I step out the door, the light blinding me. As my vision adjusts to the sun hanging in the sky again, I realize something very peculiar. I’m not standing on a normal floor. I look down and realize I’m on a fallen tree trunk.
Well, sort of. The tree is still standing. And I’m walking on the side. I’m walking on the side of a standing tree. Looking around below and above, there’s more. A whole forest on its side.
A thought passes through my head. What would happen if I fell?
I drop to the ground, er, tree and clutch it for my dear afterlife. Did I really just make that joke? I’ve been here far too long. I go from an innocuous room, to the middle of the universe and now I’m in a sideways forest. When do I get to the tea party?
I crawl back to the door and pull myself up to try and go back through. It’s locked. Dammit. I grab the obsidian key I just used and unlock it. I rush through the door and find myself exactly where I was.
Screaming again, I curse the stupid magic door! Stupid key! I grab the other key, the gold one and unlock the door again. I rush back into the oblivion of space.
“What do you think you’re doing?”
“Hi Luna,” I meekly reply.
She gives me a dirty look. She just got done telling me not to be afraid and here I am.
“Get back in there. Coward.”
I return through the door. The trunk seems as scary as before. Strange how floating in the middle of space didn’t feel quite so daunting as standing on the side of the tree. It’s probably the frame of reference. Space is nothingness in every direction. Here, I know the way gravity is supposed to work, but it doesn’t.
I don’t know where I’m supposed to go. What am I supposed to do? Crossing the length of the tree down to the “ground” takes longer than I’d like to admit, but I find it hard to balance on the trunk.
At the end, I place my hand on the dirt, picking up bits of sand and grime. I drop it from my hand and watch it curiously fall back to the ground, perpendicular to my own frame of reference.
Weird. Could it be because I’m shifted from…
The wind picks up. There’s a whistle in the air. I can feel something coming. It rustles at my ear, making me flinch. Whatever it was, it just went behind me. It’s fast.
I hear it again. Ridiculously fast. But it’s actually moving, unlike Death and Luna who seemed to teleport.
In all the wind, I hear a voice. It calls to me.
“It seems the traveler is lost and found,
when in a new place, he looks around
Sky above and trees below
What can he do? How can he know?
The path he seeks cannot be seen
A futile search as ever been…”
Where is that coming from? It sounds like it comes from the woods themselves. The wind chants along in the verse and the leaves dance to the rhythm.
“Your world you wish is not your own
Not life but Death, must you pick a bone
Scream to the earth! Yell and bellow!”
In a whirlwind of leaves and air, a small man, covered in brown fur appears before me on the tree trunk. He has two blue horns protruding from his forehead. The sly smile on his face made me fear his intentions. His entire being exuded a sense of unease.
“But fear not the whims of Robin Goodfellow!”
He takes a small bow, his eye never leaving mine.
I stood, dumbfounded. With an entrance like that, how could I not? What was I supposed to do? Oh, right.
“So… Do you have a key for this door?”
The faerie falls over from the question, exasperated from my audacity, I can only assume.