Relee the Squirrel's Domain

Relee and the Beegirls

by Relee the Squirrel

The two beegirls carry me through their hive, honeycombed walls dripping with golden ooze, and each has one of their stiff black carapace-covered hands tucked under one of my arms, a long pointed spear gripped firmly in their other hand. The buzzing of their wings and the wings of the other beegirls is almost deafening at first, but the sound seems to fade into the background after a time, like visiting a noisy construction site.

The hive is enormous, the walls filled with a colony of thousands of bee girls, yet surrounding an open hollow space like an oddly shaped dome. Far below is a lake of golden honey, collecting there as it drips down from the giant honeycomb surrounding the hollow. In the center, on a raised island, stands a strange sort of palace. Glistening golden yellow with honey, it is built of the same materials as the surrounding hive, but shaped like a fantasy castle with high towers capped in beehives instead of cones.

The beegirls carry me straight to the palace drawbridge, an odd feature since it connects to no solid land or bridge, but opens over the lake of honey. They land on the structure and lower me onto the bridge, but the fur on my round paws sticks to the thin layer of cured honey that glistened so majestically from above.

I look up at the beegirls, and they're a good two feet taller than me, around five feet tall and most of their skin is covered in stiff insect carapace. Their bodies are similar to human women, but with exaggerated proportions. Their breasts and thighs are huge but their waists are incredibly tiny, less than a foot across. They each have a huge insectoid abdomen sticking out of their tailbones as well, tipped with an intimidating stinger.

Oddly their abdomens and the other parts of their bodies are hard-shelled, not like the fuzzy shells of normal honeybees. Their rigid carapace leads up their torso, and covers their stiff breasts up to just above the nipple. The flesh above that seems soft and fleshy, but still bee-yellow.

Their carapace stops at the top of their legs, rather like a leotard, and yellow and black striped flesh is visible untill the knee, where the carapace returns in the form of knee-high boots. The boots are completely solid and terminate in a high-heeled foot that points straight down, like a ballet heel. It's odd that these beegirls can walk at all with their feet like that, but in fact they have shown superhuman agility in catching me.

The yellow and black almost-human flesh that is exposed above their breasts continues down their arms into elbow-length black carapace gloves. Each of their hands has two fingers and an opposable thumb, all tipped with pointed but somewhat dull claws.

Their heads are especially strange, because they look very human on the bottom half of their face, and very insectoid on the top half, almost like they are wearing helmets. Their lips are oddly thick and pouty, and bright glossy yellow, but their human ears are covered by the carapace helmet. Their eyes are huge almond-shaped compound eyes, and large insectoid mandibles bend down from the top half of the mask to jut out in front of their mouth. At the very top, long fuzzy antennae twitch on top of their hairless heads.

As for me I'm even more out of place. I'm a three-foot tall squirrelfolk. My body is covered in short copper fur, and my proportions are chubby and round. My hands and feet are somewhat pawlike, with four rounded fingers on each hand and toes the size of tennis balls. I have a fluffy tail as long as I am, and my face is a mix of human and animal. My eyes are large, but humanlike, with blue irises in a white field. My nose is small and animal-like on the end of a short buck-toothed muzzle. Short pointed ears atop my head dart back and forth.

Unlike the beegirls I'm wearing some clothes. A pair of blue shorts underneath a white tunic, and my favorite blue poncho embroidered with yellow stars. On my hip I carry a leather pouch, filled with magical tools. I'm a wizard, you see, but a wizard who has been caught by beegirls.

The beegirls start to walk forward, their pointed feet barely sticking to the honey-glazed drawbridge, and they tug hard on my arms when I stay behind, thinking I'm trying to resist them. In fact, my paws are completely stuck in the honey, and I'm struggling to pull them free.

The beegirls turn around and the one on my right says, "Bzz-bzz, you come with uz now. Follow. Bzz-bzz."

I look up pleadingly to my captor and say, "I'm sorry! Please, I'm stuck in the honey here. Can you help me out?" as I blush heavily. It's embarassing to ask someone for help when they're in the middle of taking you prisoner.

The two beegirls realize that I'm stuck, and they slip their arms under mine again and pull me up, out of the honey. Bits of fur are tugged out around the thick pink pads on my sole, and I yelp uncomfortably, but the two beegirls ignore that and carry me inside the palace.

There is a small courtyard just inside the palace, sparsely decorated with statues of humans coated in honey. I wonder for a moment why they would have statues of humans and not statues of beegirls, but my wizard-sense picks up life signs and I realize those are humans in suspended animation, coated in honey.

There is a massive door on the main keep guarded by a pair of extra-tall beegirls carrying halberds instead of spears. The door is open, and the beegirls stand with their halberds crossed over the entrance. They stand aside, however, as we approach, and allow the beegirls to escort me into the massive grand hall of the palace.

A golden yellow runway carpet covers and divides the polished solid-honey floor. The floor looks almost like yellow glass, polished so heavily that it even reflects light like a mirror. At the far end of the carpet stands a massive ornate throne, at least twenty feet high and decorated with a bas relif mural of beegirls in flight. Sitting on the throne is the queen of the beegirls, very similar to the ones who carry me, but her abdomen is bigger than a whole person, and made of softer material. It curves to the side on the throne, allowing the queen to rest her back. The only other distinctive feature about the queen is the polished golden crown on her head. Like the floor, it appears to be made of solid honey, polished to a mirror shine.

On either side of the queen beegirl's throne are long, solid-honey troughs filled with human-sized insect eggs. Several beegirls are milling about the chamber, attending the eggs, and three beegirls are singing in a choir, though their song is intirely made out of buzzing noises.

The two beegirls that are carrying me walk with me down the golden carpet, and stand ten feet before the queen bee. They bow down dramatically at the same time as placing me on the carpet, between them. Fortunately the carpet was much less sticky than the drawbridge, though it still felt odd under my paws. The beegirls then put their hands on my shoulders and pushed down, forcing me to kneel in front of their queen.

The beegirl on my right stepped forward and began to gesture vigorously in front of the queen while it spoke. "Bzz-bzz. Your majezty, we found thiz creature znooping around outzide the hive. Bzz-bzz. It can walk and talk like a human. Bzz-bzz. It tried to ezcape but came peacefully when pinned. Bzz-bzz."

The queen bee uncrosses her legs an sits forward on her throne. She holds out her carapaced hand and gestures to me to move forward, saying "Bzz-bzz. Iz thiz true? Take a ztep forward, and zpeak to me, creature." in a casual yet elegant fashion.

I stand up from my kneeling position, and the beegirl to my left removes her hand from my shoulder as I step forward. I attempt to mimic the bow that the two beegirls performed earlier, and say "Greetings, your majesty. My name is Relee, and it is a pleasure to meet you."

The queen clasps her hands together, and a grin forms on her plump human lips. "Bzz-bzz. My my, it iz az they zay. You are not a human or a beegirl, yet you walk on two legs and zpeak clearly and with purpose. Greetingz, to you, Relee. I am Queen Altezza of the beegirls, and you are within my domain. I bid you, tell me what you are, and why you are here? Bzz-bzz."

I consider my answer for a moment, and decide to be honest. "I am of the squirrelfolk, and I am a wizard, and I have come from another world. I am exploring the many worlds of our reality, and came to your domain by chance." I said.

The queen bee sits back and seems to consider what I said. She taps her cheek gently with her claw before speaking and says, "Bzz-bzz. An alien wizard. Thiz iz a mozt unexpected guezt. Bzz-bzz. We beegirls are a magical race, but we have no true wizardz. And you have been captured by my zubjectz within my domain. Bzz-bzz."

The queen bee's grin returns, and grows as she continues to speak. "You muzt now zerve me az my court wizard. You will greatly enrich the ztrength of my hive."

I gulped, and began to sweat. She seems intent on enslaving me! Is this a tradition on this world, when you capture someone? To be a court wizard, she would need to give me such leeway that I could escape. I decide to play along for now. "As you wish." I say, "What should I do to begin, your majesty?"

The beegirls on either side of me return to their previous positions, and the queen bee says, "Firzt you muzt become a beegirl, and my daughter!"

One of the beegirl attendants uses a golden knife to slice open one of the eggs in the trough next to the queen. Inside appears something like a beegirl, but the attendant pulls its head out and I realize it's just the carapace of a beegirl. On either side of me the beegirl guards grab my poncho and tunic, dragging them up and over my head, tossing them to the ground near a pair of beegirl handmaidens.

The attendant continues to pull piece after piece of the carapace out of the egg, while the guard to my left lifts me up with both arms and the guard to my right tugs my shorts off, leaving me naked. The attendant gathers up my clothing and places them in a bin on the far wall of the chamber, and the two guards carry me over to the egg trough. The queen be stands up slowly, and two handmaidens grasp either side of a cloth underneath her abdomen, carrying it for her as she stands to watch.

The attendant first holds up the carapace leotard in front of me. The beegirls are so much larger than me that it's almost as big as I am, yet the guards lift me up and lower me into the stiff shell, with my legs dangling out the huge leg-holes, and my arms barely reaching out the arm-holes. My tail is threaded through a large hole just above the butt, where the abdomen would go. The waist of the outfit is much smaller than any other part of it, though I realize this particular carapace is much larger than any of the beegirls around me. The waist is just wide enough that it doesn't squeeze me.

The inside layer of the leotard is coated with a layer of odd translucent slime that tingles anywhere it touches, and the attendant pushes the carapace firmly against my chest. After standing there for several moments I'm shocked to see that the leotard carapace is shrinking! It grows smaller and smaller and I can feel it constrict around my waist, pushing it in first. I can hardly breath as it applies pressure to my lungs, and keeps growing smaller and smaller.

Finally the holes around my legs touch base and the whole thing seems to stop shrinking, but my waist has been squeezed down to only inches across! At the same time, the displaced flesh seems to have gone up and down, giving my thigs an exaggerated flare, and forming feminine breasts that fill up the cups of the leotard-like outfit.

I reach down and wrap my fingers around my own waist, and there's room to spare! Truly, they are a magical race, or I would be broken in half.

Next the attendant grips my tail-tip and starts to thread it inside of a small hole on the massive abdomen, slowly bringing the abdomen closer as more and more of my tail is inside, tingling with the gel. At last the abdomen makes contact with the leotard, and begins to shrink. I can barely feel it, since my tail is mostly fluff, but after a few moments I start to feel the abdomen as if it was actually part of my own body, and I can wiggle the stinger at the very tip, yet I can nolonger feel my own tail inside of it.

After that they press something to my back, and it seems to stick in place. I'm confused at first untill I'm filled with sensation, and realize they just attached my wings. A collection of large round bee-wings buzz on my back with the slightest thought, though the guard beegirls hold me in place to keep me from flying away.

Next comes the boots, they're huge and my legs don't even go half-way in, but like the leotard they start to shrink down and come closer to my size, but my feet are much larger than my legs. They are squished first, and I wince and groan at the pinching pressure, but oddly nothing seems to break, even as I feel my toes slide down into the cone-like ballet point.

The guards lower me to the ground at this point, but I can't keep my balance with my legs like this. They hold me to keep me standing, now, rather than to keep me from getting away.

The attendant prepares the next part, the arms, and slides them into place over my own arms. Like the legs, they are far too large, but start to shrink, down and down and down, crushing my hands but not breaking them. Like clay they seem to mold into the shape inside the gloves, and the carapace fingers come to life at my command.

The bizzare bee outfit is almost complete, and I watch as the attendant reverently lifts the half-helmet in front of her, like a crown at a corronation. She steps towards me and lowers the helmet onto my head. Like before it's completely full of a strange gel that tingles against my fur and flesh. It even gets into my eyes, which tingle behind massive compound eyes. The helmet rests just above my muzzle, and the mandibles poke around either side, beginning to click open and shut as the helmet shrinks into place. The antennae on top come to life, and I feel like I'm smelling out of them instead of the nose on my face. And then, in a flash, I'm looking out a ton of eyes instead of just two. It's confusing as the world becomes a faceted, and I just hang from the guard's arms, dazed.

I finally solidify the image in my mind to a single world just in time to watch as they place my body inside the egg and close it up around me, leaving me in a yellowy-white haze of slime.

It was soothing and tranquilizing, my fur and skin all over felt like it was tingling, then numbing, and at last I fell unconcious.

I awaken in a strange darkness, and feel comfortable and safe. I don't know where I am, but it doesn't matter because nothing is wrong. And then, suddenly, I feel hungry. I try to move, to fidget, and something tears. I pull, and it rips open, and I tumble out of the honeycomb in a pool of golden slime.

I am somewhere in the beegirl hive, but noplace I recognize. My hunger escalates, and I look at the slime on the floor. It's honey, and I'm so hungry. On hands and knees I bend down, slurping up the golden sugar with my tounge, filling my belly with sweetness from the floor.

I finally satiate my hunger, and lift myself up, sitting on my knees. I look around, and I see that there are several beegirls around me, but they're all ignoring me, attending to various honeycombs.

I look down at myself and see that the fur on my chest has become yellow with black stripes, and my muzzle-fur is black. My arms and legs are stripey as well, except where the carapace covers.

Without thinking about it, I stand up, and walk towards one of the beegirls, and stop, because I realized I'm walking on those oddly pointed feet without loosing my balance.

Shrugging my shoulders and ignoring the sudden feat balance, I continue walking towards the nearest beegirl, and I say, "Bzz-bzz. Where iz this place? Bzz-bzz.". The beegirl turns to me, but I've been distracted by my voice. I put my hands on my mouth and find that my muzzle-lips are swollen and I can't seem to speak without buzzing.

The beegirl says to me, "Bzz-bzz. Thiz iz the hatchery, where all of Queen Altezza'z daughters are born. Bzz-bzz. Are you lozt? Bzz-bzz."

I rub my head slowly, the carapace on my hand clicking softly as it touches the shell on my head. I look up at the beegirl and say, "Bzz-bzz. I juzt woke up from that honeycomb. Bzz-bzz. I don't know where to go. Bzz-bzz."

Another beegirl walks across the room and stands next to me, towering over me. She looks down and says, "Bzz-bzz. You are already hatched, zizter? We expected it would take longer. Bzz-bzz. Queen Altezza will want to zee you right away. Bzz-bzz."

I look at the new arrival, but she looks just the same as the other beegirls. I wonder if there will be an oppertunity to escape from the hive soon, and after everything that happened, it seems dangerous to meet with the queen again.

"Bzz-bzz. Can that wait? I want to zee more of the hive. Bzz-bzz." I say, hoping to stall and get a tour of the citadel-hive.

The beegirl shakes her head and says, "Bzz-bzz. Don't be zilly. We muztn't keep the queen waiting. Bzz-bzz. Come follow me. Bzz-bzz." and starts walking away. I follow close behind her, but I have to walk more swiftly to keep up with her longer steps.

The hatchery is a strange room full of pillars, and each pillar is made of several honeycombs assembled in rings. Most of the honeycombs are empty, but a few are covered in wax, and I can see beegirls sleeping inside. The floor is a honeycomb as well, but completely filled with a sturdy construction wax. My pointy feet don't seem to stick or scuff the surface, but they also don't slip. I wonder how it works as we walk.

At the edge of the chamber there are a few honeycombs missing, which lead into the interior chamber of the hive. The beegirl who is leading me starts to buzz her wings and lifts off the ground. I realize I need to follow her by flying, and attempt to use my own wings. I lift off the ground in a moment, and soon stabalize myself. The beegirl is patient, but as soon as I start to hover, she starts flying towards the palace. I chase as quickly as I can, but it's difficult to keep up when she flies so quickly.

We fly together and land on the honey-glazed drawbridge, but my feet don't stick here either. I walk with my guide into the palace as before, and find the queen at rest on her massive throne. The throne room is at least a hundred feet across, and the queen is very patient to wait for our rapid yet mincing steps as we cross the entire chamber to stand before her.

Unlike before, when I mimiced the beegirls, this time my body seemed to move on its own, and I performed a sweeping bow before Queen Altezza. My guide spoke to the queen and said, "Bzz-bzz. Your majezty, Queen Altezza. I bring your newest daughter. Bzz-bzz."

I stood in front of the queen, and though my compound eyes couldn't help but stare, I lowered my head. I found that I could not speak, I was filled with an overpowering sensation of prudence and was absolutely sure it was not the time to say anything.

Queen Altezza speaks instead, saying "Bzz-bzz. I am glad to zee my newborn child. You zhall be very zpecial, my dear. You zhall be my court wizard, and I name you Wizelda. Bzz-bzz." She raises her arms as she speaks, posing in grandoise fashion.

I perform an elegant curtesy, without even thinking about it, or raising my head. Queen Altezza waits for me to finish, and then says "Bzz-bzz. I bid you, Wizelda. Tell me what zuppliez you need to perform your wizardry. Bzz-bzz."

I look to the right, to the bin where my clothing was placed, then return my head towards Queen Altezza, facing down. "Bzz-bzz. My most bazic toolz are in the leather pouch I wore when I arrived. Bzz-bzz. What additional zuppliez I require dependz on what you wizh me to use my wizardry for, my Queen. Bzz-bzz."

Queen Altezza gestures towards one of her attendants, and that beegirl walks to the bin where my clothes still lay. She fetches the leather pouch, and carries it to me.

Queen Altezza continues to speak while the attendant works, saying "Bzz-bzz. I wizh to rule thiz world, abzolutely. Bzz-bzz. The humanz hunt and kill my daughterz, and I take the humanz to replace them. Bzz-bzz. Make thiz world my own, Wizelda, and you zhall be the most honoured of my daughterz. Bzz-bzz."

I grasp the leather pouch in my carapace hands, then sling it over my shoulder to rest at my hip. "Bzz-bzz. For that, my Queen, I will require a workzhop, zomeplace zecluded. Bzz-bzz. I zhall also require the labour of craftzmen, or a factory to azzemble zpecialized toolz. Bzz-bzz. I muzt firzt learn about thiz world, before I can make it yourz. If you have any bookz, I may find them uzeful az well. Bzz-bzz." I say, and I begin to consider methods to bring the world under the absolute rule of Queen Altezza.

The Queen nods her head slowly, and considers. "Bzz-bzz. It zhall be zo." she says, and points at a beegirl near the throneroom door. The beegirl immediately curtseys and leaves the room, surely off to assemble my requests. She then points at one of her attendants and says, "Bzz-bzz. I bid you, zerve Wizelda. Az my court wizard, zhe zhall alzo be one of my princezzez. Take her to her new chamberz, and attend to her there. Bzz-bzz."

The beegirl who had guided me to the palace departs, and the queen's attendant walks up to me, then past me, but instead of leaving the palace she walks towards a honeycomb door on the left side of the throne room. I follow her, and she leads me through a maze of identical honeycomb hallways. At last she guides me through a honeycomb doorway and into a larger chamber, which is made up as a bedroom. There is a bed, though it more resembles an ornate sofa. There is also a vanity table, a collection of chests and dressers, and a few very high chairs in a circle around a small table. Everything in the room is done in shades of yellow, gold, and black, and made out of the same materials. Wax, solidified honey, clay and a strange fabric that shimmers in the light and looks like flowing liquid honey.

I buzz my wings for a moment in order to reach a high chair, certainly made for even beegirls to be high off the ground, and sit down. I feel strange and confused. When I met with Queen Altezza, I was completely overpowered by her pressence. Everything she said felt right and true, and I couldn't bring myself to disagree with her. My fondest wish was to serve her every desire without question, and my body seemed to have a mind of its own, catering to her whim without even being conciously aware of it.

Even now, I feel a lingering desire to please her, a need to fulfill her wishes. She wants to rule the world, and I want to give it to her, and it all feels so wrong. And yet I think of my lonely journey, traveling so many worlds with no purpose, and the thought of my Queen comforts me. She gives me a purpose, and wants me. She cares about me, and I find myself caring about her.

Another beegirl enters the room. She seems different than the others. She wears a small mirrored honey tiara around her antennae, and a pair of clicking mirrored honey bracelets on either wrist. More than her adornment, however, her manner is different. The other beegirls are almost robotic, yet this one is lively and seems almost distressed.

"Bzz-bzz. Iz thiz the new princezz?" she asks, pointing at me.

I buzz my wings and land on the floor, doing a light curtsey before the adorned beegirl. "I am Wizelda, the new princezz. Bzz-bzz." I say, introducing myself. Oddly, I didn't even consider using my previous name, which is even now a fading thought of little importance.

The beegirl sneers at me darkly, and I feel uncomfortable. She doesn't seem to like me. "Bzz-bzz. I am Elzabezz, the firzt princezz. I am the high-mayor of the hive-city and mozt beloved daughter of Queen Altezza. Bzz-bzz. You muzt have charmed our Queen, to be made a princezz so quickly. Bzz-bzz." she says.

I look the princess up and down, then say "Bzz-bzz. I waz an alien, and I am a wizard. I do not yet know the cuztomz of thiz world, but our Queen choze me becauze my zkillz are unique and powerful. Bzz-bzz."

Princess Elzabezz took a step back, almost as if she were afraid, then she regains her composure and says, "Bzz-bzz. You are the ninth princezz. Leazt loved. Remember your place. Do az I zay and don't get in my way, or you will regret it. Bzz-bzz." She storms out of the room, and leaves me alone again.

I look to my servant and say, "Bzz-bzz. Tell me about the Princesses."

The beegirl handmaiden says, "Bzz-bzz. Her majezty, Queen Altezza, elevatez certain beegirlz to princezzez, giving them autonomy and rulerzhip over certain facetz of the beegirl empire. It iz a zpecial honor to be chozen az a princezz, a reward for many yearz of loyalty and dedication to her majezty. Bzz-bzz. You became a princezz fresh out of the egg, which haz never happened before. Bzz-bzz."

I nod my head slowly. "Bzz-bzz. Zo, Elzabezz feelz that my rapid promotion iz unfair? Or perhapz zhe iz afraid I will take her pozition? Bzz-bzz."

The beegirl lowers her head and says, "Bzz-bzz. I do not prezume to know the thoughtz and feelingz of my betterz, my Princezz. Bzz-bzz."

I turn my head to the beegirl servant and ask, "Bzz-bzz. What is your name, beegirl? Bzz-bzz."

My servant turns her head slightly to the side, pressing her hands together across her lap, and says "Bzz-bzz. I have no name, my Princezz. Only the Queen and her Princezzez have namez. I am only your loyal zervant."

For a fleeting moment this seems alien and unfair, but I shake my head and realize it is only proper. I am a princess, and she is merely a servant girl. As I look at her again, it is with new eyes, and she seems somehow less a person. As I look around the room, I see only objects, and I feel lonely.

The quiet is pierced by a nagging sensation from my belly. "Bzz-bzz. I am hungry." I say, and my servant slips out of the room for a moment. She returns with a mirrored honey platter of small bowls filled with glistening honey. I take a bowl, and lick it up with my tounge. I notice that my tounge is completely black, and realize I haven't seen my face since I was born.

I take another bowl from the platter and walk to the vanity, sitting down on the thin padded stool and gazing at my reflection as my long black tounge licks the honey out of the pot.

Though different from the others, I appear in every way a beegirl. From my pointed toes to my tiny waist to the compound eyes on my face, the only differences are my height, the fur where the others have flesh, and the short muzzle that pokes out from under my exoskull. The lips on my muzzle have turned bright yellow and shiny, and have puffed up significantly, to the point they have taken on an almost human appearance with a beestung pout.

As I sit at the vanity, my servant begins to rub strange oils into my carapace, causing it to shine more brightly. She applies the oils onto my lips as well, stiffening and polishing them. As I admire my own beautiful reflection, my servant adorns me with mirrored honey. A thick amulet necklace embedded with a crimson gemstone, loose bracelets around my wrists, and a small tiara, not quite as ornate as Elzabezz's had been. I am lost in my own reflection, though before I would not have admired the beegirls so much, I find myself too beautiful to turn away.

At last my attention leaves my reflection as another beegirl enters the room. Her head is lowered, though at my height that causes her to look directly at me, leaving her confused for a moment before she speaks. "Bzz-bzz. Your highnezz, we have prepared a workzhop for you in the northernmozt tower, and the craftzbeegirlz are prepared to create whatever you dezire. Bzz-bzz."

"Bzz-bzz. Lead me to the northernmost tower." I say. The beegirl messenger turns around and begins to walk. I follow, and my servant follows me. The featureless corridors seem less confusing the longer I'm in them, and even though I don't see any landmarks or signs, I begin to feel as though I know how to get back to my chamber.

The winding pathways of the palace lead to a spiral staircase, but we use our wings to fly up the middle of the tower untill it opens into a large beehive shaped room. The floor is polished honey and the walls are a clay and wax honeycomb. The room itself is at least fourty feet across, with the spiral staircase below opening on the edge, and a hole in the middle allowing flight passage.

The room suits my purposes, and I turn to the messenger bee and say, "Bzz-bzz. Thiz workzhop will zerve me well. Now take theze orderz. Bzz-bzz. I require a hollow globe of clear polished honey, no lezz than three feet in diameter, and a ztand to hold it. I alzo require a daiz coated in zoft wax, and a knife to carve zymbolz with. I require a lump of zcrap iron, az heavy az two beegirlz. I require two tablez, and four chairz. I require a large book ztand, and I require bookzhelvez. Fill the bookzhelvez with any bookz or zcrollz the hive haz about hiztory and geography. That iz all. Bzz-bzz."

The messenger beegirl darts off immediately with my orders, and I stand waiting, all alone, with my servant. The chamber that will become my workshop is more than adequate, though perhaps undersized for a princess, I consider.

Soon several beegirls enter the room from the stairwell, carrying large shelves between them, as well as other more basic furniture I requested. Another beegirl buzzes out of the hole in the center of the room, and walks towards me. "Bzz-bzz. My Princezz, the craftzgbeegirlz have begun work on your orderz. Bzz-bzz. They zaid that they zhould conztruct the globe in your workzhop directly, zo az to avoid the ztairs. Bzz-bzz."

I nod my head and say, "Bzz-bzz. Make it zo." as I gesture to the messenger beegirl, who darts off down the room's central hole. I then turn to watch as the beegirls assemble a collection of furniture around the room, raising bookshelves and placing tables and chairs. Another beegirl floats up from the central hole, this one carrying a sack of honeycloth, and she buzzes over to the bookshelves. She opens her sack and begins to shelve a series of books.

I walk over to the bookshelves and examine my new library as it is assembled. Most of the books are old leatherbound tomes, caked in honey much as the palace drawbridge. A few books appeared to be made of a stiffened honeycloth bound in beeswax and mirrored honey.

Two additional beegirls fly up from the central hole just as the furniture movers begin to leave. They carry further sacks of books, and one sack is full of scrolls. The scrollcases were mirrored honey, while the scrolls they contained were made of honeycloth.

Sorting through the older, leatherbound tomes I find one labeled "The History of the World" and take it off the shelf. I sit on one of the high chairs provided by the beegirls and begin to peruse the book. It appears to have been written by humans from a land called Mirradell.

In the beginning the tome describes the world as having been created by the god Mirrana a thousand years before the tome was written. It's difficult to say if that is true or not; many of the worlds I have visited were created by gods of one variety or another, and many simply believed they were. The book goes on to describe the kingdom of Mirradell as being a lush kingdom of forests and fields located in a huge valley bordered by high cliffs.

Skimming through the work, the kingdom was founded two hundred years before the writing of the tome, when neighboring tribes were brought together under a single banner to stand against a rival country, called Citimar. The book seems more like a history of Mirradell than the history of the world. It goes on to describe the construction and or the destruction of important landmarks, two dramatic wars with Citimar, and the sucession of royalty throughout the two hundred years or Mirradell's history. The final entries state that the king of Mirradell has been slain by assassins from Citimar, and that with no heirs, Queen Altessa has taken the throne in his place.

"Bzz-bzz. Zervant, what iz the current year? And how long haz Queen Altezza ruled? Bzz-bzz." I ask my loyal servant.

"Bzz-bzz. It iz the year one thouzand and fourty-eight. Her Majezty haz ruled for fourty-eight yearz az our beloved queen. Bzz-bzz." replys the beegirl.

The queen didn't look old at all, but she did say the beegirls are a magical race. Perhaps they age slowly, or not at all. I walk to the bookshelves, now completely full, and begin to search for another useful tome. Craftsbeegirls carrying strange tools and bags of materials enter the room, and begin construction of the dais and globe I ordered.

The way they build the dais seems to involve mixing honey gel with powders to create solid shapes, though in the case of the globe it seems more like blowing a bubble. They carefully measure out the size of the bubble, somehow holding it in mid air with their clawed hands without bursting it, as it solidifies. They then begin to reinforce it with coats of honey.

I pull another book from the shelf, this one made of beegirl materials and titled "Hiztory of the Beegirlz". I consider it odd for a moment that they even write with a buzz, but it does seem appropriate. The book describes Queen Altezza as a savior who protected the land of Mirradell during a magical catastrophe that occured in the year one thousand.

An army of monsters appeared from nowhere, terrorizing the world. The army of Citimar had been on the march in the wake of the death of the king of Mirradell, but they were decimated in the open by the monster horde. The Queen was given a magical gift by a traveling wizard that gave her special powers, and she was able to share those powers with her royal guard. They fought back against the monster army and defeated their leader, a sorceror who is depicted in the book as a giant minotaur, causing the entire monster horde to vanish from the world.

The Queen then granted her gift to all the people of the realm, turning them into beegirls, and reforming the kingdom into an enormous beehive. The few survivors of the army of Citimar fled back to their kingdom, unable to continue their war. There was a time of peace for thirty years while both nations rebuilt, but then the children of Citimar had grown up to repopulate the army, and Queen Altezza began to aggressively recruit new beegirls from the outlying towns of Citimar.

I return the book to the shelf and look for another. A beegirl crafted scroll catches my eye, a map of the world. I unfold it on the table. The map is very detailed, likely drawn from aerial reconnisance, but the world seems very small. There is a single continent depicted, surrounded by ocean. There are only two kingdoms depicted on the map, the Beegirl Hive is in the west surrounded by cliffs, and in the east is the kingdom of Citimar, which is located at the western base of a mountain range. The two kingdoms seem largely surrounded by untamed wilderness, making me wonder why they would fight eachother so fiercely.

I begin to yawn as I grow tired, and I decide to return to my chambers. I buzz my wings and drift down the central hole in the tower, followed closely by my servant. This time I guide myself through the halls, and quickly find my way back to my chamber.

My bed is similar to a couch, a round padded surface lined with cushions and surrounded by translucent honeycloth veils. I lay out on the bed, face down, and my wings spread out above me as I get comfortable. My eyes do not close, but seem to grow dimmer as I drift into slumber and begin to dream.

In my dream I am a beegirl, and happy as can be. I drift in the air between enormous flowers, bigger than trees, and collect pollen in a wax pail. My sisters are there, all around me, and buzzing happily as we work. I drift back towards the hive, which stands high above the giant flowers, and I pour out my pollen into a bin. Queen Altezza is there, and she strokes my antennae as she compliments me on my hard work. I feel so proud, and that pride remains with me as I awaken.

I sit up on the bed slowly, then slide off and stand up. My servant is there, eager as always. She holds a tray of honeybowls, and I snatch one up to lick as I walk over to the vanity table. I sit down in the chair and gaze at my reflection, while my servant polishes my carapace to a beautiful shine. I look at my expression in the mirror. It seems so cold and dismissive, yet also somehow proper, and beautiful.

As before, my self-worship is interrupted by a messenger at my door. I stand up and walk to the door to hear her message. "Bzz-bzz. The globe and daiz are ready for your inzpection, your highnezz. Bzz-bzz." says the messenger. I wave my arm to dismiss her, and begin to walk through the corridors of the palace to find my workshop again, followed everywhere by my servant.

The corridors seem somehow different today, and I realize they have been rearranged. There are walls where there were no walls, and doors where there were no doors. Despite these obstacles, I seem to know exactly where to go to get to my tower workshop. I buzz up through the hole in the floor, and take a look around.

The golden honeyglobe is shiny but clear, allowing me to see inside perfectly. It rests on an ornate polished honey frame, which has been sculpted in the shape of five beegirls. The dais is simple, a circle of raised floor coated in soft wax, and a mirrored honey dagger with which to carve symbols. A sphere of solid iron lies in a nest of honeycloth. On the far side of the chamber, a large book-stand rests.

I turn to the craftsbeegirlz and say, "Bzz-bzz. This equipment will work perfectly. Return to your common tazkz and I will zend you a mezzage if I require anything elze. Bzz-bzz." The beegirls don't reply, they just fly single-file down the hole in the center of the room, leaving me completely alone, with my servant.

I walk over to the large bookstand and reach inside the leather pouch at my hip. I tug out a tiny book, only an inch across, and as I lift it in front of me it grows in size, quickly becoming two feet across and sitting comfortably in the bookstand. It is a gilded, leatherbound tome, with no title or markings. It is my grimoire.

I place my carapaced left hand on the cover and hold my right hand out towards the ball of iron. As I concentrate, an aura of blue light coruscates across the shell on my arm and flows through the air to wrap around the ball of iron. A noise of creaking and groaning emmanates from the iron as it reshapes, becoming a two-sided cone and shedding the impurities in the metal. By magic I raise the iron shape into the air and position it above the sphere of honey. I affix it to the aether and it remains stable, and I cease my magical manipulation.

The two-sided iron spike floats in midair over the sphere, and I walk across the room to inspect it. I place my hands on the outside of the sphere and focus my mind as I create a vortex of magical energy, sustained by the iron and drawing ambient magical energy into a single point.

Irridescent clouds build inside the hollow sphere, sparked over with dancing lightning as they form, tossed and teased by a wind that only exists inside the sphere.

With that preparation complete, I walk over to the dais and pick up the mirrored honey dagger. I begin to carve shapes into the soft wax, a magical circle I have drawn many times before, a link to my own personal power. I kneel in the center and begin to meditate, replenishing my stores of magical energy.

I meditate in this state for hours, my servant never leaving my side. In my trance I discover a new element of magic mingling with my own, a swirl of yellow in my deep blue pool. This is the magic of the beegirls, their innate power that marks them as a magical race. I isolate it, and pull it into focus. I examine it, curious about my new beegirl nature.

It is a violent, corrupting force, but also stable. If I let it run free, it will convert my own energies into more beegirl energies, untill there is nothing left. This is likely why there are no beegirl wizards; a casual magic user would have their stores completely converted. This element is not without its uses, however, and as a beegirl myself it is inseperable from my being. I create a filter within myself, and begin to syphon the beegirl energy into a seperate location, storing it untill it is needed.

I awaken from my trance and see that my servant has bowls of honey, though somehow I feel she never left my side. I drink hungrily from several bowls, and feel the beegirl energys fill me. This is the source of the yellow, it seems. It is delicious and energizing food, but also filled with magic that the beegirls require to survive.

I stand from the dais and walk across the room to the globe, gazing into it. A thick fog prevents me from seeing through to the other side, and I decide the globe is ready. I hold my hands out to either side and focus my mind, guiding the power held inside the globe to a task. An image forms, clear as day from the parting irridescent mist.

It is the hive, as seen from the outside. It is an enormous structure, a true citadel, surrounded by a field of blooming flowers the size of trees, as far as the high cliffs surrounding the valley. The environment has completely changed from the description in the history book, surely influenced by beegirl magic.

I drew back my perspective to observe the surrounding lands, and the shape of the world. As the maps showed, there is only one continent, located at the bottom of an enormous crystal sphere, surrounded by oceans. The sphere rotates and contains the sun, moon and stars. Perhaps this world is the creation of a god after all.

I wave my hand across the sphere and the clear image is replaced by a darkened one, with glowing points of light representing the lives of creatures in the world. There are few humans in the world, and almost all of them are located in the area where I saw the kingdom of Citimar on the map. I focus in my view on Citimar, drawing closer and closer, but I find some odd resistance just as I near the location.

From my perspective I can see a truly awesome citadel, similar in design to a medival castle, but larger than a skyscraper. Its highest heights break the cloud layer, and I can sense tens of thousands of humans dwelling within.

I press my view closer, focusing in on the citadel's highest point, and yet the closer I get the more resistance I feel. Suddenly a great force pushes my perspective back, and I sense another pressence. The kingdom of Citimar has a wizard, as well, and his power is pushing back my scrying eye.

After a moment the force changes direction, and my view is pulled into the citadel so quickly that I can't see any details. The face of a bearded human fills my perspective. I see him, and he looks back through my scrying eye and sees me.

The man is an elderly human in red robes and a pointed hat, with an enormous white beard and red cheeks. He looks every bit the part of the fantasy wizard, and he looks angry. "Who are you that dares try to peek into my sanctum?" shouts the wizard.

I put my hands on my hips, upset that he has hijacked my scrying eye, and say "Bzz-bzz. I am Princezz Wizelda, court wizard of Queen Altezza. Bzz-bzz."

The wizard scoffs at my comment, rolling his eyes and taking an incredulous expression as he says, "Preposterous! The beegirls cannot use high magic, so there cannot be such a thing."

I sneer angrily at the wizard, angry becaues he dared think himself my better, and I am surprised at my own feelings. I shout in reply, "Bzz-bzz! And yet we are talking through MY magic! Bzz-bzz."

The wizard seems to calm down, and he focuses his eyes as he looks at me. "You do not look like the other beegirls. You do not even look human! Has that fool Altessa begun consorting with demons from hell, now?"

I grow ever angrier at the wizard's remarks, but my expression remains one of cool superiority. "Bzz-bzz. I waz a wandering wizard from another world, but I am reborn by Queen Altezza into her daughter. Bzz-bzz. Zoon I will deliver thiz whole world to her, and you zhall be my zizter or you zhall be dead. Bzz-bzz." I said.

The wizard's fury returns in an instant, and he howls at me, "You shall never take this world, demon! I will not allow it! Now get out of my sight, and do this world a favor by returning to hell!" then he pushes my scrying eye back out of the citadel.

I push around the edges of his barrier, but his power is strong enough to keep my scrying eye from entering an area about one hundred feet from the citadel's walls.

Pulling back my view again I gaze at the world from on high and consider its conquest. My Queen wishes to rule this world, and I wish to give it to her, but how to do it? I wave my hand, and as before the view changes, the world grows dark as points and fields of light appear, representing the world's flows of magical energy.

Many strange patterns emerge, focusing in on a single point at the center of the world; the center of the crystal globe that shapes the world. I focus in, deeper and deeper, as I examine the force of magic there. Its power is enormous.

I wave my hand, and the vision returns to normal, and I see the physical form of the energy. It is a lake, perfect and pristine, incandescent with magical energy so thick it has become liquid. The magic of this world flows into this lake, and from this lake. It is the very heart of the world. I know what I must do.

I step away from the globe and the mists close over the image, returning to a sparking irridescent fog. I walk to the bookshelves and fetch the map I had viewed earlier. In the center between the two nations is a lake called The Starlight Pool. This is the name of the enchanted lake.

I turn to my servant and say, "Bzz-bzz. I must make a report to Queen Altezza. Bzz-bzz." and she nods her head silently, just as a messenger enters the room. My servant speaks to the messenger, then returns before me.

"The Queen will be informed shortly, your highness, and will be expecting you." says my servant, performing a curtsey. I buzz my wings and fly down the tower, and my servant follows me. I travel through the changing hallways of the honeycomb palace and enter the throne room.

I gracefully walk before the Queen, and perform a grandiose bow. "Bzz-bzz. Your Majezty, I believe I have dizcovered the key that will unlock thiz world for you. Bzz-bzz." I said, smiling proudly as I announced my discovery. "Bzz-bzz. At the heart of thiz world iz a lake, brimming with magical energiez. It iz called the Ztarlight Pool. Bzz-bzz."

The Queen listens intently, a slight smile on her face. She speaks to me, and says "Bzz-bzz. Yez Wizelda, I am aware of thiz lake, but I do not underztand how it could make this world my own. Bzz-bzz."

I nod my head and say, "Bzz-bzz. All magical forcez in thiz world flow through thiz lake, and out to all creaturez and placez. If we pour out beegirl honey into thiz lake, it will be embraced by the zame magic az the beegirlz, and az the land around thiz hive. If we tranzform the Ztarlight Pool, we will tranzform the world. Bzz-bzz."

The Queen's smile grows into a grin, and she says to me "Bzz-bzz. Thiz iz a plan only a wizard could come up with. Wizelda, iz that all we muzt do? I zhall have my army begin to carry honey to the Ztarlight Lake immediately. Bzz-bzz."

I feel even more proud as the Queen accepts my plan, and messengers around the hall dart away to other places in the palace and hive. I lift my head and say, "Bzz-bzz. There iz one more thing, your Majezty. There iz another wizard in thiz world. The kingdom of Citimar haz a powerful wizard, and he could uze hiz art to purify the lake. Bzz-bzz."

The Queen nods her head slowly, understanding, and says "Bzz-bzz. Yez, Grimaldoi the Red. It iz hiz magic that preventz uz from ztaging an aerial offenzive against the Citadel itzelf. He eliminatez our ztrongest advantage againzt the humanz. Bzz-bzz. He will certainly try to interfere with our planz, but you will do battle with him, Wizelda. Bzz-bzz."

I worry about doing battle with another wizard, but my loyalty to the Queen is absolute, especially in her presence. "Bzz-bzz. To that end, I have a requezt, your Majezty. Bzz-bzz. Pleaze grant me the gift of one of your eggz. Bzz-bzz."

The Queen seems surprised, and shifts her pose. "Bzz-bzz. An egg? Every daughter iz preciouz to me, dear Princezz. What do you wizh to do with my egg? Bzz-bzz."

I slowly nod my head and speak, saying "Bzz-bzz. I wizh to create a ztaff, a magical tool attuned to the magic of the beegirlz. In thiz form it will be the mozt potent tool I can uze, and it will afford me greater control over the beegirl magicz in the honey as we mix them with the heart of the world. Bzz-bzz."

The Queen waves her arm towards one of her attendants, and the beegirl lifts the man-sized egg from its container. Two more beegirls quickly move in to help, and they all start walking to the back hallways of the palace.

I curtsey dramatically and say, "Bzz-bzz. I thank you, your Majezty. Zoon thiz world will be yourz. Bzz-bzz." before departing from the Queen's chambers and returning to my workshop.

The three beegirls carrying the man-sized egg exit the stairwell of my workshop just as I finish carving symbols into the dais. Their slow mincing steps inch the egg towards me as I gesture to them to place it in the center of the circle.

The three beegirls slowly center the pill-shaped egg over the circle, and lower it into place laying on its side. I walk in a circle around the egg as I inspect it, my compound eyes glowing irridescent as I examine its magical matrix with wizard's sight.

The egg is filled with the yellow energy stain of the beegirls, pulsing with life. The carapace armour is itself alive, like a symbiote that bonds to its host to create a new organism. I stretch my hand out in front of me, gazing at the three digits as I stretch them open and shut. I too am bonded with my carapace. I watch the bright yellow energy flowing around and through the blue matrix of my wizardly power, altering and staining my very spirit. Though I contained the magic in my own body, the carapace and I are still not completely bonded, and it is pressing more of its magic into me.

I pause in my work and kneel, sitting on my heels as I enter a trance and pull back inside my own spirit. The beegirl energy is wild and surging from my carapace, still altering my mind and body. It has a living spirit of its own, trying to merge with my spirit as it has with my body. This beegirl spirit is the true Wizelda, influencing my every thought, action and feeling. But, as time has passed, our two spirits are merging and becoming one. Her nature is to dominate the host spirit, and that has already begun. My power is great but my spirit is timid, and already I feel eager to obey her as the secondary personality. However, if all my energy is corrupted, my magic will cease, and I will nolonger be able to work my wizardry. Because I know this, she also knows this, and she continues to stave off her own assault.

I draw on the supply of yellow beegirl energy I gathered from the honey, and I slowly circulate it through my body. I keep it isolated, floating through me in bubbles as I feed it into the carapace. I calm the symbiote with a layer of solid beegirl essence, an illusion that I am completely filled and changed at last. But this is only a temporary solution; the carapace now feeds on the yellow energy, replenishing the stocks it used in its offence, thinking my body is full of it. In time it will consume the barrier and realize my trick.

I rouse myself from my trance and stare at the egg, this time with normal eyes. Its milky white surface hides the beegirl waiting to be born. The beegirl that will never be born. I need to master the beegirl energies, and for that I need a focus.

I stand again and walk to my grimoire, still sitting closed on the large bookstand against the wall. I place my three claws on the cover and focus, drawing an aura of coruscating blue light that slowly spreads to outline my entire body. I take a deep breath and purse my yellow lips as I intone an impossible and inaudible sound that reverberates silently through space rather than air.

Light bends around the circle on the dias, causing strange illusions of bending and twisting. The symbols I carved in the dais burst into a dull blue smokeless flame, a circle surrounding a pentagram inscribed with alien characters in this world's language. The egg itself begins to collapse, pulling first into a single point, but stretching. The soft white skin of the insect egg pulls against the firm shell of the carapace, showing yellow and black stripes that twist and contort in the altered space. Soon they are crushed together into a new shape, a pole, a cylinder six feet long, standing erect in the center of the dais. It twists and contorts again, taking a shape. Sharp and solid, black and yellow it appears as a pole made out of the same material as a beegirl's shell. From the tip to a length one and one half feet down, it begins to move and contort. It crooks back on itself, almost forming a loop. The new staff trembles in the air as the bending light fades, and the echoing nothing returns to the world of dreams.

The glowing blue light surrounding me sparks yellow for a moment, before disappating into the air. I remove my hand from the grimoire, and it sizzles slightly. The book bears a handprint with three digits, where some of my carapace was burned into it. I step across my workshop and hold out my arm, wrapping my claws around the staff. At last, it becomes completely real, with real weight and mass. The spirit of the beegirl is repurposed, now a living tool for controling and manipulating beegirl energy. With this staff even a beegirl could be a wizard.

With the staff gripped firmly in my hand I walk across the room to gaze into the honey globe. When I created it, the flowing clouds were irridescent, but now they are bright yellow, like mustard floating in midair. The vortex I created has drawn in much beegirl energy from all across the hive. Energy I will soon require. I kneel down before the globe and sit on my heels, the staff cradled in my arms. I slip deep into a trance and open my minds eye to the room.

The globe is fierce with storming, captive energies. My own body is a deep pocket, a space within space. The staff is a shining beacon. I focus my mind through the staff, and pull on the beegirl energy inside the sphere. A bolt of arcing yellow lightning stabs out of the globe and into my chest, but I feel no pain as its force dances and arcs over my fur and carapace. The storm is under my control, and I draw it deep within my spirit, bottling it withing myself. Even with the staff it is a struggle to keep the power contained, its nature calling out to claim all other magic and consume it and transform it. But I maintain my resolve and contain the force within my body.

I breath in, and out, and awaken from my trance. I slowly stand up and brace myself with the staff. My body is tired, but energized in a different way. I take a few steps, and I am again able to walk properly. I need rest and recooperation, however.

I buzz my wings loudly and descend into the palace, returning to my chamber. I walk across the room and sit comfortably on my bed, gazing at my servant. She has brought for me several bowls of honey. I take them, one at a time, and I lick them dry with my long black tounge. They soothe my spirit and satiate my hunger, but I grow sleepy after such hard work. I lay out on my bed and begin to sleep.

In my sleep, I dream. In my dream, I see myself, but different. Standing before me is the buck-toothed beegirl, Wizelda. She smiles at me, and embraces me. She tells me that I have done well, and served our queen faithfully. She tells me that it is time for me to submit to her completely, and for our two spirits to become one, under her. Quietly I press myself to her stiff bosom, and cling to her. I feel myself fading out of conciousness, even in my own mind, and my dream fades to yellow.

Slowly I awaken, and I buzz my wings as I stretch my arms, legs and antennae, working my muscles after a long and deep slumber. I slide off of my bed and place my feet on the ground, standing up. My face is an expression of cold determination. Beside me, my servant offers bowls of honey. I take one and lick it dry for my breakfast, before walking to the mirrored vanity, long yellow staff clutched firmly in hand.

I gaze lovingly into my own reflection as my servant begins to rub oils into my carapace, but I ignore her. My own beauty and grace captures my full attention. My body is the same, but my demeanor has changed. The last of the softness has drained from my spirit, leaving only a cold and severe beegirl princess. Vain and haughty, living for the queen first and myself second. Smiling a dark smile I know that soon my magic will guide me to the top, and I will be the first princess, most beloved of the queen.

A messenger stands at my door. I do not look at her, but she knows my desire, and begins to recite her message. "Bzz-bzz. Your highnezz, her Majezty Queen Altezza haz called for you. There iz interference in her planz. Magical interference. Zhe demandz your prezence. Bzz-bzz."

I immediately stand and walk towards the door. The beegirl messenger has already departed ahead of me, gone to inform the courtiers that I will soon arrive. My servant trails behind me as always, in my periphery, ignored. I gracefully stride through the everchanging hallways of the palace. The route to my chamber seems far shorter, perhaps to expedite my passage. Before long, I step into the grand hall of the Queen.

Walking swiftly but elegantly, I quickly cross the distance from the door at the side of the chamber, and take my place in front of the queen. I bow elegantly and feel energized by the presence of my absolute ruler.

The Queen speaks to me, and explains the situation, her expression never changing from one of grace and poise and severity. "Bzz-bzz. My daughter, Wizelda, there iz newz from the front. The wizard, Grimaldoi the Red, haz anticipated our plan. Bzz-bzz. He haz traveled to the Ztarlight Pool and uzed his magicz againzt uz. Powerful windz and rainz keep my beegirlz grounded. Animalz of the wild attack uz with unnatural ferocity. Boltz of lightning and ballz of fire crazh down from the zky. Bzz-bzz. Never before haz he zhown zuch power, but he only blockz the countryzide around the Ztarlight Pool. My beegirlz have withdrawn to a zafe diztance, where they can fly and do battle with the wild animalz, but only a wizard can do battle with a wizard. Bzz-bzz. You muzt go, Wizelda, and do battle with Grimaldoi the Red. Bzz-bzz."

I listen to the queen, and consider the meaning of the things she tells me. For Grimaldoi the Red to wield such powers suggests that he has tapped the magic of the heart of the world itself. I feel confident, however. The Queen of the beegirls wishes to rule the world, and made the world her enemy. As her daughter and princess, I will fight the world for her, and win.

"Bzz-bzz. Yes, your Majezty. I will go at once and do battle in your name. Zoon you zhall rule all, with the zame authority that you rule thiz hive. Bzz-bzz." I say, and I turn towards the entrance to the palace. A pair of guards quickly fly to my side, and we walk together out into the central hive.

Standing on the honey-glazed drawbridge I gaze around the lake of honey, and raise my staff above my head, concentrating. I call on the abundant beegirl energy contained in the lake of honey to take a shape, and rise. The honey begins to bubble and churn at the foot of the drawbridge, and a bright yellow light shines from the depths.

A glittering golden carriage rises from the honey, shining with the mirror finish of fine beegirl craftswork. Egg-shaped like a standing beehive, it is surrounded by six golden loops. The loops each hold a long golden chain, and the chains each hold an enormous honeybee. The six bees are three feet long and their wings buzz with unnatural strength. As they fly they hold the enchanted carriage aloft, and a door on the side opens. One of my guards slips inside, followed by myself, and then the other guard. My servant sits across from me, head down. Inside the cushions are made of honeycloth, soft to the touch. I tap my staff on the floor of the carriage and the door shuts by magic, and the carriage is off.

We fly slowly but smoothly across the lake of honey, and out the gaping archway that forms the entrance to the hive. Worker beegirls of every sort pause in their tasks and wave to us, but I ignore them. My mind is focused on preparing for my battle with the rival wizard.

Majestic landscapes roll by as we travel. Enormous flowers the size of trees, high cliffs surrounded by forests and grasslands. Lakes and streams atop mountains, and finally a stormy sky surrounding a forest surrounding a lake. We fly over the honeycloth tents of the beegirl camp, their flags twisting in the strong wind. My carriage is protected by magic and guided by enchanted bees; we fly into the forest despite the wind and the rain. I can sense Grimaldoi the Red, and I am sure he senses me.

My carriage sets down on the lush grassy field at the very edge of the Starlight Pool. The water is incandescent, seeming to transform into light the deeper you look. It is also placid, completely flat despite the raging windstorm above it. I open the door of my carriage and step out onto the grass. My two guards come with me, but I stand in front of them, holding my hand behind me. "Bzz-bzz. Guardz ztay here. If I fall in battle, you muzt report to the queen. If I cannot defeat him, he cannot be defeated. Bzz-bzz." I say, but my eyes never leave the surface of the water.

In the very center of the lake, standing on the surface of the water itself, is Grimaldoi the Red. His body is glowing just the same as the lake, a bright white light shining out from under his skin. Twisting pillars of light, one red and one blue, weave in a double helix around his body and into the sky where they fade into the storming black clouds.

Surrounding the pool, animals of every kind have gathered. Lions, bears, and wolves, elk and deer and more, hawks and eagles and owls in the trees. Grimaldoi's power calls them in and urges them to attack, but my power is felt as well, frightening them and holding them at bay, a chorus of growling almost quiet when compared to my buzzing home in the hive.

Grimaldoi faces me as I face him, and he shouts to me across the pool. "I KNEW YOU WOULD COME, DEMON-WITCH!" calls Grimaldoi, his voice echoing unnaturally through space as well as air. "YOU SHALL NOT CORRUPT THIS SACRED PLACE WITH YOUR VILE WICKEDNESS. THE POWER OF RIGHTEOUSNESS IS ON MY SIDE! THE POWER OF A GOD COURSES THROUGH MY BODY!" his voice takes a dark turn, and sounds almost like a roaring beast as he yells, "I WILL SEND YOU BACK TO HELL!"

Silent in my sense of innate superiority, I merely sneer at his pretension and prepare myself for battle. Golden yellow light pours from my carapace and coruscates across my body. I step onto the the lake with my right foot, standing on the water, and a glowing taint of yellow begins to emanate from the point of my toe as my overflowing beegirl essence begins to transform the pool.

Before I can take another step, however, Grimaldoi holds up his left hand towards me, palm forward. He bares his teeth and he calls out, "DIE!!" as a twirling pulse of red and blue magic streams across the pool in a flash, and crashes hard against my enchanted barrier. I press my will into my hands and hold them strong against the incredible force, but it keeps coming like an endless river of power.

At last I realize my limit and leap into the air, buzzing my wings. The wind has no hold over me, and I fly quickly thirty feet into the air, but grimace as I loose contact with the pool, my slight change being overwhelmed by the natural power of the lake. The force of Grimaldoi's attack, nolonger disappating against my shield, blasts behind me into the forest. It carves a long canal, four feet wide and far as the eye can see, scarring the earth. The lake water remains in place, never draining, leaving an odd shape of solid water at the edge of the pool.

Grimaldoi's eyes and mine remain locked, and the world becomes light as three enormous lightning bolts crash down from the sky and surround me. Well protected from such assaults, the bolts course around my barrier and pour into the soil, disappating but starting a small grass fire. The animals of the forest draw closer only for a moment, to stamp out the cinders.

With the red wizard's attack thwarted, I engage one of my own. I hold out my staff and blast a bolt of golden yellow energy towards him. Half-way to the target, it gathers into ten thousand points of light and solidifies into ten thousand enchanted bees. They buzz loudly as they swarm him, stinging against his robes painfully, but they soon evaporate under the immense magical pressure that surrounds his body.

While Grimaldoi is distracted by the pain I make my descent, flying back to the surface of the pool, planting both feet and the butt of my staff firmly in the water. A circle of golden yellow quickly spreads beneath me as my opponent recovers.

Grimaldoi roars again, light pouring from his mouth as he speaks in un-words, backwards and out of space. "YOU FOOL! SUCH WEAK MAGIC CANNOT DEFEAT ME!!!" he shouts, and this time he holds out both hands, palm up. I hold my black carapaced hands towards him, palm up as well, and focus my power. My attack is unleashed first, a torrent of golden yellow that pours over his body, embracing his barrier before melting and turning solid. As honey it drips through his magical shield and coats his robes and beard in a sticky mess.

Grimaldoi's attack comes next, another blast of twisting red and blue, but this time twice as big as before. And yet, it is also weakened. The thick beegirl magic that coats his body is hindering his ability to draw and control magical energy. I hold my shield strong against his blast, even as the circle of yellow grows wider beneath me. The edge nears the center, where Grimaldoi stands. If I can take the center from him, his power will be shattered.

His regular fury turns to a look of ecstatic glee as Grimaldoi smiles at me. Something is wrong. My circle of growing power has stopped. "Bzz-bzz. What iz thiz? My magic iz being zealed!" I say, scowling furiously. The circle of yellow gathers into signs and symbols as a magic circle appears around me.

Grimaldoi seems to calm as he rubs his palms together slowly, his aura growing larger and larger as he charges his magical power. "Yes you fool, you empowered a binding circle tuned specifically to beegirl magics! I have targeted and sealed your particular energy, but mine is free to wipe you from existance!" says Grimaldoi.

I struggle to find any reserves of other magics in my stores, but the corrupting yellow has claimed them all. I have nothing left but beegirl energy, and nothing to defend myself with. I cross my hands in front of my face as a blast of red and blue pours through my body, vaporizing me. The world fades to white, then black, and I am gone.

In my absence, my staff is blown clear of the circle, and the pool, landing in the firm soil at the edge of the lake. My servant grasps it quickly, and the two guards usher her into the carriage I left behind. Grimaldoi, giddy with victory, taunts them. "Yes, run you wicked beegirls! Run back to your Queen and tell her she will never claim this sacred lake!"

Darkness fades to light. Light fades to blue. I open my eyes to a blue sky, and the trunk of a maple tree. I yawn and stretch my fuzzy arms, rubbing the sleep from my blue eyes as I sit up. I am nolonger a beegirl, but my previous self. I hug my enormous fluffy tail, a familiar friend long seperated, but feel lonely. I am myself again, and miss the guiding spirit of Wizelda. I think dreamily of her, but with my senses return I realize she was not a very good person.

I look around at the grassy hill in the forest clearing, the single old maple on top of the hill giving me shade from the warm sun. My own little world, my sanctuary from the ravages of time and space. I pat the leatherbound tome next to me, but notice the burned on print of a three fingered hand. I stroke my paw over it softly and the stain is removed.

Turning my head to the empty space in front of me, I open a window to the world. To the world I just left, specifically. I see Grimaldoi, sick with power, holding back the beegirls untill they withdraw. His grim manner gives me the chills, he has a right to defend his world.

I turn my gaze to the beegirl hive, and look upon the queen. Nolonger do I feel the pangs of loyalty and servitude, only curiosity. My former servant, such a nice girl, is holding the beegirl staff. The queen names her Geldrizza, the court wizard, as reward for her dilligent service. I giggle softly, that staff and the other tools I left behind will change that world dramatically. The beegirls might even win one day.

At last, I yawn and close the window. Getting killed always tires me out, especially in a drawn out magical battle. It's time to have a rest before I go out exploring again. Curling up under my tree, I hug my book to my chest, only a foot across now, and I drift away to sleep.

All Content Copyright Arthur Payne, AKA Relee the Squirrel

Last Update: April 18, 2009