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Snippet: A New Candyland
The Cardinal
wilowisp
It was the tradition that every three years, on the anniversary of the Battle of the Rim, the people of the land try to call back the Aubergine from where she dwelt beyond the edge.  In small villages, this meant modest gatherings at the chapel, or particularly large bonfires at the harvest festival.  Larger towns had pantomimes and parades.  And at the heart of the land, it was whispered that true magic was done.

Now anyone with anything resembling an education knew that true magic died out with the Ginger Witches who had lived in the Forkward Isles.  Not even the Church itself practiced anything but sanctified and approved miracles.  And all that nonsense about the fey were just old wives' stories told around winter fires to gullible children.  Yet even those at the University were wary to call out the Aubergine Ceremony as either heresy or fakery.

There was a great deal of pageantry to the whole event.  Nobles and gentry from across the land made the journey with their households to Wintergreen, the seat of the Peppermint Queen, long may She reign.  There was much merriment and celebration leading up to the solemn event, for which invitations were often very limited.  The Queen herself was present, of course, as was the Heir D'Menthe.  Oftentimes the Bakeress of Caramel was present, as the lands of WIntergreen were a gift of the Bakery of Caramel back in the early days of the kingdom.  The Oracle of the Tea Marshes was always invited, but had never attended in anyone's memory.  Established families like the Peppers and enclaves like the Sorbet always had at least one representative.

And the jester.  It was said that the Emperor Gran Cereal had only the court jester at his side when he sent his daughter the Aubergine beyond the edge, to protect her from the invading hordes.  Thought little was thought of the position in times between, during the days leading up to the ceremony, the jester was suddenly a minor celebrity - able to enjoy all the luxuries usually denied to someone of his station.  This was Gelatin's first Ceremony as the jester, and already nothing was going well.

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