The Dream : Chapter One
Mayleen walked, slowly down the hallway, breaking the cold silence with each step of her heavy shoes that pounded against the distant floor. The sound echoed around her, and for a moment it was all she could hear until a chill came over her, and she realized that she was not alone. Small beams of light reflected off of a large mirror that stood up ahead of her. This caught her attention as she quickly caught up to follow them, noticing who’s voice it was that she had heard, as she stood in the open doorway.
“Oh Christopher stop playing with the Tammerd crystals. You might fall in again,” a woman’s voice said as she glanced down at the five year old boy sitting on the floor, not far from where she sat at the table, sipping tea with a taller, very distinguished looking gentleman.
The hallway had been dark, where Mayleen came from, but the kitchen, which she was now entering was darker still. There was a candle lit at the center of the table, where you could see just enough of the two faces which hovered above their brittle bodies.
“Grandmother, is that you?” Mayleen asked as she took a step closer.
“Darling where have you been? Come, come and sit with us.” She said as she held out her hand towards her, smiling.
“What are you doing awake at this hour grandma?” Mayleen asked as she slowly tip-toed to a chair next to her.
“Grandfather, do you usually have tea at this hour?” Mayleen asked as she scooted her chair in a little closer.
“My dear, any time is a good time for tea.” he said as he took a sip out of an empty cup.
“Would you like some more sugar my love?” Grandmother asked Grandfather as she took some small tongs out of a container that usually held sugar cubes and began to pass him some.
Mayleen immediately thought this to be a strange act but attempted not to question it because the two of them looked so transfixed with happiness. Her attention then fell to the boy that was sitting on the floor. It was her little brother, dressed in his Sunday best, as if he had just come from church. As she took a closer look she could see that he was playing with something on the floor. It was a long and clear with bright colors settled beneath its sturdy exterior.
“What are you playing with Christopher? Is that another one of your new toys?” Mayleen asked as Christopher looked back at her and giggled as if she has said something very silly.
“Did you already forget? But you’ve only been away for two days. Maybe your memory is starting to get a little fuzzy.” Christopher said then looked back at the floor.
“Forget? Forget what? What is that, that you have in your hand? May I see it?” Mayleen asked.
“Don’t you recognize your own crystal? You made this one for me, last time you were there, in the Crystal World. This has been the best one yet. The strongest, as well as the most fun to play with.” He said as he got up from the floor and handed it over to her. “It’s getting a little late, even for me. I must be off to bed now. Good night sister.” He said as he walked off down another hallway, yelling behind him as he walked, “Goodnight Grandmother, and Grandfather. Sweet dreams.”
Mayleen then looked at the bright crystal that flickered radiant colors across the palm of her hand. A light breeze that appeared to come from no where passed by her as she clenched the crystal, so as not to drop it, and looked down at the tile, in the place where here brother had been sitting.
She knew that this was not how the tiles normally looked in the house and when she reached out to touch it she realized that each tile had a different picture that moved as if it where a painting and she was on the outside looking in.
“What, but there has to be some mistake.” she said as she placed her hand down on one realizing that her hand went down clear thought the floor. “Grandmother,” she said pausing for a moment as she felt the warmth of the sun blanket itself around her hand, triggering a feeling of comfort throughout her body as if lightening had struck, then continue, “Grandmother are you seeing this? Do you see what is happening? I’ve never seen anything like it.” she said still in awe.
“But of course you have dearest. You were just in that world two days ago. I think after a few more you will be ready for the dragon world. Once you have finished creating all your crystals for the four worlds, you will be able to battle the dragon.” Grandmother said still gazing back into her husbands dark eyes.
“What do you mean I was just there? And what other world, is this world not the only one?” Mayleen asked then turned to see that her grandmother and grandfather had disappeared.
The low light of the candle made it more difficult for her to see and so Mayleen quickly got up and attempted to reach for another candle when she woke.
“Mayleen. Mayleen come quick breakfast is ready. We wouldn’t want it getting cold on you like it did last time, now would we.” a voice said as she sat up in her cozy bed and carefully fluffed pillows that propped her up like a china doll on a carefully decorated stand.
“What, get up? Was I dreaming,” she thought to herself.
“Yes, yes get up now before your brother eats all the toast again.” her mother said in a tender voice as she folded a blanket that had been left on the floor the night before, and set it on a near by chair.
“I told you what happens when you have too much tea before going to bed. Tell me, did you have that same dream again?” she asked as she took a seat at the foot of her bed.
“I did. But this time it went on, further. I went down the hallway and I saw grandmother and grandfather sitting at a table, and Christopher was,” she said when she was interrupted, “Christopher was in it this time? Darling you really do have a interesting imagination. You get that from your father you know?” her mother commented as she then starred off into space for a moment then looked back at her daughter, who was holding her head as if it ached.
“Don’t worry I’ll get you some good strong coffee this time. That will make you head feel better. Maybe you should start heading to bed a little sooner. That should help your dreams. By help them I mean of course make them go away. Even when you were little you would always wake up with such a fretting disposition.” her mother said as she leaned over for a hug.
“Yes that should help.” Mayleen said as she pulled away the covers, slid into some slippers and followed her mother to the kitchen. Her brother was already there devouring the toast that was in front of him. Mayleen took a seat in the same chair that she had sat in, in her dream unknowingly, then with a bit of uneasiness glanced down at the tile. It was as it always had been, checkered black and white as a chess board. Her grandmother had done this early on after having bought the house. She had loved the game so much she wanted to feel as if she could be a piece in the game. Her life being the moves she made.
The rest of the house was simple and light in order to reflect her grandmothers mood, cheery and delightful. Mayleen rubbed her eyes a couple of times as her mother placed a cup of coffee down at the tips of her fingers.
“Would you like milk and sugar, or would you prefer it black?” she asked. “Milk and sugar please, two lumps.” she said when she noticed that the container for the sugar cubes was already on the table, and lifting open the top saw that they were out.
“Oh dear, no sugar. Maybe grandmother finished it off last night?” her mother said offering her some honey instead.
“Finished it off last night? Do you mean to say that grandmother had tea last night, at this table?” Mayleen said as her eyes lit up.
“Yes. I suppose, she possibly did. She does enjoy her midnight tea on nights when she can’t sleep.”
“Really? And does grandfather ever accompany her on these nights, or is it just her who can’t sleep?” Mayleen asked leaning further across the table making sure not to miss a word of what her mother was about to say.
“Well yes and no, see grandfather mostly sleep walks and I don’t see how he could possibly…then again…maybe” she said thinking to herself as she placed a stack of pancakes in front of Christopher.
“Hmmm…” Mayleen thought to herself when her grandmother walked in.
“Good morning everyone. I trust you all had a good nights rest.” grandmother said as she hugged Christopher as tight as she possibly could then took a seat at the table next to Mayleen.
“And you my golden princess. How did you sleep?” she asked as she took an orange from the fruit bowl that was at the end of the table and began to peel it.
“Me grandmother? Oh well I slept well, very well actually.” She said smiling.
“Come now you can tell her the truth,” her mother said as she walked over to the table, leaned over and whispered, “She had the dream again.”
“You didn’t. That’s three times this week alone. Weren’t the dreams a bit more spread out before?” Grandmother asked.
“Yes. I don’t know why they are becoming more frequent, and more vivid. I swear this time I could feel the heat of the sun as if I were really there.” Mayleen said as she moved her foot slightly over the tile that she had placed her hand through in the dream and attempted to look down, hoping that no one would notice.
“I see. So you’ve made it past the hallway this time? Tell me where we drinking tea or coffee?” grandmother asked with an intriguing face.
“Neither, the cups were empty. You were suppose to be drinking tea but there was nothing in your cup or grandfathers.” Mayleen said when she realized something, “Wait. How did you know that you were in my dream, I never told you.” she said when she was cut off by her mother.
“What are you both still talking about that dream? While you two were busy chit chatting I was busy making the best stack of pancakes I have ever created if I do say so myself.” Mayleen’s mother said as she placed a lot more on the table.
“Could I have some more butter please?” Christopher asked, mouth full of food.
“Of course.” She replied.
“Grandmother.” Mayleen said with a confused look, trying to remember if she had ever told her grandmother the details of her dream before, or if it really was a dream at all, “Did I tell you before that you were in it?”
“Yes of courses child. You just probably don’t remember because you were half asleep at the time. Remember the night sweats you had when you were your brothers age? Remember how I would come to your bedside, and bring you milk?” Grandmother asked.
“That’s right I forgot about that. Wait are you saying that I have had this dream before when I was little to, I really can’t remember.” Mayleen said as she sipped her coffee.
“Yes you did. Parts of it were always fuzzy but you did mention grandfather and I sitting at the table.” she said smiling at her.
“But this time Christopher was holding a crystal and the floor, the tile was.” Mayleen said when she was interrupted.
“Why don’t your have some of these lovely pancakes your mother has made for us, before your brother eats them all.” Grandmother said placing some in front of Mayleen.
Mayleen thought to herself for a moment, looked down at the pancakes, then back at her grandmother who was fiddling with the candlestick that was in the center of the table, flame out, melted to its center.
Bayta : Chapter Two
Later that night Mayleen was tossing and turning in her sleep. She was dreaming, and she found herself back in that same hallway. Shoes hitting against the floor as they always did, knowing that she had to follow the light.
This time, when she reached the kitchen, no one was there. The candle was lit on the table at the end of it’s leg, flickering as the wind passed. It was dark as she walked on until she noticed the tile, in the very place where her brother had sat before.
It was as if there were water on the floor, except the single square of tile held it alone. She was as equally intrigued as she was afraid as she approached it. Colors shown from behind it as if it were a pond glistening the reflections of the sun on a hot day.
Mayleen knelt down beside it. Upon doing so she felt something rub against her hand. Suddenly removing it she noticed a symbol carved into the adjacent tile. On a closer look she realized it was an engraving, some sort of image. It was a dragon perched a top a castle breathing fire. She then brought her self down to read an inscription that was written beneath it when she heard a voice.
“Mayleen. Mayleen…Come and play with us.” Mayleen then gathered her self and sat up looking about the room as the voice echoed around her.
“Who’s there?” She said softly. When no one responded she replied a second time, “Who is there? Show yourself to me. It’s very dark.”
“Mayleen, we’re waiting for you.” the voice said as the water splashed and a fish jumped out from behind the tile turned towards her for a moment, then returned.
“Was that?” Mayleen said out loud to herself then began to take a closer look at the water. As she reached out to touch it she felt its warmth and watched as the drops that had collected on her hand fall off in bits of color, as if she were touching paint.
“But, but how is this possible?” she questioned herself, “Am I dreaming?” she said as she reached her entire arm into the water and began to see if she could feel what was on the other side.
“No, your not.” a voice said from behind her that startled her so much she lost her balance and fell in completely.
After realizing what had happened she quickly puffed up her cheeks, in an effort to be able to hold her breath a little longer. Mayleen opened her eyes and witnessed an array of beautiful fish that wasted no time passing by her, in search of food.
Mayleen felt as if she were out of breath making her way to the top, up and out of the water. But when she opened her eyes she knew that she was no longer in her grandmothers kitchen.
There was grass and trees for miles, from what she could see. The mud that lay beneath her was as hard as stone, and didn’t stick to any part of her as pushed against it gaining her composure, once she stood.
“That’s strange.” She said then began to look around before continuing, “I must be dreaming. I have never seen anything like this. This seems a lot more real.”
“You’re not dreaming. You have come to play with us, just as your promised.” a voice said.
“What, play with who? Who are you?” she asked repeatedly.
She could see that there was no one around but knew that the voice must have come from somewhere, or something.
“Ah miss Mayleen. Your right on time as usual.” A man said as he walked up from behind her carrying a small pouch made of velvet, tied with a silky red ribbon at the top.
Mayleen turn to face him, knowing that he did appear to be a familiar face, but could not quite pin where she had known him from.
“Do I know you?” she asked.
“Yes of course you do. I’m Mr. Pettywither. I’ve placed your crystals in this pouch for safe keeping, for the next time you arrived. You only need one more to finish your journey here. Then you’ll be able to move onto the next world.” he said as he handed over the bag.
Mayleen pulled at the lace until it was untied and peered inside. There were several crystals that shined back at her with the most vivid colors she had ever seen.
“Mr. Pettywither, you see I really don’t remember how I know you. I am quite unsure where I am right now. One minute I’m in my grandmothers kitchen, the next I am in this place. I barely made it out of that pond over there.” She said taking a moment to glance back at it.
“I see. You don’t even remember making the crystals?” he asked as Mayleen shook her head back and forth implying that she didn‘t. “Well that’s good I suppose, since that last one you made took quite a journey.” He said laughing a little then continued, “All’s well. Don’t fret child. I’ll explain the whole thing to you on the way.”
“On the way. On the way to where?” She asked as she placed the pouch in her dress pocket and began to follow him.
“Morda of course. That’s where the last crystal is hidden. If we’re lucky we will get to Morda in an hour, since the weather happens to be wanting to cooperate.” The man said as he licked his thumb and placed it high up in the air, in an effort to tell how fast the wind was blowing.
“You were saying that you were going to explain.” Mayleen said impatiently.
“Of course of course. It all started with your grandmother. She was the first to enter the worlds. When she bought the house that she now lives in.” he said when Mayleen interrupted him, “The house that she’s lived in all her life?”
“Right, right. But you see the house wasn’t always as beautiful as it is today. It was one of those houses with promise, when one puts in enough effort to fix it. Your grandmother found, these world’s, our worlds and restored us by replacing the broken tile that was scattered to pieces, in the kitchen. We have always been here, these worlds have always been here beneath the house.” The man said as they continued to walk.
“Different world’s beneath the house, are you joking?” Mayleen said as she began to laugh then stopped when he continued, “It’s real. These world’s they’re very real. And you’re here now, in one of them. I can’t believe you don’t remember, you’ve been here before. Wait. “He said when he was stopped dead in his tracks, “How old are you now?”
“I’m fifteen. I just turned two days ago, why?” she asked as she stepped over a large rock.
“That’s right, I almost forgot you told me the last time you were here that you were about to turn fifteen. You see, with these worlds as you age you begin to forget things. You may visit one day then forget that we exist the next. It’s the way that our worlds protect themselves. So that as people age they will forget about us and move on with their lives. Basically at the age of fifteen this memory loss begins, until you have no recollection of us at all. However, your grandmother is different. For some reason she never forgot us. She would still be here, with us now, attempting to defeat the Dragon King if it weren’t for her loosing her crystals. You see you need all four to defeat him, that is once you gotten past the other three worlds.” He said as they approached a river.
“Dragon King, four crystals. What exactly do you expect me to do? Are you implying that I will have to defeat a dragon? But dragons only exist in stories.” Mayleen said as the two of them searched for a way to cross the river.
“There, look over there is enough stones for us to walk across.” The man said as he led the way. “I am your head master of some sorts on your journey to collect all four crystals.”
“I suppose this means that I can trust you?” Mayleen said as they began to cross the river.
“Yes, of course you can. I am the most trustworthy man you’ll ever meet. My friends would tell you that very same fact. Or well they would if I had any friends. But as I was saying. Mayleen, you first came here as a child. Just six years old when I first saw you. You’re just as brave as your grandmother, which I’m sure is why she sent you down in the first place.
The four worlds first being ‘Bayta’, the crystal world, the one you’re in now. ‘Linecce’, the desert world, ‘Torrent’, the glass world, and ‘Maycreed’, the dark world where the dragon king resides. The first three worlds aren’t all that bad. There are times when they might get a little tricky but nothing compares to that of Maycreed. It’s deadly and treacherous. That’s why you come to this world, first to train, and then to learn how to use your crystals for battle. “ Mr. Pettywither said.
“This is all a little confusing to me and it’s difficult to take it all in, but lets just say this were a dream, then I should be fine. I should just go along with what ever happens because it’s not really happening.” Mayleen said to herself with a tone of confidence knowing that at that moment she was not all together confident at all.
“it’s a little ways, just up ahead in that direction, and we will find our selves in Morda. The town in very beautiful but your find that the people are not so polite.” he said as he looked back at her, head down, trying hard to keep up.
They walked on, the two of them until they reached the last step and entered a town that held a large sign above it that read, “Morda”, in bright blue letters. There were several people that were scattered around, silently walking back and forth, as if they were doing it with intense purpose.
“Who are they?” Mayleen asked.
“Those are the people I mentioned earlier. Try not to look them in the eyes, they don’t like it when people look them in the eyes.” Mr. Pettywither said as he held his head down clasped Mayleen’s hand and walked on.
The town held many houses that seemed to come to a narrow point once they reached the end. Mayleen could feel cold settling all around her as she looked up at Mr. Pettywither who was fiddling with his coat.
“Where are we going now? The road has stopped at this one house. Are we going inside? It’s getting very cold.” Mayleen said as she began to pull her jacket collar up, higher around her neck.
“No we are not going inside, we’re going around to the backyard. Follow me.” He said as they began walking. The house from the front was picture perfect, lined with fresh brick and an almost green cement that made the house glow with an intent for happiness. However, as the two passed on towards the back of the house Mayleen noticed that it changed from delightful to strange. The entire back side of the house was made of glass. It’s true that the walls were made of glass but it appeared as though the homes interior was also glass, from the picture frames to the furniture. Waiting patiently at the back door was a dog, made of glass, mouth wide open as if he were panting, paw lifted, frozen in time as if he had been scratching at the door.
“Is that, a dog?” Mayleen asked.
“it once was.” Mr. Pettywither said as he made his way over to a small shed that held an oddly shaped door at it’s entrance. It to was made of glass.
“Why is everything made of glass?” Mayleen asked.
“I told your earlier, Torrent is the glass world. Sure it might look beautiful and shiny at first but there are real dangers to this place, as there will be once you enter the other worlds. Since this is the Crystal world you’re a lot safer, while your here. Which, is why the crystals are made here. This world has a piece of each of the other worlds, making you able to see what the other worlds will be like even though it cannot show you everything that you might encounter. Because you need the crystals in order to make it through the other worlds you make them here, out of the material that actually comes from that world itself. The glass crystal you will be making will be your most delicate crystal, very breakable, and you’ll have to take extra care of it, making sure that it doesn’t just clash up against the others in the bag.” Mr. Pettywither said as he looked back at her.
“What’s this?” Mayleen asked as she pointed at the door.
“On the other side of this door everything will be made of glass. The walls the floor, even the people. Don’t be afraid. All I can tell you is that what ever obstacle you pass there will be a question for you to answer. Always answer truthfully otherwise the crystal that you will have created will shatter. This crystal is the most delicate because it is made from the truth. The only thing that will make it stronger are your answers.” he said as he opened the door for her and stepped to the side.
“You’re not coming with me? But how will I know where to go. What do I make the crystal with?” Mayleen asked as she slowly stepped inside but hesitated to continue.
“Trust your self. You will know where to go.” Mr. Pettywither said as he closed the door behind her. A misty fog was all she could see at first. Mayleen took a couple of steps, only able to see the ground that lay directly in front of her.
Mayleen took a couple of deep breaths before speaking, “Hello, is anyone there?” She asked, however there was no response.
As her sight became more clear see realized that she could see a tree up ahead. It to, was made of glass. A glistening crystal that had different colored lights beneath it’s interior. Bright greens, purples, reds, yellow, and blue. Mayleen realized when she reached the tree that it was getting colder than it was before and she could now see her breath in front of her. She reached out to touch the tree when she heard a loud booming voice.
“Who are you? State your name!” The voice demanded.
“My name.?” Mayleen said to herself as if she had forgotten it then continued, “My name is Mayleen, granddaughter to…”Mayleen said when she realized that the tree was as cold as ice, as she watched the drops of water fall from the tips of her fingers.
“This is like…” She began to say when the voice responded.
“I know who you are. Your grandmother was one of the best that never finished. I wish that she could have continued her quest long ago. But all that is gone now since she has forgotten about our worlds.” The voice said as Mayleen looked up at the tree’s branches realizing that it was actually the tree itself that was speaking.
“But she hasn’t forgotten about your worlds. She just lost her crystals, that’s why she never finished.” Mayleen said taking a step back.
“I am quite aware of that! She lost the most important one to, the one that would have taken her to Maycreed to defeat the dragon. Wait, did you say that she hasn’t forgotten about us? That’s impossible.” The tree said.
“I know that’s what Mr. Pettywither said.” Mayleen said as she began to walk around the tree with intrigue.
“So she no doubt sent her granddaughter down to take her place. She must have felt you very special to take on these difficult tasks. Well I won’t keep you any longer than I have a couple of questions for you. Are you prepared to answer them Mayleen, as they call you?” The tree said with a little giggle.
“Yes, I am ready.” Mayleen said unable to think of any question that a tree might ask that she would not be able to answer.
“What is your middle name?” The tree asked.
“My middle name, that’s simple, its Marie.” Mayleen said as she took a seat at tree’s truck and leaned her back up against it as if she had been there a thousand times before.
“Where were your parents married?”
“Married? Mother told me that a thousand times before, or that’s right it was in London in a beautiful church.” Mayleen said with confidence..
“Correct.” The tree said as a beam of green blue light shot out from within the trees trunk and aimed itself in the palm of her hand.
Mayleen watched closely as the light began to change into a small shape that quickly grew. It was a crystal. A clear one that held no light.
“Is this my crystal? That’s all I had to do was answer two simple questions?” Mayleen asked.
“I’m not done yet.” The tree said as it began to ruffle its branches as if to suggest that it was uncomfortable. Mayleen quickly got up and faced the trees trunk.
“Im sorry for making my self so comfortable. I should have asked you first before leaning against you like that.” Mayleen said.
“It’s no problem at all my dear. Now on with the next question. What is the worst thing that you have ever done?”
Mayleen thought for a moment. She thought that maybe this was the hardest question that she would answer because although she had been very good most of her life, there were times when she wished she wouldn’t have made the mistakes that she did.
“Worst thing I have ever done.” She said to herself out loud.
“I know.” Mayleen said hoping that this would be the correct answer as she looked down at the crystal in her hand a couple of time before she responded.
“My grandmother fell sick, she was very ill when I was about six years old. My mother had told me that she was going to visit her and that she would be gone for a month. I begged my mother to let me go but she refused. The night that she left she came into my room to say goodbye and I pretended to be asleep. I could hear my mother crying after she walked out the door. She never liked it when I was mad at her, and I have felt bad about that ever since, and never told her.” Mayleen said as she watched the tree sway slightly as the breeze past.
“And you’ve also never told anyone about that incident until today. Correct.” The tree commented.
“Phew, I was a little worried about that one. Okay, I’m ready for the next question.”
“There’s just one more, for now. Have you ever blamed your brother for something that you did in order to not get into trouble for it?”
“I…no…I…” Mayleen said when the tree interrupted her, “Be careful what you say here. Think about your answer before you speak.
Mayleen thought to herself for a while, knowing that her and her brother were the ideal siblings and that they never fought, let alone blamed each other for things.
“The time that the vase fell.” Mayleen said unsure of her answer.
“Go on.” The tree said as it made an attempt to stand straight up as if it were a person.
“The vase fell in the hall way, when I was twelve. My brother was seven. Our pet cat had knocked over the vase. I was near by and saw it happen but was un able to catch it in time. It shattered into a million pieces. It was a family heirloom. I knew that mother would never believe that the cat did it and punish me severely for it. Just then I heard my brother coming around the corner and I hid behind a door. My brother found the vase on the floor and my mother caught him with the pieces in his hands, blaming him immediately for the damage. So it was my fault even though I didn’t break the vase. It was my fault for not admitting what had happened, and that my brother had nothing to do with it.” Mayleen said beginning to feel really bad about it..
“You are as your grandmother was, honest and true.” The tree said as it leaned down towards Mayleen and with one of its branches held out a leaf that disconnected itself from the twig it was hanging off of and floated down towards the palm of her hand until it landed right above the crystal and disappeared into it as if it had been made of some type of liquid.
The crystal then shown with a bright blue that shot out in all directions. It felt tremendously cold in her hand now to hold it for to long. Mayleen though to quickly toss it into the bag but then realized what Mr.Pettywither said about making sure that it didn’t break. She then looked to the bottom of her clothing a rip a piece off to rap it in before placing it inside.
“So how do I get out of here now that I have the crystal?” Mayleen asked as she turned back to face the tree realizing that the tree was gone as if it just lifted up it’s roots and walked away.
“Now what do I do? I thought that all I had to do was make the crystal. Now I’m all alone in as strange place with no one to guide me. How will I find my way?” She asked her self.