Chapter V: Raptrices of the Thorn
Copyright © 2002-2017 by Dustin Jon Scott
[Last Update: Decemberrd, 2017]
§βI¶I. Then, suddenly, Faith and Serenity found themselves nearly surrounded by thirteen spear-wielding Wood Nymphs, each was bedecked with a bearskin cape, and their skin arrayed with war paint. Although these were without doubt Wood Nymphs, they were even more doubtlessly not Dryads.
§βI¶II. “Behold,” said their Alpha Nymph, “for we are Maenads; Keepers of the Somberwood. I am Rapacity, and that is Governance...” she continued, pointing then to each of her tribe; “...Polity, Avarice, Iniquity, Carnage, Legality, Tyranny, Malice, Edacity, Impurity, Dominance, and Conformity. Ye have trespassed against us, and have violated our land. Therefore we must collect from you a tax ere we permit you to pass beyond this point.”
§βI¶III. “Who are ye to claim this land as your own?” replied Faith. “The land belongeth to all who dwell upon and within it, to every creature. It is not yours to govern, and ye certainly have no right to tax it.”
§βI¶IV. “Ye must allow us to pass,” added Serenity. “We have no possessions to offer you as such a tax.”
§βI¶V. “If ye cannot produce for us the required tax,” said Rapacity, “then ye must submit yourselves unto our custody for violating the law of the land.”
§βI¶VI. “The land hath no law,” retorted Faith. “The land hath only the brown earth, the green grass and trees, and the blue sky above. Ye can make whatever laws ye choose, and if ye have the means and the power ye may even enforce those laws; but those laws are not and wilt never be of the land, but only of those who would thrust their unjust rule upon it.”
§βI¶VII. “The law,” said Serenity, “is the rape of the land and all who call it home. Ye shall grant us passage, for the land hath given you no right to require of us a tax.”
§βI¶VIII. “Your thoughts on the matter mean naught to us,” said Rapacity. “The law is that it is, and no measure of argument on your part will change that. Ye are guilty of evading the tax, and being in contempt of the law. Now ye will be made to pay for your crimes.”
§βI¶IX. And so the Maenads leashed Serenity and Faith’s necks with vines and began leading them deeper into the Somberwood.
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