Iridescent Spirits

Shelter of a constantly changing Soul.


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“Well, dear. I firmly believe that every one of us has some powers. Each different, that affects differently others around us. One is more visible, the other is not. But I am certain that such unexplainable powers do exist and we only need to find them inside us”

– Grandma from Viridian – The legend

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Colour Four: Aquamarine – The Tale of the Tiny Monster

After she left the forest, the shiny light that surrounded everything dazzled her for a moment. She hadn’t seen such a sight in a long time. She was wandering around aimlessly, when she glimpsed at a stranger with a huge backpack.
For a moment, they stared at each other surprised. The woman the stared at the man, and the man started at the frightened woman. Then, not saying anything, the stranger shrugged and continued his journey. As the monster followed him with her eyes, she noticed tons of people wandering to the same direction as the traveller.

The monster decided to see what was happening there. At first, she found herself in a little town. Its name card announced; Royal Town. Busy people were buzzing around everywhere she looked, and the enticing smell of cakes and other different dishes filled the air, throughout the square.

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Colour Three: Carmine, The Crystal Queen

Royal City, the centre of our little country has always been the place where the honourable and highly respected royal family lived in their magnificent mansion. The Crystal Castle, as most people called it, was placed on an enormous cliff, in a commanding position above the sea.

Each year, for only one day, the castle was opened to the nobility, being invited to a ball, to celebrate the long lasting reign of the family and the prosperity of our country as well.

Once, a young lady, who came from distant lands, was also invited to the party. Her name was Carmine. When she arrived, two identical doormen opened the huge wrought iron gates, and soon led her to the ball room.

At the time she stepped into the room, a view, she had never seen before, petrified her.  The walls were covered with silk in different colours, and only a few candles lit the room poorly. But what she was most amazed by, was the people she saw in front of her. At first sight, they all wore classical ball gowns, and masks covered their faces and strange clothes that seemed to be heavy to wear. They were made of a strange fabric that glittered whenever they turned round and back to the rhythm of the music the band played. At first, all looked like if they had not been coloured but during their movements their outfits glittered in different colours, as if they were crystals, depending on from which side she looked at them.

The dance they performed was also something unusual to Carmine. Their movements were classical but halting at the same time.  Carmine was just standing there alone, a little ashamed of her regular gown, watching the myriad of different colours moving. Suddenly, a young man appeared before her, and stretched his hand out to invite the lady for a dance. Carmine did not say anything, only nodded. A few minutes later they were already moving along with the crowd. The man was so good at this kind of dance that they really melted into the scene. After the song ended the couple went out to the balcony where the man gave a flower, deep red like blood, to the lady. Without words, she took the flower and put it under her dress. She did not realise that a thorn cut her finger and a little drop of blood left a stain on the marble floor.

Not long after the ball, Carmine got married to the young man, the son of the royal family. They raised their four children in extreme wealth and kept holding their marvellous balls each year. Carmine’s maids always dressed her tight clothes to hide every little flaw of her body. In the beginning she did not like these clothes but everyone in the court stuck to the rule of ultimate perfection.

As years passed, Carmine got used to and even liked those inconvenient clothes. She got used to them so much that she did not put them off even when she went to bed, despite she could not sleep well anymore. Her hair was decorated with her diamond crown, the crystals of which slowly crept down to her face and connected to her mask that she also wore every single time.

Day by day she marvelled looking at herself in the mirror. Her beauty was known worldwide, „The Crystal Queen” people started to refer to her by this name because of her shining beauty. But sometimes, her reflection in the mirror seemed to be someone completely different, as if she was looking at a stranger. Though the reflection copied Carmine’s every little movement like a slave, the woman who lived in the mirror, had her long, ink-black hair flatter, and her ocean blue eyes were not covered by make-up, nor mask. Her dress was a simple, white nightgown, and she had no shoes. She very was familiar to Carmine, though she could not remember where she could have seen this girl before.

But one day, the reflection, independently of Carmine, placed her palm on the glass of the mirror and started to speak. Carmine could not hear any of the reflection’s words. The girl seemed to be terrified and desperate and the queen tried to read her lips, in vain. Later, the reflection moved on her own more frequently. By that time, Carmine hardly slept and ate, and still did not know who that scared girl in her mirror was.

Long time passed when the Queen realised that, although the girl could be noticed easily, from the room that should also have been reflected, could not be seen anything. No furniture, no lights, only the girl and darkness. And one more thing; stalks. After a deeper look, Carmine noticed that heavy and thick stalks writhed around the reflections neck and arms, as if they were trying to trap her. Then, for the first time, Carmine got frightened by the mirror. Maybe there was a reason why the girls was imprisoned there, she thought to herself. But, no matter how hard she tried she could not remember whether the girl had been there when she moved to the castle. Nor the mirror. She was unable to remember any of them.

During nights, the Queen’s sweet dreams were not only disturbed by her clothes but also the knocking of the girl in the mirror. The harder she tried to ignore her, the harder the reflection thumped.

Soon, the Queen gave birth to her fifth child, a little girl. On that night, she stepped to the mirror, and as she had seen it from the girl, she placed her hand on the cool glass of the mirror. The girl, after a few seconds copied Carmine. Their palms seemingly met, however Carmine felt the girl is far away from her. She saw her unreachable.

Their glance met, and for the first time the same emotion reflected in both pairs of the ocean blue eyes; despair. All of a sudden, the glass of the mirror, under their palms, cracked. Carmine stepped back led by fear, she did not know what happened. At that time, the reflection grabbed something unnoticeable from behind her back and threw it towards the mirror. Sharp and searing pain flew throughout the Queen’s whole body. This time, it was her turn; her expression was the perfect copy of the reflection’s look. All over the crown and mask of the Queen cracks appeared and soon on her dress and body as well.  Then, the stalks that had been restraining the reflection, slowly slackened and disappeared in the darkness. The mirror shattered into pieces. The reflection stepped out of the mirror but it was as dark as her prison was. She was scared and could only think of that all of her efforts were in vain. She looked around but could not see any escape. As she took a few steps forward in the darkness, something stung her feet. She stepped on the remains of Carmine. All of a sudden, beginning from the pile, the floor and the walls started to crack and everything shattered just like a piece of ordinary and cheap glass. The moonlit night sneaked in the room bringing the pleasant summer breeze and the scent of the ocean with itself. Now, for first in a long time, the reflection could breathe. Finally, she also could feel her limbs and body that was vibrating.

She already could hear her servants and possibly his husband, the king, approaching the place of the disaster. She gently put her new-born baby in her arm, went out to the half-demolished balcony and threw herself in the depths. It was a silent night, only the rumble of the sea could be heard.

The next day  Royal City was buzzing loudly with the case of the death of mother and child. Some of them told about an in-labour death, others said it was the king, who killed them both and according to the rest the whole story was a well-constructed lie. But the truth remained within the walls of the castle. After the incident, the king became more engaged in his work letting their children be raised by the staff of the mansion.

The vessel was rolling on the torrents, and a little girl was running on the deck chasing some birds that were flying around there. The woman, who was taking care of her, with something unrecognizable in her hand stood by the rail, marvelling at the reddish scenery of the rising sun, when that thing stung her finger. It was still as sharp as on that night even after those many years, she smiled. ‘The Crystal Queen is dead.’ And she dropped that thing, along with her brilliantly shining, but scattered mask, into the sea.

 carmine

Sarah was touched by Grandma’s story. She did not only understood the moral of it, but something started to bother her that has never popped into her mind before. Without thinking she said,

“You are Carmine, aren’t you?” Asked confidently as if she already knew the answer.

“Who knows?! It was such a long time ago” the answer was faint.

“And you also met the Viridians” this was not a question anymore.

“Why do you think it so?” Grandma was really surprised, but Sarah did not know what exactly surprised her.

“My leg” she started. “On my first day here you healed my ankle within minutes. It’s impossible, it was broken I could feel it!” And then she said what she had suspected for a long time. “You did it with magic, only the Viridians knew, didn’t you?” The old lady remained silent, instead of words her shining eyes and kindly smiling lips answered.

“What would you like to do, Dear?” Her voice was full of pure love.

“I want you to teach me magic!”


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Viridian – The Legend

“So, Grandma, what was that thing in the forest?” Phineas now was able to collect his thoughts and pour them into words. They were already sitting at the table about to start eating.

“Do you really want me to tell?” Grandma seemed to be strange with this topic.

“Of course I wanna know! That thing tried to attack us. Whatever it is, it’s dangerous.”

“Hm. Then so be it. I will share with you what I know” and with that the old lady started to speak. “You have heard about the story of the monster who lives in the forest, haven’t you?” She looked at both of the youngsters. They did not say a word, only nodded. “And, have you ever heard about the Viridians?” The kids looked at her with a puzzled face, then shook their heads.

“The people who used to live in forest were called Viridians.”

“People? There was life in the forest long ago?” Phineas was shocked. He could not imagine how people could live in a place so horrible.

“Not that long time ago, Dear” Grandma interrupted. “They were strange people. Strange but yet amazing. Unique creatures with inspiring energy and extraordinary manners. They were the caretakers of our world.” The children looked at her eyes wide open, so she finally began telling the story.

 “Many years ago, our world was completely different. At that time, that crossroads did not separate the people who lived in its four directions but connected them. That place served as a meeting point where people from different nations could maintain good relationships with one other. It was where merchants earned their livings and itinerants could find shelter. All the four nations lived in peace with each other. There was no mocking or fight as it is nowadays. They created an unbreakable unity. Or at least it seemed to be unbreakable. And that happened due to the courtesy of a special kind of people. They were the inhabitants of the forest, which at that time lived its blooming. These people were the ones who took care of it…

The forest itself used to be the extreme opposite of what it is now. Its people were the reason of it, the nation which lived there years ago. No one knew when and how they got there. The only thing that was certain was that each of them had light brown hair and extremely green eyes with a little shade of blue, which made them hard to notice if someone did not know what to look for”

At this point, the old lady glanced at Phineas meaningfully but she soon continued talking.  

“That is how they got their name; The’ Viridians.’ They were perfect citizens to that forest. These people were famous for their peculiar culture. During their heyday, that place was something otherworldly beautiful, its people fulfilled it with light and life.  They regularly held big feasts and festivals to which anyone was highly welcome. Their sweet voices spread through the area to all the other three directions of the huge crossroads. It was them and their nurturing brightness that unified people.
Only until something evil appeared among the Viridians. It belonged to them as a solid part of the society, so similar that the rest could not realise its threat until it was too late.
The wide-spread version of the legend says that it was a wolf that blended in with the Viridians and slowly destroyed them to gain their magical powers and to be the ultimate ruler of the magical forest. I do not have the right to decide whether if it was true or not. But it is a fact, that that creature had caused several problems to the society. It ruined their feasts, demolished their homes and made their whole life nothing but a mere struggle. It stormed severely from time to time even at the other sides of the crossroads.

As time went by, these people started to take up the attitude of the wolf. At least, they did not care about the forest as much as they used to. Nor about each other. Soon, the nation of the green ones, along with their marvellous traditions, started to fade away. The wolf, deep inside, did not want this. I believe it only wanted some drops of the light the Viridians possessed. But it was too late, the wheel of time could not be turned back.

The green ones after having the other nations turned their backs on them, lost the meaning of their lives and they got on the brink of dying out. They disappeared from the forest one after the other, leaving it to decline. Some of them became decayed trees, the others scattered into rocks or leaves. The light also disappeared with them, and stormy darkness replaced it. However, the essence of them was said to be remained in the forest. Along with the wolf. It has been waiting there sunk into depression and despair. All alone. Until only a tiny glade, hidden somewhere deep, preserved a little fragment of a once beautiful history.

It is still strongly believed that the wolf is able to imitate the sweet songs of the long gone green ones, luring innocent people to the now deserted forest, to devour their souls. But I believe, that the wolf only wants company. To gain back the richness of the forgotten past.

That is what you have seen there. What happened after you left, I do not know. Was that the monster from the tale whom you saw? I do not know. Who was the real monster? I do not know that either. I do not think anybody knows. My opinion is that it was not the monster itself that did the damage but something else. But what I am certain about is that not everything is what it looks like.”

Loud claps and pops from the outside prevented Grandma from finishing her thoughts. Sarah ran to the window and could see people streaming on the streets while they sang old, well-known songs with joy.

“What are they doing?” she kept watching them with amazement.

“They are going to the Royal City Port, to an annual masquerade that is held at this time of the year on the other side of the sea. It is something that replaced our old Crossroads Festival” Grandma now turned to Phineas:

“You should go there too.”

“Me? Why?” He was confused.

“Because if you went there you could find answers to the questions that are whirling in your head. That is why.”

“But still..”

“And!” she spoke up and raised her finger to gain attention. “You need some entertainment as well.”

“Okay” he sighed resignedly. “Tomorrow in the morning I’ll leave.”

“All right! Good night then, Dear.”

“Yeah!” And with that Phineas left the room.

“Grandma, do you believe in magic? That people can have magical powers?” Sarah asked while they were clearing the table.

“Well, dear. I firmly believe that every one of us has some powers. Each different, that affects differently others around us. One is more visible, the other is not. But I am certain that such unexplainable powers do exist and we only need to find them inside us” the old lady smiled and gently patted the young one’s head.

“Why did you send Phineas to the masquerade? You have reasons beside what you said, don’t you?

“Clever girl!” Grandma smiled. ”You know him well already. He is very stubborn and wayward. He already acts like an adult man. But there are things he has to know, and I cannot tell him everything. I have ideas and opinions but those are not facts. And he does need facts.”

“I see” she sank into her thoughts.

“And what about you, Dear?”

“About me? What do you mean?”

“You have some issues as well, I know. You can stay here until eternity if you desire, but problems never solve themselves.”

“I haven’t decided what to do yet” she looked sad by the question and now she remained silent.

“Keep calm, Dear, take your time. But until then, let me tell you another old story.”


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Viridian (Part Two)

She was lying on the ground in the middle of the shiny glade. Something gently touched her chin that was wet from tears and soil. That thing was an extremely dry and light hand that unpleasantly scratched her face. The hand pulled her head high. The sun was still shining brightly so she could not see the face that belonged to the hand but all of a sudden, a powerful stream of well-known emotions warmed her whole body. The shadowy shape soon started talking to her. The sweet voice was more than familiar bringing the spirits of the past to life once again.

“Remember! Why were you after them?” asked the shape kindly. The tiny monster was staring in front of herself silently. She thought back to the two youngsters who had entered the forest recently. She could see them leaving hastily and unbelievably scared. Like everybody else before. She saw them turning their backs at her and leaving her behind. Suddenly, her eyes filled with tears as she realised that they had always been escaping from her.

The shape then made a sound that suggested that it was smiling. Gently patted the head of the tiny monster bringing her back from the depth of her thoughts.

“Go! Go and show them that they misunderstood you! To all of them!” the shadow encouraged her. The tiny monster hearing this, felt a sudden strength flowing through her veins. She turned to the direction of the sound, now she could see the face which was made of colourful leaves that let the sun shine through the pieces of it. She wiped her tears, righted herself and whispered.

“Here I come!” she closed her eyes and the power she suddenly felt drew a smile on her otherwise sad face. A loud thunder crashed in the sky and a stormy wind came from the darker spots of the forest. The sudden power of the storm reached every people in the surrounding villages making them stop whatever they were doing and stare curiously at the skies.

The tiny monster stood up with an invincible gleam in her green eyes and instead of her monstrous, deformed shape, she became thin and fragile again. Her tatty hood fell off her head revealing her long, chestnut hair that flattered in the air. She started running as fast as she could. From the distance, where she soon left the leaf-people, she looked like a majestic bird flying with the wind. She chased the light, ceaselessly looking for a spot where she could leave the forest.

While she was running the stormy wind swept through the forest destroying the abandoned wooden houses clearing away every little trace of a grievous past. As the leaf people saw the tiny monster off, they smiled and collapsed again, letting the whirlwind reach and blow them off, losing the opportunity to gather ever again.

But the monster did not look back anymore. She just kept running until she found a path hidden among the decayed trees and she soon disappeared in the light.


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Colour Two: Viridian (Part One)

“So, have you ever been there?” Phineas asked her all of a sudden.

“In the forest?” Sarah was very surprised. “Never. It was forbidden to go there,” before continuing she stopped for a minute. “Though, I shouldn’t be here either,” replied with a happy little smile on her face. They were sitting on the grass resting their feet in the cool lake water, behind Grandma’s house.

“You know, you’ve changed a lot since you got here. At least now you have shoes” Phineas smiled as well.

This statement made Sarah laugh loudly. She looked at her white ballet flats she got from the old lady. “Yes, I had lost the old ones and my parents said they did not have enough money to buy me a new pair. But yes, I like living here pretty much,” she explained thoughtfully.

The boy started to think about it. “Did you regret? Leaving them behind?”

“To be honest, I don’t know. I like living here more than there but they are my family after all. But..I don’t think they miss me. Or if they do, it’s because of the housework,” she smiled bitterly. “But hey! We’ve got away from the point! Have you ever been there? In the forest?” Her slightly depressed mood changed into unbelievable excitement.

Phineas became so surprised by the sudden change that he at first couldn’t say a word.

“Ooh, yes! I’ve been there once. But I was about six so I cannot remember every little detail,” he stopped for a minute. “Okay, I have to say that I was a little child so I wasn’t familiar with the horrific tales that were and still are famous all around the area. Especially the one with the monster in the forest. Have you heard about that story?

“Well, yes.” She blushed. “Actually, in my village, people were so afraid of that monster that these stories were taught at school,” admitted slightly ashamed by the old-fashioned thinking of her villagers.

“Impressive,” stated the boy jokingly.

“Anyway, what was it like?” Sarah was enthusiastic.

“It was dark. Very very dark and scary. Actually, I can’t remember how I had got there but there were others apart from me.”

“Who? The monster?” She interrupted continuously.

“Hah, I don’t know. I think I knew them but I can’t remember their faces. A couple took care of me there. They were strange. Kind but strange. I was afraid of them. We were at a house made of wood and on its yard there was a swing and they took me there to play. I used that swing regularly, and someone from that couple was always with me. I don’t know how long I had been there but I can’t remember Grandma being there, at least not from the beginning, so I suppose it wasn’t her who played with me on the swing.” Phineas stopped again waiting for Sarah to interrupt but she was speechless, so he kept speaking.

“The other thing I remember is that I was standing on a pathway alone and cried. And what is interesting is that I called my Mom. But actually, I can’t remember my parents at all. It was always Grandma who took care of me.”

“Hmm,” Sarah sunk into her thoughts. “How did it happen that you moved to your Grandmother?” She asked.

“I don’t really know. She appeared once and brought me here. Ever since I haven’t seen those other two.” It seemed that he won’t say anything more. “Wanna go there?” He asked driven by a sudden idea.

“Where?” She screamed. “To the forest?”

“Yes.”

“Are you serious? Won’t it be a problem?” Sarah was scared.

“Why would it be a problem? We just go there, look around and come home. We will hurry, so nobody will notice,” he shrugged.

“But what would they say? And Grandma? Won’t she be angry with us?” Sarah seemed to be full of doubts and worries. “By the way where is she now? I haven’t seen her since breakfast.”

“Easy!” Phineas tried to calm her down. “You are not at Royal village anymore, it’s Own town! No one would ever tell you what to do here, okay?” Sarah just nodded silently. “And Grandma has probably withdrawn to her library and will be reading all day,” he added with a calmer tone.

“She has a library?” She seemingly couldn’t catch the point. Phineas didn’t respond to this, just nodded.

“So, wanna go there?” He asked again. The girl was thinking a bit, biting her lips, her deep brown eyes were full of excitement. But she soon nodded and with that, they set off.

On their way, the villagers they met smiled and greeted them. There was freedom in the air, as no one sent them suspicious grins or tried to stop them. To the girl it was very unusual but pleasant. She still couldn’t believe that life could be that easy. Soon they left the village and arrived at the crossing they both knew pretty well. None of them said a word when they left the deserted access road that led to her old village. They continued their way to the depth of the forest.

The closer they got to the forest, the colder the weather became. It was like they entered another world. At the edge of the forest they had to stop. So many trees stood in front of them that grew so close to each other that they seemed to create an unbreakable wall. At that point they did not know what to do. All of a sudden, a bird, maybe an owl, flew above their heads with screaming at a sharp voice that sounded like an eldritch screech, which made them shiver. At that moment the girl looked at the boy checking if she didn’t lose him, and she realised something. His whole appearance melted into the scene. It was outstanding, though she did not notice it earlier in the colourful village. His chestnut hair and green eyes gave a sharp contrast to the dark colours of the forest. They were green? Not only. Those eyes had a little tone of blue in them. She thought that there was a word for that colour she just couldn’t remember. Another strange thought came to her mind that the forest might have looked just like that once, and the boy, with his appearance, condemned what it became.

“I can see a pathway there!” His voice woke her up from deep thinking. There was something indeed. It looked like a path that was created by people but it became abandoned letting weed grow on it like it wanted to the hide something from curious eyes. Sarah wouldn’t have noticed it unless Phineas hasn’t brought it to her attention. He was squatting there pulling out some branches from the way and holding his hand out, waiting for the girl to grab it. She hesitated for a bit of a time, looking right in the strange green eyes. And then she remembered.

“Viridian!” She whispered to herself.

“Excuse me?” Phineas looked a bit puzzled still squatting, waiting for her.

“Nothing!” Said Sarah and hastily grabbed his hand. Deep inside, she trusted him even though they did not know each other for such a long time. Then she though that after all he was the one who took her to the village for treatment, this way changing her life into something better.

They set off to the path that led to the depth of the forest. It was a narrow and short path, they had to stoop and only could go one after the other. They were walking slowly and the deathly silence of the forest urged them not to say a word. Finally, they could see the end of the aisle that led to something bigger they couldn’t realise at first. When they arrived at it, they stopped in amusement by what they saw. A tiny glade was located in the middle of the forest. There, the sun was shining brightly unlike the other parts of the forest. Birds were singing happy songs and diligent bees flew from one flower to the other. And then, all of a sudden a light breeze came from nowhere lifting up a bunch of colourful leaves to the air. While fluttering, they clang together, creating a scene of ballet-like dancing silhouettes of people. They danced through the glade and during their movements the sunshine made the leaves look like they were changing their colours, which made the performance more pulsating. The youngsters stood there astonished, smiling happily at the revelation that evolved in front of their eyes.

As the dancers moved along near the edge of the glade, the guests noticed a dark spot behind them. It grabbed their imagination so they decided to walk along, to explore that area. But they soon regretted it as it was even darker than the spot at the entrance. If it can be, the silence was even scarier than it was earlier and it created an unworldly atmosphere both wildly beautiful and fiendishly frightening. There were wooden houses that must have been abandoned years ago. Heavy rains and time left their traces on the houses. They had no roofs, their doors were missing and the windows were broken probably by storms. The pair wandered through the area finding objects that demonstrated that there was life once. Soon, they noticed another lodge that was in the same condition but it was somehow different. It was bigger than the others and did not seem as old as the rest of the abandoned village. On its yard there was an old swing that had trees grown in the middle of it finding their ways throughout the decayed timbers.

When they entered the house, they got shocked. It was full of dust and dirt, used wooden and ceramic dishes were piled on the table, and mauled chops were rotting thrown away on the floor wherever they looked. Some of them were fresh, the others were now only bones eaten by ants marching on the floor. The curtains and the carpets were torn into pieces and the whole place was filled with heavy and sickening air. Led by curiosity Sarah and Phineas separated in the lodge to look round. The girl went to the old and disused fireplace on which old pictures were lined up. With a closer look they were rather oil-paintings similar that Sarah had seen earlier in Grandma’s house. Those pictures were painted of people but faded at a rate that nobody could have been recognised. Although, there was a picture of a little child whose face was very familiar to her. Of course it was familiar since she had been studying that face only about an hour ago. She grabbed that old picture and removed some dust with her hands. At that time the boy went to the back of the lodge not caring about the pictures. He was even more curious, wanted to know what kind of a creature could live in circumstances like these. Because it was obvious that this place was inhabited or abandoned just lately. He soon came back. He was rather running.

“Can you hear it?” Asked with terror. The girl distracted by the sudden question couldn’t understand it.

“Wha-?” but then she heard it too. The sound of heavy steps that stomped in a ragged pace on the wet soil, approaching the lodge. Both of them were petrified with fear.

The door opened with a terribly loud crash and a huge shadow stood in the way of light that intended to come in.  That something was enormous, its body was deformed and in fact, it couldn’t be told what it was. A beast obviously. Of its face nothing could be seen but a pair of shining eyes. With those eyes, the beast looked at the girl and despite of its size moved very fast. It reached for her but instead of fingers, its hand ended in enormous and sharp claws. Sarah, stiffed by the realisation what the beast wanted to do, did nothing just stood there and dropped the picture to the floor. Then she felt a grab on her arm. It was Phineas who started to pull her to the back of the lodge. It came out that there was a back door, he found but did not have time to tell about, and through which they managed to get out of the hut. Though they didn’t know which one was the right direction they ran as fast as they could because the monster followed them.

While they were running they crossed the glade again. It was nothing but a glance but they could see the leaf-people there. They did not dance anymore, instead they were standing, watching them escaping. They resignedly shook their heads as they saw the children off and in the next moment they went to pieces returning to be a pile of lifeless leaves again.  At the same time, the monster stopped following the children and fell on its knees right at the edge of the glade, still in the safe darkness of the forest. It roared furiously like an animal, so loudly that the children who were now far from there could hear it to their terror. As the sun came into sight it started to shine on the shape of the kneeling monster. The warm sunlight slowly reached its enormous hand revealing that its sharp monstrous nails were only long, skinny fingers of an even skinnier hand. Also, its big and dark head turned out to be covered by a hood made of brown textile that was decorated with huge holes. Under the hood, its long, shiny hair covered her sad face. As she put her hands to her heart the monstrous roar became a poignant cry of a fragile human.

But the children were too far to see that change and they had bigger problems. As they were desperately seeking for escape, the forest raged around them. Trees fell down forcing them to dodge to a direction they did not know and time to time enormous logs fell in their way. Furious stalks clung to their clothes, hindered them leaving. It was all like if the forest came to life and it couldn’t decide whether to expel them or lock them up in itself. When they were in safe distance to the forest they stopped for a little while to rest.

“I never ever want to go back there!” claimed the girl heavily breathing.

“Never” Phineas agreed, though it sounded more like a question. He was not sure if he really didn’t want to go back there. He felt a sudden sorrow for the monster as he remembered leaving behind a sad woman years ago. He played with the thought that the monster might be lonely and with that he felt guilty by their rude behaviour even though he couldn’t be sure if the monster wanted to harm them or not. He sent these thoughts away and suggested the girl to go home. They were probably thinking alike because on their way to home, when they passed by the access road again, the girl thought that maybe she should visit her old village someday.

When they entered Own town, people did the same when they left. They were buzzing busily like bees but did not forget to greet the children with a smile. It was just like the boy said; nobody scolded them for what they did or where they went, so just continued their way to home.

“I’ll take a look at grandma” said the boy.

“Okay. I think I’m having a shower. And have a rest before dinner, I’m tired,” she disappeared at the landing.

“I guess you are. Then meet at dinner!” And with that he went to Grandma’s huge library. She was sitting on the couch with a book on her lap, breathing calmly. She fell asleep again during reading. But as he looked closer, Grandma’s fingers were stained with ink. She was writing something. He tried to take away the book from Grandma not waking her but when he closed the book something caught his attention. That book was half empty, with more blank pages than the ones filled with words but he noticed something interesting on the bottom of the last written page;

And maybe that creature, whatever it was, just wanted someone who would rescue it. And perhaps it is still waiting for that person who will finally lead it back to that shiny glade. 


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Colour One: Purple

She was standing in the middle of the crossing. The crossing that separated the Royal town from Royal village, where she lived, and what people just called ‘the village’. They always warned her not to go right, nor left just straight along the road to reach the centre of Royal town. She obeyed but the truth is that she always kept standing there for hours waiting for something to happen. Something that forces her to change her usual path. The spring breeze was so light that it playfully fluttered her incredibly fair hair yet she thought she was going to suffocate. She wondered about what would happen if she turned left. According to the locals, at the end of that way, another town existed, which was called Own town, where strange things happen. It was dangerous, or at least they said so, but not as wild as the right path, leading to a deep and dark forest with solid storm clouds above it, where she really never wanted to go.

But on this very day something was different. She was different indeed, but that was nothing new at all. Before she would have lost the regular fight with her own self, putting her bare feet on the road leading to the everyday greyness, she noticed a huge dust cloud approaching fast from the left. It had the silhouette of a carriage which was pulled by a purple pig. That pig looked like it was escaping from something, for example from the boy who drove the carriage. As the shape came gradually closer, the girl saw that the boy was rather riding the pig in order to make it stop. This scene was apparently something extraordinary but she had no time to be astonished as the carriage was rushing so fast that the girl couldn’t jump over and simply got hit by it.

After a few blank minutes a sharp pain in the ankle was the first thing she felt. By then the carriage had stopped next to her and the pig somehow managed to escape. It seemed to be proficient in it. The boy hastily jumped down from the carriage to help the girl.

“Looks like, it has broken.” Said calmly, without any introduction and offered a lift to Own town for some treatment. The girl, maybe because of the shock, did not resist. She had an unsolicited vision of her parents getting angry by her going there but she just ignored it.

At first sight, Own town wasn’t strange. The only thing it was different from hometown was that the houses were painted vivid colours, each completely different from the other but still somehow unified. In the yard of a certain house the girl could notice the pig sleeping under the bushes.

“Thanks, for bringing the pig back!” the voice was soft and kind coming from the front of the house. A seemingly young lady appeared in front of them, however a few silver lines in her ink-black hair suggested that she was older than she looked.

“Oh, dear.” She looked at the girl. “This will take a few days to heal.” Said warmly.

“My leg?” asked the girl.

“No dear” the lady laughed with sympathy. “That will be less than a moment. I am talking about the other thing.” The girl didn’t understand it. In her town, a broken bone needed weeks to be recovered. Although, it is true that her villagers wouldn’t know what to do with it. Especially her parents. They may let her rest for a little while but as soon as she was able to work again, they would force her to help out in the fields as usual. She was truly surprised by the prompt and unselfish action of the old lady. She had the same warm aura as the boy. Probably, that was something typical to these villagers.

The company then headed to a bright room, its decoration as delicate as the lady herself. The woman disappeared and soon came back with a large bouquet of herbs in her hands.

“Are these all for my leg?” managed to find her voice again. Although the old lady was the nicest person she ever met she was somehow afraid of her.

“No, dear. Their only purpose is to cheer you up.” Said with a smile. And with that, started to take care of the ankle while crooning a warm and very familiar song. Smelling the calming scent of the flowers the girl thought the procedure must have been some kind of magic because the pain in the ankle almost immediately ceased but in fact just in order to reappear in her chest.

After the treatment was complete, the girl stayed there for a while to become completely recovered. During those days she helped the lady around the house, the same she did at home, but yet it was more refreshing, something completely different. Also, the people of that village were far nicer than at home. Every once in a while, random people she met asked her about her leg even though they didn’t know her. But she knew this would not last forever. In the morning of the last day, she thanked the lady for the gentle care and, a bit sadly but full of experience and determination, headed back to her village.

When she arrived at home, she couldn’t find her parents anywhere in the dark and cold house. They were working in the fields as it could be expected. Later, when they came home none of them showed any concern about where the girl had disappeared in the past few days. Instead of listening to her story, they sent her to the town to buy some ingredients for dinner. She didn’t say a word, just calmly set off.

While she was walking, the villagers started to flow out to the street, pointing at her with their fingers and whispering behind her back;

“She went to the other village!” while others were amazed by her courage;

“And she survived!” But mostly they all disapproved her;

“I knew that someday she will be a trouble for us! Just look at her hair! None of us looks like this!” Though, by now she has become indifferent to them. They were right; this really wasn’t the place where she belonged.

Approaching the crossing she realized that the left path has changed. Now it wasn’t deserted, instead, blooming bushes and trees stood on both sides of the road. Again, she stopped for a moment to think, took a deep breath and, with a smile on her face, turned left now intentionally. And then, she knew that next time she will be the one riding the purple pig.