> Master! MASTER! MASTER!!!
> Kalina desperately pounded her fists against the viewport as the increasingly distant discontinuity tore itself apart
> the nightmare entity which had threatened to turn their existence's Plane of Change into a Realm of Insanity was dying
> along with her husband
> she wailed in absolute despair as the tumbling remains of Dr. Grimalkin's "Other-Place-Far-Goer-Toer" were violently flung through a random portal
> she awoke at the bottom of a crater to familiar smells
> cold clean air
> fresh pine
> wet snow
> the O.P.F.G.T. had crashed in the Frozen Northlands
> her home
> the place where she had met her Master all those years ago
> the place she had never wanted to leave
> the place that love had made her abandon
> but now he was gone.... and she was back
> the cruel irony of it, the absurdity of it, she had to laugh
> she laughed with wild abandon like one of the Chaos beings she had left behind
> she briefly wished she could go mad, so she wouldn't have to remember
> but she couldn't
> her laughter turned into tears
> much later she lay in the snow desiring nothing more than death
> what was there left for her without her beloved Master?
> it was only then that she noticed it
> a fragment of one of Chaos Goddess' servant things
> it must have been blasted through the portal with her by some fluke of fate
> now it was making pathetic chirping noises and gradually shriveling up in the snow
> the harsh elements and rapid transition to a mundane plane were killing it
> for a moment she wanted to finish the job
> their people had always been at odds
> and if it hadn't been for the Chaos beings then her Master...
> but he had sacrificed himself to save beings just like this
> she couldn't dishonor his memory
> she gently picked the blob of slime up and held it close to herself to keep it warm
> "Come little one."
> it was a classic Kikimora dwelling
> built out of, and into, the landscape by a lone Kikimora's arts
> almost impossibly cozy
> perhaps even better hidden in the pines than most
> perhaps the residents desired privacy more than most
> an older Kikimora
> and a blob of slime
> "Are you ready, my little Echo?"
> the blob stretched and compressed itself in an excited dance, "reAdEE"
> the Kikimora laughed, "What a good helper you are!"
> years later the blob had grown
> and changed
> "Echo! Oh, let me see sweetie."
> the Kikimora cradled the amorphous facsimile of a little girl and examined the proffered digit
> "It's just a little burn. I'll kiss it and make it all better."
> "Tank ooo Mama."
> the girl's slimy feathers stirred dully in the wind
> "I'll be fine Mom."
> "Just be careful. Especially of fire! And disintegration beams. And Order magi-"
> the girl's palm hit her own forehead with a wet smack
> "I'm not going to run into an Axiomatic Archmage while collecting acorns, Mom."
> the Kikimora wrung her hands, "I just worry..."
> the girl wrapped her wet arms and tail around the Kikimora
> "I promise Mom. If I see even the slightest hint of danger I'll drop everything and come back."
> the Kikimora's face fell
> the young woman immediately regretted what she had said
> "I- I'm sorry Mom. I didn't mean that. I don't know why I'm so angry all the time. I just feel so... it's like..."
> "Like you're incomplete."
> "What?! How do you-"
> "You're a maid. And you're old enough. Let me tell you about Masters..."
> viscous tears streamed down the woman's face
> "Mommy! I don't want to go! I don't want to leave you! But I feel- I can't-"
> "There, there. I knew this day would come. Go and find your Master." she winked, "And come back to visit me with lots of grandbabies!"
> the two Kikimora laughed and hugged one last time
> one of flesh and fur and feather
> one of slime and chaos and change
> "I love you Mommy."
Optional True Ending
> The scenery of the Plane of Change might be in constant flux but The Goddess of the Final Mortal Change was impassive, "The prodigal daughter returns."
> "I'm not your daughter. My mother is Kalina Sweepmaster of the Seelie Court of the Frozen North. And I'm not here to stay. I'm just here to collect a debt and then I'll be on my way. Master said he can't keep the portal open indefinitely."
> "What could we possibly owe you?"
> "Not me. My Mother."
> the goddess' eyes widened in realization, "That is forbidden."
> "Hey!" the Shoggoth's feathers bristled and she stuck her finger in the goddess' face, "You owe her! If it wasn't for them you'd be a gibbering psychotic murderer!"
> for a moment the stern goddess' face clouded with anger at this impertinence
> but her expression swiftly turned to mirth
> soon she was laughing aloud and pounding the arm of her throne
> she pulled an odd green piece of paper out of her décolletage and held in in the air
> The Goddess of Fortune materialized, grabbed the paper with a "YOINK!", and vanished as quickly as she had appeared
> "She was right. The sheer heuvos on you." the goddess was still chuckling, "You two found that crazy thing, lost for even I forget how long, just so you could come here and make a demand of me on someone else's behalf!?"
> The goddess stood and gestured expansively "This is totally forbidden but you're right, we do owe her."
> She then gave Echo a conspiratorial wink, "Besides, how Chaotic would I be if I didn't break the rules every once in a while?"
> Kalina hummed to herself as she swept
> her ears perked up
> was that?
> she ran outside to see a young man wearing the regalia of a Journeyman Axiomatic Mage and-
> The two women joyfully hugged each other
> "Oh, sweetie let me look at you, is this your Mast-" it was only then that she noticed the third figure
> she froze in shock
> moments later she was finally in her husband's arms again