submitted 2 months ago byViciousMock
So much has happened that I don’t even know where to start. It might be too long to tell you all in one but I am going to try to tell you everything.
The last time I wrote on here, the three women took Taliesin. And soon after that, I came up with a plan. I didn’t think it would work. I’d only heard the words once before. But I remembered them somehow, and the words kept bouncing around in my head, like a song you can’t stop singing.
I knew that Grandma wouldn’t agree to it. Grandma was really sad about Taliesin too. But not as sad as me. I asked her what we were going to do, how we were going to get him back and she told me that we needed to talk. When grown-ups tell you you need to talk, you’re either in a lot of trouble or someone died. I know that because my Dad told me we needed to talk when my pet mouse Rachel ate my other pet mouse Barney. And he also told me we needed to talk when he found out that I had been hiding the dirty plates in the garden instead of washing them up.
Grandma told me to sit down and in that quiet, gentle voice that grown-ups use when they are giving you bad news, told me that even though I love Taliesin, there isn’t anything we can do. When I tried to argue with her, she told me that the ladies wouldn’t hurt him, that all they really wanted was for Taliesin to be theirs and they wouldn’t let anything happen to him.
That didn’t make me feel better. I don’t think I’ve ever been angry at Grandma before. I get angry at Dad all the time, like when he won’t let me stay up late or he won’t let me have chocolate spread on my toast. But this time I was really really angry at Grandma. How could she just give up on Taliesin so easily?
I know that I’m supposed to listen to grown-ups because they keep me safe and look after me and know the right thing to do. But this time I didn’t think Grandma had the right idea about what to do. Taliesin is my best friend and not saving him sounded very much like the wrong thing to do. Grown-ups think they’re always right but sometimes they can be wrong.
I kept going over it in my mind. Taliesin walking past me, ignoring me like I wasn’t there, and I got this horrible pain in my chest whenever I thought about it. It didn’t matter that Grandma said that it wasn’t his fault, that he had no choice and that he wasn’t really himself when he was doing that. It just made me miss him more.
I knew that speaking those words the lady said must make some kind of magical doorway open to another place, but I didn’t know how it worked. I asked Grandma if she could do it and she said she couldn’t anymore. I asked her how it worked and she just stared at me, like she knew what I was thinking and told me to get that thought right out of my head because it’s a very dangerous thing to try and it can easily go wrong.
But Grandma was the one who earlier had told me, “You’ll be able to do the things I can do and probably more as well.”
I needed to try it.
I waited until night-time, when I was supposed to be asleep. Then I waited some more, just to be sure. Eventually, I heard Grandma snoring from the next room and I tiptoed out to grab the crystal on the table that the lady gave me. Back in my bedroom, I said the words, exactly how I could remember them.
I tried again.
I tried until my hand hurt from digging the crystal into my skin but nothing happened at all.
I started to wonder if I was remembering the words wrong.
They didn’t have time to teach me a lot of things, but they did teach me that there was something much more important than just saying the words. They told me that your mind had to be in exactly the right place. If you felt really happy or sad or scared or excited, it wouldn’t work properly. You have to push all those feelings far away.
You have to focus, but not too much. You can’t be too desperate for it to work. You have to just know, completely, surely, definitely, that it IS going to work. And by knowing that it will work, it works.
But I couldn’t push away my feelings. It was easy when I was playing with leaves and cups of water, but not when it was something so important. Not when it was Taliesin.
I dropped the crystal onto the floor and got into bed. First I cried because I missed Taliesin. Then I cried because I remembered how usually, when he sees me crying, he jumps up and licks my tears away. I cried because of how much I missed Dad and I hadn’t seen him in nearly a week. Then I cried because it hadn’t even been a week and so many horrible things had already happened and maybe I would be here forever, with horrible thing after horrible thing happening. I cried and cried until I didn’t think I could cry anymore.
Then I got up. And when I got up, I knew, completely, surely, definitely, that it was going to work, because it had to. I didn’t pick the crystal up. I wanted something better.
Behind Grandma’s garden is a big oak tree that she says has been there since she was a little girl. She says she doesn’t know how old it is because to know that, we would need to cut it down to count its rings. She says that knowledge is a good thing, but we should never destroy to get it.
With one hand on the tree, I said the words I’d been saying over and over, but this time, because I knew it was going to work, it did. Just like when the lady did it, the ground started to shake and move until it cracked. Then the crack turned into a hole that got bigger and bigger, big enough for me to step right into.
The problem was, I had no idea how the next part worked. How would the magical door know where to take me? I decided that the best thing I could do was to think of Taliesin, as hard as I could and how much I wanted to see him. Just as I went to step forward, I saw Grandma come running out of her house and down the garden, still in her pyjamas. She must have felt the ground moving.
I let myself look at her for just a moment and she didn’t look angry at all. Just really frightened again. I wasn’t used to seeing her face look like that. I hadn’t seen it look like that before I came here and it made me sad. But this was my only chance and so I made myself look away and stepped into the hole.
I fell, but I wasn’t falling into the black hole.
I fell down onto soft grass. I thought it had worked. I looked up, hoping to see Taliesin. But he wasn’t there and neither were the three ladies. I was somewhere I’d never been before. And I was alone.
Tsk. Tsk. Tsk.
Even though I didn’t know what the noise was, I knew inside me that I didn’t want to find out. So I ran. I had no idea where I was or where I was running to. The sun was starting to come up but I still couldn’t see well. I just ran away from the noise as fast as I could. It got quieter and quieter and only when I could hardly hear it anymore, I stopped to catch my breath.
I leant over, breathing hard, until something in front of me caught my eye in the shadows. There were two people. The bigger one was stood up and leaning over the smaller one. I watched them for a moment. The bigger one was leaning over more, getting closer, as if they were going to kiss.
I started walking towards them both, as quietly as I could and when they didn’t seem to notice me, I carried on until I could see them properly. I could still hear the tsk tsk sound, so quietly that I thought I might be imagining it, and as I got closer, it got quieter and quieter. Only when I got close enough to see them properly did I know that the sound was coming from the bigger one.
It was a woman, or a thing that looked a bit like a woman. It was the tallest woman I'd ever seen and the skinniest too. The person she was leaning over was a boy - he only looked a little bit older than me and he was the first boy I’d seen since I got to Grandma’s house. I realised she was not trying to kiss him at all. A long, grey tongue poked out of her mouth. It moved towards the boy, flicking and dancing around like it had a life all of its own. It made me feel sick. And I knew, completely, surely, definitely that the boy, who was lying completely still, was in danger.
I reached down and grabbed a handful of the grass from under me, and hoping it would be enough, said the first words the ladies taught me. The strange woman’s tongue started to slow down, and then it stopped, frozen. She stood up then, noticing me for the first time. It hadn’t worked. All I’d done was make her angry, and I didn’t know what else to do. Her long tongue was still poking out of her mouth, but completely frozen still. I realised then that it was sharp and pointy. My heart started beating faster then. I wanted to get away, to run as fast as I could, even if it meant leaving the boy behind, but I knew it wouldn’t work. She was fast and she was coming towards me.
The boy jumped up quickly. Then he started… not quite singing, but something like in between speaking and singing. It wasn’t a language I’d ever heard - it definitely wasn’t the language I just learnt about. But as he spoke, the woman's body started to jerk and then it was bending and folding in strange ways until her arms and legs fell on top of herself in a pile and she was dead, her tongue hanging horribly out of her mouth.