Sethra Pt.6

When she awoke, Alas found herself nose to snout with a big, fat pig.

An ugly creature whose wrinkled skin hung over its eyes, whiskers on its chin and drool

dangling from its lower lip as it stupidly chewed the apple cores that littered the cart that

Alas found herself in. Before she could blink the sleep from her eyes, another apple core

flew from somewhere near the front of the cart, landing squarely on Alas’ head. Wresting

with the blanket of hay, she flailed madly trying to get to her feet.


“Hey there are people in this pig pile” she shouted. “watch were you are throwing those



“Oh, you are awake. Finally.” came a familiar silky voice.


Alas recognized her as the angry gypsy from the night before. Her hand reached to her

throat and she froze, shocked. Then, that horrible nightmare hadn’t been a nightmare at

all, she thought to herself.

Tracing her fingers across the jeweled choker, she asked in a far off voice, “where am I?”

“in a pig pile,” for the first time, Alas heard joy in the gypsy’s voice.

Alas made a face, “well, where are we going?” the gypsy didn’t answer. As if Alas wasn’t

even there, she began to hum to herself. Giving up, Alas sunk back into the heap of straw

where she had awoken. The pig, whom Alas had dubbed, Oinkers, was a cuddler. The two

spent their day being jostled in the back of the cart. Together, they ignored the gypsy and

in turn she ignored them.



Sethra pt. 5

Sethra – Official Sethra page

Raising itself, the snake stopped within an inch of Alas’ face. She could see two long fangs

glinting as it’s tongue brushed against her chin and cheeks, smelling her. Alas kept still,

trying not to let a tremble of dread show as the serpent’s body landed heavily on her

forearm. Snakes were not slimy and slippery creatures as Alas had thought but were dry,

warm and muscular.  Hands clenched tightly at her sides, muscles spasming, knuckles

white. Any moment, the creature could decide to sink its fangs into her, inject its deadly

venom, and Alastair would be dead. A lot of horrible things had happened in her short life,

she had been left alone and defenseless very young. After everything she had managed to

survive, Alas didn’t want to die, but couldn’t help but wonder if the venom would hurt or

perhaps she would simply fall asleep and never wake up. By now, the snake was coiling

about her arm, reaching the upper part of her shoulder. She felt every muscle of the

creature as it curiously wrapped itself around her. the cool scales felt strange and good

against her skin.


So intent on the snake, Alas had forgotten about the old woman who sat watching with her

coal black eyes sparkling. With a large silver needle in hand, she stabbed in Alas’

direction, causing her to jerk back in surprise. Instantly there was chaos as the viper slid

around Alas’ throat, squeezing violently. In response, Alas threw her body to the wood

floor boards, her hands scratching at the snake’s scales. Instinct flooded her body, turning

Alas into a senseless beast, desperate for survival. Her body bucked and bent as she used

every muscle in an attempt to remove the creature from around her neck. The snaked

hissed, its jaws opened wide and then sank its fangs into the delicate flesh of Alas’ throat.


This was how she was to die? Alas thought, before she could accomplish anything she had

set out to do?


Excruciating pain burned through her as the venom hit her blood stream. The poison

created visions in her mind. Alastair thought she saw a bright light glowing from the

snake’s tail as it rattled in front her. It was a fantastic blue, filling up the snake, like

pouring water in a glass.Light pressed itself into every dark crevice of the room. Laughter

of the old woman danced through her head. Alas was surrounded by many faces, old and

young, hidden in the smoke. They peered at her curiously, not saying a word. Spots began

to fill the room, red, yellow, black. they danced like beautiful flowers as the room spun

faster and faster. The pain was gone now. She pressed her hand to her throat and there

was no snake, only a silver choker with large stones resting cool against her skin.


If dieing was this beautiful of a dream, Alas wonder what the after life would be like. The

room spun so fast now that Alas fell back, slamming her head hard against the floor. the

last thing she saw was the old woman with the many faces dancing around her, fading into

the mists, her throaty laughter eerily bouncing throughout Alas’ subconscious.



To be continued….


Sethra pt. 4

Sethra – blog page

-previous Sethra post




Alas could feel the beating of her heart thrum through her body as she struggled to

maintain a calm demeanor.

Alastair had always been uncommonly good with animals. When otters played in the

shallows near her home, they swam up to her. She would play games with them, as if one

of their own. The other village children would try to join in too, only to receive bites and

hisses from the wild creatures. Somewhere along the line, they had associated Alas with

the wild creatures she had kept for company, shunning her from their normal child

games. Alas hadn’t minded much, she much preferred running with the deer at the edge

of the forest, singing with the birds and pretending they were telling her tales of far off

places, and greeting the horses as they came into town with soft velvety nose kisses. If she

lacked for human companionship, she had many relatives that worked and lived in the

village. Mostly, she found company with an old sea witch who lived above her bait shop.

All the good fishermen who came into town went to the sea witches house for the best



The sea witch had taught her all about the animals of the land and sea, shared their

secrets and wisdom with the young Alastair. A snake, however, Alas had only heard about

in fairy tales. They didn’t come so far north,it was too cold for them. The sea witch had

referred to them as the creatures that guarded the unknown.


Long moments passed. Alas knew that a wild animal rarely attacked without provocation,

but this didn’t seem like a normal animal. Its scales were white, like the diamonds on the

outside of the case with speckles of green and red around its collar. Its eyes though, were

the strangest blue, it struck Alastair as looking unnatural.


The serpent blinked, beginning to twist and turn. As it uncoiled, its gaze never left her

own. Its hood, had fanned out, showing off markings that looked strangely like large eyes.

Her heart fluttered as heat began to crawl up her neck. Some kind of intense

connection was forming and true to the myth of the snake, the reason remained a mystery

to her. The only question she could think of was, would she be alive long enough to find






Sethra Pt. 3


Through the drenched air, an outline began to unfold itself. Its shoulders drew back, its

spine straightened. A ghostly profile rose from the smoke, directing its attention toward

the room’s invader. Unable to stop from walking forward, Alas felt as if her will was lost to

the smoke.


She came face to face with “grandmother”. The old lady had milky blue windows for eyes,

a huge porous nose that drooped and a body that appeared so decrepit and weak as she

sucked on a long hose and released its contents into the air around them.


The old gypsy sat nearly motionless as its sightless eyes drifted lazily, staring over Alas’s

shoulder. Her long stretched earlobes wobbled as she cocked her head in silence. It was a

moment before her grating voice assaulted the silence, “Sit down Alastair Sowelu Perth”


Alas did more than sit; she fell to the ground in shock. How could this gypsy know who she

was? No one had addressed her by her full name since she had been a child. Even if she

was not blind the old gypsy would not have been able to see Alas and couldn’t have

recognized her since Alas had never met a gypsy before today. It must be gypsy magic.


“that’s right,” rasped the old gypsy, “I know who you are. I’ve waited twenty five years for

this day, longer that you have been alive by the looks of you,” a crooked sneaky smile

made its way across her face; showing off her lack of teeth  and numerous laugh lines that

etched her face, “to tell the truth, I was beginning to think you would not show yourself,

that perhaps the path you were meant to take had been broken.”


“The path?” Alas echoed dumbly. It was all she could think of to say, hypnotized as she

was by that front tooth that Alas was sure would fall from the old gypsy’s gums any

moment. However, it only swayed with each breath.


The old gypsy continued her explanation, “the path, if broken is hard to find again.

Somehow yours was broken but it must have been a very strong path if you still found you

way here. If this path had truly been broken, the balance of this world could have changed;

possibly for the worst.” the gypsy cackled as if she had told some great joke that Alas

should have gotten.  Alas wasn’t sure what the gypsy meant.


Alas let the words soak in as she tried to make sense of it, “what does this have to do with



The cone’s eyes seemed to sharpen and stare right at Alas, staring somewhere past just

her face. It felt as if a gaping hole had been bored into her head. Coldness swam through

Alas’ veins, the chilling grip shook her spine.


The old gypsy leaned forward, her breath smelling of mint, lavender and sweet tobacco,

“exactly” then rolled back on her pillows laughing hysterically. Every hair on the back of

Alas’ neck stood up, tingling. This old gypsy was seriously dangerous, she could feel it.


The old gypsy reached behind her massive stack of pillows and took out a hand carved

chest. Alas made note of the diamonds and rubies that laid in the intricate border, amazed

by their beauty. What really caught her attention though were not the priceless gems but

the fact that the border seemed to be moving, almost slithering, as if it were alive.  In fat,

as Alas stared, she realized it was a depiction of a snake. The rubies and diamonds

represented the skin, but there were only two large sapphires that she suspected were

eyes. The delicate hand painted silver outline shimmered with every movement, making

the snake look alive. Alas was entranced. She didn’t realize she had been reaching her

hand out to stroke the beautiful gems until the old gypsy grabbed Alas’ wrist with

surprising strength.


The old gypsy held her firmly, “the snake” her words were slow and careful, “has always

been a protector of my people and to anyone who shows no fear of it”


Her voice seemed stern, as if a warning. Then she let go of Alas’ wrist and lay back

amongst her pillows. Although startled by the old gypsy’s behavior, Alas only nodded and

looked back at the chest in anticipation. Her heart beat rapidly, she wanted to open it so

bad but something in her made her wait for the old gypsy to let her continue.


After a long silence the gypsy sighed, releasing more of her smoke into the air, “smart

lass, ” she gave a toothless grin, “you will do nicely”. Then she waved her hand to signal

Alas could go ahead.


Alas’ head felt foggy but she still felt the excitement as she threw open the lid. She was

only a bit surprised to find a living snake curled up and waiting. It was a viper, a very

deadly snake. It looked up, eyeing the human who had disturbed its slumber. Not braking

eyes contact, Alas froze, not wanting to startle it any more.



Viridian Gold

Viridian Gold– page


Viridian Gold


This gold cannot be sold for profit; nor can it be made to encase gems. This gold only

beats at you, until you lay bloody and ragged; a mere skeleton of what you once were. The

only thing it has in common with the true gold is its ability to turn men, into monsters.


Sand slipped between the fingers of the young woman’s clenched fist. Humans have

adapted to this harsh climate, where only the strong survive. Squeezing her eyes shut, an

image appears, one not made from the sun’s waves of heat as it crushes down upon each

living creatures’ neck, but of a memory. She recalls the faces of her younger siblings. Judd,

a boy with dimples in his cheeks and no older than six, with his tuff of hair that always

curled over his brow was the youngest of the three siblings. Kanya was the oldest. In her

memory, Judd held onto to the hand of their sister, a young foolish girl of thirteen called



Kanya always pictured Nai with her shoulders held stiffly back, defiant. Her eyes were a

strange shade of gold, as if wild with her thoughts of adventure. Kanya’s heart felt as if it

were slowly being punctured by these thoughts. A fountain of tears rose, stinging her ears

and nose.


Jerking back to the present, she shook off her emotions and knelt down. Right now

she needed to focus. Sensing a calculated stare resting somewhere above her brow, Kanya

turned slowly, scanning the barren sandy plains. Lips quirking, the young woman thought

back on how her parents had told her and her siblings a child’s story of a place where

plants grew so numerous that all you saw was green. Most people thought this was a place

you would go after you die. Not her sister, Nai, though; she was convinced the place was

real. And it had been her dream to be the one to discover it.


Nai had taken the fantasy to heart and had led their little brother out to find the

hidden land of green, the bodies were never found. Their clan had always been the best

trackers, they were able to find nearly anything what was lost in the sand storms, but the

two children had disappeared. Now after everyone had given up, only their older sister

kept searching. Who knows, perhaps little Nai and baby Judd had found this mystical

world and were playing in the shade of a million plants, where there was no sun and plenty

of water.


Suddenly, an explosion of sand burst into the air. Kanya was staring at a wall of

yellow. The hairs on the back of her neck quivered at the sound of a beastly roar. Hurling

itself on the girl, the creature attacked from the side. Two massive scaly feet stomped into

the ground on either side of her head. The beast’s body rippled as he let out another bellow

that shook Kanya so hard, she almost couldn‘t breathe.


To be continued…

Sethra pt. 2


Sethra Pt. 1


Terror ripped down Alas’ spine, her eyes flung open with the abruptness of a rabbit finding

itself in a fox den. Sensation crept up her forearms, itching beneath the rosy surface of

skin. Her shoulders rose with her hands, preparing for an attack. Gaze wide and seeking,

Alas waited anxiously for the person to make their move. Acting instinctively, she shuffled

so that the barrel was between her and the gypsy. Eyes glancing, toward the railing, she

prepared to jump from the rolling caravan.


Standing eerily still, the gypsy watched with flint like eyes the very shade of death’s cloak.

Her black hair was twisted into long braids, carefully arranged along the crown of her head

and woven with a purple cloth that wrapped around her head. A matching piece of

material was entwined into a single thicker braid that dangled down to the small of her

back. Besides the vibrant purple of the cloth, the gypsy wore only black from jaw to toe.

This person was the most color challenged gypsy Alas could never have imagined.


Under the pressure of the gypsy’s silence, Alas itched more than ever to jump the rail and

take off running. She was about to give in when the gypsy once again spoke. The gypsy’s

lip curled in distaste, turning away from Alas, “I know who you are Lo’ilo”


Alastair had heard this phrase only a few times before, the term made her suck in her

breath a little. It was a phrase of the Nornavi people that when translated from their old,

broken language, meant “blue eyes”. It was rare to have anything other than brown or

black eyes in this part of the world. “Lo’ilo” was used to call someone a stranger or

someone who doesn’t belong.


The gypsy had disappeared down a corridor and now Alas stood idle on the caravan’s

porch. What should she do next? If she ran, she still had no where to go. Perhaps the

gypsies weren’t as bad as the stories suggested. Maybe she could finally get a ride to some

sort of civilization and start a real life again.


The flint like eyes appeared once again through the doorframe, “jeez, don’t be so slow. Are

you coming or what?”


Alas closed her fist so tight that her nails dug into her palm, nope this wasn’t a dream.

This was really happening. For the first time in years she would have to interact with

people again and possibly dangerous gypsies no less. Her muscles tense, she slowly

followed the gypsy into the cramped corridor. Keeping a palm against one wall, Alas

followed slowly behind; much to the gypsies frustration. It was difficult to walk down a

hallway that made you feel like you were a jumping bean in wood box. It was strange, the

wagon had not seemed so large from the outside.  Was it perhaps some kind of gypsy

magic? On the other hand, it could just be good decorating.


Finally, they came to the end of the hallway and the disgruntled escort had stopped and

stood waiting in front of an elaborately carved door, designed with carvings of magical

symbols and fantastic beasts. Epic battles of armored men carrying mighty swords, winged

beasts carrying off maidens and dark shadows dragging children into deep wells were

portrayed with beautiful delicate paints. Some of the stories Alas recognized, while others

seemed completely foreign to her.  The beauty struck Alas with wonder.


Leaning against the wall with  a stillness that was meant to impress, the gypsy was getting

impatient, “Go in Alastair, grandmother has been waiting for you” This gypsy’s pure

dislike for Alas was, to say the very least, annoying. Still, Alas saw no advantage to letting

the other girl know she was bothered by her. Instead she turned on her beaming smile as

brightly as possible, her cheeks stretched unnaturally as she smiled till it hurt just a little.

try as she might, her display would not warm her eyes.


Alas wondered how the gypsy had known her name, she didn’t even go by her full name,

not that she had known anyone to call her either for quite some time. However, she didn’t

want the gypsy to think she had been affected so she answered smoothly, “I prefer Alas”


“Whatever,” the gypsy drawled and with an elaborate roll of her eyes, began to examine

her nails.


When Alas turned the knob to the decorated door, tendrils of smoke leaked out of the

creases, seeming to grab at her arms, legs, face, and hair. It was drawing her into the have

filled room that stank with multiple layers of incense and other foreign flavors. So thick

was the smoke that Alas had to squint to make out the shapes of tables and chairs.

Breathing in, her lungs filled with smoke, stretching her insides. Alas was very aware of

her esophagus, cradling her throat, she spiraled into a coughing fit that lasted several

minutes. Alas gasped, wishing for the clean curling winds that leapt throughout the leaves

across the meadows.


A low sigh filled the room and more of the dreaded smoke filled the room. Alas only then

remembered there was someone else waiting for her in the room. Someone who knew who

Alas was and had known she would be coming, even if Alas had not known herself.


To be continued…

-L.P. Gelseth






Star Eaters Pt. 2

Star Eater Pt. 1


“Gaea” her name was being called, ripping her away from the seeing glass. “Gaea,” it was

her mother’s soft voice trailing through grandfather’s dark shelter. Reality set in, she had

been sitting there for hours, soaking in this world. Gaea was shocked at herself, to be so

easily sucked in by a hobby, a pass time.


Unnerved, she shot from the chair and in a calm voice greeted her mother, “hello

mother.” her mom’s face didn’t hold its usual soft smile.


Nona stood still in the doorway. Her angular features and long yellow silver hair were

classic in their beauty. Nona gazed at her father’s body, “why didn’t you tell me he was

passing?” the only indication of inner turmoil was the slight crease between her mother’s



Gaea blinked, this was the most upset she had ever seen her mother but in her mind all

she could do was wonder how a human would respond. Had any one in Gaea’s world shed a

tear for something other than their own physical pain?


Gaea’s mind flashed back to the young girl of earth. A girl that had appeared to have the

same eyes as Gaia; green and deep. Gaea had been intrigued by the affection the girl had

given a young man who worked in her father’s house. The girl was named Myrrah. The

name felt strange in Gaea’s mouth. The Earth couple had professed their love to another,

and Myrrah had given herself to the man heart, soul and body. In the morning light, he

left her and the truth came out that he hadn’t loved the girl. He had lied to her, tearing her

heart in two. Myrrah cried so hard, red rimmed, exhausted, her green eyes grew dim.

Myrrah became nothing more than a shell, lying prostrate on the ground, too broken to



Gaea had watched and her own heart throbbed, her throat had worked to breath and

pressure built in her chest. A single wet tear trickled down Gaea’s cheek. It had taken

several minutes before she felt in control of her emotions. Even now, just remembering

Myrrah’s heart brake, Gaea felt a swell of sadness. However, Gaea had only felt a fraction

of Myrrah’s pain.


The feeling had been so alien to Gaea that she had gasped for breath at the sudden pain

in her chest. That is the true feeling of loss. Nana realized that her mother was staring at

her in silence. Quickly shaking her head side to side, as if to disrupt her thoughts, Gaea

tried to put the humans out of her mind. It was just a game, she told herself. But Gaea was

beginning to doubt that what her grandfather had built was a game and that doubt scared

her. She didn’t want to become like him, obsessive and cut off from her true reality.


“I told him I would keep his game running.” and though the statement didn’t explain

much of anything, her mother nodded in silent understanding.

“I will call the carriers” her mother said softly voice and then turned to leave.


The Carriers came to transport the body of the deceased. Their woven shrouds covered

their bodies. To be a Carrier meant you were forbidden to speak, an oath that all Carrier’s

make before they don their shrouds. It was an honor to be a Carrier and it took years of

sacrifice and discipline over ones self to even qualify. The most grueling part of the

process is the final test. No one but the Carriers know what it is and all are forbidden to



Mother and daughter silently stood outside the room as they waited for the carriers to

perform their duties. With the last shrouded figure’s graceful exit, Nona and Gaea began

tidying up. Grabbing the piles of clothes her grandfather had left discarded and used on

the ground, Gaea grimly smiled. Grandfather had never been a very tidy man, once a week

her mother, Nona, would have to set everything to rights once more. In his living quarters,

grandfather had been a walking disaster. His work area though, he kept respectably neat,

for him. There were stains from assorted substances all over the desk, chair and floor.

Papers were filed as notes that he had made recently and a pile with a note saying

“Everything else”. Bits and scraps of paper were floating around and so Gaea scooped

them into a pile she called Miscellaneous. Her sigh was heavy.


It would take a lot of effort to organize his Earth project. First Gaea would need a filing

system. She shook her head at the idea. Why was she even thinking these things?

Narrowing her eyes, Gaea sternly told herself that she would not be continuing the Earth



Nona moved toward Grandfather’s desk, toward Earth, a large basket of recyclables in

her arms. His tools thrown haphazardly inside as she reached to tear down the sketches

that had been tacked to the wall.


Gaea’s heart skipped a beat. Her skin felt like it would stretch off her body in order to

stop her mother. Her throat contracted in that same way when she had felt the tears well

up inside. Couldn’t her mother see?


Gaea’s heart caved like that of an imploding star, “No!” Gaea screamed, a mirror image

of Myrrah’s. The sound had ripped at Gaea’s vocal chords. It was such a strange feeling. It

was as if Life was pumping through her, trying to escape the confines of her own flesh.

Her cheeks flushed and everything seemed to beat inside of her, almost painful with how

alive she had become.


Nona stared at her daughter, hard. Something between surprised and disappointed was

revealed in Nona’s features. The small crease between her brows returned, even more

defined, showing how distressed she was at her daughter’s outburst.


Gaea realized in that moment that she hadn’t lied to her grandfather, she had lied to



Planet Earth was a real breathing organism and like any small defenseless star that

needed a hand in growing up, Gaea was going to defend it.


-L.P. Gelseth