Chapter 6: Dezola..... Inside Hollow Earth...
At dusk, they took the northward direction, reaching the bottom of a very tall mountain.
“We must climb this mountain, but without anyone else noticing us. It will be prudent to hide our horses, and start climbing the mountain right away. I will perform a small invocation ceremony to hide the horses within ‘violet ether’. Unload every supply from the pony, and stay very quiet, until I finish the ceremony, Dark-Elf,” Tuathan said, while taking out some strange-looking small bottles from his bag.
Dark-Elf unloaded the supplies from the pony, and then he waved to Meril to sit next to him quietly on top of a small rock nearby. From this point, they watched Tuathan carefully performing the ceremony. He mixed different drops from the bottles inside a small ball made of stone and, facing the mountain, he raised the ball with both hands as high as he could, and started chanting this beautiful melody.
“Silk and golden-hair associations,
tied together with the rope of illusion,
Open the gates!”
In a sturdy voice, he shouted with authority, “OPEN THE GATES!”
Right there and then, large golden lines appeared in the sky, curling in multiple shapes, and mixing with the violet drops in the ball he was holding in his hands. The golden sky-lines kept curling, like they dithered over what final shape to take. It seemed that the violet drops were helping the golden lines to eventually form an arched gate, transparent with a violet line inside and a golden line outside its perimeter.
Dark-Elf, demonstrating the fearless and enthusiastic nature of the Elves, moved right away to take a stab at passing through the newly formed gate, like a small innocent child.
“No... Dark-Elf ….Wait...,” shouted young Druid Tuathan.
Surprised, Dark-Elf froze in his position, with his eyes full of questions.
“This is one of the Gates of the Underground city called Dezola. It is a gate to Hollow Earth. You are not allowed to know everything about Hollow Earth, except for the fact that it is the habitat of a very benevolent human race. There is a treaty between the Druids and the Dezolians, which allows us to use their Gates, in case of an emergency, but we are not allowed to pass those gates by ourselves. We must wait for someone to come, and accompany our horses into their internal world.”
True to form, a yellow light appeared all of a sudden in the centre of the gate, in the shape of a cross and an X, which both had the same centre, forming a diagram of an 8-prong star. The light was getting bigger and bigger as it was approaching, and with a small explosion a human creature appeared, seemingly walking on thin air.
He was a young human, of approximately 35 years of age, much taller than the average human, about eight (8) feet in height, slim, and in perfect shape, with long blond hair cascading down to his shoulders. His eyes were blue but, when combined with his voice, he gave the impression of possessing wisdom accumulated over millennia.
“Hello, Tuathan, greetings to you and your company,” he said, and Tuathan bowed respectfully. The rest of the comrades followed suit.
“Hello, Buhara,” Tuathan responded. “We would like to hide our horses here, so we can climb the mountain. We are trying to reach Lord Goodelf.”
“What? You will try to climb the Mountain of Disaster? You very well know what happened last time, when someone tried to climb the mountain. You know that you do not possess the proper supplies, and we cannot help you in that respect,” said Buhara obviously upset.
“I know, Buhara, but at least we have to try,” Tuathan responded.
Buhara seemed very disturbed. “Knowing the risk you run, I do not think that your horses will facilitate your attempt to climb the mountain.”
“Buhara, I plead with you, do not place obstacles in front of us. We must proceed with our plan, at all costs, and I would not like to inflict any harm on you to gain access. Our mission is so important that it concerns the entire planet, all dimensions, and all parallel universes. If I calculated correctly, maybe the time for the Final Conflict is approaching fast, according to the timeline indicated by all prophecies.”
“The final conflict?” Buhara whispered. “The Great Darso must be informed immediately, about the developments. Tuathan I will not allow you to proceed. You must come with me.”
Tuathan seemed very disturbed upon hearing that name.
“The Great Darso? I have heard that he does not allow anyone to leave your city after visiting it. Are you sure we will be able to depart? I must remind you that we have a very important mission and this particular Elf...” The rest of his explanation went unheard as he whispered it in Buhara’s ear, and the other man in turn whispered something in Tuathan’s ear ....The other members of the mission gave each other some puzzled looks.
Tuathan, with a deep sigh, turned around to Dark-Elf, and said. “My friends, we should follow him.”
Buhara started walking towards the gate that remained open and, as soon as he crossed it, he turned into a bright yellow star again.
“Are we going to turn into light, as well?” Dark-Elf asked, scared, taking two steps backwards. “No, we don’t possess that quality,” Tuathan answered, totally absorbed in his thoughts.
Entering one by one, they all realized that this was a large dark space similar to a cave. The horses stopped in a corner, and a violent light tied them to a golden stick nearby. The yellow bright star illuminated the road they had to follow. It was a sloping tubular structure. The more they progressed, the steeper the inclination, until it became so steep, they were falling down a bright slippery slide…..Their screams, as they slid down, soon gave place to expressions of amazement, looking at the wonderful view that followed. It fell like they were passing in between multicolor planets, accompanied by some divine melodies. In the centre, there was a very tall tree, laden with bright fruit, each covered in a violet layer of light, looking like a giant chandelier. They all felt jubilant, until they landed on an elastic surface, which caused them to pulsate up and down, until this stopped, only to realize they all landed on a thick layer of grass.
Of course, Dark-Elf was the first to stand up. He took a look at the grass and, in his usually playful manner, he tried to jump on the grass, only to start pulsating up and down again.
“Look!” he shouted. “This grass is flexible.”
His observation made a large group of kids that gathered there laugh in response to his words, as they started to jump up and down, having a lot of fun. Amazed, he stopped and took to observing the kids. All of a sudden, the yellow star transformed back into Buhara, who explained, “The grass is flexible, in order to absorb the fall from the steep slope.”
“So, you have the power to make the grass the way you want to?” asked Dark-Elf, completely baffled.
“You will see much stranger things here, my dear Dark-Elf,” Buhara responded.
“What?... How do you know my name?” Dark-Elf asked, but he got no answer. Buhara ignored the question and, in a serious manner and a sturdy voice, he ordered everybody to follow him.
Stepping out of the flexible grass, they looked all around, realizing they were in a very wide tunnel, at the end of which they could see a bright light. It was their guide. At the exit, a new surprise was awaiting them. Many people, taller than Tuathan, all of them the size of Buhara, were all dressed in beautiful colourful clothes. Some of them were having a discussion, standing on their two feet, while some of them suspended in mid-air, instead of walking. It looked like a large city square. The floor was paved with blue and yellow stones, decorated with the same cross with the X in the middle. All around, there were some small hills, each one ending in a waterfall. They were forming a circle of waterfalls, but the sound they made was that of a note, part of a melody, each one representing a different musical instrument, in a magnificent, sweet unheard-of concert.
“What a divine melody! It’s like the waterfalls are playing music,” said Meril, who was able to talk for the first time after the shock of all these new experiences.
“They are really playing music, ” Buhara said.
“How could that happen?” asked Dark-Elf .
“For the time being, just enjoy the music and, when time comes, you will get the explanations you need. This particular music is very beneficial to both body and soul.”
“These waterfalls look very strange,” said Tuathan. “Whatever is running does not look like water.”
“That’s true,” said Buhara, “but you will hear about that in time.”
Tuathan, despite Buhara’s advice, approached the closest waterfall, and reached out his hand. The “water” was transparent, composed of multicolour light molecules, but he could not sense it with his hand. It felt like his hand was simply going through them, feeling no resistance at all.
“I thought we were in a hurry, Tuathan,” said Buhara with a smile.
“Well....this the first time I’ve seen such a waterfall, and it is really amazing that these people can be suspended in thin air,” Tuathan added.
“Keep moving, and everything will be explained on the way,” Buhara said with a smile across his face, as he started crossing the huge square.
Soon, he reached the furthermost waterfall, he went through it, and called everybody to follow him. They went through it, with some hesitation, only to face a new unbelievable view. A huge walkway with multiple endless arches, one after the other. One was made of gold, and the next of glass, forming an unprecedented beauty, with the pavement cover made from coloured pebbles of every shade of blue. Side trails began from every space in between the arches, allowing you to turn either right or left, in an endless network of pathways. Pink lighted mushrooms, were illuminating the pathways placed on either side of the trails.
“Be careful not to get lost here, since this is our psychedelic labyrinth. Be sure you all follow after me,” Buhara warned them.
“It is amazing…amazing,” said Tuathan, hypnotized by the beauty he witnessed.
Dark-Elf took the small Drago in his hands, jumping up and down, shouting, “It is perfect, perfect!”
They were turning right and left, then straight again, then left again and, after a while, they reached a door. Buhara made a sign in the air with his hands, and the door opened. It was a very heavy door made of thick wood, and covered with gold. They found themselves inside a large living room. They noticed three doors.
“Those are your rooms,” Buhara said. Each door had a sign that left no doubt as to whose room each of them was.
The first door had the picture of a Drago, which resembled Meril almost perfectly. The second one had a picture of an Elf, and the third one of a human.
“It looks like you were expecting us,” said Tuathan with suspicion.
“Maybe yes, maybe not. The result in both instances could be the same,” answered Buhara enigmatically.
“I am going to inform the Grand Darso. You go and enjoy your rooms, rest for a while, and soon you will be served food. Each room has its own bath.”
“If we would like to get out of our rooms, how are we going to pass through the labyrinth without getting lost?” wondered Tuathan loudly.
“Simply, you are not going to get out of your rooms,” responded Buhara kindly, while closing the door behind him.
“I...begin not to like any of these…,” Tuahan whispered.
“Everything’s so beautiful, Tuathan,” noted Meril.
“It is stiflingly good…,” Tuathan responded, whispering: “We are wasting valuable time because Darso must be informed and, while we have not met him as yet, they had prepared special rooms for us like they knew we were coming.”
“We have experienced such strange things so far, so this should not impress us at all. Mistrizia was expecting me, as well, but that did not mean anything bad,” Dark-Elf said.
“It is obvious that we do not have a choice to leave if we would like to, but we cannot even go out for a walk,” responded Tuathan.
His last words were interrupted by a knock on the door. Tuathan pulled out his sword, and opened the door very carefully. A woman and a man dressed in multicolour clothes rolled in a serving cart full of strange fruits and different produce. They greeted them with a smile.
“Welcome. Unfortunately, you will not be able to have meat here, but we can assure you that the fruits and nuts of Dezola will provide all the energy and nutrients your bodies need. You may now enjoy your meal.”
They left, bowing down their heads, and smiling.
“You see? They are very hospitable,” the small Elf said, and he started gathering the chairs around the table, so they could all eat.
“Don’t touch anything,” Tuathan shouted. “I must check them first. They might be poisonous.”
From his bag, he pulled out two sticks made of copper, holding one in each hand, crossing them in an angle over the food, without touching each other. He tested the ball with the fruits first. He prayed with his eyes closed for a few seconds. The sticks started pulsating up and down.
He repeated the same process with the sticks all over the plates containing food. “They are safe,” he declared finally.
“What is this?” Dark-Elf -asked.
“These are sticks we use for rhabdomancy. We the Druids use them quite often. This method is popular among humans. Actually, a Chinese emperor had issued a special regulation that no houses can be rebuilt unless checked with this method of rhabdomancy.”
“Why?” asked Meril
“Because on earth, there are some radiating energies that can be very catastrophic to any living creature.”
“The life of humans seems to be very complicated,” Dark-elf whispered, only to add immediately. “If I had to check everything before I eat it, I would never eat. Can we eat now?” he said, starting to eat voraciously.
“Ι am probably much too cautious. Everything seems to be fine, and we will probably enjoy our stay here. Let’s eat now,” Tuathan said.
The moment they started eating, the frail voice of a girl interrupted them.
“Would you like to watch a live musical, while eating?”
They looked at each other, and finally Tuathan said, “Why not? Let’ s enjoy that part, as well.”
There appeared a girl—too short by the standards of the city. She was approximately the same height as Tuathan. Her long hair was of blue colour, her fine dress featured some floral patterns of all the shades of green. She was holding a violet-pink harp.
“Bon appétit!! I am Giribel,” the young Lady said, and immediately started playing the harp, filling the entire room with a beautiful melody, while singing at the same time. It was a plaintive song, describing a beautiful girl’s love of a young man, who could never imagine that she was in love with him, since she was so beautiful, thinking she would never think of him, so he never confessed his love to her. Finally, she was forced to make an arranged marriage through her father. Her husband was an old rich man. The voice was magical, and the story so moving that Tuathan started crying.
Everybody was impressed by the beautiful young Giribel, so at the end of the song they invited her to join them for dinner. They enjoyed their meal, and then went to rest, except for Tuathan, who sat with Giribel, asking about the story recounted in the song. The ones who went to sleep had a unique experience. The moment their body touched the bed, the lighting in the room changed automatically. The big lights went off, and small yellow-brown candles were lit in each corner of the room. The flame in the candles was half-hidden inside, and the light illuminated like small droplets, similar to those the water was made of in the waterfalls.
Despite the soothing environment, and although he felt very tired, Dark-Elf could not fall asleep. All of a sudden, a small shadow appeared on the wall, which began growing and growing only to take the shape and size of a human of large stature.
“Who are you?” Dark-Elf asked, apparently scared, sitting up on his bed.
“Shhhh... relax. Don’t be scared, my son. I am a friend....I am Druid Maverel.” As he spoke, the shadow started forming faintly in the beginning, until he appeared in his natural form in front of terrified Elf.
“Druid Maverel!!! Mistrizia told us about you,” Dark-Elf shouted happily, albeit puzzled.
“Yes, my son, I tried to communicate with Tuathan, however he is so convinced that everything is great here, due to the girl he just met, his subconsciousness is blocked to any other suggestion aside from the girl. I appear to you in a dream form as I need a clear subconscious to relay my message to, and Tuathan’s is not so clean. I came to help you..You should...”
A knock at the door awakened Dark-Elf. He looked around to locate the Druid. A second knock, and the door opened. It was Tuathan and Buhara together. He looked carefully to see if Giribel was with them, but he could not see her.
“We must appear in front of Great Darso,” Tuathan said.