Welcome to The Edge
Chapter 8 Part 1
Happy Friday, fantasy readers! Here’s Chapter 8 Part 1 of Saving ForeverLand.
If you didn’t get a chance to read the previous chapters, remember to check those out. I’ve included the links below:
As the sun rose the next morning in ForeverLand, Sarah and Josh each lay fast asleep in their rooms. Little did they know the daylight would bring forth a new adventure for them both.
Sarah stirred, rolling over, still half asleep. When she opened her eyes, she thought back to the events of last night and couldn’t help but smile. She was absolutely giddy imagining herself and Josh, together, a couple. But then, reality hit her hard.
He’s my trainer. There’s got to be a rule against this.
Panicking, Sarah strained to hear any sound from outside her room. Was Josh awake?
She got up and inched the door open to peek into the common area, where she noticed Josh, sitting at the table with a bowl of cereal, just like any other day. Deciding it was best to face the potential awkwardness, Sarah opened her door all the way and made eye contact with Josh as she stretched. “’ Morning,” she said. Expecting some sort of reply, Sarah was taken aback by Josh’s next words. “It’s your first day working on The Edge,” he announced as if this was obvious. “We’ve got to get going or we’ll be late.” Then he looked back down at his bowl.
Sarah’s jaw dropped. “That’s it?” She asked him. “That’s all you have to say to me?”
He paused, then turned around and looked at Sarah carefully.
“Yes, that’s it…for now. Obviously, we are going to talk about last night, but right now, Elozar is expecting us on The Edge for our duties in about five minutes, so do you want to talk, or do you want to get to work saving ForverLand?”
Once the words sunk in, Sarah felt silly. Should wasn’t just some lovestruck teenager; she was the dualbender who could save ForeverLand. She didn’t even realize she was picking at her nails until she noticed Josh looking at her hands. She pulled them apart and forced them by her sides. Then, taking a deep breath, she cleared her head.
“You’re right,” she said to Josh. With a brief nod, she began walking towards the cave entrance, not knowing what to expect for the rest of the day, but anticipating an adventure.
Josh was right behind her, and eventually, he took the lead, knowing that he was supposed to be showing Sarah the ropes of The Edge. She didn’t even know where they were going, what they were supposed to do, how long she’d be gone. He envied her trust, though also felt sorry for her. She didn’t have a chance of keeping her typical teenage life.
They continued to walk down the mountain and then when they finally hit the flat grass, Josh pointed to the far side of the field. Sarah had never been there before - she had only been living in the mountain range. But blindly, she followed her trainer down a long paved path leading across the large grass field. The path seemed endless. Although they had been walking for quite a while, Sarah couldn’t see their destination - she had no idea what was waiting for her at the end of the path. It was just darkness ahead; she started to get a little uneasy.
Then it got cold. The air was ice, but there was no wind, no source of the coldness. It was like Sarah had walked into a freezer. And it was dark all around her, besides the small light hovering above their heads, a few feet ahead of them. Was it moving? She wondered.
The ball of light led the way for Josh and Sarah, further and further into the icy abyss. And then, all of a sudden, the light went out. They were drenched in the pitch black, but before Sarah could get too nervous, the world lit up before her eyes and a centaur was standing a mere foot from herself and Josh, apparently waiting for their arrival.
He looked very different from Elozar - smaller, slimmer. Maybe he was younger? Sarah wondered though she didn’t even know how centaurs aged, or really, much about them at all. The only centaur that Sarah had spoken to consistently was Elozar. When she realized this, she thought about all the other centaurs out there in ForeverLand, helping to fight against Hadoo.
“Welcome, Josh, Sarah.” The centaur spoke lightly.
Josh turned to Sarah. “Sarah, this is Omor. He is the lead centaur for the Protectors of The Edge.” Sarah waited for Josh or Omor to explain more, but it seemed as though they both believed this was enough information to satisfy her. She didn’t want to pry, but at the same time, she wished the citizens of ForeverLand were a little better at explaining all the danger she was getting herself into.
Sarah opened her mouth to try to ask about her job as a Protector, but then Josh and Omor began to walk away. Sarah supposed she should follow, despite the lack of communication. She paused for a minute and when neither Josh nor Omor turned back, she figured it was time to jog to catch up with them.
She was so shocked by the sudden light and the new centaur, that she didn’t even get to look around her until that point. As she ran down the path, she noticed the trees all around her - leaves bright green and trunks wider than any she had seen in Leisata. It was like they were holding in energy, waiting to release it. She could feel the icy air covering her like a strong embrace; she shivered.
They were just coming up to a stone wall when the giant trees became more sparse. There were only two thin and tall trees left on each side of the trio when she was face to face with the rock wall, and only then did Sarah know what would happen next.
“Of course!” She exclaimed. “We have to portal to The Edge, right?”
Not sure who Sarah was addressing, both Josh and Omor silently nodded. Omor reached out two slender hands and made the same motions that Elozar had done time and time again to help her travel through space. When the familiar rainbow swirl of light appeared on the stone wall, Sarah looked expectantly at Josh, then Omor, waiting for further instruction.
“This might be a bit of a shock, Sarah,” Josh said carefully. “The Edge isn’t like ForeverLand. I know Elozar told you a little about it, but really, this is completely different from what you’ve seen so far. Just prepare yourself.”
Sarah’s eyes got wide. Did she really want to do this? She had assumed The Edge would be very similar to ForeverLand. She expected to see other timebenders like herself, and possibly other spacebenders, though now that she considered things, she hadn’t been told anything specific. She just kind of imagined what The Edge would be like - mainly, the edge of a cliff on the other side of the mountain range of ForeverLand.
“I’m already committed to the mission,” she responded. “Let’s go.” Then Sarah walked up to the swirling light, prepared to go first through the portal to The Edge. Her toes on her right foot hit the swirl, but then she looked back and Omor and Josh. “You’re both coming too, right?”
“Yes,” Omor replied.
“Of course,” Josh said, though there was a slight hesitation there, Sarah noticed. She decided not to overthink the situation and just walk right through to where she would find out what it takes to be a Protector. The dull burning sensation began to fill Sarah’s body, starting at her toes, which had touched the portal first, and ending at the top of her head. Surprisingly, the sensation was over rather quickly compared to the other times she portaled.
When the world appeared again before her eyes, Sarah couldn’t help but gasp. This place looks like it’s been demolished!
In case you didn’t see my last announcement, or if you’re looking for more information - The Great Substack Story Challenge is underway!
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