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Chapter Twenty

Open, closed. Open, closed.

I sat in the middle of the hallway opening and closing the front door with swift movements of my hand. I was quite baffled by the fact that I could, from a distance, open and close doors.

“Well, this is odd,” I uttered to myself. “How do you suppose I acquired this ability, Fitz?”

Fitz raised his head, meat protruding between his teeth.

“Got some nice fangs there,” I uttered, as I stared at his sharp and jagged teeth.

Staring at Fitz I contemplated of what he was capable.

“Hm, do you play fetch?” I inquired.

Fitz whimpered as I grabbed a bone and threw it out the door, but he continued to sit next to me with a perplexed stare.

“Go on! Fetch!” I commanded.

He looked up at me as if I were speaking Chinese.

“Fine…” I sighed whilst getting up and walking from the house.

I halted at the entrance and called out to him. “C’mon Fitz, come here.”

Fitz hastily got up and followed me outside.

“Now, you see this?” I showed Fitz the half-chewed bone. “I throw the bone, and you catch it. Understand?”

Fitz still looked quite confused; his head tilted and his big red eyes looking up at me.

“Ready. Three, two, one. Fetch!” I threw the bone as far as I could, but Fitz would not follow. He stood motionless, staring at the place I had tossed the bone.

“Come on! It’s not that hard! Look, I’ll show you.”

Picking up the bone, I waved it at him so that he could clearly see what I was alluding to. I then threw the bone further and like a fool, chased after it, picking up the bone with my mouth and pointing at it.

“You see, Fitz. I pick it up with my mouth.” I mumbled through my teeth.

I walked to Fitz with the bone still in my mouth. He looked up at me with his head tilted down, and eyes gazing upwards.

“As you have now seen the description, I will throw it once more. Do exactly what I did it,” I instructed Fitz, while taking the bone out of my mouth and throwing it forwards.

Fitz slowly trotted towards the bone at last picking it up with his teeth. He immediately sat down facing me.

“Perfect! Now bring it here!” I commanded, but Fitz did not bring the bone, he simply cracked it in half and went back into the house.

“Wow… nice job party pooper,” I quipped as I walked back inside.

Fitz responded with a huff and proudly lifted his head.

“If you’re going to keep up this rude act, I will throw you out,” I jested to Fitz as he turned his head towards me and angrily trotted up the stairs.

Soon the sun was setting, and I attempted once more, to fix the contraption. For hours on end I nagged and picked at it, getting absolutely nowhere. It was not the contraption that exhausted me, more so, the boredom and the excruciating thoughts that drove me to the edges of insanity.

Fitz alleviated the tension, but it still wasn’t enough to rid me of these feelings. Un-nerved and exhausted, I lay down next to the bloody contraption hoping to soon fall asleep. Sleep was the only thing I really looked forward to. It was a wonderland of anything my brain could conjure. As I had hoped for, I quickly fell into a deep slumber.

The colorful fields were gone and in its place was a brown and dark landscape. It had unsettling, warm winds howling throughout the barren wasteland. It was a parched, dry dessert with only dead trees to fill its empty spaces. Confused and somewhat frightened by this, I attempted to wake myself, but I could not. Jittery and constantly looking behind me, I panicked and did not know what I could expect.

My feet and body were aching as I ran trying to get away from this dry, scorched desert. At last I stopped and sat down on a piece of driftwood. Looking up, I saw thick dark clouds covering the sky.

I sat for hours in silence. Presently, in the distance I could discern what I presumed to be a large wooden medicine wagon approaching me.

As this peculiar wagon came closer, I could see that the horse which pulled the wagon was rotting and an abominable figure was at the reins.

The figure had a torn cloak which was covered in moss and dirt. His head appeared to be that of a decaying goat with green vines hanging from its horns.

When the eerie wooden wagon had stopped in front of me, I cautiously began to get up. The creature which drove it angrily turned its head towards me and huffed. I slowly sat back down and with terror in my eyes and continued to gaze at this perplexing sight.

The wooden wagon appeared to be falling apart; nevertheless, it was quite nicely decorated, with many peculiar ornaments encompassing it. There were skulls of birds and animals on the front of the wagon, and incense hanging from the back, creating a trail of perfume.

The orange dust which was elevated from the halt of the wagon had blurred my sight. I began to hear the slow creaking of the door as it opened. My eyes widened and my heart had dropped due to the sight which was unveiled in front of me.

Its long black torn cloak had waved in the unnerving warm wind. Its hands which were covered in green veins and bone had curdled my blood and its head which was the skull of a deer was well known to me. The vast ornaments which had accompanied it jiggled as this gruesome creature stepped out of the crooked old wagon.

Surely, I had known this entities name, for it was the king of the banished, Velkagon.

As Velkagon had exited from the wagon, I felt utterly paralyzed and dread filled me clear to my bones.

He had approached me and halted some distance from me. With the clanging of ornaments and cracking of bone and wood, Velkagon slowly lowered his gaze at me. His face was mere centimeters from mine, and as I looked into his hollow eyes, I could feel darkness and death. I could even hear the screams of his banished souls ringing in my ears.

With his gaze still closely fixed on me, he took out a talisman from his cloak and gave it to me. I was hesitant to take it, but Velkagon was persistent. Afraid to refuse him, I took it. It was quite a peculiar talisman. It was of gold, with many rings encompassing it. In the middle it had a red ruby which I gazed at with grave inquiry.

I sensed an odd feeling, as if the talisman had known me. When it began to illuminate, I stared at it with great perplexity. Velkagon quickly lowered his head downwards, gazing at the alluring talisman. Moving his gaze back to me, he snatched the talisman from my hand.

Velkagon swiftly stepped back and uttered words which were unknown to me.

“T’kahnu heshile amoni.”

I was quite petrified by his deeply terrifying voice, but soon, he hastily returned to his old wooden wagon, and drifted off, into the vast and dry desert.

Not knowing how to react, or even feel about this encounter, I simply sat there, on the driftwood staring at the cracks in the ground and hoping for the first time, I could wake up.

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