Within The Walls Of Ęberaun

     Through streets paved with opalite and carnelian, sardonyx and amethyst, between houses and merchant shops built of jasper, alkyd and ebonwood Juye wandered. Above him, suspended from poles of hickory jutting from the gables flew banners of velvets and silks. They fluttered in the soft breezes raised by the orchestral manoeuvres of the spires at the gates of Ęberaun, and sent a shower of colors to flicker wildly in the mirrored jasper walls. The streets themselves were a frenzy of ermine and chenille, gossamer, swansdown and corduroy, and a myriad of other fabrics as the inhabitants of the wicked city went about their business. If Ęberaun was ever beautiful, it was never moreso than now.
     At the corner of one avenue a trio of unicorns stood conversing, and so to them Juye made his way. He spoke to them in their tongue, and inquired as to the whereabouts of the castle of Greunweiln. He could sense a sort of uneasiness come over them as he asked his question.
     "You're not of these lands by natural birth, are you?" the boldest of the trio asked. "Strangers do not enter this place uninvited. Even the merchants who sail from Mattgunne and Hzirak to bring us spices and rare oils do not enter except when bidden by the lords of The Balance In Space. How is it then that you come here inquiring of his castle?"
     Feigning ignorance, Juye with a quick imagination stated bluntly, "I was foraging in the lands close by when I heard a peculiar sound that seemed to summon me. I was drawn to these lands, and as I came near to the walls that encircle this place it parted. I know not what purpose has brought me here, only do I know that I have been called to the castle of the lord over these lands. I merely wish to do his bidding as best I might."
     "Whether you speak the truth is not ours to judge, but be warned" Juye was told, "that this place is full of treacheries, and those who would toy with the treacherous presence care little for their own lives."
     "I know not why I should fear" Juye boldly answered.
     "You should fear because The Balance In Space has come into possession of the most ingenious of all knowledge, and with it he has spun artful illusions. These illusions can be dangerous. Chaos stalks hand in hand with the order you see all around you. It is not always so easy to tell the difference between the two."
     "Look over there at that wall of azurite" another of the trio announced, "It is not true azurite, but an illusion of it. Before The Balance In Space came to acquire his newfound knowledge these lands were purely obsidian, and nothing more. At that time everything other than the accursed obsidian had to be imported from Hzirak and other lands beyond the stars. It seemed that overnight all things were changed, and it is rumoured that only Tzimar's domed vault remains obsidian to this day."
     "But one can not truly say that these illusions are illusory." The third of the unicorns appeared shaken as he spoke the words. "They are so ...real."
     "Well I am not one to question the realness or illusion of this place" Juye spoke up, "I find it all perfectly marvelous. And thank you for your caution, but I doubt that I should need it for I am a peaceable sort, and desire no trouble."
     Juye once more questioned them as to the whereabouts of the castle, and then bidding them farewell set off in that direction. He smiled inwardly to himself about the subterfuge he had created, and laughed heartily at his coyness. "I desire no trouble" he thought to himself, "indeed."
     Tzimar, in his tower quarters fumed and hissed. His hand shook as he tried to fill the curcubit with oil of perminvar. The alloy spilt down the outside of the vessel and bubbled in the fire below. " Ęberaun has been defiled" he swore under his bated breath.
     As the last few rays from the star Berielle flickered through the heavens above to signal the end of the day, and called forth the night with widening shadows, Tzimar strode into the sleeping chambers of Greunweiln. The invader had to be found out. He told Greunweiln of his premonition that a being or force was at that moment inside the city walls. Greunweiln, ever mindful of the wizard's council, ordered a guard to search throughout the city to find the intruder.
     What Tzimar and Greunweiln did not know was that Juye had taken upon him the form of a vapor, and floated round them even as they stood speaking in the bedchambers that night. There he heard them also speak of The Tales Of The Golden Comet And Sundry Winds Of King Nordo.
     "If it is true that an interloper has succeeded in making his way into our domain" Greunweiln raged, "it can only be for one purpose ~ to plot the stealth of my sacred book. We must hide it where no one but ourselves might have access to it, far removed from this place, which even your magic has not made impenetrable."
     Tzimar scowled at the insult laid on him. "The barrier of rubidium may have faltered this once my lord, but the book is safe enough in the carven recess wherein Ckowlyn guards it."
     "No; My mind is made up!" shrieked Greunweiln, his nostrils flaring, "the Book will be moved.' Beyond the Asgurdth Hills, where the plains of Galbradith meet the Zagar buttes, in the lands of the Chlandoins amid the cairn stones laid o'er the fallen body of my father Maelnru, there shall the Book be hidden. It will be the perfect place for there is not a being in the seven universes who would disturb that hallowed spot."
     And so the decision was made much to the chagrin of Tzimar who saw no good in it. Where evil treads, so does danger follow. If the Mardots' foot disturbs the sands of time that cover the slaughter of the past, what would stop others to tread there also?
     In the form of a parasaurolophus from the realms of Ghan, Juye went forth from the wicked city of Ęberaun to tell his tales to Hathuurn.