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Chapter Eighteen

The forn and I descended the ravine and into the cluster of crystals. Still bewildered by the sight I was spellbound by the alluring spectacle that was before me.

“Careful not to touch them,” the forn cautioned.

“May I ask, what we are we doing here?” I asked the forn.

“A better question would be; ‘where are you going’?”

Slouching my shoulders, I hung my head in disappointment.

“So, I was right.” I uttered. “It was all about finishing it.”

I turned my back to the forn and proceeded to walk amongst the glowing crystals.

“You have a choice, Augustine,” the forn calmly said.

Facing the forn I raised my voice.

“What choice?”

“You can either use the crystals to go anywhere you want, or you can use them to finish what you had started.”

“I started nothing! I didn’t want this burden in the first place.” I angrily fumed. “I want to go home.”

The forn gazed down at me, with a serene and patient look.

“It is your choice, Augustine.”

He moved a couple steps back to reveal a large crystal.

I cautiously stepped forward and stared down at it, feeling a sense of dread as it luminesced its white hue.---

--- Abruptly awaking in a cold sweat, I bumped my head on the top of a growing roof.

I slowly got out of my bed and made my way toward a mirror which resided next to the main window of the room. It seemed as though a bump had begun to grow on my forehead.

“Perfect…” I mumbled.

Out of the corner of my eye I noticed a red eye was peering at me through the window. Cautiously I approached the window looking out, trying to discern what or who it was that was looking at me through those menacing eyes.

Since arriving at this place, I did nothing but occupy my mind with cleaning and books. A sense of curiosity was forming inside of me. This might finally be something new.

Moving a bit to the left, the eyes quickly disappeared into the darkness. I hastily followed, running down the stairs and tripping over a stack of writings.

I soon burst out into the cold night and illuminated the night with my humble candle.

Even after circling the house multiple times, I still could not find the scarlet eyes.

As my candle slowly dissipated, it occurred to me how foolish I had been to leave the safety of my house. My longing for occupation had dissipated so I went back inside the house. Sitting on my bed, I waited for the sun to rise and caress my pale skin with its warmth.

My mind was obsessed with those mysterious red eyes. Occasionally I would hear the voices of the crew downstairs, but they were completely incapable of distracting me from the desire to know the identity of those red eyes.

The following hours, as the sun had finally ascended above the surrounding mountains, I decided to create a trap, with which I would capture the red eyed creature.

I recalled the cage with which the professor had captured the house lynch. Making my way quickly to the grand hall I located the cage.

Halting in front of the entrance I gazed at the cage. I hesitated, remembering the professor’s warning to me not to get too close to it. My thoughts then began to drift to his rambling teachings and stories about his journeys. Needing to extract myself from my musing, I hastily blinked a couple of times and commenced with constructing my plan.

I had to get new rope, since the old one had broken during our travels.

“Where could I find rope?” I asked myself.

I searched around the house in a futile attempt to find rope, when suddenly I remembered…

Scrambling rapidly toward the porch, I was relieved to find the rope still where the professor had tossed it. The rope was heavy and cumbersome. Persistently, I pulled and tugged until I was finally able to bring the rope inside. I was then faced with the frustrating challenge of trying to tie the rope to the hook on top of the cage. Each time I lifted it up it would come undone causing the cage plummet to the floor.

“You incompetent idiot.”

I jolted backwards and turned my gaze to the left. The professor stood leaning against the entrance of the hall. Relieved, to see that it was the professor, I continued to work with my trap.

“Oh, I see. So, you are just going to ignore me.” the professor uttered.

“There is nothing to ignore,” I countered.

“Excuse me your highness. I forgot you where the king of these barren land.,” snickered the professor.

I continued to ignore him, since engaging in his banter would bring nothing but thoughts that should be suppressed.

“Hah, you were always a disappointing match.”

Those words struck my pride. I turned to him and began to argue. “And you were always a prick of a teacher!”

The professor halted and turned to me.

“I wasn’t the one begging on my knees like a sad wimp, and asking for answers,” He countered.

“I wasn’t the one who left Amalia for dead!”

“If I hadn’t left her there, you wouldn’t be here, attempting to fix an already faulty trap!”

“Maybe I wish I wasn’t here, wasting my time arguing with the air!”

I turned my misty eyes upon the trap and forced myself not to look back. After a couple of seconds had passed, I failed and turned my gaze back, only to be met with a plain and empty entrance.

It was as though someone had shot me through my heart with an arrow. I closed my eyes and sat down. Breaking down in tears, in anger I veraciously lifted the lever up and down. Low and behold, the cage began to ascend.

Perplexed, I stared up at the cage wondering why all this time I failed to make it work. Nevertheless, night was falling, so, I quickly made my way to the storage room to take out some raw meat. Chopping it into little pieces, I scattered the meat creating a path from the doorway, all the way underneath the cage.

Finishing the trap, I put a black sheet over myself and hid in the corner of the room, a short ways from the lever. I waited as night fell. Although my eyes were feeling heavy and my body felt like a hump of bricks, but I could not allow myself to sleep, since falling asleep could mean my death.

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