Wednesday, 2 January 2013

Remora the Remorseless: Chapter Two

In which Steppy and Remora continue the adventures begun in Chapter One...

True to her word, Steppy journeyed forth and sought the greatest tooth magician in the land; one who could bestow upon her friend Remora a set of gnashers as white and straight as the aspen tree. And Remora travelled thence with Steppy, and in exchange for a bag of gold, received the tooth spell.

But Remora still seemed ill content, and restless despite her dazzling smile. And one day, while she and Steppy were lunching on a bowl of broth, she swore Steppy to secrecy and confessed that she had gone to see another magician. A most skilled magician, conversant in the Changing Arts, who for a mere ten bags of gold would give Remora a brand new face.

Steppy respected her friend's right to choose the spells to which she subjected herself, but she could not help but convey her fears and reservations to Remora. 'This is deep and dangerous magic,' Steppy told her. 'You will need to be girded by protective talismans - and maybe consider having some counselling?'

For it had long seemed to Steppy that her friend was deeply troubled, so much so that a new face would not necessarily achieve the enchanted existence she seemed to crave. But Remora told Steppy that it would be a walk in the castle grounds.

'But whither will you conceal yourself, Remora?' asked Steppy. 'For you have told me that no-one is to know, not even your household'.

'I shall tell my household that I have had some warts removed from my face,' replied Remora. 'And they will be satisfied'.

Steppy's mind was in a complete whirl. Had her friend never witnessed a woman undergoing a similar transformation? Had she never read Glamour magazine? Had she never stumbled upon 'Ten Years Younger' whilst channel hopping ??!

Steppy tried to explain to Remora that this Changing Magic was so deep that her face would swell as large as a pumpkin, that her eyes would weep perpetual tears, and that her cheeks would be glowing all hues of the rainbow. But Remora did not seem to believe or understand what was being said to her.

There was only one thing for it. Steppy told Remora that she would conceal her in her own dwellinghouse until the changing magic had taken effect...

And so it came to pass in The Year of Our Lord 2008 that Steppy, true to her word (again) hid Remora away for several weeks; nursing her many seeping wounds, washing her bloodstained locks, feeding her gruel, and even lending Fergus to Remora in order that she might cuddle him at night (Fergus being Steppy's very own personal talisman in the form of a large furry bear....). Finally, when the day of Remora's departure dawned, Steppy used her best arts of concealment to create a mask for Remora's still battered face, enabling her to travel abroad without suspicion.

So Remora returned to her household, and from that day to this - despite everything else which followed - Steppy has never told a single other servant working at Anonymous Castle the story of Remora's New Face.

Despite everything else which followed.

But everything else - dear Reader - must wait for another chapter...

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