Deceit is convenience in the simplest of ways.
It is almost a disease, an incurable one. Lies slide off our tongues at an incalculable rate, may it be for our benefit or demise. Every tiny action, every mumbled word that is untrue plays a pivotal part in making living easier for us – but ends up as a foe more often than not.

For me, ‘tis an ally, perchance even a tool I could use further to live the grandest life. My gut tells me to completely trust it and continue with my venture. After all, it would be turning our feeble hut into a proper bungalow; in no time my family will be out of the slums. Shortly after, our future would certainly be painted bright. Deception is a friend.

“Jeanne-Deirdre, Jeanne-Deirdre!” A hurried shuffle of feet caused a loud rumbling and creaks from inside the bamboo hut. I held onto one of its tall stilts, feeling the dampness of moss beneath my slender fingers, and grinned, ready for the sight that was to reveal itself before me. A few seconds later, a skinny boy in a ragged brown shirt peeked below and rushed down the ladder, clumsily holding the wooden rungs. “You wear funny clothes!” A giggle.

Before he could get off the remaining three, he turned to me and jumped, clinging on my frame, soiling my cloak even more. I grunted at the added weight but did not utter a protest. Instead, I fixed him in my arms and gave the tightest hug I could muster whilst he tugged on my hood, causing my lazily tied hair to flail with the wind in distress.
I soothed stray black strands at the back of my ear. 

“Pip, how have you been?” I slightly leaned forward to plant a kiss on his cheek before putting him down. “Tell me everything.”

“Oh, last month we learned about the steam power and ideas, ideas everywhere!” He raised a finger in a matter-of-fact manner, eyes darting on his side as if accessing a memory. “Mister Schultz says that there would be carriages moving by themselves, we might get wondernized sooner.”

“How delightful!” I exclaimed, unknowing of what the word meant.

He threw his arms out and exclaimed, “I know - horses would be free!”

Joining in, I undid the lace of my sandals. The sumptuous density, thickness, and even the vein lines of leather felt soft and supple under my touch, nothing like the common misconception where alligator leather was comparable to plastic. This one was the first I’ve made from fooling the kingdom. I could only imagine the riches I could still acquire and put to good use.

Pip Pip grabbed both of my hands and urged me to spin around with him. Cackles filled the air as lightheadedness crept over us, blurring the vision of revolving trees up above. My chest began heaving up and down harder and it became my turn to ask him to stop.

“No more, Pip. Can’t.” I shook my head and slowly reached for the ground. It rotated still, causing me to fall. But before I could land faceplanted, the lush grass underneath formed a protruding crater, somewhat of a cradle. And instead of feeling pain, a blissful, paralyzing sensation rushed through my core, tracing my fingertips when they met the ground.

When I finally got a hold of myself again, I spun to see Pip Pip standing horrified, nervously fumbling over the red kerchief tied around his forehead, trying his best to stay put. 

“I’m alright,” I reassured. “No need to worry.”
“But Jeanne? Y-your hand.”

“Wha-” My gaze snapped below as I pushed myself up. I huffed and pursed my lips and balled my hands into a tight fist.

A vein-like object was moving from under my skin, causing the parts where it ventured in to swell every now and then. It itched, a somewhat pleasant feeling until it tingled so much it hurt. I winced as it pierced through my finger, taking in the form of a viscous liquid of a strong shade, ocean's deep.

It convulsed in the ground, squealing, producing a ripple and discoloring the once evergreen richness of the field, and Pip Pip took a step back in fear. 

The object soon began to levitate, all the while decreasing in size. It then took the appearance of a black pebble, although incredibly translucent yet retaining a smooth, hard surface. A low hum almost like a hushed waterfall filled my ears and my eyes widened.

In an instant the pebble bolted right at Pip, meaning to kill him.

“Pip, no!” A darkish blue smoke released itself from my hand as I waved it across the air. Consequently, a phantom figure of the same hue emerged from the shadows and jumped at him, knocking him out of the way.

He screamed, and I rushed towards him, ready to aid. Cupping his face, tears fell down his pale cheeks in a constant stream. Pip Pip was clutching his elbow, seemingly helpless at the trickling of blood. His arm had been grazed by a sharp rock, it appeared to be.

I held out my index and middle finger, bringing them to my mouth. After a few unheard whispers, I flicked them towards Pip Pip, and his elbow was soon swathed in layers of dull grass and dead gaillardias.

Helping him stand, I handed him a silver silken pouch. His face had been contorted with confusion, yet he untied the strings with a free hand and peered inside, shocked to see countless black pearls and several other gold jewelries. His breathing was enough as an initial inquiry of doubt.

“That should be more than what you need for a few months’ time.”

“Uh – did you steal again, Jeanne-Deirdre?”

My eyes widened in shock, yet I showed him a tight smile. What horrid question. “‘Tis mine – the king pampers me well.”

“But… but you do know this is bad? I don’t want you to get hurt.”

“And you heard me, Pip,” I said firmly. “I don’t steal, these are given.” A lie. I dared not look at him, rolling my eyes instead. “Now go and find mother.”

And so, Pip Pip ran past me, disappearing from beyond the bamboo hut.

I stood and patted my cloak free of dust, repentant for ruining the fine velvet. I approached the hut ladder to retrieve my sandals but was stopped by a chuckle. I exhaled deeply to control my temper.

“I know ‘tis impractical to wear such a thing in summer’s heat, but what would you have worn?” I called over.

A loud splatter behind me sent my hair in a soaking mess, and I gritted my teeth.

“Clothes practical yet discreet, suitable for a convict, wouldn’t you agree?” The luscious voice took a snickering tone.

At it, I turned around and managed to grab her neck. It felt strange, like wet moss that were constantly slithering. Her feet were paler than the clouds, with traces of lilies from between the toes. The nymph’s eyebrows were arched in struggle, slippery fingers attempting to get rid of mine.
I yelled, “Gros Klaue!”

Almost immediately, a small, bear-like being with excessively pointed snout feverishly drooling emerged from the woods and tackled the nymph. It pushed her back into the forest, breaking pine trees in half as she was knocked into them. A loud rumble echoed then on.

I looked around to see if anyone heard, noticing a family on the next hill to be running out of their cottage. A crow cawed overhead; wings spread out majestically. I clasped my arms together and stretched them in the same manner. I closed my eyes then, welcoming the strong gusts of wind to lift me up.

“Let us be one. Grant me your wings that I may fly, be my eyes and tell me what you see.”
As light intruded my vision, the sight of people down below greeted me. Brown shirts and robes flailed with the wind, the red kerchief from their heads coming undone. A man swung his axe in the air to induce a scare, while the women, an old lady and a child, raised both hands and aggressively swayed their palms in all directions. A sign of unwelcome, a gesture made for the gods to see and protect them from misfortune.

But the conflict is that the gods have long given up on us. They are forced to reside at the stomach of Aa’kbarc, an ancient entity of great cosmic power that dwarfs even that of the gods who only show a frail front of harmony by rejoicing with the few souls destined to be there – a land of no return. A prison even the gods themselves cannot escape. An arena of which even the most potent defenders of Bledsian would not be able to outwit by some miracle.

Eventually, I freed the crow, nodding at it for gratitude. A guttural sound emerged from the forest once again. I let the wind guide my feet to where it came from.

“Release and go home, Gros Klaue,” I declared, disturbed by the slimy slickness that was mud. It retracted its claws from the tree it struck, leaving massive holes in it, and letting the nymph breath on her own accord. The bear-like being growled at me and I approached it, stroking its fur. “Do not test my patience.”

It slowly walked away before climbing from tree to tree upon hearing rustles in a distance.

My tone became vivacious, a façade to provoke her. “Priah, old friend. Why have you come?”

She massaged her neck and bald head which seemed to simultaneously pulsate various hues of cerulean, adding life to her skin. Priah reclined on the pine tree, and it began to bow down and wither, same as the exotic plants around her. She cursed under her breath; her pristine dress was scales swinging like water.

“Beings of the earth do not take a liking in me,” she said, almost apologetically.

“I’ve noticed. Fae as yourself shan’t be wandering defenseless.”

Priah craned her neck to listen to the rustling which alarming seemed close. She reached out her slender fingers. “D’you hear that?” she asked, not bothering to minimize her voice. So much for being discreet.

I nodded. It proved difficult to see through the shadows from the compactness of flora abundance. But the air set in, becoming intense and unnerving. I raised an eyebrow to raise my question once again.

“I, uh, came to warn you. The king,” she cleared her throat, “he knows. He wishes for your head, Jeanne-Deirdre.”


“‘Tis not, I assure you.”

“You speak of lies; he loves me.” I chuckled. 

“More than all the other concubines combined, and even that wretched wife of his!”

“You have become what you dreaded most, a monster! Putting on a glamour pretending to be the queen, just so you could bathe in the kingdom’s riches. He might not love you after what you’ve done-”

I spoke through gritted teeth. “You do not understand a thing.” I shook my hand, producing dark hues of blue to disperse in the air. “Do you think the queen was meant to die from that poison?

My eyes began to sting at the thought of what I had lost. “I may simply be a concubine but I’m no monster, I would never have hurt her purposefully. Even concocting that Wildebrock took a good ounce of my conscience. He was going to give me everything and she prevented it all. She wanted to have me killed, secure her place.

“Everything I do is for my family and,” a pause to prevent my voice from faltering, “the life that is yet to come.”

Priah gasped in realization. “You bear a child.” Her cerulean orbs darted at my stomach. Fae were granted a gift to peer into the future. “It isn’t supposed to be.”
“But it is.” 

“Of course.”

By then, shouts were heard, and spots of light circled us. I began chanting to call upon the creatures of the night to come to my aid. But she firmly held my hand. “The future is uncertain but not now. You'll ruin your plan,” she said, rather amused.

“I do not know what you mean.” Another lie.
Still, she rested her forehead against my own, and through her eyes, I saw mine burn bright jade while swords were aimed right at me.

Brightness flashed abruptly and voices speaking languages I know not bellowed, threatening to deafen me; persistent croaks invaded my mind. A silhouette of a huge man soon revealed itself before my trembling frame, with its axe raised up above. I kneeled before him, desperate, and he brought his axe down anyway.


“O-ow!” I screamed, as I felt a hard object enter the flesh of my feet. The intrusion continued as I found myself being dragged by the arms by two unfazed armored men. “Where are you bringing me? I demand you release me this instant!”

    I thrashed and kicked at the cold cemented floor, achieving not victory but more scratches. Opening my left eye seemed tedious and it worsened my sight, blurring what I can see when I looked at the bricked walls. Countless wounds were on my arms, and they were constantly bleeding, occasionally pressed on by the men out of spite. Tears began to trickle down my face out of fear and the lack of understanding. The long hall had been dimmed and silent throughout, with only the sound of me being dragged backward and screaming, causing noise.

What has happened to me?

I was finally released for a short while and just when I thought I could crawl my way out, they threw me down the abyss. And I could’ve sworn I saw the king’s plump face snickering from the opening.

Screaming, I came crashing, only saved by faint bluish figures that created a phantom haystack for me. I clutched my stomach to make sure I was alright. A sigh of relief escaped my lips as I felt a slight wriggle. Of all the places, I thought.

“Finally,” the voice was rough and malevolent. It was full and hoarse, almost commanding. It even killed the single thread of light that managed to enter this pit.

I stepped back, trying to see. “Who’s it?”


“No,” I whispered in disbelief. This could not possibly be true, he was supposed to be a myth. 

The Henchman had once been a ruthless hero who’d been corrupted and went into a killing spr

“No,” I whispered in disbelief. This could not possibly be true, he was supposed to be a myth. The Henchman had once been a ruthless hero who’d been corrupted and went into a killing spree and pulled me forward. With the little power I had left, blasted a flame upfront, the place shortly lit up.

And to my horror, a humanoid toad was at my side, croaking loudly, daggerlike teeth sticking out from the sides of its mouth. And another gripped me, now on my shoulders to restrict my movement. 

Lingofiddlers, wretched beings. They’re notorious for eating their prey to speak native languages, borrow voices, and even recall memories that aren’t theirs. They whispered in unison, and I swear they’ve been speaking fluently in Kbarcíl, the fabled language of the gods.

As I struggled, they held me down, making me kneel.

“Leave me alone!” I screamed, no matter the current weakness of my authority. And surprisingly, they freed me from their unpleasant grips; and stopped.

But not for me.

A gigantic man stood up then, dwarfing me even more than the darkness did. “Your hand,” he bellowed. “Give.”

My chest tightened at the panicked beating of my heart as I held my hand out. Only to have it pricked. As blood flowed down my hand, blue aura ignited from it, and I manage to see that I had been bitten by a Lingofiddler.

It began to mimic me. “Let us be one. Grant me wings-”

“Silence.” The Henchman’s hoarse voice cut through the air and bounced off the walls. “We have waited for you,” he eventually said to me.

When he reached for me, I drew back. His eyes seemed to have squinted in pain at what I’ve done.

 “We do not wish to hurt you.”

My voice shook. “Y-you don’t?”

“No. You are our savior. We have heard of tales about how you controlled the creatures up there and kept them at bay.”
“It is what I do – a gift.”

“You are a creōtamr, a powerful one. It is in your hands where creatures are tamed – creatures of the night.” He pointed a gigantic finger at me. “You only free us from the burdens we carry, relinquish the pain of memory, and we shall be at peace. Longevity has pestered us for centuries.” 

A slimy tongue slithered its way down my fingers. “Free us, and in return, we are yours.”

Good, I could use them. My relief came in the form of a slow, savored exhale. I thought I would died have soon. A mere pinch from this man is more than enough to shatter my bones to a thousand pieces.

“What’s the point in that?” I asked, with knees still shivering but now standing defiantly. “I could simply order you to stop breathing and it will be guaranteed, no need for bargains.”

“T’is something you cannot do yet.” The Henchman's crooked nose pointed down at me, scrutinizing my current state. “But a bargain is not what you need. It is an army, is it not?

“You need it after what you did to her.” He gently ushered me forward with a gigantic hand.

But I looked away in agony, squirming. “I do not wish to see her body once more.”

“All the more benefit for you. Now tell me,” he leaned forward, his breath stinking of rotting corpse, “what will you do?”

“I will lead all of you. You shall serve me just as you have offered.” I raised an eyebrow, pessimistic. 

The promises, the lies - an accident, for heaven's sake. My eyes stung as fear festered in me. If Priah is right, the king will go after my family. I have caressed his chest far too many times to know he seethes with wrath – I cannot let that happen, not even a strand off my mother’s head. 

With fury aflame, I smiled at the plan unravelling. This isn’t about protection only, but glory and respect. Laughter escaped my lips, bouncing off walls and trailing upwards the darkened pit. I exhaled as if savoring every second passing by. 

“The king shall fall on his knees before me as I burn this kingdom.”

And so, I laughed once again.

Owl Tribe Creator

Where Creatures Are Tamed by CharleeeyyBitMe