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Welcome to the world of myth and speculation. Here you will find explanations of the mythological background of characters, items, places and plot elements in Fairy Cube.
[Note: YK = Yuki Kaori; FC = Fairy Cube]
The name means "oneself" and comes from an English folk tale. In the tale, a boy plays with a fairy at night and when he asks her for her name, she tells him it's "Ainsel" to which he replies he's "Ainsel" too. They go on playing until the boy accidently burns her and she's sent back by her fairy mother who appears because of her daughter's screams. From then on, the boy was never able to meet the fairy again.
Note how Kaito tells Ian he's been cursed by "himself" (jibunjishin) after he gave him the Fairy Cube with the lizard.
In installment 1, Kaito refers to Tokage as $@
Fairies were believed to steal human babies for different reasons. One was that fairy children were often ill and/or deformed and their fairy mothers couldn't stand their ugliness. So they exchanged them with a human baby. A fairy would steal a beautiful and healthy baby out of its cradle and replace it with her own which would soon die. (Sometimes, the mortal babies were also exchanged by old fairies or sticks which were made to look just like a baby with the help of glamour.)
The fairy would take the human baby to the Fairyland. Her own baby, the changeling, would remain in the human world with all its knowlegde of the Otherworld. It is said that these babies were often crying and angry but had a strangely knowing and wise look in their eyes.
Bluebell (also: Fairy Bells or Fairies' Thimbles)
(Flowers of the species Campanula.)
A flower widely spread across the northern hemisphere with violet-blue bellflowers. Fairies are said to dwell within them, especially at their midnight gatherings. If one hears the ringing of the bell of the bluebell, it indicates that an evil fairy is near or, even worse, a sudden death looms over the hearer of the chiming.
The flower is constantly used throughout the manga to symbolise danger. Note that Rin's name is also written with the kanji for 'bell'!
Fairy Circle (also: Pixie Circle, Fairy/Pixie Ring, Gallitrap)
In installment 3, Kaito tells Ian and Ainsel to find a Fairy Circle ($@ME@:$NNX(J) or a gallitrap ($@%,%j%H%i%C%W(J; superscribed as $@%T%/%7!<$NNX(J/Pixie Circle) so he can bring them back to the world of humans.
A circle of mushrooms or a ring of withered grass. According to folklore, fairies would often gather at night when no human being would disturb them and dance in a circle. Their feet would trample down the grass and leave a ring of withered grass. The mark would stay for a long time because of the fairies' strange powers.
In reality, those rings are naturally formed by mushrooms in the grass. Even if there are no mushrooms to be seen, you can detect a circle of withered grass because the fungus is growing underground.
In installment 3, Kaito sends Ian and Ainsel to the Otherworld. In Celtic mythology, it is the spiritual world that is bound to our material world. YK uses the Japanese $@0[3&(J (ikai), which means alien/other world.
Another word for it is $@ME@:$N9q(J (yousei no kuni), the Fairyland. However, in the furigana reading, YK gives us a more specific name for this land: $@%^%0%b%k%$%V%i%;%k(J (magumoruiburaseru)). This is probably a combination of Mag Mor (the Great Plain), one of the fairy islands in Celtic mythology, and I-Breasil (alternative spellings: Hy-Breasil, Hy-Brasil, I-Bresail, Bressail etc.), a fictious island in the west of Ireland.
As noted above, the material world and the Otherworld are linked by hidden entrances. It is said that time passes much slower in the Otherworld, so a traveller to the Fairyland might suddenly age several years when he returns home, even though he only spent a few days in the Otherworld.
The magic powers of faries. In FC, the fairies using their Glamour look darker than usual while their eyes are glowing. Ainsel can destroy things with her Glamour. Kaito seems to be able to use Glamour with his right eye. In installment 3, he uses his Glamour to transport Ian and Ainsel to the Otherworld.
The most horrible, most dreaded of all Scottish elves. Sighted mainly in Orkney and Northern Scotland. Although its home is the sea, it also wanders on the land, bringing diseases and ruining the crops with its deadly breath. Some think it to be a rider on a horse, other witnesses claim it to be a monster with the body of a horse (combining the rider and its horse to be one and the same creature). Its gigantic head sways on its body that has no skin. Fears fresh and running water which is why you can escape it by simply crossing a river as Nuckelavee cannot follow you across it.
In FC (installments 3 and 4), Nuckelavee is a huge four-legged, skin-less sea monster which catches small animals and carries them in nets around his body. Ian leads Ainsel and the urchin into safeity by throwing them across a river where it can't follow them and hurts the monster with a pair of iron scissors. Later, Ainsel blows its head off with her Glamour.
Fairies are divided into the Seelie Court and the Unseelie Court. Kind fairies belong to the Seelie Court, whereas the Unseelie Court (=Unholy Court) consists of fairies unfavourable of human beings. The ugliest and most evil of all fairies.
Nuckelavee is one of them and it might also be members of the Unseelie Court that try to grab and pinch Ian until the bigger fairy-like creatures chase them away at the beginning of installment 2, after Ian was stabbed.
In installment 3, Kaito advises Ian to be careful and not to be devoured by the Unseelie Court in the Otherworld.
Old English word for hedgehog. Also: imp or mischievous child, as it was supposed that some imps took a hedgehog's shape.
In installment 3, Ian finds an innocent-looking small creature which he mistakes for a fairy child. In truth, it is an urchin which can take on the form of a hedgehog. Its urchin sister was caught by the sea monster Nuckelavee (see above). Ian and Ainsel can defeat Nuckelavee and free the other hedgehog and in return, are lead to the oak with the fairy circle by the two urchins.
Written contents, site design © 2005 Yuuya, part of $@M-5!E7;H%I%C%H%M%C%H(J.
Original images & manga © Yuki Kaori, Hakusensha
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