by, 02-02-2010 at 12:33 AM (411 Views)
She opened her eyes, silver stars shining above, their light filtering down through the trees. It was beautiful, almost ethereal, but very peaceful. But something wasn't right.
Trees? She thought and reality came rushing back. Where am I? What's going on? Why am I outside...and in a forest? Questions began to buffet her from all sides as panic sunk in. She had no clue where she was, or why she was there. And then the worst question of all hit her. Who am I?
The sudden realization that she couldn't think of who she was stopped all thoughts dead. She was no longer panicked, now she was simply frozen. Terror that she had never felt gripped at her. The trees around her became completely unfamiliar, threatening to tear her apart. But just as suddenly as the terror had set in she wondered why she thought she should be anywhere else.
Could I not just have dreamed about being somewhere else? Why am I so sure I should know who I am? If I know nothing, then why am I afraid? I don't know that anything is out to harm me.
And the clearing was peaceful once more. She took a good look around, paying more attention to the land around her this time. The trees weren't very tightly packed and she could see a fair ways through them. A pool lay not far off, and the water was clearer than she thought water should be. Faint sounds of night seemed to fill the air and she realized she had been so afraid that she hadn't even noticed what was around. This place felt so familiar, but at the same time so foreign. Confused she decided she should find somewhere decent to be at night rather than in the woods.
Not that I have any idea if there is any reason to fear the woods, she thought, but it still just felt right. But which way is out?
Looking as best she could through the trees by starlight she thought she could make out where the trees were getting thinner. Having no better bets as to which way to go she set out. As she left the clearing behind fear began to creep up again, clawing its way slowly into her mind, threatening to paralyze her. But she found herself wondering what there was to be afraid of, and just as suddenly the fear was gone, replaced by the barrage of questions. Focusing on the task at hand she shut out the rain of questions and focused simply on getting of the trees.
Another two hundred yards and the trees thinned until they stopped completely. Without the trees to stop it, the bright moon shone enough for her to see clearly. She was standing just off the side of a worn path. The dirt there had been packed so tight that nothing grew, and there were even twin ruts running along it, certainly this path had seen plenty of wheels. Another fifty yards past the road and the ground simply stopped. Walking over to investigate she found that it was a cliff, a cliff that overlooked a vast body of water. By nothing more than the moonlight she couldn't see anything beyond the water, but only daylight would reveal the horizon. Stepping back from the edge she looked down the road and was just able to make out what looked like buildings of some kind.
Well, it looks like a settlement of some kind, and any place with houses has somewhere for a traveler to sleep.
So she began to walk along the old beaten path. Following it until she reached the village.