The Traveller (School Project)
The traveller wandered through the deep thicket of black roses, wrapped from head-to-toe in a dark hooded cloak, the crunch of gravel vibrating under his every step. At least, he thought it was gravel... Upon closer inspection, the ground beneath him was, in fact, a collection of bones, scattered across the vast, rocky plain of Eden Isles. Drenched in the toxic waters, the traveller was surprisingly thankful for the sun’s scorching heat. The violet star hovered high above the horizon, shining harmoniously with the sky — an endless pallet of vibrant colours and a sea of gleaming stars.
It was dusk, the traveller concluded. Or maybe it was dawn. He didn’t know anymore, nor did he care. After all, time was irrelevant in the Ring. He should know, seeing how he spent the last decade searching for the infamous ‘Sleeping Wizard,’ completely oblivious to the passing of time as his body unnaturally maintained its expired youth. A point soon came when he (like all the others) had forgotten that his home planet — Earth — still even existed.
Unbeknownst to the traveller, another year passed when he finally found what he was looking for; he just so happened to stumble upon it thanks to the help of a random elf.
“The Wizard can make all of your desires a reality,” stated the elf, the words echoing through the traveller’s mind as he continued to delve deeper into the cave, his stomach growling for such desires to come true...
Despite his efforts, his mind inevitably returned to that fateful day on the ship. The traveller could hardly remember his name until that point.
He kept his eyes fixed on the ship’s instruments, careful not to burn out the rest of the fuel. “Hmm?”
“How much longer?” Ciara asked for the dozenth time, dozing off with her head tilted back.
Lucius sighed, the silver band irritating his finger. He forgot it was there most of the time. After all, who in their right mind would marry a woman like Ciara? It clearly couldn’t be him. “Calm yourself, woman. We are almost at the Ring.”
“You said that three hours ago.”
“Well, as I explained three hours ago, intergalactic travel takes time. Besides, we are eons away from Milky; they cannot track us.”
Ciara scoffed, “Leaving Earth, our home, and our galaxy. And for what? To camp someplace else until another one of your butchered jobs? You messed with the wrong people this time.” She snickered. “The universe’s greatest mystery: how did Ciara Cole ever fall for a broke thief?”
“Listen,” Lucius barked, staring at Ciara directly with wild eyes, “I am fully aware of my actions, so why don’t you just shut—?!”
SMASH! The ship struck a passing asteroid, sending the craft swirling through the cosmos at breakneck speed.
The world spun violently, sending Lucius through a spiral of red. He couldn’t move. He couldn’t breathe. He couldn’t scream. All he could do was feel — the searing of the flames melting his tissues to the bone. And as for Ciara… Well, there wasn’t much tissue nor bone of hers to feel.
Lucius couldn’t dwell on the past, he could only fix it. He had to find the Wizard.
The old man sat on his diamond throne, resting beneath the moonlight that shined through the open ceiling. “Greetings, child. I am the Wizard, ruler of the Ring, and keeper of this island. I see all, and I know all.”
Lucius kneeled. “I’m Lucius Cole. It’s an honour.”
“What is it that you seek?”
He pulled down his hood, revealing the scorched, mutilated face that bore no resemblance to the man he claimed to be. “I seek to reclaim my wife from the dead.”
“Apologies, but necromancy is not my specialty, as reclaiming one’s soul is far trickier than reclaiming one’s body.”
“Oh…” Lucius felt his whole universe crumble. All that time, all that effort — for nothing.
The Wizard smiled. “But there is an alternative…”
Lucius raised his head, his face lighting with joy. “Really? That’s great! What is it?!”
“I can give you one of two choices. You can either wake up on that ship, survive with your wife and fulfill your intended goal. Or you can wake up years prior, reform your life and start again with a clean slate. But be warned: if you decide to choose the first option, the circumstances surrounding your wife’s untimely fate will be the same. The two of you will forever be on the run, and those hunting you for your crimes will never rest.”
“But… if I choose the second option… I’ll never be able to see her again, would I? We never would’ve met in that café, or fallen in love?”
“My powers come at a cost,” the Wizard explained, “as does everything in life. Above all else, balance must be kept.”
Lucius opened his mouth; the choice seemed easy at first, but then he stopped to reconsider. What was more important? Ciara’s life or his own?
Why not both?
He silenced his concerns, and time regained motion. He was confident in his decision, and it was certainly worth the risk.
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