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There is a hat in the crevasse under the willows growing on the meadow near Diamond Town. The Spade-men camped there because the rocks and trees provide shelter. They should be afraid. Not of the hat. Of the man underneath it. The man under the hat is mad. Seething with it since blood and war took all things and people from him he held in value. He has been mad for so long he doesn’t remember being anything else. The Hart-folk of the valley call him a hero in their songs. The Spade-men and their Club Captains call him the wrath wearer. He doesn’t care for names. He is the Hatter and all he wants is busy hands.
“Seville Oranges…” he mutters as he threads his needle. It is a large, strong needle for piercing  leather. “…black tea, lavandula angustifolia. Lady Grey.” he recites. Listing his favorite teas and their ingredients focuses his mind as he works cramped in his little nook, his shoulders slumped to keep his top hat from knocking against the boulder above. Being focused keeps him calm; keeps his hands from shaking and himself from bursting out of his hiding place and attacking the Spade-men in broad daylight with nothing but the needle.

“Camellia sinensis, jaggery, condensed milk, green cardamom pod, whole peppercorn, bark of cinnamon…” The litany goes on and on. His fingers flash as he works, his red rimmed eyes hardly blinking. His long fingers are knobby, the price of long hours of dexterity. He finishes one task and takes up the next. More leather, more leather cord. “…almonds, rose petals. Masala Chai.”

He holds up the last finished piece to inspect it in the failing light. “Not too large, not too small.” he croons softly. He is a master of his craft. They must all fit precisely. He watched these Spade-men for hours gauging the fit of each mans brow.

The moon sunk after the sun, running from a night filled with the madness of the Hatter. The Hatter ground his teeth as he slipped from his hiding place. His perfectly formed wares are held tight in his hands. When the sun rose again the Hatter was gone. His madness was all over the clearing. The Spade-men in hats littered the copse of willows. The Spade-men bodies below the trees, and their Spade-men head in the branches, hung with cord and each wearing it’s own perfectly fit leather hood.

Next to the dying fire is a cup. Loose leaves of tea floating in the cold dredges. The Hatter is mad. The Hatter must keep his mad hands busy.



  1. Chilling and yet it somehow makes complete sense!

    • Thanks Estyree! I like a little bit of creepy in my life.

      • No life is complete without it!

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  1. […] You Would Be Mad Too: Part 1 […]

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