In Pan Post 33 the adventures of Space Camelot continue. Merlin the Younger, Sir Kay and Sir Bedivere are joined by the Aes Sidhe, Shalott, atop of Mount Snowdon as they wait to see the surfacing of Camelot. At Stonehenge, Morganna le Fay, with the help of Vivane, channels her magic into the machine which is buried deep within the Earth below Great Britain. She manages to shift the huge vessel but when it rises it almost takes Ireland with it. Shalott seeks the aid of other Aes Sidhe and they save the land of Ireland while Camelot floats into the sky. King Arthur wants to take a population aboard to foster a colony, though Guinevere chides him and expects that he allows people to choose freely to join or not. Sir Lancelot is left to wonder how they'll ever reach the ship while those on Mount Snowdon are attacked by the Afanc monster.
Space Camelot: Take-Off
Merlin the Younger slaps her arms as she strives to warm them up. She's standing atop of Mount Snowdon and peering off into the west. She holds up her hand and snaps her fingers. The dark clouds that had been looming overhead very quickly scarper. Sir Kay looks from Merlin to the sky with astonishment.
Sir Key: "I swear those clouds just whimpered like a pack of dogs..."
Merlin: "Then they should behave themselves."
Merlin: "That's why we're up here, Sir Kay."
Sir Kay: "I know, I know. I'm just... stating the obvious."
Sir Bedivere: "Not the most useful trait, Sir Kay..."
Sir Kay pouts, hands on his armoured hips.
Sir Kay: "I make up for it by smashing skulls. Care for a demonstration, Beddy?"
Sir Bedivere: "Don't call me that..."
Sir Kay: "Beddy."
The humans around her have the decency to be embarrassed. She is a tall Aes Sidhe witch with long dark hair that shines beautifully in the sun of the, now clear, sky.
Sir Bedivere: "Actually that sounded suspiciously French to me..."
Merlin: "It sounded suspiciously anachronistic to me."
Shalott: "I invented it. A magical brew for keeping the hair lusciously soft."
She paws her hair like a cat scratching her ear. She has black skin like the peoples of Africa, something most of the humans in England had never seen, and irises so dark that they appear almost black. She often wears a cocky smile when addressing the humans, which Bedivere openly remarked to be Aes Sidhe arrogance.
Merlin glances back from their perch, down towards the lake.
Merlin: "Someone keep an eye on that lake, would you?"
They all, save Merlin who keeps looking westward, look down the mountainside at the lake.
Shalott: "Which is why I'm stuck babysitting you."
Shalott looks affronted but didn't get a chance to protest her innocence before Merlin cut in.
Merlin: "Not that lake. The other lake. Llyn Llydaw."
They look at her with shock. Sir Kay works his mouth uncomfortably as he attempts to repeat the words.
Sir Bedivere: "Your Welsh is impeccable, Merlin. I'm very impressed."
Shalott: "Where was the praise for my French?"
Merlin: "I am Welsh, Sir Bedivere."
Sir Bedivere: "Consider me shocked. I always thought you were from the Old North..."
The stare at her and Sir Kay wiggles his tongue in disgust and fascination at the crazy Welsh language.
Merlin: "Old North, as you put it. He taught me English."
Shalott: "English? And you complained at me for anachronism. English doesn't exist yet. You'd have probably learnt Cumbric in the Old N--"
Sir Kay: "I think I saw something in that lake you meant, Merlin."
They all fall silent and stare at Llyn Llydaw - save Merlin, again.
Sir Bedivere: "What exactly did you see, Sir Kay?"
Sir Kay looks at Sir Bedivere with wide eyes.
Sir Kay: "It... wiggled."
The two men shudder with inward horror.
Shalott: "So much for the brave knights of King Arthur..."
Sir Kay: "But--! It's wiggly! And slimy! And gross!"
Sir Bedivere: "Sir Lancelot usually deals with that kind of thing."
Shalott smiles wistfully.
Shalott: "Such a knight!"
Sir Kay: "That's why you're not allowed at Stonehenge."
At Stonehenge, already ancient by this time, King Arthur holds out his hand to help Morganna le Fay to climb up onto the central plinth. Under that platform would be Doughnutdelf and The Rift to Albion. Out here, however, there's just us chickens.
King Arthur: "I am not a chicken."
King Arthur: "Nothing."
Morgan looks over towards Guinevere, trying to see a streak of jealousy in her as she watches Arthur help her up. Guinevere, however, remains as stoic and composed as always, much to Morgan's disappointment.
Vivane: "I'm glad you showed up this time, Morganna..."
Morgan: "Hey. I told you. I had a bad dream. I thought Arthur was going to screw me..."
Everyone is silent.
Morgan: "I meant fool me into destroying Avalon..."
Everyone sighs with relief.
Morgan: "Then he pretended to let me actually screw him but he lied about that too. Dream Arthur is a nasty *******."
Vivane: "Now that we're all sufficiently uncomfortable, shall we begin Morganna?"
Morgan nods and looks down at the stone. She smacks it with her boot.
Morgan: "You still down there, Old Man?"
From below the stone comes the shout of an old man.
Merlin the Old: "Don't take that tone with me, young lady! I'm still your mentor--"
Morgan: "As long as you're stuck down there, you're not!"
She cracks her knuckles.
Morgan: "Let's get this show on the road."
Sir Lancelot: "What show? What road?"
Morgan: "Quiet, cretin."
King Arthur, Sir Lancelot, Guinevere and Vivane are gathered around Stonehenge to watch Morganna le Fay get to work. She had postponed this after her dream but now, seeing her dream was just the Dreamstate playing silly buggers with her mind, she had quashed her beloved home of Avalon and now uses that energy to pump into the ground.
This spell is like none ever attempted before. The channelling of such a huge amount of magic across a massive area, all with Morganna le Fay acting as the conduit. She didn't admit to anyone but she is terrified of what might happen to her. Especially she didn't tell her half-brother.
From The Rift beneath her flows a sudden great wave of magical energy, a dimension composed entirely of magic with plenty to spare. Vivane warps the flow of magic, careful not to overwhelm the frail human body of Morganna. She has to direct the flow just right, just enough so that it will course through the woman's limbs without exploding. Morganna is the engine while Vivane is the driver.
Morganna feels her eyes burn as magical energy tries to seep from them. She holds back her cry of anguish and closes them tightly. Her hands tremble as magic gushes from her palms and spreads across the field surrounding the henge. It coats the landscape like a morning mist. It seeps, as fast as light, through the ground and down, down, down deep into the mountain below the sea that creates Britain. There... she feels it.
Exotic, alien, ancient - three words that barely begin to describe the unusual object that she can sense buried deep, deep down. How it got there she can only begin to fathom. But no she has it.
According to Merlin the Older the great galleon can further its own removal if she powers up its own energy core. She pushes with her will and she easily locates the energy engine as it hungrily, greedily, laps up the magical current she's throwing across the machine. She directs energy to power it up. Suddenly the thing feels alive and, as Merlin promised, the vessel works with her to free itself of the land. It grumbles and grinds out of ancient rock. Slams into more rock, breaks other rock, and is buried several times by collapsing rock.
Morganna doesn't notice that the entire country is wobbling as she's completely focused on her task.
Sir Lancelot: "I hope this endeavour doesn't destroy your old kingdom in the attempt to make a new one, Sire!"
King Arthur: "If it does, I totally blame Morgan!"
One of the huge slabs of Stonehenge topples from its perch, slamming into the ground. Sir Lancelot jumps back to avoid being squished.
Back on the Welsh mountain of Snowdon, the other party is trying to maintain its footing on the rocking peak.
Shalott: "What have we let you crazy humans do this time!?"
Merlin: "No anachronisms!"
Sir Kay: "Whatever one of those is. It's Ye Olde Kent Fried Chicken! You need to get out more, Merlin!"
Sir Bedivere: "That's assuming we survive this calamity!"
Sir Kay: "I think all this shaking is making our lake monster friend more angry."
Shalott: "Or more hungry."
Merlin: "It's called the Afanc. And yes. It'll eat us."
Shalott: "Oh! I know the creature! It's a playful little blighter! I'm sure it just wants to try and make friends with humans it sees! Probably doesn't know its own strength."
Merlin: "We'll remember that when it's tearing our flesh from our bones!"
Sir Kay: "Ladies first if that happens!"
Shalott: "How bold you are, Sir Kay!"
Sir Kay: "Hey. I'm the master of sarcasm around here, witch-lady!"
Merlin: "There! I... uh... is... Ireland flying?"
They all turn away from Llyn Llydaw and look towards Ireland, or Eire as the Irish prefer. It's now floating up in the air. Beneath the landmass is the object Merlin thinks is their actual prize.
Merlin: "Shalott... I suggest you send a message to Vivane and tell Morganna she needs to nudge the thing over to the west a wee bit..."
Vivane: "Morganna... you need to move the space galleon to the west more."
Morgan tries not to grumble. It's hard enough trying to lift the damned thing without moving it around some more. She'd already moved it westward once. How much more west could it need to go?
The land has ceased vibrating so much but she feels that the land still aches. She imagines there's a dirty great big hole in the land beneath the waves that's causing Britain's tummy ache.
She thrusts westward and, suddenly, the strain on her feels so much lighter! Weird that.
Ireland plunges back onto the surface of the ocean and starts to sink, little-by-little.
Merlin: "Cripes... no one will notice!! Right?"
Sir Bedivere: "I expect the Irish shall... at least for the next... ten minutes."
Shalott: "I suppose it's up to the Aes Sidhe to make up for your mistakes. As usual."
She holds out her hands and aether begins to swirl around her. While Merlin suggests to the magic what it ought to be doing, giving her a clean and straight-forward brand of magic, the magic of Shalott is anything but clean. It's aggressive and commanded by her dominance over the wild aether. Ireland begins to rise again from the ocean, the water bubbling around it.
Sir Bedivere: "What's happening down there?"
Shalott: "Aes Sidhe of Ireland are in the water, repairing the rock while I hold it up. Well. Me and a lot of other Aes Sidhe witches or warlocks or whoever has decided to help. I'm sure there's more than a few lazy braggarts just watching us struggle."
But they've stopped listening to Shalott. Instead they're gazing up at the massive vessel hovering above Ireland. It's high enough that they can see end to end and it is not only gigantic but an incredible and unusual shape. It's also very dirty.
Sir Bedivere: "I'm sure there's some very confused barnacles up there..."
Morgan: "I think it can support itself now..."
King Arthur: "Are you sure? I don't want you to drop it back in the ocean again!"
Morgan: "It's fine. I've already let go and it's staying up there okay."
Vivane: "Shalott reports that Ireland was damaged but it seems to have survived the ordeal. A bit smaller than it used to be, but still in one piece. Ish."
King Arthur: "Good to know..."
He leans towards Guinevere.
King Arthur: "What's Ireland?"
Guinevere: "Part of your kingdom, Arthur."
Vivane: "Apparently... Sir Kay is being molested by a lake monster now. Sir Bedivere is trying to distract the creature by building a... giant, wooden rabbit... And Merlin has run off and left them to die."
King Arthur nods sagely.
King Arthur: "Usual antics, Lady of the Lake. Nothing to worry about. So! My space ship! Time to whizz off into space and find new worlds to populate! I was thinking of taking all of Scotland with us!"
Guinevere: "You mean the entire populace of Scotland, Arthur?"
Arthur nods eagerly.
Guinevere: "I don't think you can force the entire population of a country to leave..."
King Arthur: "Alright fine. I'll let people sign up. I just hope we have enough people to start a colony!"
Sir Lancelot stares off into the distance where they can see the huge hulk against the sky.
Sir Lancelot: "The more immediate question is... how do we get up there?"
They look up at it too.
King Arthur: "Uh... wasn't Bedivere making a giant rabbit?"
"I deliberately wanted to expand on several established figures and concepts of NeS lore with this post, specifically The Rift and the Aes Sidhe who had been briefly noted in previous posts. I also wanted to give greater scope to the British Isles as the cultural identity of the characters of Space Camelot largely utilises regional differences and background to those locations for identity and personality. Shallot's actions would loosely be based on the concept of the 'False Guinevere'[Ext 3] but also merges with the infidelity of Lancelot[Ext 4] and Guinevere[Ext 5] in many texts, all of which will culminate to a climax later in Space Camelot. The post makes brief reference to the Afanc[Ext 6] monster from Arthurian Legend and The Mabinogion[Ext 7]. The last comment about a giant rabbit refers to the actions of Sir Bedivere from Monty Python and the Holy Grail[Ext 8] where the silly knight replicates the concept of the Trojan Horse[Ext 9]." ~ Britt the Writer.