found helping at Four Quarters Farm (a worthy place to put time into), or trying to recover from bouts of semi-exhaustion at home sleeping.
Oh, about the 152 great grand children. I cannot afford to procreate on my social worker’s salary, so don’t worry. Even though I occasionally moonlight for the Department of Antisocial Services, who pride themselves in the slogan “We Reimburse You Late or Not At All!”. Why do I work for them you ask? Because I have True Grit. Tremble, mortal mice.
Educationally, I graduated from Albright college with a BA in Philosophy/ Psychology. This has actually saved me a lot of money because each time I need a psychologist, I just look in the mirror and talk to myself. Trouble is, I win all of the arguments. Any suggestions?
What do you look like? — Like the humanoid in the picture. Actually I’m quite normal. Really.
What do you do? — I’m a social worker for the State. I often don my gauntlets and sunglasses and a black suit and state, “I’m with the Government. I’m here to help you.”
What do you want to do? — I want to do something that truly helps people to be their best whilst at the same time expressing my creativity and making me be admired and famous worldwide. Well, actually. I’d settle for helping people and knowing they were actually getting some good out of it.
What do you like to do? — I like to climb up to high places, flap my arms, and make a noise similar to a large condor. The proper steps for accomplishing this are illustrated below:
What kinds of people do you like? — I like eclectic hypermorphs with a sharp sense of humor. I also like the Elf folk.