Welcome to Wonderland
Abby's head was pounding. She refused to open her eyes because she just knew that doing so would hurt worse. She did groan, though. "Oh good, she's coming to." A voice with a mildly strange accent said. Finally, Abby opened her eyes. She bolted upright, immediately regretting the action, as she noticed that she did not recognize her surroundings. She was on a very plush bed in the middle of what looked like a room in a very modern-style apartment.
"Where am I?" she asked.
"It's okay, you're fine. Look, don't worry about this; it's all a big misunderstanding." The blond man in the corner said to her. He really didn't look much older than she did.
"Really? What's the misunderstanding? The last thing I remember is some creep banging on my door, asking about my mother and now here I am." She said, getting angry, but not angry enough to stand up.
"Your mother? Alice Hamilton is your mother? Well, it didn't take her very long to move on." He replied.
"Move on?" Abby asked, still a little groggy.
"From the Hatter."
"That's my dad. At least, that's what mom's always told me. I know it's ridiculous, though." Abby replied.
"Well, he's never mentioned that before." The man replied.
"What?" Abby asked and then shook her head a little. "Look, who are you? Where am I?" she asked.
"Oh, forgive me; my name is Cillian, Cillian Heart. And this is Wonderland." The man replied to her question.
Abby gave a little laugh. "Wonderland doesn't exist. It's just a story." She said.
"Does this look like a story to you?" Cillian asked.
Abby shook her head again, much to the protest that it was giving her. "No, it looks like a modern-styled apartment in New York." She said, glancing around at the room. The walls looked like colored glass except what she assumed was the outer wall. That wall happened to be concrete.
"Well, perhaps if you see outside, you might think differently." Cillian said. "I really am sorry that you were brought here in such a…aggressive…manner. My father's confirmed that there was simply no way for you to have been Alice and the suit that brought you here has been dealt with." He added, taking a few steps toward her and reaching out as if he was going to help her up.
Abby shied away from him, not being too comfortable around the stranger. "Suit? Your father?" she asked.
"Oh, the suits are, what's the word, servants I guess you could say. They work for us. And my father is the King of Wonderland, Jack Heart." He said as Abby nodded again, the throbbing pain starting to go away slowly.
She stood up on the opposite side of the bed from where he was. "I will have to say, this is quite a nice room to wake up in when you've been kidnapped." She said snidely as she walked slowly over to a triangular window on the wall. There was a forest outside and she was very high up, probably on the tenth floor of the building or so. "What the hell? Okay, seriously, where am I? Where's the city?" she started to panic; now realizing that she was nowhere near her home.
"I told you, you're in Wonderland. Calm down, we'll fix this." Cillian said.
"Take me home, now!" Abby replied.
"We will just as soon as we can. First, we need to know if you can help us to find Alice. My father thinks that she might be able to help." He said, walking up behind her. Abby wasn't the kind of person to like someone coming up behind her; especially not when she was upset. She turned and struck him in the stomach with her hand open, she'd been taking martial arts lessons from her mother since she was a very small child.
Cillian didn't seem to have expected her to do that and he doubled over in a mixture of shock and a bit of pain. Abby immediately ran for the door, swinging it open and rushing into the hall. There, she saw a handful of men wearing some ridiculous costumes. It looked like they were trying to dress up as a deck of cards. She immediately put her hands up in a defensive position in case they might try to come at her, but they didn't move. That was also a problem, though, because they were blocking the hall.
"Please don't do that again. We're not going to hurt you. We just want to find Alice." Cillian said, having regained his composure and come to the doorway.
"Well, I'm not going to help you find her. And if what she said about her trip here is true, then it'll be at least a week here before she even gets home from work." Abby said, remembering how her mother would talk about the days that she spent in Wonderland, but when she returned home, she'd only been gone for an hour or so.
"Listen, have dinner with us. Let us explain what's happening, why we need your mother. After that, we will take you back to the Looking Glass and everything will be fine." Cillian replied. Abby sighed, putting her arms down when she realized that the suits weren't going to attack her.
"Fine, but you're taking me back right after dinner." She said before looking back at the suits, "You look ridiculous." She added before turning fully back to Cillian. "So, when is this dinner exactly?" she asked simply wanting to leave as quickly as possible.
"It'll be ready in an hour." Cillian said. He seemed pleased with her change of heart. She stood there for a moment, waiting for him and the suits to walk off, but they didn't.
"So, I'm gonna just…walk around." She said, edging her way between a couple of the suits who moved out of her way. Cillian followed her. "…alone, please." She added.
"Wouldn't want you getting lost, would we?" Cillian asked.
"I'm sure that I can find my way." Abby replied. Really, she simply did not trust this whole thing and wanted to find an exit. She walked down the hall quickly with Cillian right behind her. "Really, I just need to wander around a little bit, clear my head. You know, get some fresh air and all that jazz." She said.
"I still wouldn't want you to get lost." Cillian simply replied.
Abby let out a frustrated sigh. She was sure that she could lose him somewhere. All she needed to find was a distraction. She smirked as she came upon a staircase. She hoped that her plan would work. She rushed down the stairs, not going too fast because she didn't want to actually fall. Near the last step before she got to the next floor down, she pretended to twist her ankle and sent herself crashing to the floor. "Ah," she groaned just for effect.
"Are you okay?" Cillian rushed to help her.
"My ankle, it hurts." She said. Cillian turned and waved his arm like a madman. Abby looked down the hall, confused, only to see more suits. She sighed, "It's fine…" she said, hauling herself up.”Doesn't need medical attention or anything, just hurts a bit." She added, wondering if there were going to be more of those ridiculous suits on every floor.
"Are you sure? That looked like a pretty bad fall." Cillian asked.
"Yeah, I'm sure." She said, already taking the next set of stairs down again. After three floors, there were no more stairs down from where she was, so she started down the hallway. "This place is huge." She remarked to her ever persistent shadow.
"You get used to it." He replied.
"Not likely…I'd bet that you guys even have one of those ridiculous hedge mazes." She said.
"We don't exactly have a hedge maze, but we do have gardens." Cillian offered.
"So…how much longer until dinner?" she asked.
"Well, it's only been about five minutes, so quite a while." Cillian said, to which Abby replied with a shout of frustration.
One Hour Later
"Look, I don't know what you want with me or my mother, but we can't help you. So, why don't you just send me back home and we can forget that this all happened." Abby said as soon as she got into the dining hall. She directed her comment at a man who was obviously Cillian's father, dressed in a bright red velvet suit.
"Please, sit." He said, indicating a chair near the head of the table. She glared at him, but sat down.
"Okay, sitting. Now, home please." She said.
"So, the suits tell me that you are Alice's daughter…with the Hatter." The King said.
"What's that got to do with anything? You do realize that this is kidnapping, don't you?" she asked.
"I was going to offer Alice a deal. I'm sure that she has the ability to save Wonderland from a new threat that we were facing. I was going to give her the Hatter for her service." King Jack replied.
"Wait, so you're telling me that he's here? Right now? Look, I'm no expert on Wonderland or anything, but you seriously have to be more convincing than that. I mean, he'd be really old by now if this really was Wonderland because doesn't time move really slowly here?" she asked. The King gave her a strange look. "My mother said that she was here for days, but that it was only an hour or so in New York." She said, still not quite believing that this was Wonderland, but going with the story just to appease these people.
"Oh" the King said with a laugh, "No, no. That was the mirror. We programmed it to send her back to shortly after when she came here. The time runs at the same rate between the worlds." He explained. Abby just shook her head.
"Look, let's just send me home, okay?" she asked.
"Dear child, can you just listen? Wonderland has a new threat. We are breaking out into a civil war. The people here, all of the people, look up to your mother. Our hope is that she could stop this imminent war from happening." The King said.
"And how, exactly, would she do that?" Abby asked.
"I think that you underestimate the magic that Wonderland possesses. Just her presence would calm the population." The King said.
"And your father would be returned to her in return for her coming here." Cillian added.
"About that, did you just kidnap him, too? Did you just decide to hold him ransom until trouble rose up?" she asked, not believing for a minute that her father was here.
"No, we arrested him. He broke our laws when he went to your world. As soon as I rose to power, I declared that no Wonderlander would be allowed to use the Looking Glass. Similarly, no Oysters were to remain in Wonderland." King Jack replied.
"Oysters?" Abby asked.
"People from your world." Cillian answered.
"So he's been, what? Sitting in your dungeons for the past 18 years?" Abby asked sarcastically.
"Yes." The King responded. Abby suddenly became very serious.
"Take me to him." She said.
"You haven't eaten any…" Cillian started.
"Take me to him." She repeated, interrupting the boy who, during her hour with him, had revealed that he was only one year older than she was.
"We'll have him brought up. Number Ten, bring us the Hatter…and another place setting. I'm sure that he'd enjoy the meal." King Jack said, sending the suit rushing out of the room. "Now, then, let's get started." He said, indicating the food that was sitting in front of each of them. Abby wasn't hungry, her stomach was twisting into knots.
'Get a hold of yourself, Abigail. You've never even met the man before. He doesn't even know you exist.' She thought, but now she wondered if he really hadn't left her mother. Maybe he had been kidnapped. She forced herself to eat a few bites of the food as she waited.
"What do you want now, Jack?! I told you, I've no idea where she'd be now!" a man shouted angrily as he entered the room. He was wearing a loud shirt, tan pants, and a tan hat. His hair was curling up over the rim of the hat. He didn't look like Abby imagined a prisoner would look like.
"Why don't you take a seat, Hatter? We have a guest." Jack said, motioning toward Abby.
Her father glanced at her quickly and then made to round on Jack again before stopping. "You're not Alice." He said, having thought for a moment that the suits had found her.
"No…I'm really not." Abby replied.