Secrets of the Faeries: Jhudora
The grass crunched beneath Jhudora's feet as she began to walk through the forest behind her bluff. She had been coming here for a very long time, though she had never even considered the possibility that it would be this close to home after all. It was her secret, her place of quiet sanctuary. But sometimes, secrets fell too close to home.
Jhudora had been visiting her own 'glade' or her garden as she liked to call it, since she was a little girl. Back when she was just a small faerie, small enough that no one took notice of the fact that she was dark, or had a slightly unusual fashion sense. She planted everything here, from Song Flowers to the Brilliant Draik Flowers. But as she grew older, that began to change.
Not the garden, mind you. She continued to plant the same beautiful flowers, year after year, into her melodious garden. No, what changed was other's perception. As she grew older, her odd fashion sense began to manifest in other ways. She made a name for herself as a dark faerie, and a terribly evil one at that.
The garden had always been a closely kept secret, but no it was of absolute importance. A reputation like hers took years to build, and a single flower could tear it down. She had made the gallery of evil for Fyora's sake! She would allow nothing to tarnish her reputation, most of all her beautiful garden. But some it seemed were determined to bring that to an end.
Jhudora dove gracefully, swooping and diving down to Neopia. Today was a special day, indeed! She had finally been inducted into the Gallery of Evil! It had taken a lot of suggestion, and a lot of bribing. After all, she hadn't actually done anything evil. So she scared the young clerk into putting her in, convincing him that she just might be responsible for all these crimes. She had the best of both worlds; a place as an evil villain without a crime to incriminate her!
She landed softly on the ground, and immediately began muttering incantations. It only took a moment for the charm to take effect, and for her beautiful garden to appear before her. When she had started petitioning for her allowance into the Gallery of Evil, she had put a spell on it to hide it. It wouldn't do well for an 'evil' faerie to grow pretty flowers, now would it?
Jhudora walked to back of her garden, and bent down to her knees. The dark faerie pulled the Rainbow Morning Flower seed out of her pocket, and began scooping up the earth in front of her. She dropped the beautiful seed into the hole, and gently patted down the soil around it.
"There you go, little flower," Jhudora whispered. "Grow up, big and strong." A loud gasp resonated from behind her, and Jhudora leapt up with a start. Behind her stood Illusen, the goody two shoes who had been threatening to derail her campaign.
Jhudora would have been in the Gallery of Evil years ago if it hadn't been for her. Every time she was about to be inducted, the earth faerie came up with something Jhudora had done, regardless of whether she had actually done it or not. And now, with hard proof that she wasn't truly evil, she would take it to the world and ruin her.
As Illusen turned to leave, Jhudora quickly muttered the spell for sealing away the garden. She didn't simply make it disappear; no, that would leave it far too vulnerable. She made it physically disappear into another dimension. Jhudora knew Illusen wouldn't know the counter spell, because she had created it. The pair was trapped until an agreement could be reached. Jhudora broke the silence first.
"You will not leave until I can be assured you will tell no one about this."
"But Jhudora, don't you see! This is your chance to redeem yourself! Show people that you're not really that bad! Fix your reputation and-"
"I don't WANT to fix my reputation!" Jhudora yelled. She dropped her shoulders and sighed loudly. "Don't you understand? A bad reputation is better than no reputation. And if you expose me after today, I'll just be known as a fraud, someone who can't make up her mind. You can't take that away from me."
Illusen fiddled with her hair, and avoided Jhudora's gaze. It was a difficult decision. What was right for Jhudora and what was right for Neopia were two different things.
"I don't know," Illusen mumbled quietly, still not making eye contact. "How will I not tell someone when they ask? You know I'm a terrible liar, Jhudora."
"Then go! Leave Faerieland, and go where my name will rarely ever be mentioned. Go somewhere else, Illusen. Leave, and do not come back, for if you do, you'll ruin my life." Jhudora began to murmur the spell under her breath once again, bring her garden back in to Neopia. She couldn't force the earth faerie to do anything. She could only hope she would choose correctly.
Illusen hesitated for only a moment, before turning and running out of the garden. She was heading west.
Jhudora's hands cupped the beautiful Rainbow Morning Flower in her hand as the rest of the memory reached her. Illusen had left the garden and headed to Meridell, and set up a small tree house within the kingdom. She had called it 'Illusen's Glade', and gave out quests to any little Neopians who visited her.
Illusen gave out her quests like her prizes were as plentiful as water in the Neopian Sea. Jhudora was far more meticulous, making sure to give her quests only to those who deserved them. After all, it wasn't often that they could afford the price of failure.
And yet, Jhudora had failed, and Illusen had done nothing. She had failed to keep her secret, and yet nothing had come of it. Well, nothing that Illusen had done. In fact, she could even consider herself lucky, in respect to her garden at least.
When Faerieland had crashed, she had landed just a half mile away from her garden. Just a slight change in where the floating cloud had landed and her garden may have not only been crushed, but discovered.
Jhudora watered the small flower that had nearly been her undoing. If only Illusen hadn't been there. If only she hadn't come that day. If only she hadn't bought that small flower seed.
'If only, if only...' The thought echoed around Jhudora's mind as she finished watering her Cheops Plant. It was just like her, really. She was poisonous and deadly if approached the wrong way, just like the leaves of the delicate plant.
But if one could dig past the leaves and find the sweet fruit, they would be pleasantly surprised with the sweetness of the fruit. If you could catch Jhudora in her garden, you could find her as kind as the fruit she was harvesting. A small smile graced her lips as she pulled the small plant out of the ground.
But no one would see her here. She couldn't ever risk what would happen if Jhudora, the dark faerie in the gallery of evil, would be known to grow food for the money tree and beautiful flowers to decorate Neopia. No, the garden was her faerie secret, and would be her faerie secret to the end.