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     From his lofty vantage point atop Mount White, Deserata peered through the dappled layers of sunlight and took in Mythlewild's vast landscape. Autumn showers left the meadows clean, and the mountain air crisp and delicious. The great winged unicorn filled his lungs with an invigorating slice, and soared into the sky before descending into the lowlands where the morning's air was not so welcoming. He was an alacorn, a beast of providence, favored by immortals, and chosen by them as warden over their estate. It was a responsibility Deserata took to heart and he relished every opportunity to drop in on his devoted subjects, no matter what their mood. 
     One of the stallion's favorite tenants was Iris. No one was more beautiful or merry, and like everyone else, he usually smiled upon sighting her. But today, as she streaked towards him, Deserado's smile vanished. She emerged from the parting rain clouds crying, “Help me! My complexion—It's fading!”
     With his course blocked, the alacorn hovered about momentarily while thinking of a tactful response. “Well, you do look a bit pale,” he began, “but isn't it customary for rainbows to vanish after it rains? Why don't you sail back to your clouds and latch onto a friendly sunbeam. Once illuminated, you'll be vivid as ever.”
     While that solution seemed quite reasonable to him, Iris burst into tears. “You don't understand . . . I'm REALLY disappearing this time, rain or shine. Wherever I appear, my colors just aren't as bright . . . Everyone says so . . . sob.”
     “Now, now. We mustn't cry. We'll only dilute our lovely hues even more.” Deserata encircled the rainbow examining her spectrum. No doubt about it, her colors were lackluster. “Tell you what, why don't you accompany me on this morning's flyover. It's October, and the season is a feast of colors. With luck, it might serve up a big bright portion for you.”