Maelstrom: Part 1

Hey guys! I know I didn’t post on Monday, but here’s a new Elizabeth installment! Check it out, and leave a like if you like it! Also, if you unaware of what this title means, a maelstrom is a violent whirlpool or a state of confused chaos (thus the picture:)

The Adventures of Elizabeth Shelley

 

Finn had been gone all day, and there was no sign of him arriving anytime soon. This wasn’t the first time he hadn’t been in our home base in Campestris at the time we were supposed to train, but this was the first time he hadn’t shown up at all.

 

I sit on the floor, sinking a little into the padding, staring at the wall and bored out of my mind. I spent the morning hacking away at one of our poor wooden men, and then I climbed the rock wall in the back for a few hours. But now, I’m just waiting. I’ve been waiting for like, two hours now.

 

I let my head fall back against the wall behind me, feeling the cold of it seep into me, and I shut my eyes.

 

It’s been eight months since I was first transported through dimensions by the wegferends as a prospective apprentice. It still shocks me sometimes when I’m sitting in class, in my dimension, learning about derivatives or ecosystems or something, that no one around me has any idea. I could blow my science teacher’s mind with ease. Obviously I don’t, though.

 

Only a week or two until I’m done with high school, and then I’m off to college about an hour away from my hometown. Finn insisted that I didn’t have to go, that most apprentices don’t. I could simply tell them all I’m going to some nonexistent school and continue my training full-time. That way I could devote all my time to this life and could be ‘more focused and less exhausted’ at his training sessions.

 

He’s got a point. For eight months, I’ve basically been living two lives. In the mornings, I leave through the Door to Campestris for the wegferend-life, and then I go back home and shower and go to school and do homework. I’ve never been more exhausted in my life.

 

But other than the stress and being tired and terrified all the time, it hasn’t been too hard. My parents think I go to school super early for tutoring, and then by the time my wegferend-day is over, they’ve both gone to work, so I have time to shower and eat and head to school. It’s not lying, exactly. Or at least that’s what I tell myself.

 

College will complicate things, to be sure. But some part of me knows I have to do it. Something will snap in me if I don’t, if I dedicate everything to this life. I need something to ground me, as much as I don’t want to admit it. Plus, what could go better with traveling through dimensions than an archaeology major!

 

It’ll be fine. I know it’ll be fine. I can do it.

 

A loud bang attacks my ears, and my eyes shoot open. I jerk my head forward, and then backward in surprise, knocking it off the wall.

 

“Ow!”

 

Wincing and rubbing the back of my head, I look up to see Rhett sauntering in from the lounge area. Clothes rumpled a bit and hair tousled, he seems to have just woken up, sunken eyes scanning the room. His expression softens a little when he spots me on the floor.

 

It’s been hard on him since he lost Beata. They must have been so close. He moves around like a phantom now, eyes hollow and hardly saying a word. Life has taken its sweet time coming back to him.

 

Recently, he seems to have better days and worse days. His status with the wegferends is a bit in flux. They don’t seem to want to give him a new mentor, but he’s not taken the test and become a full wegferend. Most days he spends with Finn and I, and I have no idea what he does on the others. Those days when he’s with us, like last week when we rode these weird horse-like creatures through a purple stream in a particularly fantastic dimension, I heard his laugh again. I can tell by just looking at him that today is one of the worse days.

 

“Hey.” I say, my voice a bit soft in the huge room.

 

Settling himself down next to me, he looks over at me. “Hey.”

 

Then, silence. We both just look out, in the plush-floored room with silent wooden soldiers ready for a missing battle and dusty old chairs with no one to sit in them. I watch the dust float around in a beam of light from one of the big windows, Campestris’s sun dimming the world.

 

After five minutes of silence, Rhett asks, “Where’s Finn?”

 

I give a noncommittal shrug in return. Then, an idea forms in my mind. A master plan, one might say.

 

I hop to my feet, energy flowing back into my body. “Come on!”

 

Rhett doesn’t move. He just squints up at me, confusion leaking on his face.

 

“Why, exactly, should we just sit here while Finn is off…being Finn?” I heave Rhett to his feet by his arms. “Let’s go find adventure!”

 

I start dragging him out the door by my grip on his arm. He lets himself be dragged, but he asks, “What, alone? Isn’t that a bad idea?”

 

“It’s not like it’s against the rules!”

 

“Actually, it is.” He mumbles. “In the wegferend handbook.”

 

I roll my eyes, wrenching the door open and shoving him out into the blinding Campestris sunlight. “Oh, well, in my defense, I didn’t read that. Who cares?”

 

I’m fully aware it’s probably a bad idea, but if it takes adventure for Rhett to laugh, then adventure is where we’re going.

 

Thanks for reading! If you liked it, please share with your friends! And tune in next Monday for Part 2!

 

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