Within the peaceful southern forest lives the spider, Keeper of Lore. Within her webs you will find stores of knowledge about this realm and myself, frequently asked questions, and more.
About the Realm
In redesigning the Realm, I decided to make it reflect that world. Upon entering, you see a map hovering over a valley at twilight. Four lands are presented, the desert, the caverns, the dark northern forest, and the peaceful southern forest. It is a living world, and among the inhabitants of the four lands are the Keepers. Each one is embodiment and the guardian of their land.
In the desert lives the Keeper of Facades, the coyote. Coyote of legend is a trickster, cunning, sometimes wise, often a fool. This Keeper, master of disguise, displays the costumes I have created. On the map, she is represented by a Native American style petroglyph. Her home is the vast, deceptively empty-seeming land similar to that in which I live.
In the caverns is the Keeper of Visions, the dragon. She is a hoarder, a collector of things pleasing to her eye. She is guardian of the artwork and craft projects I have done, including multimedia. Her representation on the map is done in heraldic style. The cave system is reminiscent of Carlsbad Caverns, one of the most stunning places I've ever seen.
The werewolf of the dark forest is the Keeper of Nightmares. If you had explored the Realm previously, you may remember the gargoyle that this keeper has now displaced atop the cold, grey brickwork. The werewolf is master of the realm of Halloween, home of decorations, and the A.A.H. (Adopt-A-Haunt) program. On the map, she appears heraldic, a wolf rampant regardant. The dark forest is thick with twisting trees and undergrowth, similar to the beautiful, somewhat foreboding forests of southern England.
Finally, the Keeper of Lore is the orb-weaving black and yellow garden spider. Spiders are small, mysterious, and fascinating, and you can't help wondering what else a creature knows, if it knows how to build such a thing of beauty as an orb web. She is guardian of the southern forest, a peaceful place in which is kept the lore of the Realm. Her symbol on the map is a petroglyph. The forest is like one you may see in northern Arizona, near such magnificent places as the Tonto Natural Bridge, the Mollogon Rim, or the Grand Canyon. The black and yellow garden spider in particular appears because I once had one take up residence in our backyard, a while back when I was younger, and my parents and I lived in Texas. The spider built an enormous orb web in a corner of the fence, about 6 feet across, and my parents were kind enough to leave her be. It was an amazing experience.
The heraldic and petroglyph-style imagery on the map may seem to be something of a mismatch at first, but they work well together. My husband is British, and I was born in Santa Fe, so in a way, it is representative of both of us.