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I idly twiddle the knobs on the picture before me and it shows the Tea Room in glorious colour. The walls are now sparkling, the floor is in pristine condition and the ceiling repairs have been done.
The gnomes have done a great job once more.
It is then that I notice, or rather sense, the absence of sound.
Where is the clack, clack of Charlies’s knitting needles?
She is crouched over in her chair, but her work is on her lap.
What she is doing is writing???
I zoom in and to my horror read the note she is penning to Angel and Roo.
It is telling them of my Cunning Plan.
How does she know? My amulet is in the off mode.
Then I remember that she has the ability to read my thoughts.
My rage is so immediate and irrational that she could not possibly have determined the cause of it if I act quickly.
So painful as it is to me, I stub my toe on the edge of the table
With 99% of my mind broadcasting this, I use the remaining 1% to tell my broom to IMMEDIATELY go to Roo and Angel’s bedrooms and remove all evidence of my Plan.
Return the foul objects to the HOS Repository.
Through the tears I see that Charlie has already passed the note on, so she still has no knowledge of me cancelling the Plan.
Now to keep her, that meddling old woman, in isolation of the others while I work out an alternative Plan which will prevent her from continuing to read my mind.
My revenge on Roo and Angel can wait. This has priority.
Of course, as my pain is easing by now, she will have realised my discovery of her meddling but not what I have done to counteract it.
I decide to give her a taste of what is more to come if she does it again!
“Broom! How busy are all our worthy citizens playing in the Castle?”
My broom does a quick survey and replies “Very busy! The dust bunnies are everywhere, and you haven’t released me yet today to go and sweep them away.”
“No matter. Now you can do so, but heap ALL of them either on or around Charlie!
“Bury her in them and carry on doing so until I tell you to stop!”
I then switch my amulet on and tell her that I am watching her!
She is such a ‘nice old lady’ but she does have an extensive vocabulary when she requires it!
I turn back to the picture in front of me knowing that there will be no more notes forthcoming from her
HAW!!!! I KNEW HE HAD TO HAVE CAMERAS HERE WE HAVE NOT FOUND. I LOOK UP AND SMILE. HE MAY THINK I CAN NOT HEAR HIM. SO HE THINKS TO MESS WITH ME. I AM SORRY HE HAS STUBBED HIS TOE. HIS TRICKS ONE ROO I DON'T USUALLY INTERFERE IN. BUT USING CREEPY CRAWLIES IN THEIR BEDS IS TOO MUCH. I HAVE NO IDEA IF THEY HAVE PROBLEMS WITH THEM BUT AS A KID I DID. THEY DO NOT FAIR WELL INSIDE. OUTSIDE NO PROBLEM.
THEN I SAY OUT LOUD. BROOM DO NOT FORGET IT WAS NOT AN IDOL THREAT. I TAKE A LIGHTER FROM MY BAG AND HOLD IT UP. THE DUST BUNNIES THAT HAS STARTED TO SURROUND ME STOP. I GATHER THEM AND STUFF THEM IN THE SACK I KEEP IN MY BAG FOR THEM. PICK UP MY BAG AND HEAD FOR THE KITCHEN. WITH OPAL GONE I LET KATT I AM GONE TO THE BARN. AND ASK PENNY IF SHE WOULD LIKE TO COME AND MEET THE ANIMALS HERE. I THINK MR. T MIGHT MAKE A NEW FRIEND OR TWO THERE.
I tune into the Tea Room with a smile on my face to watch Charlie’s discomfiture.
My smile freezes!
There is NO discomfiture!
There are NO dust bunnies being heaped all around and on top of her!
The room is bare and in pristine condition
And Charlie’s chair is empty.
She is not there.
Searching around I see that she has gone to visit her menagerie with a sack of the dust bunnies over her shoulder!
Drat! And double DRAT!
Flummoxed I turn to my broom for an explanation.
After all it was such a simple task for it to accomplish.
Then I feel a small wriggle in my pocket
It is trying to hide from ME!
“Come out right now and explain yourself!”
A very shaky broom emerges
"Charlie has threatened me with incineration if I continue!
"Since all you would do is to tell me off for dereliction of duty – personal safety first!"
That confounded woman! Turns even my broom against me.
There must be something to counteract the thought transference spell between her and me.
I need expert help so I open the aperture to the Dark Tower Library and head for the Book of Knowledge. There I open the ancient tome and search.
After several fruitless hours I find what I am seeking on a scrap of paper attached to the wards protection page.
In the ancient script I read: In the Northern Islands the Druids have fashioned a potent drug to read the minds of their enemies.
Unfortunately, they could also read each other’s minds and it drove them mad with the result that they started to fight among themselves instead!
So their most ancient and powerful mage developed a powerful drug to counteract this.
They store it in an Ancient Sphere, and it takes the form of a Magic Pollen.
You sniff it and your brain cells become immune to outside thoughts.
Just what I want!
Now dare I risk travelling to that unholy Realm where capture is a strong possibility?
The answer has to be YES and immediately so!
Before Charlie can interfere or summon up help from the others or even Cap’n Randy.
I am off using my broom as a sumptuous charabanc.
I only hope that this Northern Kingdom has no magical defenses to combat what I am about to do!
IN THE BARN WITH PENNY AND MR. T I THINK AH!!!! THE PEACE AND QUIET IN MY HEAD HERE IN THE BARN DISTRACTED I CAN'T HEAR ANYONE THINKING. IT IS ONLY WHEN I AM SITTING QUIETLY DO I HEAR THEIR THOUGHTS. MAYBE I SHOULD TAKE BABY AND BEAU OUT MORE OFTEN, OR GO WITH THE CATS WHEN THEY HUNT. I HAVEN'T SEEN THAT MUCH OF THE AREA SINCE I STAY CLOSE TO THE TEA ROOM AS CAP SAID NOT TO GO OFF ALONE. IF I AM WITH BABY AND BEAU OR THE CATS I DON'T THINK ANYONE WOULD BOTHER ME. THEN I CHUCKLE. I INTRODUCE PENNY AND MR. T TO THE CATS, DOGS, BABY AND BEAU WHO HAVE JL UNDER CONTROL. THEN I INTRODUCE THEM TO GOLDIE AND DOOGIE. PENNY GIVES THEM THE APPLE AND CARROT TREATS AND A FEW SCRATCHES. I TELL MR. T HE CAN COME HERE ANYTIME THINGS GET TOO MUCH FOR HIM IN THE TEA ROOM. HE WILL BE WELCOME.
Although it is not a long journey over to the other Realm, there is time for me to put my feet up and sink back into the luxury of a Regency sofa.
It is then that I notice that both my owl and crow are perched on the arm at the end.
Which I have now determined is owl-speak for ‘I am not happy!’
My crow then enters my mind
It tells me in no uncertain terms: “You are an idiot to even attempt this voyage on your own.
"I have been in contact with members of my family over there and they are lining up to pluck the flesh from your bones!
“Their tables are laid and at the ready!
“Apart from this, you are also insane to want to take such a potion!
“It will make YOU an imbecile who cannot communicate with anyone other than your own kind.
“It will not just be your foes unable to discern your thoughts, but you will not be able to discern theirs either whether vocal or written!
“So please turn back before it is too late, and you are snared into that terrible Realm!
“There must be another way to help you hide your feeble thinking from your fellows!”
Frost lands in the open field and I tell him wait here for me and keep an eye out , I do not like this uneasy feeling I am getting something not right.
I high tail it to the Tea Room and enter.
Man the place looks great the Gnomes did a great job again .
Hey where is every one good way to catch them off gaurde no one knew I was coming lol where is Penny?
I hear a chuckle in my Amulet // it's PTG hum I can hear him and his crow his Crow is having a fit and telling PTG to go back or else.
I then hear and understand why his Crow is freaking out ,, my lame brain idjit doorknob is almost at The Northern Island....
HAS HE TOTALLY LOST HIS MIND AND ALL HIS MARBLES????
WHAT THE $%^&&^^% DOING GOING THERE AND ALONE THE BLUNDERING IDJIT.
WHAT IN HELL DOES HE THINK HE IS GOING TO THERE ?? WHAT IS HE AFTER? WHAT IS HE LOOKING FOR ??
ALL THAT DOORKNOB WILL FIND IS THAT VIKING WARRIOR'S HORNED HELMET UP HIS ARSE AND WOULD NEED A DOUGHNUT PILLOW JUST TO SIT.
HOW MANY BLEEDING TIMES DO I HAVE TO SAY ******** DO NOT GO ANYWHERE OUTSIDE THE TEA ROOM ALONE*******
MY MIND IS AT WAR WITH IT'S SELF,,, THEY ARE A GOOD BUNCH == * YEAH RIGHT DUMB AS A DOOR-NAIL**BUT THEY DO GET SOME THINGS RIGHT** YOU LOST YER MIND**??
OKAY OKAY ENOUGH AS I SCREAM INTO MY AMULET PTGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG YOU FLIPPING DOOR KNOB TURN AROUND THIS VERY SECOND AND GET YER ARSE BACK TO THE TEA ROOM NOT YOUR HIDING HOLE T BUT TO THE TEA ROOM I AM HERE AND YOU GOT 5 SECONDS TO TELL ME YOU ARE ON YOUR WAY OR WILL SEND FROST AFTER YOU
I give him a few more seconds,, nothing and I know he can hear me .
Okay door knob you asked for it.
FROST ==** RIDER**
Go and get that door knob we call PTG he is not far from the Northern Island and heading right for a world of trouble or his death so you have to stop him before the Killer Crows spot him .
I have no choice I have to wait here till you get him and return him.
He has avoided a word of hurt from over there BUT he has no friggen idea what a world og hurt I am going to lay on him here
** Frost answers RIDER meaning he understood and will bring that door nob idjit back.**
I have to inform Our Queen of PTG's blunder == AGAIN .
The Golden Queen answers she already knows and understands that I am doing the right thing in stopping PTG for no one outside that realm knows what a danger it is
I am not to worry about Imp (Gammon) Falga seems to be making progress with her she has calmed down quite a bit and her fever is less.
That is great news My Queen it makes me so very happy,,,,
I turn around and see Miss Katt and Mrs Fletcher with worried looks on the faces,, well hello my two beauty's miss me lol?
I hug them both good to be back if only for a short time now where is Charlie>>> they both say at the same time with the critters *giggles*
Okay excuse me I must talk to her ==* Mrs Fletcher * Sweetie ( blush deep red ) I mean Captain Miss Katt and I will be making you a bite and it will be ready when you are finished speaking to Charlie.
That would be terrific I could eat a bit and I am sure Penny and Charlie will join me ,,,, Penny is with her right?
Yes and her Mr.T he is adorable LOL yes he us but you would think the same thing is he gets any of those berries and grows as big as a house lol so Penny makes sure they are well hidden and only feeds him when the need arises.
I find Penny and Charlie in deep conversation and I startle me when I say well now what are you two up two,,
Penny jumps and Salutes SIR.
I return the Salute and say Penny here we are less formal and you will get to know when I need the soldier in you but as all the others you will call me Cap or Captain nothing to stress over you will get used to it.
SIR YES SIR
I pick up Mr.T hello you lill dickens long time no see,, he sticks his head way out nips at my nose ,,,, I laugh still as feisty as usual I see Penny yells MR.T stop that right now that is The Captain you are trying to bite.
Sorry Sir he has not seen you in awhile ,,,, it is ok Penny he is fine and I put him down next to a banana he was eating when I picked him up maybe that is why he tried to nip me I disturbed his snack lol.
Charlie I have to say your workers and our friends The Gnomes did a fantastic job in the Tea Room ,,, I do not see them around so would you please pass on my thanks and my gratitude and when we get back we will have a thank you party for them.
Sure Cap I will do that.
Okay what I want to talk to you about is we are going to need to expand the en closer .
She looks at me???
Look I can not get into it yet but soon and you will understand in the mean time keep up the great work and see to it that Penny here gets to know every one and all of you give her help and answer any questions till we return.
I will give her more instructions before I return to The Main Camp .
A word of warning Frost is on his way to return PTG here and if I know that man he will be royally P***** that is where Penny comes in you Charlie ignore his bellows that I am sure he will be screaming at you all.
I go over to Doggie and hug him and scratch his ears ,, hello boy have missed you but I see Charlie has taken are of you very well ,, you look 100% better and I bet you fell it to.
Hey bays and I give him a carrot.
Okay we have time for a bite ourselves come on Charlie ,Penny Miss Katt and Mrs. Fletcher made us a snack so lets go eat and Penny we can talk more about your duties until I return.
I am mulling over what my crow has just told me while we journey onwards to the Northern Kingdom.
Do ANY of my Cunning Plans work? I ask myself
Just then my amulet starts to jump up and down and I cannot help but listen to my dear Cap’n chewing me out yet once more
I do not care for his tone!
“PTGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGGG YOU FLIPPING DOOR KNOB TURN AROUND THIS VERY SECOND AND GET YER ARSE BACK TO THE TEA ROOM”
And then he starts calling out some stupid numbers.
Let him wait for a moment while I recompose my thoughts about what my crow as told me, when I am aware that night has suddenly fallen!
But there are no twinkling stars or moon to illuminate my way onwards, just a large misshaped black cloud.
This rapidly changes into the form of a very large dragon who I know so well.
“Hi there Frosty!
Are you joining me in my little adventure?”
At this precise moment my sumptuous charabanc disappears leaving me stranded in mid air and subject to the laws of gravity.
My broom has deserted me!
This cannot be good!
But neither is the back flip onto its back as the dragon blasts me into position and we head back to the Tea Room.
“There was no need to do that!” I crossly exclaim.
“I am wearing my boots and am perfectly capable of getting there under my own steam!”
All I get is a grunt (as only large dragons can grunt without decimating the countryside beneath them).
Within seconds I am standing before an apoplectic Cap’n Bob who seems bereft of speech.
The others are still milling round the notice board on which is pinned that offensive letter to me for resigning,
And giggling when they turn and see me!
I go up to the board and remove the note
“All past history now! You all need me too much”
And turn to the Cap’n saying “And so do you too, so be more considerate before sending your lizard to unceremoniously fetch me back!”
Within seconds I am ring fenced by tall shards of ice and the thought penetrating my mind like a blizzard:
“My name is Frost, Frosty to my FRIENDS!”
The Cap’n then speaks but my hearing is not so good after the recent events that have befallen me!
The Cap’n has finally found his voice!
I concentrate on his “?????????”
So I give it to him straight.
“I am fed up with having my mind read by that knitting machine in the chair over there.
“After consulting the fountain of all knowledge in the Dark Tower Library it showed me a possible escape from her mind scrying activities.
“And that was to get some Magic Pollen from the Northern Kingdom
“But my crow warned me of my doom if I proceeded and while mulling things over at leisure, your dragon plucked me back here and I stand incarcerated in this fence of ice
“It is just not fair and not in the best interests for the harmony of the group.
“Those harridans over there can get away with anything whilst every move I make or intend is analysed and broadcast!”
I see the Cap’n give a little nod to Frosty and my prison bars are melted away.
“Now I have a fall-back Cunning Plan which is a bit more problematical, but simple to do and VERY safe.
“I also got the information from the Dark Tower library in an old tome in the Bookcase.
“It comes under the section of ‘banes’
“It states herbs with names that end in –bane. fleabane really gets rid of fleas Witches use witchbane for spells. Wolfsbane is dangerous to wolves or werewolves
“We can easily test if Charlie has or is using witch-like powers and if so I’ll get some witchbane that will solve the problem.
“So we need to test Charlie!
“I’ll convert my broom into a ducking stool and we can cart it and her down to the moat and duck her in it in true witch determining style!
“What do you all say?”
I look up to see a line of very hostile females facing me in front of Charlie.
Mrs Fletcher is twirling her heavy copper-bottomed sauce boat; Miss Katz has an iron stew pot at the ready and Opel is brandishing her large rolling pin in a very threatening manner. Angel is sharpening all her pencils into needle-like points whilst Roo, Roo has disappeared altogether (gulp!). In front of them all is miss-military-in-charge Penny in a classic karate pose!
Even worse behind them are two enlarged fluffy balls of teeth which seem to be dripping for my blood!
“Ah well it was only a suggestion
“I would have pulled her out before her last gasp and perhaps it would have reduced her powers of observation”
A rumbling emerges from the Cap’n and it does not come from his stomach
“YOU blithering nincompoop. Just sit down HERE in this room while we sort this LITTLE problem out
“If it wasn’t for you and your Cunning Plans there would be NO problem!
“Have you worked that one out, SIR??”
My, my, my.......Mrs Fletcher softly mumbles under Her breath....When is PTG going to understand..."Don't mess with the Female Members in our Special Room Group because it's "Darn Tooting" that We will always stand united together when we can and able to do so!!!........"Now Scoot along with You PTG Pronto!!! Now fellow Tea Room Warriors why don't we put our "Weapons".......to another good reason and cook our dear Friends an scrumptious Meal with all the trimmings ta boot?.....Yum..yum...yum!.......