Our departure from Elemaria was for me a mixture of sadness and joy. Sadness, because my heart wanted yet to stay among these people of nature, and wander through their gardens and woods and study their herb lore and ways within their great libraries. The joy that countered it was because our onward path would be shared with a company of elves who had also paused at Elemaria on their way back to their homes in Heliodor.
It has been many a long year since I had first looked upon elven folk. I had been so much younger then, and knew not what to expect as entered the fabled – and now long-hidden woods – of Evensong. Even so, their voices and song had long echoed in my thoughts and dreams ever since, so hearing such voices again, even amidst so many fine and fair voices of the people of Elemaria, set my heart soaring.
In truth, the elves of Heliodor are very different to their kinsfolk of the woods. Long ago they left the green halls of the forests and woods, their devotion to the ideals of creation and growth leading them to find a place where they could settle and create things of beauty and utility. And so they founded the city of Heliodor, the artisans and architects who lived there gaining fame throughout the known world for their skills and crafts.
Those who have not walking along the winding, white cobbles roads of this fair place or looked upon the sweeping curves and curled roofs of their halls and houses can scarce imagine the beauty to be found within Heliodor! Far from their woodland homes these elves may have travelled, but their love of the ancient forests lives on with the great forms of their halls, the curled sloping roofs of which might be autumn leaves fallen from some giant Mallorn, the rise and branching of the stone pillars and arms that support those roofs suggesting trees with arms uplifted to the Sun.
And oh! The sound of music and song! To walk through Heliodor is to hear nature’s soothing voice, as pleasing and gentle to the ear as the breeze through high, young branches and as pure as the soft bubbling of a brook newly raised from its founding spring. Again I found myself wanting to stay, to explore each of these wonderful halls, but our companions turned hosts encouraged us onwards through the winding streets, past well-tended gardens and orchards until we crossed a small bridge to where a wide field awaited.
Here had been set tables and root-stools with platters of fruit and flowers set for a noon time meal, goblets and pitchers of the finest carved glass catching and reflecting the light of the high Sun. As we stopped, my kinsmen tending to our mounts, so we were taken by hand and lead to the waiting feast, even as more elves emerged through the screen of trees, separating field from town, and the air filled with song. My own companion, fully two heads taller than I and yet not yet full grown, held my hand gently as he led me to a seat, his long cloak seeming to float over the long grass. His wide face, delicate yet strong, shone with an inner delight and he helping me to sit, a warm smile playing at his lips as if he sensed the urge I felt within to reach up and run my finger tips around one of his elegantly pointed ears.
And so, once more, I found myself in the company of elves, and I and my companions scarce worried at the passing of the day, for in Heliodor, urgency has no place, and all who visit know that everything will come at its appointed time.
Heliodor designed by Nix Marabana and sponsored by Jinx. Featuring stores by: [ae] Adam & Eve, Dragonsworn, Dreaming Thicket, Dreamscaped Designs, !!Firelight!!, Grey’s Mind Maze, Home Whimsy, Kumiho-J!NX, Old World, .:Partners in Crime:., Rainy Fey Creations, Scarlet Fey, Simply Shelby, Sweet Intoxication, ^TD^Tirrany Designs, [TF] – Tamiron Forge, The One Team Initiative: Meet the Teams, and XPOSEure & SE.
Total raised by the end of the Faire’s fifth day: L$5,242,493 (US $20,969).
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Fantasy Faire regions are rated Moderate.