When the smoke cleared, Edward ran over to the book and picked it up shaking it thinking that his new friend was now squished in between the pages of the book. However, as he did this he scrambled to the floor in a panic trying to figure out where the dragon fell. There was nothing there sadly.
“Where did you go?” he said to himself near tears.
He looked around the room there was an electric charge in the air as the place hit him with a sudden wind that threw all his items around it in a fury. He fell back onto his bed and then felt his body sucked from the spot he was in and before he knew it he was inside the book on his floor.
Edward was sure he must have screamed, but how would anyone hear him now as he fell into a void so deep that all sound disappeared and all space and time was eradicated from the world as he knew it.
As he felt his body stretching to fit the void he felt light-headed and confused. How could this be happening? One moment he was in his room now he was being sucked into a book and he was pretty sure this was impossible. However, it was possible because he was looking around him and as the black faded he saw glittering light appear and swirl around him. There was a hint of light coming out from under his feet and a cold chill that hit his face like a cold winter’s day. He floated down into a puffy white cloud and it seemed to carry him into a dark blue sky and just ahead of him he could see what looked like a town of strangely built houses. They appeared to be upside down and so did the people, were they people? He looked at them again straining to focus on them.
Some creatures were tiny with pointy ears that seemed to curl above their heads. They had strange clothing on and some of them had overly long legs with puffier bodies on top of them. Some of these creatures seemed to blend into the trees and even though the trees were upright the beings were walking upside down under the tree limbs and some of them hopped on to the tips of branches and chatted with one another.
In the distance there was a river that looked like pink lemonade from where Edward could see it. Short fat creatures were bathing in it entirely and none of them seemed to pay any attention to him as he floated above them as though he didn’t even exist. The cloud drifted over a vast countryside where everything looked like a moving valley of lush green grass in variations of dark green to light green to lime colored green. It appeared to move and then he realized it was running. There was a large creature swimming inside the earth below him. It raised its head and Edward realized it was all made of grass and looked a bit like a sea lion. It turned upward and spit out flowers and dirt from its mouth and Edward could see its whiskers made of long bundles of green grass. Edward sat back in fear and then the creature took notice of him and winked at him as it dived back into the earth leaving the surface still as any vast field of green from where Edward had come.
In the distance was a castle that loomed large in the distance and it was dark purple with gold windows and a drawbridge that went over a river of pink and orange. That is when he saw someone waving from one of the windows. The cloud he was on began to float toward the window and as he came close to it that is when he saw it. One of the pudgy creatures was motioning for him to come closer as if he knew how to make the cloud he was on move.
“Hello, welcome! Welcome!” the large creature said as it’s pointy ears curled up and outward as if they had a mind of their own.
Edward floated toward the window of the great castle and the creature put out his hand for Edward to grab on. Edward reluctantly took the fat hand of the creature and off he jumped from the white puffy cloud. He landed softly as though this place had no gravity or if it did it was nothing like the world from which he came.
“What is this place?” Edward asking scratching his head.
“Well, you are in a place that doesn’t have a name, but it is from a time and age before men. My name is Tapsio and I run this place.” He smiled happily.
“You mean like a king?”
“Well, I suppose, but I don’t give myself titles that is a sign that I have airs about myself and no one here has that. We are all equal here and while some of us are more organized no one owns anyone or anything. Except for the Shadow Keepers of the Valley of Roots, but let’s not think of unpleasant things.”
“Well, I’m Edward, nice to meet you I guess.” He said reaching out a hand to the small creature who stood precisely 2 and a half feet off the ground.
“Pleasure is all ours!” he said in a sing-song voice.
“What are you if you don’t mind me asking?”
“I’m a flower fairy, we are all fairies here.”
“Don’t fairies have wings?”
He let out a big hearty laugh and then rocked backward rolling from one end of the room to the other then back like a ball.
“That is a misconception. The ones with wings are the darker Shadow Keepers. Everyone always mistakes us for them because they fly into your world without even a hint of permission. They let humans like you see them sometimes and it causes a rift.”
“How did I get here?”
“I suspect you know that.”
Edward looked at him in frustration. “No, sir, I have no idea how I got here.”
“Really? That is strange, did you by any chance come by a dragon? The dragons belong to the Shadow Keepers.”
“Dragons?” that is when Edward looked at the creature and it hit him. “You mean that tiny lizard is a dragon?” he let out a laugh smirking at the creature.
“That was no lizard, child. That dragon belonged to the keeper of the light which is one of the most ferocious Shadow Keepers. This is no good, we must send you back before that dragon comes looking for you. Did you feed it by chance?”
Edward looked down at the creature gulping. “Well, yes I guess I did, but I didn’t know I wasn’t supposed to!”
Tapsio looked at him smirking and then peeked out the castle window. “May I ask what you fed him?”
“Um tacos and peppers.” Said Edward
“OH!” Tapsio shook his head. “Feeding him things that will only fuel the fires inside of him.”
“What’s going to happen now?” asked Edward.
“We must send you away before it is too late!”
“Send me where?” Edward asked worriedly.
“To the Shadow Keepers.”
Edward gulped something didn’t sound right about these Shadow Keepers. He was suddenly afraid now and by the look on Tapsio’s face this was not a good thing.
With a quick spin Tapsio pulled out a giant pink wand and then out of nowhere he began to create a pink and yellow tornado around Edward and as he did this Edward felt very lightheaded once again.
“What is going on?” Edward asked as he began to see the ground opening beneath his feet. He started to feel as though he were being swallowed up yet again and then before he could blink he found himself in dark woods. Here there was nothing unusual about the woods he found himself.
These woods looked no different than the forest that was directly behind his house. He did not understand why he was here suddenly. He was once again a short period of time thrust into a place with no explanation.
He looked up from his place on the ground and then found his feet. He walked around slowly and found that there was a trail just off in the distance. He walked toward it and even though the forest was dark and gloomy compared to where he had only been, there was a comfort in something that was semi-familiar.
Edward walked along the new found trail admiring the plants and the sounds of the wildlife in the distance. Where was he? How would he get home? He kept walking hoping that by some stroke of luck he would find himself not far from his house.
The trail was strange to him because it was quiet. That was the one thing he noticed was that it was hushed. There were no sounds of birds or crickets chirping. It was just still and there was no wind blowing in the distance either.
Edward began to feel afraid and alone for the first time in a long while. He recalled feeling that way when he first found out he had cancer. The looks on his friend’s faces was one of sympathy but also their looks were pitying and standoffish. It was as though he had a disease they could catch. They stopped coming around his house to play video games and they stopped calling and texting. That is how he felt now with this uncertainty looming in the distance. How would he find his way back home?
Just then there was a light in the distance and he saw it move across the forest without making a sound. It got bigger and bigger and then he recognized that it appeared to be an orb of some kind. Edward began to follow it and then he saw it stop and start to come toward him.
It began to speed toward him and Edward felt the strongest urge to run but his feet would not move. He was too curious to move and so he stood in the forest wide-eyed as he watched the orange orb speed toward him.
It kept coming and now it was almost upon him and all at once burst into a thousand tiny sparks of light that seemed to spin around him and then float in the air. That is when he realized it was not sparks of light, but these creatures had wings. They were tiny fairies and as he realized it he heard it then.
Coming through the trees now was a beast moving through the trees above him with a sound of pure thunder cracking as it’s wings spread over him and created near total darkness.
He stood with his mouth open and then ran toward a large rock cowering near it with his head down as the beast floated slowly above him with it’s dark pupils glaring at him as it flew above him.
The light from the fairies came closer to him then as well and then all at once he heard something like a giant rock falling in the distance as tree branches cracked above him.
The fairies were hovering above him and then all at once they began to get bigger and bigger. That is when he saw the beast walking toward him one step at a time until it was almost unbearable for Edward to breathe. He reached into his pocket to feel for an inhaler he kept with him, but he could not find it. He began to pant heavily as though the life were going out of him with each step of that beast’s feet.
The fairies were the size of small men now and their faces were ugly and bent like holes in tree trunks. They did not have the same look as the fairies from before. These creatures were dark and evil looking to Edward. They seemed to crawl like spiders some of them from the tops of the trees downward above him and then the beast got close enough to see Edward he noticed he was green and blue like his lizard. As it was now directly above him he could see the serpent’s wings behind his back now and he looked at Edward very curiously as though he too were studying him like the fairies. Then as Edward lost his breath once and for all fainting from lack of oxygen he could have sworn he saw the dragon laugh at him.
To be continued…