A New King is Born
Huh, what was I doing? The red eyed nine-year-old though. She turned around, to see a painting, larger than the average canvas.
Fabricated? What does that mean?
Whatever, this painting is weird. I'll go check out some of the others, but their just as weird.
Ib turned the corner, seeing more weird sculpture and paintings.
I've seen these before. Where? Why can't I remember?
But wait. That one looks different.
Ib walked up to one painting, painted slightly different than the others. Something was different about it. The style? The paint used? The shading?
The bottom plaque read The Forgotten Portrait. It depicted an adolescent sleeping, wrapped in thorns, with blue roses framing the painting.
'Ib!' A sharp voice called out. 'Where have you been. I know this is a large art gallery, but still, must you go and hide from us? Come on. We're leaving NOW.'
Ib turned, seeing her mother, red in the face, stomping toward her.
'I'm sorry Mother, I didn't mean-'
Ib's Mother sighed. 'I know Dear. Something came up and we must leave now. Lets go.'
Ib glanced over her shoulder at the painting, getting one last look at it.
'Ib', her mother called, now impatient. 'Now'. With that, she walked out of the museum, curious about the one painting.
- SEVEN YEARS LATER -
'Wake up Ib, come one! We're going to be late!' Ib's friend said running around the room, trying to get dressed. School had been out for a week, and Ib's friend's Father had gifted his daughter and Ib with tickets to an old art exhibit that had recently been renovated. Her friend was so excited, Ib didn't have the heart to tell her that she despised art galleries...
Ib rolled out of bed. She went over to her stuff and pulled on a silver blouse and tucked the bottom of it into a red skirt. After looking out the window, she also grabbed a black sweatshirt before running down the stairs and hastily eating some breakfast. Her friend grabbed her bag, slung it over her shoulder, and yelled back into the house, 'We're leaving!'. With that she pranced out the door and onto the pavement. Ib glumly followed.
Ib's friend noticed her glumness. 'What's wrong Ib? I thought you would be more excited than you are?'
'What's there to be so excited about? We're just going to see a bunch of weird paintings.' Ib said as she pulled her black sweatshirt over her head to protect her arms from the bitter cold morning haze.
'But I thought you liked art.' Ib's friend said. 'You're always drawing those weird-looking dolls on your notes. And that girl in the green dress you drew yesterday...She was beautiful! Who was she? An old friend? Your sister...thought you said you were an only child.'
Ib looked away, pocketing her hands. The only reason she drew anything was because it haunted her in her head, and didn't leave her until she had trapped in on paper. She didn't know where the figures and shapes had come from, just that they were more often than not disturbing and frequent. 'Something like that.' Ib mumbled so her friend would stop talking about it.
After the two girls passed two more blocks of grey buildings, Ib asked, 'So what's the name of the art exhibit? I never caught it.'
Ib's friend pulled out the tickets. 'Something I can never pronounce. Here.' She handed the tickets to Ib.
Ib balked as she read -
Welcome to the World of Guertena - Renovated!
'Are you sure you want me to come along? I think I've already seen this art exhibit.'
'Really? You never told me you've seen an art exhibit...let alone this one!'
Because I didn't remember anything from it other than a few weird paintings... 'Um...I guess it wasn't worth mentioning. The paintings were weird. In the end I got lost and mum yelled at me.'
'But it's renovated. New stuff must of been added!'
Ib shook her head. 'Guertena was long dead by the time I saw the exhibit.' That is what the plaque said...right? I was, what, nine, ten, when I was there. I was not the most advanced of readers.
Ib's friend looked disappointed. 'But...something must be new! You'll see when we get there!'
After crossing two streets and walking five more blocks, the two teens made it to the entrance of the gallery. Ib's friend was right, the building was different. More modern looking than it was seven years ago.
As she stepped inside, a strong scene of deja-vu washed over her as she stepped inside and the same voice that had greeted her seven years ago said 'Welcome to the art Gallery.'
Ib's friend squeaked with joy and pranced off as Ib handed the man the tickets.
When she departed from the welcome desk to find her friend, her feet moved her automatically before she knew what she was doing. She stopped herself two steps before she ran into a wall. They must of rebuilt the building.
After two more hall ways lined with strange charcoal sketches and two left turns, Ib found her friend staring at one painting in particular.
'Hey Ib, why do you think this one painting looks so different than the others?'
'What do you mean by that? They all look the same to me.'
'Well most of the paintings so far have been abstract objects, like one was fruit, another has wine glasses, and another a weird eye. But this one is a full person, he looks like he's dead too...'
'He's not dead.' Ib said defensively. 'He's...just sleeping. I'm waiting for him to open his eyes.' Why did this painting look so familiar?
'If anything he looks lonely.' Ib's friend said. 'Especially with a tittle of Forgotten Portrait.'
'Sounds lonely. Wouldn't you be lonely if you were a painting?'
'I guess. You ask weird questions, Ib.' Ib's friend said, smiling at her.
'You have weird interests.' Ib said, rolling her eyes.
Ib's friend stuck her tongue out at her in a playful way and grabbed Ib's wrist. 'I dragged you here in the first place, so you will enjoy it. Let us be off, to more paintings. Or do you want to see the sculptures next?' She started walking in a random direction, pulling Ib along with her.
As they neared the end of the passage, a shiny brass plaque at the beginning of a hallway read Sculptures↑. There was only one painting in the hallway, which was odd, considering how all of the other walls were covered with odd and abstract paintings. But this painting took up the whole wall. If anything, it was even more bizarre than the others. Instead of a thing, it was many things, like there was a whole nother world on the other side of the canvas.
Ib stopped walking, and her friend let go of her wrist. 'Come on Ib, the sculptures are just pass this hall.'
'You go ahead. I-I'll catch up. I...I like this painting. I want to look at it more.'
'Something that finally piques your interest? Well, I'll just be looking at sculptures.' Ib's friend said, turning and walking away halfway through her phrase.
As Ib turned to look at the name plate, a light in the direction of the sculpture exhibit flickered.
What a fitting name for such an offset painting. Ib thought. After standing in front of the 'Fabricated World' for a moment, Ib ran off to catch up with her friend. But then she exited the hallway, there was not a person in sight.
Ib sighed in frustration, and turned around to go to the other end of the hallway. The Fabricated World, Ib noticed, was leaking blue paint from the frame.
As she entered the other end of the hallway, the rest of the fluorescent white washing lights flickered and went out. Ib could still see, but it was dark.
When she reached the Forgotten portrait, the adolescent was gone and the thorn vines were no longer confined to the bounds of the frame. They were reaching out, growing at an impossible rate. Twisting into thicker vines, making small separate platforms, and then a set of stairs that seemed to lead into the painting. Backing up from the frame, eyes wide, Ib fell back onto the wall, stunned that such abnormalities could happen.
Come, Ib. A voice inside her head beckoned. Come.
As if in a trance, she slowly stepped away from the wall and towards the painting, until she was right against the frame. The canvas seemed to have disappeared and the adolescent disappeared into the depth of the world beyond. A path was opening up, and the frame seemed to dissolve slowly. Either that or Ib was being pulled further and further into the world.
Ib took a breath, and took a step forward into the foreign world.
Must go to...
The words seemed to echo off the endless dark void. Growing louder, more intense. More painful to listen too.
He opened his eyes, and sat up, dispelling the void.
So yOU WoKe up
The same sound that echoed in the void was now echoing around his very existence, threatening it. Testing his willpower.
HoW are YOu feEling?
HEY, Let's pLaY
SInCe I FINALlY WokE you UP
'Play? Where am I?' He questioned, looking around. He was sitting up in a field of what looked like blue flower petals. There were no walls, no ceiling, just a void, a space tinted the same blue as the pedals.
ThiS is tHE PLaCe where yOu liVe the voice responded
'I am...? ...my name...?'
AhaHAha WhAt aRE YOu saYIng! You HAve no nAME. HaVe a LOok aT yoUr TitLE
''Your title''...? He glanced around until his eyes found a tarnished plaque half buried behind thorn vines. Standing up, he walked over to the plaque to read it better.
BeCAUSe iT's ''forgotten'' yOU HaVe no nAME
'But...Isn't that strange...'
lET's JUsT PlaY!
'But...I made a promise.I can't remember whom I promised what but...I will leave. I have to go. It-'
LEaVe thIS PlaCe?
YOu WanT to LeAve? REAllY?
He directed his attention away from his surroundings and toward the plaque. Above it was a frame. The scene was many different moving faces looking up. Many of them moved away, then shortly afterward, two teenage girls, a blond girl dragging a brunette, came into the frames view.
'Looks like he's dead too...' Said the one who dragged the other.
'He's not dead.' said the other girl defensively. 'He's...just sleeping. I'm waiting for him to open his eyes...'
'That girl...' He said. '..somehow, she's different.'
tHeN it'S DEcIDEd! It's ThAt ChIld! tHaT's IB
WoN't be dIFFIcult to HAve hEr hERE a SECONd tImE
'...I don't get what your saying...Anyway if that girl comes here, Can I really leave this place?'
ThE KING befORe leFT liKe thaT
'...I see. I'm sorry, Ib. I don't really hate you but I have to get out of here. There's a promise I made. And there's a promise I have to remember.'
ThEn lEt's wELcoMe tHat cHIld. I'Lll mAke A NEw maZe aNd Set TRaps. wE WiLl SCarE aND seDUcE tHat GIrl. Ah hoW FUn thaT wILL Be! iT's a NEW maZe'S birTHDay! thiS TIme tHe KinG Is thE blUE roSe
'An important one...'
A blUE RoseS maZe, a BLuE kinG