Jan 08
ameliajane's picture

Stumbling Into The World

   I had been walking for years. Each footstep was heavy with exhaustion, while the aching spread up through my legs. My lungs had collapsed from the sheer effort it took to keep walking. Yet every step seemed important, important that I should keep going. I didn’t have the slightest clue why. 

    The thick leaves of the trees provided some refuge from the sun, concealing me in their pleasant shade. It was late afternoon from what I could tell, and the forest looked peacefully awake. Squirrels ran through the trees, while pine needles softly covered the ground I walked upon. The small path was twisty, curving upwards at the sides, lifted by thousands of roots. I stumbled only once before catching myself and continuing on. 

    I tried to recall how I had happened along this path. Why on Earth I would dream of venturing into the deep woods of the forest. But I hadn’t a clue. Just as I hadn’t a clue what day it was, what time… especially where I was. I had a vague recollection that it was September. A normal month. A time when the sun is warm, but not hot. A time where the breeze blows gently through the trees, making you shiver, but not that much. A time when all you can focus on are the colors that wander through your vision, the little green that's left is on fat bushes. 

    But a sudden break is the norm had me startled out of my wondering. It was an opening far ahead. The sun streaked out from the clearing up ahead, creating golden rays of sunlight that struck the floor of the forest. Thick mossy trees surround the edges of the clearing, stooping over, as if they are the entrance to the next world beyond. 

    It takes me a long while of stumbling before I can propel myself forward fast enough to keep at a light jog. My feet scream for me to stop, but the hope of the clearing stays strong around my mind. It’s a painful travel, the yards before reaching the entrance, and I gasp for breath when I stop right before the trees. My hands lean against my knees. My body is bent over from exhaustion. But I look up through the blinding sun and see a miracle. 

    There are tall grass’s swaying in the breeze. Little blue bells are scattered throughout the field, like sprinkles on ice cream. Each leaf of every plant shines gold when the sun rays lick it.The rest of the forest creates this little cove around the grass, containing the magic within its borders. 

    I take a small step forward, somewhat carefully, as if I might disturb the meadow. My eyes are wide with wonder at the small world I have happened upon. But a smaller sight puts tears in my eyes. To my right a small cottage lies in the corner of the meadow. It’s a small building made from light brown logs. The roof is a deep brown, harboring the secrets of the people who live there. There are little stairs that lead up to the red door. I slowly take a step closer, hearing small shrieks of laughter. 

    There are two flashes of movement, darting around in the grass. I can sense that they are nearby. Blonde locks of hair occasionally bounce up from the grass as the two children run around in delight. Their hair matches the golden sunlight, and they look like spirits flying around. A feminine squeal escapes one child, echoing around the meadow. I can barely see them, until they run right past me. But one spots me on their way by, stopping so suddenly that the little boy runs right into her. She doesn’t look any older than 6, small and fragile. Her small ears point up, almost like an elf’s. Her golden hair matches her brother’s, thin, shiny, and blonde. The small girl tilts her head at the sight of my ragged, dirty self. The brother looks bewildered, having crashed into his sister moments ago. He only stares, a mirror of his sister. 

    Not only am I curious and shocked by the children, but I am embarrassed of how I must look. I haven’t slept in a long while, and haven’t bathed in forever. My clothes are torn and my feet are bare. Yet, the little girl holds out her small fingers and takes my hand, leading me gently through the grasses.