lands imagined by eye and ear
…All of the alliance but one fled for their lives from the beautiful beasts. The lone holdout, a powerful merchant named Doolox Slyne, was defiant. “No, dear Lord of Lies, Poxum the Pretender! I shall not trade the treasure of my lifetime for your feast of fools and garden games.”
The ruler’s response came cool and calm. “A pity. But it matters no more, dear Doolox. You have a new friend now.” The man, middle-aged yet cocksure and quick, jumped back — but too late. A flying flower the red of blood and boney white lit to rest in peace upon his shoulder. “Farewell Doolox. May your soul be not forsaken with your foolish flesh.”
The Semperor turned away, admiring a pleasing array of angel horns, mersies, and forgive-me-nots as he ambled contentedly to his waiting carriage. But a boyish footman suddenly shuddered in horror, going pale as a ghost. “Sire… at your ear… you have been chosen!”
The great leader gave a fleeting glance, then laughed with warm bemusement at the pixie of purple and gold that fluttered playfully by his crown. “Long ago, my son. Long ago.”
Doolox was given a fresh chevox and clear passage. After three days’ journey, he reached the soaring Cliffs of Syar and home a free man, then leapt to his death in the sea.