so–this is an intro to my project a glittering venery.
a venery is the collective name for the collective names of animals (e.g., a group of deer is a parcel, a group of ravens is an unkindness, a group of jellyfish is a flutter).
yet, “venery” also has the connotation of hunted animals, game animals–animals that were hunted by the courts.
fairy courts themselves are sometimes referred to as “glittering courts”.
therefore, a glittering venery is a fairy court(s) whose denizens are more therian than fae–despite the fact that lycanthropal beings, changelings, and shapeshifters of all sorts can often be situated firmly in the “fae” category.
now, a glittering venery is the name of a project that i’ve been working on that’s one part illustration and one part novel and one part representation because, when you don’t see yourself represented, you make the representation yourself, by the thing high atop the thing.
the eventual hope for this project is to be something akin to dinotopia or the voyage of the basset where text and image are merged together in this storybook sort of way that still intended to be for ostensible adults–i mean, technically, it could be considered a graphic novel, but this is really less formally composed than a graphic novel and is more dependent on the text.
be warned: all of the writing that’s under the a glittering venery umbrella here is going to be very, very, very roughly edited and of first-draft quality, which means that, while i have tried to ensure that it’s all somewhat readable, there’s probably plot-holes the size of mac trucks in here and inconsistencies that breed like bunnies.
a rough description of the story:
Eira Tove is the heir to the Prima Princeps of the Parcel, the (currently) ruling family of the Court of Dreams–one of the four Courts of the Venery and one of the two Summer Courts–and as such, Tove is expected to do her duty and marry whomever her parents decide that she’s supposed to marry because alliance is a thing that always needs to happen and our position is much more precarious than you think it is, Tove, and–yeah.
Enter the Parcel Wards.
(Because how better to ensure that the Families and the Courts don’t go to war with each other than to raise each other’s children as their own? If it sounds like a familiar position, it’s because the Romans learned it from the Venery. How is another story entirely.)
Well, one of the Parcel Wards because there was no way in the Heavens or Hells or In-Betweens that the Eira Parcel would be sullied by a non-Summer court marriage, so that left Grey Halkyon, heir to the position of First Unkindness in the Court of Miracles, and someone who has never in the remotest way been pleased with living in the Court of Dreams.
And, Grey might not be particularly fond of Tove.
Some of it is that Tove is a Blood-Wielder, casting worlds and changing realities by the shedding of her own blood. That liminality and changeability is unsettling at the very least for most people, but it’s downright terrifying to Grey–for reasons.
Some of it is that Grey would much rather run with Aedier Quille, the First Flutter of the Court of Nightmares, because Aedier is the only person who isn’t asking Grey for anything other than for them to be theirself.
(That’s rarer than you’d think–especially in the Venery.)
Hells, Grey would even rather spending time with Killian Pius despite the fact that he is also a Blood-Wielder, so it might be more than just Tove’s abilities that are getting to Grey.
The most flummoxing thing is that Tove actually really likes Grey–tiny Grey with their sure-footness and excellent flying thrust, their kindness and their intelligence.
Tiny Grey who would be so much happier to just return to the Court of Miracles and allow their sibling to ascend to the position of First Unkindness.
Grey may get their wish.
And, there may be more sinister machinations going on beneath the usual Venery politics than any of them know.