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Rhapsody with Blue

                                   Jonathon Pierce

Iffley stared at the Ring in his hand. Adena had rejected him again. He had given her the Ring as a promise--a promise of undying love. It had been an engagement Ring, only she had never realized that fact. Even now, she still loved Blue, and no other man would ever measure up to Adena's high standards. Iffley's heart had known this, causing him to leave before he had gotten too involved.

He opened the door and returned into the study. The desert still stretched out into the horizon, but no fierce winds stirred the sand. Immediately, he noticed the absence of Sterling's body. Iffley was certain that Adena had killed him. But where was his body?

Iffley turned his mind to the task ahead. He transformed the nearest dune into his desk. Obviously, Sterling's power was not in effect now. A large dune became the davenport. The long process of restoration had only begun, but Iffley felt that he needed the time alone.

Unnoticed by Iffley, a small, black cricket crawled out from the study and into the hall. It leapt several times and hid in a dark closet. Assured of its safety, it began to sing softly. Soon, it would have its revenge.

*  *  Out of the Blue  *  *

Adena arrived in Furanose via danae. She had several things that she had to accomplish during her short visit, and she decided to begin with the Council.

She entered the vast chambers and approached the seated members of the Council. "I have come to resign my position as ruling figure of Furanose."

"Enchantress, you cannot, the laws will not permit this."

"I don't care about the laws anymore. I just want to get away from here."

"Even if we permit this, who shall replace you as ruler?"

"I really don't care. The chief advisor is next in succession, isn't he?"

"Yes, but-"

"Please, don't make this more difficult than it already is. I love Furanose, but I have to leave." She nodded to the Council and quickly left the chamber. She walked briskly down the hallway toward Eve's room. She knocked on the door and entered.

"Eve, there is something that I have to tell you."

"Yes, Adena?" Eve, dressed in a pink sundress, waited patiently for Adena to begin. She wondered what was on her mind. Knowing that Adena usually did not beat around the bush eased her mind; she would not have long to wait until Adena told her tale of woe.

She was right, for Adena immediately spoke, "Eve, you are my best friend, and I know that I can trust you. Something has come up, and I have to leave. I have resigned the throne. You, as well as anyone else, has an extraordinarily good chance to become the ruler of Furanose. I suggest that you try."

"What do you mean you resigned the throne? I thought that you loved Furanose."

"You know that I love Furanose."

"But if you leave, what will happen to Furanose? You have been the best ruler Furanose has ever seen."

"I'm sure that she will survive without me." She smiled warmly at Eve. "I have a present for you." She touched the Amulet and removed it from her neck.

"No, I can't take your Key."

"Please, you must. Where I'm going, I won't need it."

"Where are you going?" Eve asked, her eyes not moving from the Amulet.

"That is not important. Please, Eve, take it. I want you to have it." She held the Amulet out to Eve, who gingerly took it. They embraced, and both women cried softly.

"Eve, I really must go."

"Please, Adena, keep in touch."

"I will, if I can." Adena brushed a tear from her cheek and smiled warmly at her friend. She started to exit the room and turned around. "Good-bye, dear friend," she said.

"I hope you find your happiness."

Adena waved and left the castle. This time, she realized, she would never return.

*  *  In a Deep Blue Funk  *  *

She arrived at Iffley's castle in record time. She patted Terra on the nose and gave her a cube of sugar. She crossed the drawbridge and entered the castle. She found Iffley still cleaning up the study. It almost looked normal, except for the extra layer of sand on everything. She hated to interrupt him, but she knew that if she did not leave now, she never would.

"Suralio, take me back to T'mir."

"Now? Adena, I have a lot of work that--"

"Please?"

"Alright." Iffley twirled the Sceptre, he was getting more imaginative, and teleported them to the Casablanca. The couple boarded the satillite ship and took off. Iffley again admired the power of the new mini-ship. The pair rode in silence, and within minutes, they approached the mother ship.

The hanger bay of the Xanadu loomed above them. The communications officer contacted the mothership. On the viewer, a bright beam of green light rapidly approached the satillite ship. "Tractor in eight seconds." Eight seconds passed and the tractor contacted. It swiftly drew the ship inside the hangar. Iffley nodded approvingly at the other two satillite ships in the hangar. The Maltese Falcon, painted in gold, complemented the silver of the African Queen and the red of the Casablanca. They exited the hangar bay and trekked to the bridge.

Iffley sat in his commmand chair, feeling one with his ship. The ship lurched with the extra speed of the Starlight Drive, and she sped on her way homeward.

*  *  Twice in a Blue Moon  *  *

Several hours later, the Xanadu established a routine orbit around T'mir. The Casablanca returned Iffley and Adena to Yorkshire. Not wanting to disturb Jonathon and Asiel, Iffley did not announce his return.

Adena raced up the stairs--Iffley following a close second--and entered her bedroom. The crest that Iffley wore around his neck still bothered her; she wondered how he could have gotten it. She dug through her Christmas presents, which she had carelessly not put away, and emerged with a red box. She took off the lid revealing some rings and coronets, the gift that Iffley had taken from the twins' room.

She picked up a coronet, "Yes, Iffley, this is how we intended the twins to contact us." She put the crown on the head and placed one of the rings on her fingers. She touched the latter item with the former. A delicate melody sounded and three wispy shapes appeared. "Blue, dearest, I am ready." The largest shape nodded.

"That is Blue?"

"Yes, Iffley, and Kyan and Kirstie. They are my family without their corporeal forms. Bluemind. Bluespirit. Bluemotion. Blue is all that he ever was. And now, I must join him." She leaned over and picked up a silver ring with a clover-shaped jade on it. "Take this, it will bring you good luck." She hugged him and kissed him on the cheek. "It is time. Suralio, I hope that you will find your happiness as I have found mine. Good-bye, Suralio." She stretched out her hand and touched Bluespirit. Her body seemed to dim, as if all of her life was being drained out of it, and she slumped to the floor. A fourth shape appeared and waved to Iffley. The entire family then vanished.

Iffley gently gathered up Adena's corpse and carried her downstairs. He entered the laboratory and placed her body in the super-cooled freezer. Should Adena ever want to return--if it was possible--her body would be waiting for her. He kissed her delicately on the cheek and closed the door, sealing her body in the frigid environment. He stared at her cooling body through the frosted window, "Well, Adena, I hope that you are truly happy now."


 © 1985, 

K. Blaire, L. Charles, D. Conrad, Enad the Great, A. Mann, J. Pierce, B. C. Randolf, and T. G. Taft

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