By Mistypaw

About a year later, Ishmael woke in the middle of the night. They were sleeping together in their tent at the Renaissance Faire. He woke her and tried to tell her about the dream he had. Mistypaw tried to listen, but she was very tired from the previous day. The next morning, she woke to find that Ishmael had left. While she slept he packed everything except the sleeping bag she was in. She looked about in panic. Under a rock next to her she found a letter he left for her. Dear Mistypaw, My dream last night has shown me it is time for our paths to part. You’re destiny is here. I would only get in the way of what must be. There will be a lot of fear and trouble ahead, and this path will end in glory or tragedy. You know what fairs I frequent. We will meet again. I love you, don’t give up hope ever. Ishmeal

In a fit of depression, she turned into a cat and hid under a bush. “All alone again...” she thought. Afraid that the only life she knew was over, Mistypaw cried until she fell into a fitful sleep. When she woke up, the faire was full of people. She walked around not caring where she went. A blur of green streamed past her, and came back. “THERE you are! Keep an eye on the cat, he says... HA! Well, come on. Ishmeal gave me the address of some friends of his he said you could stay with.” Muddlegump led her to a magician’s show, where a satyr was turning people into animals. A little girl reached down and picked Mistypaw up. “Sir, can this one turn into a person too?” she asked. “Well, put her in the box, and let’s see.” When the box opened, Mistypaw had changed into her human form again. “That’s the end of this show folks! If you liked what you saw, leave a tip in the hats my dogs are carrying. Our next show is at 1:30, and will feature all my pets dancing together! Don’t miss it!” The crowd slowly drifted off, and the satyr walked to the edge of the stage where Mistypaw was sitting. “Hi, you must be Ishmeal’s friend. I’m Jared.” The animals wandered off, except for one of the dogs. The Labrador jumped up on her and she heard him say, “You’re uncute. Don’t call me Wags.” He turned to the satyr. “May I leave?” “You can lead us to the nocker, if you know where he is.” Jared said. On the way, Wags stayed close to Mistypaw’s side. Muddlegump asked him, “Hey Wags the dog, didn’t they just make a movie about you?” “Why yes! I was the star!” He loped his tongue out in a doggy grin. Their joking was interrupted by a loud crash, followed by a string of obscenities as annoyed mothers covered their children’s ears. A few yards away, a tent had smoke coming out of it’s flaps. A man with reddish skin covered in soot stumbled out. “Friggin rats! How many times do I have to tell ya critters not to touch my machines!” A pair of laughing rats scuttled out from under a wall flap and into the bush. He turned around, cursing under his breath, and noticed the group staring at him. “Well what the smeggin hell are you all gawking at?” Mistypaw and Wags were trying to peek inside, when the nocker slapped the flap closed. “Who are you?” he snapped at Mistypaw. Jared cleared his throat. “This is the friend Ishmeal was asking us about.” “Just what I need.” He sighed. “Alright. Stay out of my room, and you sleep with the others in the living room. What’s your name?” “Istypaw-May. ow-Hay id-day o-uyay now-kay Ishmeal-hay?” she said. “What the HELL is all of that?” He yelled. “She speaks Pig Latin. Her name’s Mistypaw.” Muddlegump told the aggravated man. "ot-nay ig-pay atin-lay, at-cay atin-lay!" “Sure, whatever. Just stay outta my room. Wags can show you where the place is.” He went back into the tent mumbling something about critters and mess.

“Don’t worry about him,” Jared said. “He’s always grumpy like that.” “Really? I thought he was sweet and lovable,” Wags quipped. “o-say ere-way o-day ou-yay all-hay leep-say?” They turned to Muddlegump. “You know, you really have to teach some of us how to speak that.” Jared said. “Well, anyway. The day is almost over, and everyone is going to a party after the faire.” He offered Mistypaw his arm. “Would you like to join us?” She smiled at him, and they all left for the party.

On the way, Mistypaw asked Muddlegump why Ishmeal left. “He said you had to be on your own now. One of those crazy things that he says he just knows.” Mistypaw sighed, and stared out the window until they arrived at the party.

The bellhop held the door open, but stopped them when he saw Wags. “I’m sorry, sir. No animals are allowed in the building.” Jared leaned toward him, raised his eyebrows, and said “Not even party animals?” Wags trotted off, and a young man around seventeen years old came from around the corner. He grinned at Mistypaw, and said, “I didn’t want to gothis way, anyway.” He wore black jeans and old sneakers. His T-Shirt had a picture of a black Labrador dog who looked just like Wags. His unruly black hair had soft black ears, and from under his bangs warm brown eyes glowed with laughter. They headed up to the party together, leaving Jared, who was trying to persude the bellhop to go to the party. “The bellhop hates guys, and often proclaims so. Jared likes to stay very quiet about the fact in respect to his wishes.”

On the third floor, one door had fog coming out from under it. When the door was opened, soft rhythmic music could be heard from inside. The ceilings were all mirrors, and the walls and carpet were both black. A melodic voice was singing, and Mistypaw suddenly found herself laying on a futon in the corner. She felt her body being gently caressed, and Wags hardness growing on her thigh. Part of her knew that she shouldn’t, that she had only just met him. But after one startled thrust, she gave into the music and passion fully. When the music stopped and they were finished, they went to the snack table. Jared was sitting there with a few other young men. They glowed with a dreamy glaze on their face. “Cats and dogs,” Jared chuckled. “So, do you like my apartment?” “is-hay his-tay here-way i-hay am-hay o-tay tay-say?” Mistypaw asked. After a figuring out what she said, he replied, “Oh, no. Wags will show you to the Pooka Place.” When the party was over, Wags walked with her to the other apartment. It was less fancy than Jared’s, but nice enough. The door they stopped at had many drilled holes at several different height levels. Inside, there were sleeping human and animal bodies laying everywhere. They found a vacant corner and curled up against each other’s bodies. “I really hated the party, and I hope I offended you terribly.” Had Mistypaw been awake, she might have told him she thought he was cute, and liked having someone to hold and take care of her. Instead, she purred as she dreamed of what surprises this new place might bring.

Meanwhile, elsewhere... At the renaissance faire, dark figures and shadows drifted from tent to tent, and the nearby forest glowed with a strange dark light. On the other side of town, Ishmeal looked up from his writing pad as he felt the change in the local glamour. He put his notebook and pen in his bag and turned to leave. “It’s happening, Just like I dreamed. Her story’s just begun.” Ignoring his urge to return and be at Mistypaw’s side, he left, knowing that he could not help her on the path she had to take.

Mistypaw liked living at the Pooka Place. There was a party at Jared’s apartment almost every night. Wags showed Mistypaw around town. When there was no faire, festival, or party going on, the pookas all acted as a street improv group. Most of the pookas and satyrs she hung out with were into the free love lifestyle, and took care of eachother. The landlady of the Pooka Place was always fun to play with. She would come in screaming that she heard animals, yet none were to be found. Mistypaw loved her new friends, and was very happy living there.

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