The Fog

Tree in the field during extreme cold. Picture courtesy Wikimedia Commons.

Tree in the field during extreme cold. Picture courtesy Wikimedia Commons.

Not so many know of the dangers that the wild holds. Neither what nature is reserving for the adventurer, the space traveller or the one who is simply lost.

In our times, certain things have already changed in comparison with the past but not so many, like the average human being could think. Buildings keep being the same than at Victorian times. Some have modernised in some sort of spaceship shapes which are not so clear to identify or classify. In fact, it has been needed a new series of words, protocols, studies and observations for to can name their new and revolutionary style. Some people does not even understand why all those terms are about but that does not mean they do not exist if not they have not been properly educated on those new arts.

In between the old and new, so many things have changed. Evolved if you prefer. Others do not.

Now, it is possible certain animals: like falcons, tigers, or any other exotic pets will take commercial flights for to move from one location to other. All thanks to the revolutionary industry promoted by the sheikhs which have made possible animals have a passport. Actually, it is a bit awkward to travel with a leopard at your side who looks suspicious at you but no impossible.

People keep driving old cars and new cars. While others keep without to travel anywhere at all. It is not a matter of visas, economy… If not they firmly believe what they have around them will not be overcome by any other sort of experience they could find in the rest of the world. To this, it follows there is not better sheep than the ones which made that wool on that jacket. There is not better shortbread and biscuits than the ones we made. There is no better language than we talk. There is not better tea than the one we drink. Even if that tea is not cultivated in those regions and it comes from abroad but who cares indeed where the tea grows when the box says clearly “Made in…” and not the name of the country from where it comes from.

There are so many things which have changed on the islands but not so many like it could seem. In fact, one of the things which keep stalking everybody and whom no one has could find a solution is the fog.

It is not about normal fog, this one which clearly makes everything slightly damp and blurry. The one of the fresh mornings or nights which needs some sunlight to break and which seems in winter it never comes. No, I am not talking about that fog if not about the fog.

It is thick, dense, a simply small quantity of them not even bigger than the volume of a glass can make you chill from head to toe. Still, the worst is not that, if not how it expands on a series of white layers of poisonous effect. To breath it, it is asphyxiant. And it can cause death in less than ten minutes… If no one notices that silent stalker affecting them.

The problem this dangerous and treacherous enemy has is: it is easily confused with normal fog when, in fact, the fog is nothing alike the fog at all. The current one is made of vapour of water in different semi-liquid states while no one is sure about what the fog is made. They use to call it: the silent killer, the winter stalker or the frozen whisper because the victims which have been affected by it have could only whisper a few strange words before their death. Still, not so many have could deliver their last message for to keep a record of it.

“It’s here…” they used to exhale. After that, all their muscles became paralysed on a frozen agony and there was not more information that those people could share in this physical side and, for the moment, the contacts with the other side had not been developed properly. Neither it is allowed to make it in certain cases which are considered trivial.

Some of the oldest cases documented about this sudden deaths come from the early medieval times. They are not only on these islands if not worldwide. It is said, so many soldiers who served in Africa when George IV was the king, saw how the fog took away so many of their beloved there. Only, when those strange phenomena happened there was not cold there if not a sunny day which turned without any explanation on a grey one; where life and death were confused and it finished winning the last one.

The most dreadful about how this tragedy repeats in non-correlative dates; in different places of the world for so many different ages. There is not a reason why. Not even an explanation about if it is some sort of physical atmosphere or anything else behind. But to inhale the winter stalker is like to be choked slowly by the poison of a frozen deadly breath. So, beware of the fog. If you find it on your path, be awake and run away. If not, the late will take you: for the eternity in advance.

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Castle of Glass

Originally posted on 2011 at an old blog I have. This is a rewritten version of the original story. The story has not changed, just my English and my way of to express myself. This story belongs to the Ambrosia tale’s which are narrated for Sebastian‘s Canny. I hope you enjoy it. Best.

Castle of Glass

There is an old legend which not everybody knows if it is truth or not. It is not clear what happened on those annals of the so early times which barely keep recorded after the Great Fire. Just a few memories about the events are left at the lands of Cadyland and Benethor but without to be sure if they are reliable or not.

After centuries this story seems to have occurred, only a few archeogs guided for their greed and lust have dared to cross the Lamsa mountains. Still, those scoundrels whom exploit national heritage for to sell it on the magic market have not found so much: just a few pieces of highia.

It is for this reason, so many believe this story was not real at all. It was only one of the so many legends which are part of the early beginnings of Ambrosia’s world. However, like a good keeper of the events and success of this immortal and strange lands it is on my mission to proceed to tell it. Like a good writer will do with any good storytelling.

Hidden on the furthest side of the high and steep Lamsa mountains, it is said there was a palace made of glass. It was not a fortress which pretended to avoid invaders to come in, neither it was the sort of castle full of richness which love to have certain kings. What was built there, it was made for to do not allow no one to run away.

Although, before to continue with the facts, it is important to set clear an important detail. It is clear, not so many had the opportunity to check the map that Ilicitus Magnus made of Ambrosia’s lands. I have not even shared them on this texts. But after so many confusion issues and things, it must to be told, confirmed and assured. Lamsa mountains are not near the sea. Neither there are mermaids or gorgons on those lands. Those creatures seemed to be extinguished long ago but they were more a greek thing and not something from those fantastic lands.

Highia is a rare crystal which could be used and adapted for to build anything. Between the several properties this element have is to trap the evil beings. That was the reason this castle was made of that special glass: because nobody wanted that what was inside walked completely free for all the lands.

It was there, inside of that crystal maze, where some of the evilest souls no one could imagine were trapped. These beings, with human and beshrut appearance, could provoke the end of all the knowing things we knew until now. It is truth, the castle of glass was a jail but not for the people if not for the doomed incorporeal souls and beings whom would be better to keep under watch.

There was not mortal flesh at all living those lands. Still, not all the people living there was cursed of condemned because in between all those fiends there was a keeper whom had like a task to be sure none of them will be freed.

Her name was Ina and there is not so much about her. Just she was one of the eldest trained at the Golden Temple and before the multiple invasions and wars which almost finished with the richness and peace of those lands.

Ina had that obnoxious and frightful task not for her special training; if it would have been only for that any trained monk at the Golden Temple could have made it instead of her: a young and fragile naive girl in appearance. It was granted that honour because inside their knowledges each one has a gift. Ina’s was to can see directly through the souls of all sort of beings. No one could hide to her a lie, a secret or the truth. That, granted to her the ability of to can know too much and with to can learn how to use that people in advantage.

However, Ina did not used her gift for bad. It was indeed for that she was sent there like a guardian of that place full of malefic souls. There was not way of to cheat her and she could always prevent which were the methods they were using to try to escape or for to harm others outside. Because on certain magical places not everything is necessary it can happen with physical touch.

The capacity of to control them made her the princess, queen and custodian of the place. But it was one of the hardest duties and task any mortal or immortal could have. One of the loneliest jobs in the world because with the evil it is better to do not cross a word if it is not for to punish them for something they have done for to harm a fair soul.

She missed the green grass, the full life of woods and landscapes, the Candyland trees, the Neil’len waterfalls and the sea. She wanted to see them all again but her responsibilities for centuries impeded her.

Between the evil, she was feared. She could not only knew what they were plotting and planning if not she knew how to destroy those plans and ideas, to hurt those beings if it was necessary, only using her mind. Despite she abhorred to hurt anyone for her pacific nature and the teachings at the golden order, she knew sometimes it was necessary to take actions for the good of so many others living at Ambrosia’s lands. The so many creatures inhabiting the rest of the world did not had to pay a high price only because some beings could not think clear and they were blinded in revenge and madness. It was not fair at all they had to paid the fair for the insane and unjust.

Inside that place which was not made of no ordinary glass: which people can have on windows, the one which makes bottles or the one which is used for to correct the vision of certain deficiency in the eyes; if not the one similar to mirrors but without the metal-coating side. She had her quarters which she considered her peaceful sanctuary. On there, a balcony allowed her to watch the sky, the clouds, the soon, the moon, the stars and the so many frozen mountains which custody the place.

Inside those crystal reflections which were not like obsidian if not like pure transparency itself and which could show anyone like who he was really himself and not like he pretended, she gave her best for to find her inner peace on the small moments and tiny rituals. Sometimes, it was only needed to enjoy a light meal, while others it was about to meditate for a long time.

However, one day there was an incident which changed everything like it used to be. The legend says a nightingale arrived to the balcony singing his song. She was reading an ancient book when that happened and she was confused. Usually, no one at least he had a crime to pay arrived there while it seemed this nightingale had not anything to hide. He was only asking assistance after to have had some sort of trouble with a wild cat.

Ina wanted to help him but the nightingale distrusted for a while. He was not sure if with the bad stories which were told about the place he would not be dooming himself instead of to have taken a refuge for to take shelter of that whiskery animal. He decided to trust and Ina helped him to heal his wounds. In exchange, the bird sang a song to her for to do not make her feel so alone. A beautiful friendship started there. Even if Ina could have caged the bird, she did not. So he tended to fly away and to come back as he pleased when he was cured. Still, he used to come back all the days at the same hour to sing to her a song, maybe two or more. It used to be a dawn before she would fall sleep. That way, he thought, she could have beautiful dreams.

Despite Ina had warned him to never come back for the danger it could suppose for himself to be near those evil beings, he felt grateful and he did not listened her advise. She told him to fly away to the green landscapes where there was plenty and full of live and trees, to find another nightingale, to build a nest and to have his own family. But the bird was quite stubborn and he loved his new routine. Instead of to set his nest where she said, he found something more closer to the Lamsa mountains, at the other side where not so many humans had crossed. He established his lair on an unexplored area on those times. It was called Speltia and probably Ina did not know she had the beauty so close to her. For this reason, the small bird decided to do not only give to her a song or two each day if not he carried some tiny yellow roses on his beak that he found growing under the castle and near his nest.

Ina felt grateful for her new friend, in exchange, all the nights he had waiting for him a bowl full of the most delicious seeds and insects that birds could try plus she made with some highia a bird’s bath so he could drink and enjoy in there having fun at night.

Ruefully, the evil is treacherous and shrewd. Having in mind that Ina was taking less care of them, they set a dangerous scheme.

One night, before the bird arrived, the cursed souls made a huge mess at the other side of the castle. They made all the possible for to break the glass and to release themselves. They could not. And while Ina was working punishing all of them and fixing the mess, other doomed souls granted the access to her quarters and they waited for the nightingale. When he came, they caught them. They got him and they almost killed him if it was not because Ina found them in the last instance attacking the bad beings and moving them towards they belonged: to the crystal maze. For a moment, she believed her friend had been murdered and doomed. But life was strong in him, he was weak but alive. Night and day she dedicated to the poor thing whom could not even move of the bed or to fly.

Time passed. And the evil grew strong. Ina was not making her daily duties because she was scared of to leave the nightingale alone. Until one day, the small bird could fly again but he did not had voice. He had lost what made her enjoy the most. Still, that did not discouraged him and he kept with his stubbornness insisting in to come. Just, instead of to bring the flower and to sing, he used his beak for to make noise. It was another sort of song, like to play on the different glasses a piano or a xylophone.

The routine started again while the bird bought some joy to the cloudy and shady hours that the princess had to deal with. It was different but it was equally a relief. But evil cannot cease to act, even on the lightest moments or on the most difficult moments at dark. They were envy of the bird. Full of jealousy, rancour and malice. Those souls have found for so long having Ina’s full attention that they could not dare to have it no more. So, without Ina’s expected it. They set another more dangerous plot.

It was on the middle of the night when the hits and blows against the highia walls could be heard. First like door slams, after like thunders instead. Somehow, all the souls have joined for to break the spell and to escape of their mirrored jail. They made a breach, and after that, there was not anything Ina could do instead of to give her best and to try to save her friend.

The castle was destroyed by the dark magic, it collapsed itself falling in ruins which no one else is sure if they have ever existed or they were a legend.

Here, everything comes less clear. The several stories and oral legends documented quite differ. Some say Ina sacrificed her life to save the bird while the castle was falling and trying to keep with her power the evil souls on the same place. That is the reason not so many dare for to approach to those areas even if it is said there is not any menace on those lands anymore.

Other say: some evil escaped and she stills going behind them for to avoid they will hurt anyone else, while the nightingale made his life save, without harm on his nest.

Another version says: the nightingales was killed for the evil’s malice and she keeps looking for revenge. However, the last version says: she could kill all the evil destroying everything bad which existed on that place or which could escape. Now, she lives very happy on a house near of where the nightingale has his nest.

Nobody knows the real end. For that reason this story became an Ambrosian legend. Although, what it is truth is one thing: at the Lamsa mountains, there are a lot of wild tiny yellow rose trees which grow up strong. Even if the area is snowed all the year, they grow up giving to the mountain a charming yellow colour.

Even if it has passed centuries after this story had been told. There are only a few so brave to go on there because so many people keep believing those mountains are doomed. But whom had went and he had come back can affirm one thing: “In the night the wind shares a beautiful sing and in the dawn a very funny rhythm which makes to anyone whom feels the worst, to become better. The adventurer whom dares to cross receives from those musical moments some hope and he is pleased. After all sort of strange events on the path for to arrive to Speltia, those moments are welcomed for to aim ones spirits.”