Wednesday, November 18, 2020

Hiatus Until December

Sorry I haven't posted anything in a long while. My computer bit the dust a month ago, and I've been swamped with work in real life. That, compounded with the stress of the elections and real world, has left me not feeling in the mood for blogging. So for the time being, I'm taking a hiatus. No blog posts until December. Have a happy Thanksgiving.

Saturday, November 7, 2020

DWOA Princess Alliance: Chapter 06

Disney's World Of Adventures: Princess Alliance

Chapter 06 – At Long Last, True Love Arrives

    The next day arrived, and with it, the wedding. What was once planned as the union between Princess Marianna of Hermosa Vista and Prince Gruber of the Southern Isles would now be a union between the Princess and her faithful lady-in-waiting, Susanna.

    Both ladies awoke early that morning to prepare for their big day. Maria wore a wedding gown, pure white as the freshly fallen snow—the same dress her mother, the late queen, once wore on her wedding day. Susan, meanwhile, wore a violet gown that she would have worn as the Maid of Honor, but which she now wore as the other bride.

    When the hour of the wedding arrived later that afternoon, both ladies marched down the aisle to glorious fanfare. Both stood before the altar facing each other as the bishop officiated their wedding. Both exchanged their vows and said their “I do’s”, and both embraced each other in their first kiss as lawfully-wedded wives. They had marched down the aisle as friends, and marched once more as a married couple.

    The wedding ceremony had been hosted in the palace’s sanctuary, and the following reception was hosted in the grand ballroom. There Maria and Susan were formally introduced as they made their grand entrance. They shared their first bite of cake, their first sip of sangria, and their first dance as a married couple. Maria tossed her bouquet, and Susan tossed the garter belt. Both celebrated with food, dancing, and overall merriment. They cavorted with their fellow guests, including their new friends, and continued the festivities well into the evening.

    As the sun began to set, both Maria and Susan retreated to the balcony for some quality alone time as a couple. The orange sun dipped into the ocean, appearing to melt within the water, and the sky shifted from tangerine to indigo as the stars faintly appeared. Both ladies held each other’s hand as they watched the dusk transform into the evening before them.

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Saturday, October 31, 2020

DWOA Princess Alliance: Chapter 05

Disney's World Of Adventures: Princess Alliance

Chapter 05 - The Witch, The Dragon, And True Love’s Kiss

    The five heroes (and Gruber) hacked their way through the forest of thorns until they neared the end. Upon leaving the thorny thicket, and having worked up a sweat from their hacking and slashing, they stopped to catch their breaths and wipe the sweat from their brows. Gruber, who had barely lifted a finger to lift his own sword, merely brushed the dust off his trousers with a huff.

    “About time we escaped those dreaded thorns.” He pressed his hand upon his heart and lifted his chin proudly as he flicked his hair back. “No need to thank me.”

    Susan rolled her eyes behind his back and muttered under her breath, when she finally caught it, “No one was going to.”

    Gruber pointed to the path ahead of them. “Onward, fellow adventurers. Time is of the essence, and the darling princess—my princess!—awaits her rescue.”

    If Susan wasn’t disgusted at his refusal to help them through the thorns, she was appalled now that he dared imply his efforts would rescue her friend. Unfortunately, she and the others were too exhausted to rebut him. All they could do was follow.

    The six of them traveled by foot the rest of the way. Their horses remained tied to their posts on the other side of the forest, as they refused to travel through the thorns. Fortunately, their equine companions, having been fed and watered, would be safe alone for the time being.

    Along a winding road among rolling hills they traversed until they reached the foot of the mountain range bordering the kingdom. Their path soon led them to a ravine. At the end of the path spanned a stone bridge, where stood a tall tower on the other side. Along the bridge rose a series of pillars, each bearing the worn, faded colors of hanging banners. Both the bridge and tower were hewn of stones that appeared much older than even the surrounding mountains. At the top of the tower was a stained-glass window, its panes the only hue among the gray stone. No doubt this was where the witch had trapped the princess.

    “At last, we’ve arrived!” Gruber stretched forth his arms to greet his destination. “And in yonder tower, dreaming of her true love, awaits the lovely Princess Marianna.”

    Once more, he pressed his hand against his heart. Closing his eyes and gleaming his pearly whites, he gesticulated to the others.

    “I have no further need of your assistance, thank you,” he said. “It is I who will brave the tower and rescue the princess from the clutches of the wicked witch—”

    He turned to gaze into the sickly green eyes of the witch herself as she stood before him, her crooked yellow grin inches from his face. Her sudden appearance startled him and forced him to leap a yard back.

    “Bruja Dama!” Reflexively, he drew his sword and aimed it at her with trembling grip. “Stay back, foul wretch, or I shall smite thee with my—”

    “¡Venga ya!” she rolled her eyes with arms akimbo. With a single slap, as casually as if she were swatting away a fly, she sent his sword flying from his grip and across the ground. “I take it you’re the príncipe valiente who’s come to rescue fair maiden?”

    With a yelp, Gruber rose both fists in front of his face. “Y-y-yes! I am the man who will fight for her honor. Now unhand her at once.”

    “Come to bargain, have we?” The witch studied her fingernails before glancing back at the poor, pathetic excuse of a prince cowering before her. “Pues vale. I will trade the princess for the entire kingdom. I very much want my pueblo back on the top of the hill, though the castle will suffice as a suitable upgrade.”

    Susan, from where she stood yards away from the Prince, pointed an angry finger at her. “You will hand my friend over at once, or you will have to contend with us!”

    The other four nodded in agreement as their hands hovered near their weapons.

    Gruber nodded furiously and pointed at the others. “Y-y-yeah! What she said.”

    Bruja Dama flicked her wrist. “Have it your way.”

    She rose several feet into the air and stretched forth her arms. Her eyes glowed green as she chanted: “Ahora deberás tratar conmigo, y todos los poderes del mal.”

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Saturday, October 24, 2020

DWOA Princess Alliance: Chapter 04

Disney's World Of Adventures: Princess Alliance

Chapter 04 - The Plan To Rescue The Princess

    The ballroom roared in a cacophony as the guests panicked over the disaster that befell them. The remains of two stained glass windows littered the marble floor, and the princess who had graced their presence was nowhere to be seen, carried away in the talons of a centuries-old witch turned griffin.

     “Mi Dios!” The king tugged upon his whiskers as his face glowed red. “This is a disaster. Princess Marianna is to be married tomorrow. The princess cannot get married if there is no princess to marry.”

    The Duke paced back and forth, biting his fingernails—or at least he would were he not wearing gloves.

    “Indeed. And her marriage to Prince Gruber is required to unite our two kingdoms. They cannot unite if the heir of one kingdom is not present to be married to the other.”

    Susanna stepped forward to raise a finger.

    “Forgive me, Your Excellencies, but shouldn’t our concern be the safety of Princess Marianna? She was stolen away into the night by an evil witch.”

    The King blinked several times before clearing his throat.

    “Of course, of course,” he answered, coughing each time. “The safety of my darling daughter, The Princess, is of the utmost priority. We must rescue her at once.”

    Prince Gruber knelt on one knee with head bowed, eyes closed, and hand upon heart.

    “My dear King, as the prince betrothed to your beloved princess, I humbly offer my services in rescuing her.”

    “You would risk your life to save my daughter?”

    “I would scale the highest mountain, swim the deepest sea, and brave the darkest forests to rescue the fair maiden who would be my bride—provided it doesn’t rain tomorrow, of course!”

    This elicited an eye roll from Susan, while the King offered a hearty laugh.

    “Very well! Fortunately for you, the forecast tomorrow is expected to be tiempo soleado as usual here in Hermosa Vista. You have my blessing to rescue her.”

    Prince Gruber stood and bowed before the King.

    “One small favor, if you will: as willing as I am to brave any danger awaiting me on my quest, it would benefit me most if I had some assistance. I’d humbly request you provide me with a few of your guards to accompany me and serve as my pawns—eh, I mean entourage.”

     “Fair enough,” The King nodded. “Fortunately, my guards are some of the bravest, noblest warriors in my kingdom. I gratefully provide you with the assistance of my 13 elite guards—”

    He motioned to the guards standing near his throne; but as he glanced upon them, he could only see a whirl of dust, several spears littered about, and a sign that read, “We quit!”

    “—who have now retired!” The King, blushing, tugging at his collar, glanced at Gruber. “Well, it appears they are unavailable at the moment. I’m afraid you are on your own.”

    Prince Phillip stepped forward and bowed before the King.

    “Your Majesty, I humbly offer my assistance in retrieving the Princess. As someone with experience in rescuing fair maidens, my services would prove most useful in his quest.”

    Princess Aurora also stepped forward and curtsied. “I, too, volunteer.”

    Rapunzel did likewise. “As do Eugene and me.”

    Eugene raised an eyebrow. “We do?”

    Rapunzel elbowed him in the ribs.

    “Of course,” he replied, nodding as he bowed. “Of course, I do.”

    The King clapped his hands. “Very well. Are there any more volunteers?”

    Susan stepped forward and bowed. “I do, Your Highness.”

    The King blinked. “You? But you are but a chambermaid.”

    Susan nodded. “I’ve been trained in swordsmanship under my father, the Captain of the Royal Guard. I’ve also been the closest friend to your daughter, The Princess, since we were young, and I would do anything in my power to save her, even at the cost of my own life.”

    The King stroked his whiskers, then nodded. “So be it! If there are no other volunteers, then the rescue party may prepare for the quest ahead of them.”

    Gruber once more bowed before the king.

    “It will be my honor.” He turned to the others. “We shall depart at sunrise first thing tomorrow. The vile creature should not have carried our fair princess far. We will no doubt face many unspeakable dangers. Most of you will most certainly not make it—” He clasped his chest and closed his eyes in the haughtiest expression. “But that is a sacrifice I am willing to take.”

    The others could only moan and roll their eyes in response. Promptly, they departed from the ballroom and returned to their respective chambers to receive a good night’s sleep.

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Thursday, October 22, 2020

Throwback Thursday: Let's Get Dangerous

My computer is busted and I'm swamped with real-life work. So, sorry: no proper Throwback Thursday this week. The good news is that Disney XD released the full episode of the new Ducktales/Darkwing Duck special on it's YouTube channel. And it is glorious! It's everything a Darkwing Duck fan would want. Seriously, if you haven't watched it, go watch for yourself!

Saturday, October 17, 2020

DWOA Princess Alliance: Chapter 03

Disney's World Of Adventures

Chapter 03 - The Princess Meets Her True Love

    Princess Marianna spent the day in her room preparing for her ceremony. As the sun set on the horizon and the hour of her event drew near, she sat silently in front of her vanity, gazing forlornly into her mirror, as her lady-in-waiting and closest friend, Susanna, helped her prepare.

    Susan spent the past hour helping Maria apply her makeup. Now she tied her hair into a bun with several braids. She added the finishing touches by fixing her hair in place with diamond-studded hairpins. Unfortunately, she stuck one pin too far in.

    “Ouch!” Maria jerked in place as the small yet sharp pin pricked her sensitive scalp.

    Susan sucked breath through her teeth as she tensed up. “My bad! Let me fix that.”

    As her friend withdrew the pin to fix it in place properly without nicking her scalp, Maria rubbed her temples. “Ay! Caray!”

    “Sorry, boo!” Maria replied. “I’ll try to be careful.”

    Maria shook her head. “It’s not that. It’s just that—I’m just flustered about this evening. I knew my father would marry me off someday. I just never thought it would be this soon. I assumed I had enough time to find the right person. And now he’s gone and found someone for me instead.”

    “Cheer up!” Susan stuck another pin in Maria’s hair. “Who knows? Maybe your father finally found Mr. Right for you. Maybe this prince will actually succeed in sweeping you off your feet head over heels in love.”

    “But what if he doesn’t?” Maria asked. “What if he’s still not the right person? I know I’ve been taking my sweet time with my suitors, and I understand my father getting impatient with me, but—you know—if I’m going to marry someone, I want it to be someone I love. You know? True love and all? Happily ever after?” Maria sighed as she frowned and sadly dropped her gaze into her lap. “But I guess that’s just the stuff of fairy tales. Maybe that’s just not for me.” She gazed at her friend’s reflection in the mirror. “I just hope that, when you finally get married—that is, if you get married—that you marry your true love. I hope you find someone you care for very much, someone you know very well, someone you want to spend the rest of your life with, together, forever. At the very least, do it for me.”

    Susan pushed the last pin into Maria’s hair. After spending hours aiding her friend, from drawing her bath and dressing her up, to applying her makeup and styling her hair, she finally looked upon the final result of her handiwork. She was proud to say the least, but what Maria had said stirred something deep inside of her, something she couldn’t contain. She bit her lip.

    “Maria, there’s something I’ve been meaning to tell you, something I’ve been wanting to tell you for a long time.”

    Before she could say anything else, she was interrupted by the door flying open as another female servant rushed in.

    “My ladies, the ceremony is about to begin! Please make your way to the ballroom!”

    The other servant gasped when she saw Princess Marianna dressed and dolled up in her best. “Oh, bless my soul! You look absolutely gorgeous! You’re sure to be the envy of the party, and I’m sure you’ll catch your prince’s eyes as well!”

    Once the servant left, Maria stood. “Well, I’m sure you can tell me later. My guests, and my prince, awaits.”

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Friday, October 16, 2020

Fan Art Friday: Foxtober - Nick Wilde

October is Foxtober. All this month, I'll be showcasing fan art of Disney fox characters. This week, it's the better half of the Zootopia duo, Nick Wilde. You know you live him. And if you don't, well, it's called a 'hustle', sweetie!

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Thursday, October 15, 2020

Throwback Thursday: Walt Disney's City Of The Future

So my main PC recently went to the big computer store in the sky. I'm currently forced to rely on my laptop until further notice. So no big posts this week.

If you haven't been following Defunctland, by all means, follow them. They release very informative video essays and documentaries on the Walt Disney Company, specifically the theme parks. They recently published a very interesting video essay on Disney's original vision for Epcot, his "City Of The Future." It's a favorite subject of mine. By all means, give it a watch:

Saturday, October 10, 2020

DWOA Princess Alliance: Chapter 02

Disney's World of Adventures: Princess Alliance

Chapter 02 – Two Princesses Receive Their Invitation

    Once upon a time, there lived a princess named Aurora. On the day of her birth, she was visited by three good fairies, each of whom bestowed upon her a magical blessing. But an evil fairy arrived to lay an evil spell upon her. She was cursed so that, on the day of her sixteenth birthday, she would prick her finger on the spindle of a spinning wheel and fall into everlasting sleep.

    Not wanting the curse to come to pass, the three fairies took the baby princess away to raise her as their own and protect her from the evil fairy. Unfortunately, her sixteenth birthday arrived, and Aurora was tricked into pricking her finger and falling into a deep sleep. She was trapped in a tall tower and guarded by the evil fairy turned into a dragon.

    Fortunately, she was saved by a handsome prince with whom she had fallen in love. The prince, equipped by the good fairies with a magic sword and shield, slayed the dragon, and awoke the princess with true love’s kiss. Having been awoken by her true love, Aurora and her prince married, and they all lived happily ever after.

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