Amy McDonald at http://butterscape.blogspot.com/ has started a story that is being told in installments. You can sign up at her site to write and she will assign you a week. It was my turn this week to continue the story of the red-haired girl and her horse Peg. To see the full story click here: http://butterscape.blogspot.com/p/onceuponatime.html. Illustrations are optional and I took my best shot at creating some to go along with my story line. They are done in Caran D’Ache pencils.
Suddenly the girl with the red hair saw a bus coming towards her through the swirling maelstrom. This seemed incredibly odd but it was the diversion that she needed. Though the wind and debris kept trying to carry her away from the bus it loomed closer and closer and she fought to reach it. Finally it swerved up beside her and the door wrenched open.
She was shocked when she set eyes on the driver. She appeared to be staring at herself, which she knew had to be completely impossible. And yet, in a voice she recognized as her very own the driver said, “There is powerful magic afoot, come inside quickly and I will give you aid.” Dazed and confused by the ever-changing circumstances in which she found herself, the red-haired girl boarded the bus. She hoped that trusting herself was the right choice, but she had few options!
The driver explained that she was a physical manifestation of the strong heroine within the red-haired girl. She explained that she would drive the bus towards the mirror shards while the red-haired girl took time to gather her thoughts and determine what must be done.
The red-haired girl pondered the fact that Mr. Panda had not become a demon and had appeared to be trying to give her advice that would help them all. She began to wonder if he had also been under the enchantment from which she had helped set them all free. But he had warned her of sea turtles and cups of tea and she couldn’t determine how that fit into the puzzle in which she was enmeshed. She had to reach the mirror and put the pieces back. Her best guess was that was how to stop the demon woman.
As she reached this conclusion the bus lurched to a stop and the red-haired girl locked eyes with herself. The driver said, “The mirror shards are right outside but Peg and the demon, Mrs. Goldwater, are approaching quickly. You’ll have to work fast to put the mirror back together!” The red-haired girl leapt from the bus and began to gather the shards glimpsing Peg looming ever closer.
She knelt with the mirror and the shards and fit them back into place as best she could. While it was not perfect, she could see her own crooked reflection and had to hope it would be good enough. She was startled by a whinny from Peg, who was clearly right behind her. She whirled, mirror turned outward to face Mrs. Goldwater, or the demon that she had become. Mrs. Goldwater looked furious as she moved toward the red-haired girl not immediately noticing the mirror. When she saw the mirror it was too late, and she looked into her own twisted reflection. Instantly she turned from flesh and bone to a dark shadow and began to drift back to the sky. At the same time the wonderful, red bus, with her other self, and the maelstrom evaporated to expose a beautiful countryside. Peg, intensely weary, came to her side and nuzzled her neck. Mr. Panda was nowhere to be seen.
When the red-haired girl held the mirror towards Mrs. Goldwater she made a wondrous discovery. There was a map drawn on the back of the mirror. It showed rolling hills edged by a sharp string of mountains. Past the mountains was a lovely blue sea. She believed that was where the two of them were meant to go. Their fate seemed tied to the sea and the sea turtles and mermaids of which she had dreamed. Always frightened that the man in black might close behind, she mounted the tired Peg and set off towards the mountains that she could just make out in the distance. Though flying might be faster, Peg was not strong enough for that after what they had been through. They merely plodded off in the direction of the mountains, sorely tired but happy to be together once again.
to be continued…