Dropping the 2nd mask

The Pretender lay her hand beside his head
And he fell backward into the grave she had dug the
night before

Singing a dirge of mournful amusement she buried him
And with no small satisfaction she noted his blank
stare
As the dirt filled his mouth

But even as she walked away
brushing the dirt from her hands
The Magician became dirt
became Earth
And as she watched flowers burgeoned from his grave
speaking his blood
Oak trees around the grave lifted his arms and eyes
And the Silent Green Engine lifted every part of him
from his sequester

So before too long
he was once again standing before her

The Pretender focused the Sun on him
And he began to crisp and fry about the edges

He sprouted tiny tongues of flame at every point
Yet he did not flee but accepted the Cloak of Fire
without comment

She screamed at his silence
Cursing and reviling him
taunting him
offering him a cup of water

At the moment the Flame became unbearable
And she knew with absolute certainty that he would cry
out
He began to dance
dance within the flame
And the Wind was the music

His flesh peeled away to become the Dance
His clothes
his devices
his bones
Became the Dance of Flame
Until there was nothing left but the Dance

When the Dance was spent
as all dances must be spent
When the last of the flames had danced away
The ashes stirred and scattered
scattered and coalesced
coalesced and gathered into a gray man

So before too long
he was once again standing before her

Shrieking the Banshee Song above the World
She called down the Winds that twist
the winds that whirl

The cone of Destruction writhed like a headless snake
seeking him
The funnel of the Whirlwind sought him
And when at last the Maelstrom found him
he did not flee

Pieces of him were ripped from his flesh
Until nothing remained but a dervish of tiny bits
And yet within the Chaos
within the frothing turbulence
His pattern continuously reemerged
Because while the Magician was not indestructible
He was not in fact solid
The Magician was a pattern that continuously
reinvented itself

So before too long
he was once again standing before her

All the flesh had left the face of the Pretender
Revealing the skull beneath the skin
All pretense had left her and fine cracks had began to
appear in her countenance
But with the last of her energies she summoned the
Deep Waters
So that the full extent of the Seas crashed down on
him
And the whole of the World was drowned in her tears

Yet there appeared in the Skies above the Waters
A rainbow half in
and half out of the Water
And perched there was the Magician
Regarding her

Reaching out a hand to her
A hand made of Fire and Water
a hand made of Earth and Air
A hand offering to help pull her from the waters of
her own summoning

And the Magician smiled . . .

Dropping the 1st mask

The Pretender decided that she would Like the Magician
in as much as she often made such decisions
on the spur of the moment
And as was her custom
She took off her first mask saying:
I will become you
I will become your creation
I will change my self into something else
so that you will never ever want for anything else
I will be everything you need so that you will never
leave me

The Pretender opened her hand
opened everything but her eyes

Let me buy you with my sex
Let me open my body
but not my heart
No
You may not touch me there
Never
ever there . . .
I will show you everything
but my soul

Departures – Manjag and the Pretender

They left in clear sight but no one saw them leave
They walked across the fields
Walked across flower dappled meadows
and oceans of golden wheat

And when they had walked a day and a half
They came to the coast

As her foot hit the sand of the beach
The Pretender turned and regarded the Magician
His eyes had taken the hue of the Sea
and his beard had become the grey of winter skies

“Which way?”
“My ship has a mind of its own and there is really no
way to know.”
“Oh what a lazy captain, that you let your ship steer
itself.”
“It is not a style I would suggest for everyone
but it has worked well for me.”
“How shall we call this ship?”
“It comes when it comes, perhaps patience is . . . ”
“Where’s the boat?”
“There.”

And sure enough
Just cresting the horizon
A tiny cyan ship coursed toward them against the tide

“Does it have a name?”
“It is called the Heart.”

The ship was such that it was sometimes difficult to
make out at a distance
It could easily be mistaken for a graceful sea bird
It’s billowing sails could be clouds . . .

It moved onto the beach and sailed the sand to their feet
The Magician offered his hand and the Pretender
boarded the Heart of the Magician

Initial Contact

The Cocktail Parties of the Furies always have
the most interesting music
And the décor . . .

The invited guests sashay through fantastic landscapes

Awash in the brilliant colors of Midnight
The low dull thudding of the Infrareds
the shark toothed ultra violets
They eat the most peculiar things
and are encouraged to wear very strange hats

The Magician is holding an azure drink
filled with twinkling stars
Off to his right
The Pretender glides through shadow and shade
Her gown
a whisp of gossamer
a hint of feather and down
She seldom turns to look face on
But has seen everything in the room
She seldom stops to talk at length
but had spoken to each and every person there

If you’re lucky you might catch
The grace of a hand involved in a perfect gesture
the hint of a smile
The lilt of her voice

She flows through the room like water
And congeals where the Magician converses with a
werewolf
The Magician is visibly unsettled by the beautiful
woman
suddenly standing before him

The Magician meets The Pretender at the Cocktail Party of the Furies

Constance met him at the door
reminding him to remove his sandals
She took his cloak and asked for his staff
The Magician used sleight of hand to sequester the
staff in a hidden pocket
Said he’d be naked without it
Constance smiled
the leaves in her hair undulating in the breeze

Sabote turned to regard the new arrival
and immediately slipped on her “Oh, its only you . .
.†face
The Magician pulled a rabbit out of her ear
everyone laughed

Anxi reprimanded her sister
reminding her that they were civilized and as such
Were required by code and custom to welcome all
invited guests
The tentacles that covered her torso enfolded the
Magician
He extracted himself by offering her
a tiny ornate box of candy he had pulled out of the
air

Horrence clapped and made the most annoying noises
She tried to grab him by the nape but succeeded in
only grasping his shoulder
Dangling him from her pincer she held him up for all
to see
The Magician waved to them

Manjag the Metamystic Metaphysician ~ an Introduction

But First
an Introduction

Current speculation has it that Manjag Entaphulus was born in far Caleiberiera
Or The Eastern Land of Xundenda in the year of the Gloam
There is even some conjecture that he might have roots in the Land of Blue Ginger
All of this is hearsay and idle speculation of course
because there are no records

The records do show that he achieved high marks in Metaphysics
in the ivy encrusted halls of Herseck DeKammers
And while he was not first in his class
He was graduated with honors in the study of Metamysticism
from Tuzeca
The title of his Thesis:
“Its Not So Much About Learning the Truth,
Its About Proving Yourself Right”
A Tome that caused a bit of a stir
It is a matter of record the faculty were divided in their evaluation
Some claiming it was an inspired work of biting sarcasm
Others cited the documented facts as irrefutable proof
Unable to resolve the issue of the document’s intent
They decided to award him an advanced degree and rid the campus of him

It is generally said by those who knew him
that Manjag had the unnerving habit of
Transmuting Reality into Metaphor
and Metaphor into Reality
He was known to twist Light out of Darkness
Conjure songs out of memories
songs filled words dark and true
In addition the Magician had a small talent
for making up the most marvelous lies
And his lies
like all really good lies
Had at their nucleus a kernel of profound Truth
In some ways his lies were more akin to the underlying Truth of the Universe
than most of the facts of everyday life

To the best of the records
He never tried to pass any of his lies off as truth
But with a man such as this
one can never be absolutely certain

The Invitation

Manjag the Metamystic Metaphysician
Decides to attend the Cocktail Party for the Furies

He fingers
The ivory inlayed invitation
Properly appointed in silver trim
And sealed with the most exotic sealing wax
It must have materialized in the earthen tureen
in the surge of the Night
Now no one knows just exactly how such invitations are wont to appear
unexpected and unheralded
But everyone knows
That only those invited
May attend the Cocktail Party for the Furies

Manjag never attends such parties
Often finding himself instead
In distant and curious places
walking beneath the cathedrals of scarlet and amber in the woods
or sailing the unseen currents in the skies
But he has heard the tales
We’ve all heard the tales . . .
And it can only be guessed why he decided to go

But what to wear . . .
What to say
What to carry in the pockets
or leave in the Chest of Many Wonders
Whether to go hungry or satisfied
Should one conform to the customs
Or try new ways . . .

We’ve all heard the tales . . .

Few have ever survived such parties
And those who have
Are never quite returned the same
And you just have to wonder why
Only those invited
May attend the Cocktail Party for the Furies