The Realm of Nyght

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: The Imaginarium


A continuation of DipperDots' story "Lost in the Woods of Nyght" in response to the Imaginarium Continue the Story challenge.

Submitted: January 13, 2018

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Submitted: January 13, 2018

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“We didn’t even pack an axe!”

Flynn placed a hand upon the great, dead oak, feeling the rough texture. Some of the bark fell away beneath his fingers. 

“Yes,” Flynn said, “it seems we did come here a bit underprepared.” He smiled at his companion, who crossed her arms and rolled her eyes. “Although,” Flynn continued, “I don’t believe an axe will be necessary.” At these words he plunged his hand into the rotted-out trunk of the oak. 

“Wait,” Amelia said, her arms falling back to her side. “Wait just one minute. When you said that we have to go through here, you meant—”

“That’s right. Though the old, rotten oak,” he said, digging through the soft wood with his gauntleted hands to create a large enough opening for the two of them. “Can’t go over it, can’t go around it, got to go through it.” He smirked at the disgusted look upon Amelia’s face.

“How do we know if that’s even the right way? Are you sure you read that moldy old map correctly?”

“Not at all,” Flynn said with a chuckle. He stepped back to look at the sizable hole he had managed to create in the thick trunk and nodded. “Ladies first?” He gestured toward the hole.

Amelia let out a short, derisive laugh. “You wish. If there’s something waiting to grab us on the other side of this tree, I don’t want to be the first to get eaten. If you go first, your screams will warn me to turn tail and run.”

Flynn sighed. “So optimistic,” he mumbled as he turned toward the tree. “Just follow me, nothing bad is going to happen.” He said this more to convince himself than her. Who knew what evils lay within these woods. 

The remaining wood gave way easily as Flynn started to claw his way through. He got only a few inches through when Amelia’s voice rang out behind him. “What was that?”

“Amelia, shut up,” Flynn said in a hushed voice. “What did I tell you, we probably aren’t the only ones out here.”

“Yeah, and I think I just heard one of them.” She was turning every which way, like an anxious bird, straining to see threats within the encroaching darkness. 

“All the more reason to shut up,” Flynn said. “Now follow me.” 

The wood softened even more the deeper he dug, and soon his hands just sunk into the tree. He forced his way through with his shoulder, and was soon engulfed by the foul-smelling, rotten wood. A heavy pressure pushed in on him from all directions, and he could not breathe. There was nothing but darkness. For a fleeting moment, Flynn was worried that he had made a terrible mistake. Surely he would die within this ancient oak, and for what? A mere trinket?

But then the pressure was gone. The darkness receded and air flooded back into his lungs. He fell to the soft forest floor and spent several seconds simply lying there, breathing in the cold, night air with his eyes closed. But something was wrong. The air did not smell right. It even felt different, softer somehow. His eyes flew open, and a foreign world met his gaze. 

He slowly got to his feet, looking around at the world surrounding him. Everything was massive. The trees towered above him, reaching impossible heights. In fact, the smallest tree was the old oak he had just dug his way through. The large trees were also smooth, almost shiny, and a dull glow seemed to hover over every surface. 

A low rumbling stole Flynn’s attention from the towering trees. He spun around and saw, walking between the trees in the near distance, the hulking form of an immense creature walking on all fours. It turned its head and set a pair of glowing eyes upon him. Flynn stood motionless, waiting for the beast to pounce upon him, but it simply walked on. 

An odd squelching noise arose behind him and he heard a string of curses from his companion. 

“This is the last time I ever let you talk me into—” Amelia’s voice broke off as she took in the mysterious world she had entered into. “By the gods,” she said, and for once her voice was soft.

“You said it,” Flynn said. His words seemed to linger within the strange atmosphere. 

“Where—” Amelia began, but she had to clear her throat before continuing. “Where, in the name of Tarloc, are we?”

Flynn glanced down at the map in his hand. “According to this, we have just enter the Realm of Nyght.”

Amelia was silent for several moments before she said, “And the Harp of Recompense is supposed to be in here somewhere?”

Flynn opened his mouth to respond, but it was not his voice which replied. “I certainly hope so.” A cold blade appeared at Flynn’s throat. “Or else we followed you kids here for nothing.” The gravelly voice was cold and mocking. 

Another rough voice arose from where Amelia stood: “That harp is as good as ours.”

 

To Be Continued


© Copyright 2019 J. R. Merrick. All rights reserved.

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