sunlight wafted through the trees, soaking the flora in its warm embrace.
Iffley, Jonathon, and Asiel sat in the gazebo at the southern corner of the
courtyard. Iffley, dressed in vermilion, swirled the tea in his china cup.
"Furanose has been in a tremendous uproar since Adena's
I've heard." Jonathon seemed as disinterested in Furanosian politics as
he did in T'mir's.
Council cannot decide who will be their next ruler. The obvious choice is
Toltec, but he is so inexperienced. I think that Eve would make a good ruler,
heard that Bronson is trying to get a piece of the action, too." Asiel
smiled and drank some of her tea.
Bronson becomes head of Furanose, we may be in trouble. He does have the
Iffley, but we are rapidly catching up. Our remaining ships have been
renovated. The Sonata, the second ship of the Emerald class, has
been outfitted with three satillite ships: the Fugue, Tempo, and
the Triad. The Enchantress class, with their smaller hangers,
can only hold two satillite ships. The Enchantress contains the
Huntress and the Little One; the Nemesis, Calais
Coach and the Innocence; and the Labyrinth, Minotaur
and the Theseus. The newest ship in this class is the Triumph
with the Sundial and the Sextant."
suppose that you authorized these new ships?"
have been gone a long time, Suralio. Also, we have been exchanging technology
with the people from Snicker's. They provided us with the information, and we
altered it to fit our present needs. The Sonata and Fugue have
already been outfitted with their zim-bam gun. We have changed its name to the
nice...It was so thoughtful for you to notify me."
only the Emerald class ships and their satillites are capable to use
it. The Xanadu and Casablanca are being outfitted even as we
else that I should know?" Iffley said sardonically.
did leave me in charge, you know. We, in conjunction with the
Snickerians--who, by the way, are living just outside of Borphee--are in the
process of developing a Ravager Wave, involving three ships."
stood up, "You do seem to be handling things rather well. You should be
the ruler of the Colonies, anyway." He exited the gazebo and started down
so emotional," Jonathon said to Asiel. Iffley turned and glared at
Jonathon. Then he teleported to his suite.
* * Truth Revealed * *
stared at his musical instrument, the sript. There, on the side panel,
was the Crest of Iffley. It was a shield--checkered in red and black
diamonds--with a dragon behind it. A bolt of lightning issued from the
dragon's mouth. In its claw, a glistening crown shone brightly. Inscribed
under the crest was the word 'Prior.' When Iffley had made the sript, he used
some antique wood from a trunk that he had found in the attic.
by the word, Iffley punched it into his computer. The computer spit out a lot
of useless information and a name and address: Bryce Prior, Castle Wyndham,
Thrift, T'mir. Iffley, in eager anticipation, transported to Thriff.
reappeared outside of the town, which was rather small, and walked up the
gravel path to the castle on the hill. With each step, the castle became more
formidable. It was made of hand-smoothed marble and ivory. The castle had been
dismantled and reconstructed from Furanose to its present spot. Iffley
remembered signing Bryce Prior's immigration papers and wondered how he could
have slipped his mind so easily.
Iffley approached the moat, he noticed a sign:
Bought, Sold, and Restored
Ring bell for service
sign, itself, was made of fine walnut and looked like an antique. He nodded
appreciatively at the sign and started toward the moat.
drawbridge was raised, so the wizard followed the sign's instructions. He
pulled gently on the braided rope at his side. A loud, clear bell sounded and,
immediately, the drawbridge reluctantly lowered. A small sprite flew from the
castle and approached Iffley.
who are you?" Suralio asked politely.
am Karma, follow me." The sprite spoke mellifluously as the friction from
her wings lighted her body. She turned abruptly around, creating a sphere of
light, and dashed back into the castle. Iffley laughed and followed her trail
the castle, Karma left him with another sprite, Pandora, Bryce's secretary.
Pandora brushed her antennae back and sang/said, "What is your business
am 8uralio Frith Iffley, ruler of the Colonies. I come seeking advice about an
secretary nodded, "Dusk, come in here please." Seconds passed, and
another sprite appeared. This was the first male sprite that Iffley had seen.
He, like the others of his ilk, created a trail of light from his pulsing
wings. The male sprites, Iffley noted, created a much brighter iridescence.
Pandora whispered something into Dusk's ear, causing him to fly rapidly into
the next room, through a small hole in the wall.
emerged from the hole, "Bryce grants you entrance, sir." The small
sprite then motioned to the door. Iffley opened the door and entered the realm
entire room was filled from floor to ceiling with heirlooms. Great tapestries
hung from the walls complimenting the oriental rugs scattered on the wooden
floor. Dressers, vanities, desks, chairs and other antiques lined the walls. A
young man, perhaps twenty years old, rubbed delicately on a walnut roll-top
desk. "I am honored, sir." He looked up from his work, "Now,
what can I help you with?"
would be best to show you," Iffley said, while he created a hologram of
the sript. "I noticed your name underneath my crest, and I
wondered if you could tell me anything about...Excuse me? Is their something
had been staring at the crest, "No, sir. May I ask where you got that
particular piece of wood."
removed it from an old trunk that I found in the attic."
si...Suralio. That particular piece of wood was not restored by me. It looks
like the work of my great-great-grandfather, Wyndham Prior. Did you say that
your name was Iffley? Well, then I think that I may have something for
you." He clapped his hands once, summoning Dusk. "Go into the
storeroom and retrieve the maple box. You know, the one with the dragon on
it." The obedient sprite left the room on his task. "As I was
saying, I inherited the family business from my father, rest his soul. He
taught me everything that I know. I--Oh, I see that Dusk has
sprite had indeed returned, along with several others, carrying the box. The
box was beautifully made, from its shiny, smooth sides, to its hinges made of
silver. Carved onto the top of the box was the Crest of Iffley in all its
majesty. The box was perfect, except for a slight depression in the
box," Bryce began, "has been handed down from generation to
generation. The one bearing the Crest of Iffley"--he pointed to the crest
around Iffley's neck--"was to be given this box. Only the Crest of Iffley
is said to be able to open it, anything else will destroy its contents."
He handed the box to Iffley, who took it gently.
Iffley stared at the depression and then at the
crest; the depression was exactly the same size and shape as the crest. He
removed the crest from his neck and placed in the depression. There was a
slight click as the lid released. A piece of parchment slid out of the
At last you
have discovered our secret. The secret of the Iffleys. But, perhaps you do not
know our story, so I will relate it to you.
Once, long ago,
the Iffleys ruled the land of Furanose. We were a powerful family, and the
people loved us. Then the wars came. Invaders from the North plundered our
villages and cities. But, our forces eventually drove them back: the people of
the North were unorganized and uncivilized, an advantage for our side.
Then, one day,
a man organized them into a powerful army. They not only attacked our towns,
but destroyed them. Their forces were too great to overcome. After months of
war, the end had finally come, Furanose had fallen to the enemy.
our capital, Odina, and set it on fire. We were unable to cope with both the
attackers and the fire, thereby losing most of our beloved city. They stormed
the palace, seeking me. I have fled through the underground escape tunnels,
but I realize that they will find me soon.
I gave my wife
the Crest of Iffley hoping that she would be able to give it to the child that
she bears. I have left her in competant hands, and I know that she will be
safe. I have taken the crown and put it in a special box, which only the
bearer of the Crest of Iffley can open, and have given it to my chief advisor,
Wyndham Prior, with the instructions to give it to my descendant. The crown of
Furanose is legal identification to rule. Present the crown to the Council,
and they will be forced to accept you as king.
is my last word: Seek revenge for the indiginties that the house of Iffley has
suffered. Destroy what is left of this man's family. Destroy the remains of
Kaura Ludit's sphere of influence. Take back what is ours.
Good Luck, Descendant
punctilliously opened the lid. Inside the box, a beautiful crown glistened in
the lambent light. Rubies, diamonds, sapphires, emeralds, and amythests
sparkled as Iffley held the box up to the light. "Bryce, are you willing
to take a trip back to Earth with me?"
* * Truth Reclaimed * *
Chambers of the Council was packed with people. The Council was undecided.
Toltec was arguing his case at the top of his lungs. Eve was patiently
awaiting her turn.
oblivious of everyone, was also shouting, "I want to be King!" His
Verbosity Spell had worn off a few hours earlier, and stupidity was one of the
side effects. "This land is mine! Hear me out!"
room abruptly became quiet as Suralio Iffley and Bryce Prior entered. Iffley
was wearing the official crown of Furanose and, from the reaction of the
crowd, everyone realized its authenticity.
have come," Iffley said, "to reclaim the kingdom of
| ||© 1985, ||K. Blaire, L. Charles, D. Conrad, Enad the Great, A. Mann, J. Pierce, B. C. Randolf, and T. G. Taft|