Okay, time for a little fun. I get tired of blowing up the world, people dying, death and destruction and clever people averting universal disasters after awhile and have to fall back on my very most favorite fantasy characters, the top of the list being Merlin.
So while not so long, it is a meant to be amusing and light hearted tale of Merlin as a young boy....proceed with caution, as you are in grave danger of having fun! :) John
Of Man and Gods, Centaurs and Eagles
A Merlin Story
By John Pirillo
My name is Merlin Ambrosius Indigo. And this is my story:
The first time he decided to venture out on his own in the lands was the first time he had his nose rubbed in dragon poo. Literally!
"Great gods of fire, Lillian!" He had hollered at his best friend, Lillian. She was a centaur with a gorgeous mane of silken purple hair and a tail to match. Her body was a piece of art, carved by the gods of the mountain and the gods of wood. She was as fluid as water and as strong and unyielding as stone. In other words she was stubborn.
She twitched her button nose and stuck her tongue out at him.
His anger fizzled into a spout of dry stupidity. "Okay!" He said, wiping at the poo with one of the great leaves of the tree next to him. The dragon had to have perched in the tree the night before or else he wouldn't have had the enormous dropping fall onto his hair and face like it did. Sometimes a denizen of the lands got whacked from the sky as dragons flew over. They were quite unconscious of where they dropped, just like the birds, but always apologized whenever they found out. So they weren't soulless creatures, just...well, he had to think with a grin...spontaneous.
"Indigo." The name she preferred to call him because his face turned that color whenever he was mad or upset. "You really must be more alert."
He frowned at her. At his early age he already had thickset, heavy eyebrows that looked like thunderclouds fallen from the heavens. "Next time, you wait under the tree."
"I shall." She agreed, but he could tell she wouldn't. It wasn't her nature to take chances like him. Perhaps that was what compelled him to explore deeper into the woods that morning. Mother Tree had given him her blessings and Father Tree as well, once he could be awoken from his usual day long slumber. His father was a lazy head, he thought fondly.
"Indigo!" Lillian shouted.
He startled from his thoughts and saw that she was galloping off. "Can't catch me!"
He frowned deeply. "Of course I can't, you four legged excuse of an imp!"
She giggled girlishly and hoofed it even faster.
He stood there with his hands on his hips, wondering what to do next, and then a bright idea flourished for a moment in his mind. He rubbed his hands together and then cupped them to his mouth.
Lillian didn't look back when she heard the call of an eagle. They were so common in the lands that hardly anyone noticed them calling to each other as they wheeled in the skies or dove for food. Eagles were mighty creatures and not to be feared. They were the friends of Fairie.
She also didn't look back when she heard powerful wings approaching. She had no fear of anything flying, because anything that flew in these lands was friendly. But when Merlin swooped past on the back of a giant eagle and then put his thumb to his nose and blew a rude sound, she stopped and flew up her back hooves and kicked at the sky.
"Ambrosius! You rascal!" She hollered. She used his middle name when she was angry or irritated with him. At that particular moment her great big brown eyes were screwed tight in anger and irritation.
Merlin sensed it, leaned over the beak of the eagle and stroked between its eyes gently. "Shall we help Lillian calm down, old friend?"
The eagle, whose name was Feathers Sky God, swept around in a tight circle then approached Lillian head on. Lillian continued to make rude gestures until she realized Feathers Sky God wasn't going to turn.
She quickly turned about and began racing for the safety of the woods. "I'm going to pluck your beard when I get you back home." She cursed at Merlin.
He heard. He had very, very good ears. Almost supernatural, because he could hear words before they were spoken by lips. In his head. "Too young to have a beard." He shouted at her, and then as he swept just a bare inch above her purple hair, he coaxed Feathers Sky God to complete the mission.
Lillian screamed in horror as a precise bomb of about ten inches in diameter splashed in waves of goo across her glistening back. "I am so going to pluck your beard for sure, you beast!"
Merlin laughed all the way home. He leaped from Feathers Sky God's back, rushed to his sleeping spot, and grabbed the largest tumble of berry branches he had stashed there and ran back and held it up for Feathers Sky God, who began plucking the berries he loved from the branches as delicately as if he were using fingers.
Merlin loved to watch his large feathered friend eat. He rolled his eyes with pleasure at even the smallest of tidbits he was fed by Merlin. "If only all creatures were as noble and grateful as you, Feathers Sky God." He praised the creature.
Fathers Sky God rewarded him with a rub of his beak across Merlin's face, and then he swept around and leaped back into the sky, calling out happily as his wings caught a draft which pulled him higher yet.
Mother Tree tapped him on the shoulder. He looked up into her warm, amber eyes and she gave him a smile. "You've been naughty again, haven't you, Merlin?"
His mother usually addressed him by his first name. Well, she was his mother after all!
"Noooo." He hedged.
She leaned closer, her eyes whirling hypnotically in their sockets.
"MERLIN I'M GOING TO MURDER YOU!"
"Yes." He finally admitted as Lillian drew in beside Mother Tree. She put her well muscled arms and hands to her sides and glared at Merlin. Then she tossed her mane revealing the gooey mess on her back.
"Oh my!" Mother Tree exclaimed. "Did Merlin do that?"
"No." He answered.
"Yes." She added.
She looked at both of them. "Well, which is it?"
Merlin sighed. He couldn't lie well. It wasn't in his nature...yet! But he saw sometimes in quiet moments his future and it included parts of himself he didn't recognize now, and some of those parts frightened him and some made him sad and some like this part just made him sadder. Because he saw the coming loss of a better part of himself that could never be replaced...his innocence.
"She made fun of me!"
Mother Tree looked at Lillian.
"He got back at me by making Feathers Sky God poo on me!" She spit out angrily, tossing her girlish mane in emphasis.
Even though she was mad at him he couldn't help but admire the beauty of her hair. She noticed and crossed her arms, raised her nose and went. "Humph!"
Mother Tree touched Merlin on his right shoulder. "What has Father Tree taught you, my son?"
He paused a long time. He wanted to say it, but the moment he did he would be admitting he was wrong and he would also be facing the loss of innocence he had dreaded seeing come to past. Finally, he took a deep breath and looked across at Lillian. "I'm so sorry, Lillian. I shouldn't have done that."
Lillian gave him a beautiful smile. "I forgive you."
Mother Tree laughed. "Now see how easy that was?"
Mother Tree walked slowly away.
Merlin looked into Lillian's eyes, which were now looking kind of...triumphant. Mother Tree hadn't seen that side of her. Merlin had...more than once by now.
"No. What I should have done was had him empty out on your head!" Merlin said, and then as Lillian roared angrily behind him, kicking at the sky with her angry hooves, he clapped his hands together and vanished in a clap of thunder and lightning.
Merlin appeared in another clap of thunder and lightning beside a calm lake in a distant land, where men stood tall, but fought fiercely amongst themselves for possession of what all living creatures shared, but which they falsely claimed as their own. A land he was attracted to, though at that time he couldn't explain why. His visions of the future told him this land was important to him in the future and would become more so when he met someone very special.
He never got a clear glimpse of who that was, but he knew when the day came he would recognize the child. It was his ability to see to the truth of things. He sighed. Especially in himself.
So he sat beside the lake and pondered the mischief he had wrought and that more impish side of himself and wondered where it came from. He knew his real father and mother must be human like he, but Mother and Father Tree would always be his real parents. He also knew that. Saw that. He sighed again, and leaned his chin on his cupped hands, seated on his crossed leg on the green sward next to the lake.
The lake bubbled slightly, which caught his attention. Then a wondrous light began to rise and bubble in the water, colors of the rainbow. As he watched a great sword of uncanny beauty and incredible godlike beauty rose from the waters, clutched in the hand of a water nymph. He rose to his feet and gestured at the rising sword and hand.
"It is not time yet!" He ordered, not knowing why he said those words, only that they were true.
The sword slid back into the waters and the bright rainbow colors vanished. In moments the waters became still once more. He could see a fish launching across the bottom near his feet and a distant eagle soaring across the skies.
He turned his back to the lake and his future and began walking again towards the land he was born in. Or was he?
He clapped his hands and vanished in a flash of thunder and lightning.