Spring came early to Vargsangen

The Dryad wakes slowly like a flowers petals opening. When her eyes open she suddenly becomes aware of the temperature. It’s too cold, it’s too dark, she shouldn’t be awake yet. Being bound to the cycle of nature and the Seasons, she shouldn’t awake until Spring when the first green shoots appear. Something is wrong, she must find out what’s going on. Sticking her head out of the entrance to her underground sanctuary, she looks around to see white everywhere.

She finds some boots to protect her feet, usually she’d be barefoot but dare not walk on the freezing snow, frost is as dangerous to her as it is to plants. As she walks through the Human settlement she sees green grass poking through the snow, this is what’s woken her but how?

There’s no sign of industry that she’d heard of further south that made the climate warmer, just the usual primitive wooden homes. She visits a few of the buildings to see if there was anything amiss but found nothing unusual.

They have ships in the harbour so perhaps they have brought something here, or learnt of something that’s causing the problem.

Then she glances up and sees the temple up on the mountain, perhaps that has the answers.

She wishes she’d brought a cloak as she begins the ascent, touching the trees on the way up for reassurance, they are still slumbering as she should be.

Inside the temple she finds evidence of rituals and sacrifice, but these are not the usual practices of worshiping nature and beings such as herself, as could be found at the stones further down the mountain.

The locals still worship her kin it seems

These were darker works, the fools had evidently heard of crops being raised artificially out of season to the South and thought this was how it was done. 

Inside the temple

With her bow she knock everything off the Altar in anger at their foolishness. Picking up a collection of scrolls featuring illustrations similar to the altar goods she glances at them in surprise. These are old, so very old but she recognised them. The fae races had worked hard to destroy all copies of this arcane knowledge, in order to preserve the balance of nature. She knows what she must do.

Waiting at the doorway of the temple, to get some warmth from their fires, she is impatient until dawn. She was going to need all the help from nature she could get for what she had in mind. As the sun rises she takes a bud from the vines encirling her body and places it into a shallow hole she was able to make in the frozen earth with the end of her bow. Standing back she raises her arms and chants quietly calling on the dormant natural world around her.

Directing the energy into the barely buried bud she encourages it to grow and expand until the building is encased in leaves, the shoots running up between the stones of the building like roots through foundations of a house and pries them apart.

It takes time and a lot of effort but eventually the roots demolish the building entirely into rubble. The shoots recede and combine into a single living thing…a blossoming tree. They wanted out-of-season plants, this is what they shall get.

Exhausted and barely able to stand she returns to the forest to hibernate until Spring actually comes.

When I had been told by Camilla Runo the builder of Vargsangen that it had returned I was excited and just had to go explore! I thought I would wear something warm and furry like my previous post. But once I collect this New Year’s special skin from Fallen Gods that completely changed, a Dryad post was in order. I had earlier been out for a walk (in the odd world of Real Life) and I saw daffodils sprouting, which doesn’t usually happen for another couple of months and that gave me an idea, to which I added a fantasy twist.

The build is expected to close at the end of January 2022 so get over and check it out. Here’s a few extra snaps that didn’t fit into the story:

Arrival point: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Party%20Wave/24/54/22

Outfit Credits:

Dreamz Express

Having recently paid a visit to the Winter Hop n Shop I had a very nice and warm outfit that just called for a wintery location to explore. I saw Dreamz Express on the Destination Guide and it looked perfect.

I arrived on a very busy train platform with lots of passengers apparently awaiting the next train.

The information available said the RP journey takes 2 hours and mentioned ticket prices of L$5oo and L$300 for children. Unfortunately there was no indication of who to pay and when the next train was departing, so I set off on foot. At the end of the platform there is a ski-lift that will take you down to the ground level.

I followed the nearest path through a beautifully festively lit arch way, which just brought me back to the station. So I walked the tracks instead as far as I could before meeting a blocked tunnel. Given not much choice I did what any SL resident would do (right?) and jumped over the rail..

Which turned out to be a very good idea (unlike if you were to do it in RL), there’s lots to see and explore down here so I’d recommend exploring on foot.

While exploring down here I came across a tunnel with some wintery inhabitants.

Rather than disturbing the Noob in the wild I took a side tunnel where I saw a snowborder outside.

Aside from not actually being able to ride a train (at the time of visiting) Dreamz Express is a beautiful and photogenic wintery location to explore alone or with friends. Definitely dress up warm though, the snow is rather blustery!

Arrival point: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Dreamz/52/134/50

Outfit Credits:

S&P have a Trinkets machine at the Shop n Hop which is like a gatcha, but you know what you’re buying before you pay, the numbers relate to parts of the outfit.

SecondLife Winter Wonderland 2021

Every year there are masses of events and activities in SecondLife for the Christmas period that run throughout December. One of the regular highlights is the Winter Wonderland that gets built each year by the Linden Moles. Here you’ll find everything you’d expect from such a name, covering 5 regions.

When you first arrive you’re near the snowball fight arena, which is pretty impressive and is the venue for the annual Residents Vs Lindens snowball fight event:

But I wanted to see what else the place had to offer, so I went the other way up some steps through a snow corridor to where the landscape opens out again.

Main attractions are an ice skating rink, ferris wheel to ride, festive village to explore and a large snow race track.

I followed the signs to the Ice Skate area to check that out, if you don’t have your own skates you can get some at the kiosk. Even if you do have skates, the ones here do have a cool optional FX attachment that causes your skates to carve into the ice here.

Onto the other attractions..

Outfit Credits:

This post was featured on the SecondLife Community Blog on 17th December 2021.

Roleplay: Awakening

Ava wakes in darkness. Reaching forward her hand hits the inside of the capsule and the control panel lights up in front of her. She activates the exterior cameras to see where she ended up..Wall, crate,slightly further away wall..and a purple detailed hover bike that can only belong to her friend Vic! She’s in the right ship at least. She mentally catalogs her gear of use. If Vic is on board, tools will be more useful than weapons to her so Ava snags the compact kit that’s standard issue in the capsule along with her weapons; 2 company-issue handguns with spare clips and a tazer, not fatal to a human but in Vics hands very Terminal to bots.

She presses the hatch release of the capsule, there’s a hiss of seals then a clunk and nothing happens. She looks straight up out the capsules window and sighs, the goons have stacked a heavy crate on top of her. Looks like she might need to call the office. She reluctantly activates the capsule emergency beacon then brings up the communications menu on the control panel and starts preparing her report for Head Office.

To AMZ Outreach Office
Situation Report:The resident community in the Hellas Planitia crater have been rounded up by what appeared to be Helix Corp employees. To prevent abduction I secured myself in my NukeSafe capsule, which they appear to have  loaded onto their ship, presumably unaware I was inside. Destination is unknown but likely another Mars location.I have attached the transponder for drone 116 to the transport ship, so AMZ will get the location of the new Helix Corp office, just in case my capsule is offloaded elsewhere.
AMZ lawyers should contact Helix Corp make them aware they are illegally carryig one of our employees. Maybe also remind them that trying to force open my capsule could have fatal consequences for their employees.

Requisition Order:

Prepare a shiping drone containing the following items and send it on it's way towards Mars ASAP, exact destination co-ordinates to follow.

Drone Control terminal & Workstation
Refresh pack for NukeSafe (power cells, all gas canisters)
Signage pack for new location office
Ammo packs for standard issue side arm
Fill any remaining space with cigarettes in reseller packs (A rare commodity,last shipment presumed lost at Hellas crater)

Message Ends

Ava transmits the report and reactivates stasis mode, all too aware of the time it may take the message to arrive, depending on current location and rotation of plantets. Hopefully there’s an AMZ drone or company craft nearby that will relay the emergency beacon signal faster.

Pixel Box – Roses

Today I’m showing off an outfit that’s a collection of purchases from Pixel Box the Steampunk clothing and accessories store. I don’t normally write about specific stores (except during Fantasy Faire), but Pixel Box have a great sale on right now. I saw this cool Rose eyepatch and it rightaway gave me the idea of the look I wanted; Steampunk meets Rock Chick.

I originally thought miniskirt and corset to go with the high boots, but then I saw this padded leather dress that just worked perfectly. Each of the items from this outfit were just 75L$ in their store and maketplace Black Friday sale. Everything is discounted right now, most items are 75L$ but there are some larger items (like full outfit sets and vehicles/decor) priced at 99L$, which are still bargain prices!

Outfit Credits:

(Teacup and pose are part of the chair which is from “*Gothic* Living room” set by  Made by .. Houses & Furniture @ Chicco.)

NeoVictoria Photo Contest 2021

The title image here is my entry for the NeoVictoria Photo Contest 2021. It runs until 15th November 2021 and anyone can enter. Just take a Steampunk style snapshot in either of the NeoVictoria Project regions and post it in the Flickr group, then comment on the rules post that you consent to the terms.

The First prize is 5000 L$ so it’s wotrh a quick snap!

Press Release: https://neovictoria.tv/2021/10/07/your-invitation-to-the-neovictoria-2021-photo-contest/

Arrival Point: maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/NeoVictoria/18/129/703

NeoVictoria Flickr Group: secure.flickr.com/groups/neovictoria/

Rules post: https://flic.kr/gd/hZrgw
(Which you should read, since you have to comment on it to enter.)

Below a a few more pics with angle or perspective changes that I almost chose:

Outfit Credits:

Photo Location:http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/NeoVictoria/67/174/34

Halloween 2021: Different perspectives but all fun!

Halloween is a special time of year, for different reasons for different people. For some it is a deeply religious time when rituals are performed formally or informally to honour the dead and rememer lost loved ones. You can find legimate Wiccan/Pagan organisations in SecondLife that perform these ceremonies.  The opposite extreme is the very Westernised version of the holiday that is a retail exercise featuring lots of black,orange and kids dresing up to get sweets.

Wherever you feel you fit on that range doesn’t really matter in SL. You can go to the rituals, the parties, the shopping, it doesn’t really matter so log as you’re enjoying yourself.

The common theme through it all is the costumes! Whether you go for playful cute witch, some kind of monster or in my case dark creepy vampire, it’s all such fun!

There’s not much in terms of skin coverage in this outfit, but that’s kind of the idea for a vampire on the hunt. Too much clothing would just get in the way and soak up any spillage that could be drunk! The cloak is definitely a requirement though, it lets me wrap up and disappear into the shadows quickly away from witnesses!

Photo Location: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Pine%20Valley%20Resort/249/28/26

Credits:

Halloween 2021: Haunted Hummingbird Isle

Next is The Haunted History of Hummingbird Isle which is by the same designer as Once Upon a Spell, but it feels a little smaller. I totally love the environment settings here, a thunderous sky with appropriate sound and rain.

The pirate ship isn’t boardable, but it definitely makes for great scenery on the beach before you proceed up the steep steps to the gardens and house.

From up here you get a great view of that cool sky again before you walk through the rain to the house.

I opened the doors and stepped through, immediately recognising the building was the same as one I saw at Dead Mans Island last year, however while the layout is the same the interior and contenst of the rooms is different so still worth exploring!

Landing Point: http://maps.secondlife.com/secondlife/Hummingbird%20Isle/200/26/23

Outfit Credits:

This post was featured on the SecondLife Community Blog on Monday 11th October 2021.