Two weeks ago this mysterious archway appeared overnight in the small inland town of Leatherham, formally known only for producing the toughest meat in the country. Since its arrival on the edge of the town, many people have crossed through the arch, but it is still not known what is on the other side as none that have passed through have returned. This has raised many questions such as:
- Does it really lead to the future or is it perhaps a ravenous black hole with a clever disguise?
- Is the future overrun with dangerously violent beasts such as poisonous venom spitting penguins and all that have crossed through have succumbed to a terrible penguin disease?
- Or is the future so brilliant that those who find their way there have no desire to return?
Those who are still entering the archway seem to believe the latter. The Klah Gazette interviewed a few of those making their way there about what they expected to find:
“I think in the future everyone has tusks, which would be really handy for keeping shopping lists and bits of snacking fruit on,” said an efficient looking woman sucking on a lemon.
“I think woolly mammoths have returned but this time they can fly and humans ride around on them and both the mammoths and humans wear flying goggles that shoot lasers at rainclouds and make them dissolve with cool fizzing sounds,” said an old man in slippers who looked like he may have ridden mammoths the first time round.
“I think open-neck linen shirts will be back in fashion” said an extremely hairy man.
Other archway-goers appear to have inadvertently wandered through because they were too lazy to read the giant flashing sign which is written in both English and native Klah. The Kingdom’s official position on the matter is that those who choose not to read are no great loss, and that those who choose to cross should take several packed lunches, anti-penguin venom (available from your local pharmacy) and an open necked linen shirt.
While out foraging for snizzleberries last week, Hetty Hobnob, a reporter from the Klah Gazette, witnessed a tree decide it was destined for more in life than sitting around hearing tales of the skies from the beaks of birds. She managed a brief interview as it sailed past:
Klah Gazette: This is an important moment in your life. How are you feeling?
Tree: Uplifted, uprooted, excited, and many other three syllable words that I don’t have time for right now.
Klah Gazette: Do you have any advice for those that might follow in your rootsteps?
Tree: Pack snacks and warm socks, these are my only regrets.
And with these wise words it became a speck in the sky of destiny.
– Hetty Hobnob for The Klah Gazette
The carnivorous chameleon-foliage at Lake Ereinak, West Klah. Photo: Nina van der Voorn
This carnivorous chameleon-foliage was recently discovered near Lake Ereinak and is causing a great deal of controversy across Klah. The Society for the Protection of Bears Against Carnivorous Plants is concerned the foliage is posing as a bear to entice real bears over so it can eat them. The foliage insists it actually loves bears and just wants to congratulate them on being bears, and is even planning to give the next bear that visits him a prize of 1000 honeypots. No honeypots have yet been sighted by The Klah Gazette. We also spoke with the foliage’s dentist who reported seeing suspiciously bear-like hairs in his teeth, though he admitted they could also be from very hairy snails. A spokeswoman for The Society of the Prevention of Discrimination Against Plants, Ms Faux Tosynthesis, issued a statement yesterday concerned that “this is just another example of unfair discrimination against the vegetable kingdom. Why are there never any articles on all the sheep that brutally devour blades of grass all day long? I think you will find the figures are substantially higher and I for one find that far more newsworthy.”
After a great deal of schmoozing and some several hundred letters with small treats enclosed as bribes, The Klah Gazette is excited to announce we have finally succeeded in a small but magnificent exclusive with the reclusive & elusive Baroness von Petnickle. Barely anyone has spoken to the Baroness since she ran away from home as a teenager on the back of a large harrier hawk, carrying only a ball of twine and a piece of half-eaten toast. For years sightings were reported from various central forests of Klah, witnesses describing an extremely well-dressed and glorious woman hurtling past them astride a golden antelope, tearing through the undergrowth surrounded by leopardhogs, or swinging through the trees with the notoriously surly native tamarinds (Saguinus oldmannus). These days the Baroness lives in a castle built from sticks and moss at the top of a tall tree, accompanied by an extraordinary variety of pets. She now speaks 38 languages, 36 of which are animal based, can identify edible fungi by scent alone, and catches insects with her tongue. A true inspiration.
Above: The Baroness with two Pineapple birds, which as their shape implies, are indeed descended from pineapples. Unlike most birds, they will not eat berries or fruit as they feel it is carnivorous, opting instead for wholegrains and a selection of nuts.
Above: The Baroness with her pet snake Clarence. Clarence works part-time as an eyebrow model enjoys long slithers on the beach, and is one of the Baronesses closest companions.
The Baroness wears The Wolf-Fox, Sacred Feather, and Mystic Charles . Photographed by Nina van der Voorn for The Klah Gazette.
Those of you outside of Klah may be unfamiliar with the coming festivities of Klahmas on December 25th, a national holiday where citizens gobble large quantities of small cakes, dance the Jangjilly-Jive and give each other magnificent gifts such as ear-trumpets, spangly hoof-warmers and, most importantly, Official Royal Garments. With less than a week to go, many citizens have begun doing warm up stretches in preparation for the Jangjilly-Jive, and tailors are making a fortune repairing ripped pantaloons as citizens overestimate their athletic abilities. Several readers have written to us concerned that they can’t remember the correct order of Jive moves, and relaying horror stories of poorly timed kicks knocking cakes and hats and great-aunts flying, so we asked renowned dancer Horatio Simpopple to provide a demonstration of the traditional dance:
Merry Klahmas and Happy Jangjilly-Jiving, citizens.
Captain Lilith, the well known seafaring celebrity + pirate heroine was recently awarded the prestigious Queens Award for Piratical Services to the Kingdom, in recognition of her brave and fearless capture of 72 Magnet-Fingered, Saw-Toothed Pirate Squid. The crew of mischievous squid have been terrorising the seas of Klah for many years by slithering under ships and using their magnet fingers to draw out metal chests of treasure, expensive iron frying pans, electric guitars, several thousand sets of tweezers and passengers with too many fillings. All this bounty is drawn out through holes they have nibbled in the hull of the boat using their saw teeth, and thus the boat normally sinks without so much as a good deck brawl.
“Terrible pirating practice” says Captain Lilith. “It’s cheating, and not in an acceptable piratical fashion either. The scallywags were difficult to catch – every time I got near, my cutlass was whipped out of my hands and my canons malfunctioned. In the end I used a pandemonium of parrots, assisted by monkeys riding on their backs to drop a metallic net on the scoundrels. That snaffled them jolly good.”
Captain Lilith travelled to Vamoose Province to receive the award, which is represented by the famous Fork Medallion & Crown (pictured). The fork – which is believed to be the first major invention in Klah, and has been useful for a number of things over the years, from letter-opening to back-scratching and even spaghetti-guzzling – is used here to symbolise the usefulness of the Captain’s immense contribution to the Kingdom of Klah.
Above: Captain Lilith poses in her prestigious jewels after the awards ceremony (Photo: Nina van der Voorn)
Below: Captain Lilith snapped unusually far from the sea en route to the ceremony, arriving via a teleportal in the Abscondis Forest, Vamoose Province (Photo: The Klahparazzi)
Lake Pombero, Kingdom of Klah
Today Klah awoke to some magnificent news, that the expedition of new season stock has survived the perilous voyage from Klah to the Kingdom’s Beloved Stockists. Cleverly disguised as a shipment of asparagus-shaped telephones (to avoid detection and being mobbed by excited fans) the expedition travelled through treacherous seas in golden ships, dangerous meadows prone to prickles and underneath terrifyingly unpruned trees. They also crossed not only the tricky Rivers of Deceit, but Lake Pombero (above), famed and feared for its strange purple waters that have been known to seize unsuspecting travellers and turn them into blueberries. Fortunately our crew were very suspecting (see Fig.1 below), there were no blueberry casualties and the cargo has now arrived safely at the Beloved Stockists, and subsequently Online. The Klah Gazette spoke to the Captain of the expedition, who reported no ration shortages or homesick night-snivellers, and indeed a general feeling of excitement amongst the cargo as they speculated on their new homes and owners. Who will they be? Will they be Wine-Drinkers, Cat-Ladies, Hobgoblins or Politicians? Will they like dancing & merriment or cold moonlit nights? Will they live in nests or castles, and do they keep their clothes in elegant wardrobes with gold trimmings, or on the floor where they can roam freely after dark while their owners are sleeping?
One conclusion was drawn: They will all have spectacular taste.