Aug 18, 2006

Keeping a promise

The Most Marvelous Adventures and Perils of Knightess
Christina Alycianne and Her Two Most Loyal, Brave, and True Sisters
Kaylana Bethany and No. 3
Through the
Magical and Manifold Wonders of the Woodland Path and
Surrounding Regions.
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My walks about the property are solitary, as a rule. Other people tend to distract, as selfish as that may seem of me. But there comes a time when you convince yourself someone else should share and benefit too, when in truth you just want them with you. I'd stopped by the pond for a few minutes and was gazing absently like usual when Michaela came along. I don't remember what she was doing or where she was headed, but she sidelined whatever it was and stuck with me. We talked a bit, about nothing probably, and started meandering up the field. Not minutes afterward, #3 fell in with us wanderers. I had my two baby sisters on a walk with me. Unprecedented. We got near the top of the hill and to the front field. Now, I had in my hand a long, sturdy stick I'd picked up from somewhere. Sticks = fun= kids = pretend = yes! It came into my head all of the sudden, and as we were walking, I held my stave aloft and cried, "CHAAAAAARGE!!!" and so we did, up the rest of the hill, yelling, to collapse at the fence in laughter.
That's how it started.
After we'd crossed the driveway to the path around the other field I had to run back to the house for a hat and scarf, partly because I'd gone out unprepared and it was getting cold, partly because well, I just look so darn cool in a scarf. I entrusted Kayla with my staff. In a bit I returned and was about to take it back but she - the little wonder - she told me to kneel first. Kneel? Sometimes you don't question kids. I knelt. She then solemnly tapped me on both of my shoulders and pronounced me Knight, which I accepted, surprised and honored, and reverently changed to Knightess. We are girls, after all. She returned my staff and we went on our gallant way. After a little while, we came to the timber pile (left by the irreverent foresters) near the woods and I stopped. See, they should be Knightesses too. And you certainly can't be a proper one without a good and sturdy stick, I told them. So they eagerly began their search which soon produced two very worthy staffs. But before receiving the honor, a candidate must walk the Log of Knight (A felled tree) to reach the Meditation Seat (stump of felled tree). Terribly perilous, yes. But fear is the only thing that could possibly make you unsteady; your valour will keep you safe. The young ones did this admirably and without delay on each I conferred the honourable rank and we continued on our way.
And then we reached it. The entrance. Just before our present path entered the shadow of the trees, there was an opening into the woods. All chatter was hushed and I proceeded to tell them with all my (ha) wisdom as elder Knightess - we were to enter this enchanted and magical Wood. There was beauty there found nowhere else in the realm; but also peril, so rules must be followed. They understood. We walked in. Lookout Point! the first place we came upon. Each could stand on the point (A tall stump.... since renamed the Fool's Stone) and look out to see one of the loveliest sights in the kingdom: the Gold Field, called this for what can be seen there in the fall, but on this day the emeralds were in bloom. 3 reluctant hops down from Lookout Point and we were strolling along the Arbor Footpath. It was then we caught sight of the intruder. Black, furry, bumbling... the dog had followed us. A filthy animal! and without a stick!, I cried. The verminous creature was destroyed several times over with our sticks-turned-machine-guns. Sighing with relief at our close call with death, we continued on our way, sometimes pausing to to observe the rule that states every stump within sight must be stepped on reverently for a moment - and the one that says every log lying across the path you must step onto, close your eyes, turn in a circle three times and then get dizzy and fall off laughing. We arrived in this giggly state in Sunny Grove and passed through suddenly silent, for no one must break the peace of that place. Then another log, down to Deep Ravine, on to Hobbit Hole - oh, this tale grows too long to permit the details of all of the wonderful places.
We finally reached the end of our journey. Only one obstacle remained. The Shadow. It lay between the shelter of wonder in the Woodland and the Sunlight of the end of the day. But what was that? We could do this. We could do anything. Taking a deep breath of that wonderful air, (for one cannot breathe in the Shadow) we three Knightesses ran from the end of the Woodland to the light, to collapse in victory and more laughter. Our adventure was done. But it was a journey no one else could know of then. Who would understand? Our staffs we buried under the pine trees. Our smiles we kept with us.
Where've you been all this time?
We shrugged, but looked at each other with those smiles. We knew.

2 comments:

Jessie said...

You need to write a book, dear.

Christina said...

I appreciate the compliment, jess.

But I don't think I could give these things to anyone but you fiends. It's kind of like a child of mine and it would wrench my heart out to give it to strangers.

Hope that makes sense.