The Castle On The Waves

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic
A tale of magic, mystery, and the madness of a gifted musician, set on the Australian coast.

Submitted: May 08, 2008

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Submitted: May 08, 2008

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Mrs Anderson drove her little, broken car down the steep Peninsula road, halting abruptly at a fence that bordered the cliff. The waves broke angrily on the edge of the sea below, and the sky was veiled in grey cloud.

'The waves look dangerous, today,' said Mrs Anderson, to her daughter, Susan, and her friend, Lizzie.

She parked the car against the fence, and the girls followed her as she walked down the sand covered steps that twisted below them, to the beach. The cool, soft air blew their hair across their faces, as they descended the steps. Their feet sank into the damp sand, as they walked briskly along the beach.

Mrs Anderson carried their picnic basket to a small rock pool. The girls gathered around her, as she opened the basket, and placed some ham sandwiches, a bottle of freshly squeezed apple juice, and a sponge cake on a tablecloth above the rocks.

'Look, a small cave!' cried Lizzie, pointing to a hole in the cliff wall, just above the rock pool. She watched, as water trickled in tiny rivers, away from the pool, back into the sea.

Lizzie tiptoed up the rocks and stood on the pebbles that fringed the cave entrance. She stared into the gaping hole, then something made her shiver, so she returned quickly to sit next to her friend.

Miss Anderson and her charges sat in a circle, around the basket, and began to eat, again. After they had finished, Lizzie stood up and started running down the beach. Susan called out, 'Wait for me,' and followed her.

Lizzie felt her breath become warm inside her cheeks, as she ran along the base of a cliff. The sea had cut away the rock face into ghostly shapes. Sea water rushed over their feet, deeper and deeper, until it caught the hems of their dresses. They ran until they reached one of the half sunken shapes. Then Susan turned around to see that they had run so far that she could no longer see her mother.

Before she could panic, thunder had already surrounded them and she yelled at Lizzie, 'Come on, we'd better go back, as fast as we can.'

The girls dragged their feet through the sand, as they ran along the shore.

Susan could see the figure of her mother at the end of the beach, waving to them, but the wind tore at her patterned dress. She gasped when she saw her mother turn and begin walking up the steps, back to the car park. The wind pushed her onto sand. She stood up, brushed the grains from her dress, and turned around to face the cave.

'Let's go inside,' said Susan. This time she walked up the rocks to the cave and stared bravely into it.

Inside, the cave became a passage, leading to the unknown. Sunlight drifted into the cave, revealing its beautiful walls.

'Susan!' Elizabeth's voice echoed hollowly through the labyrinth. The cave appeared to continue underground, further from the sea.

'We should go inside and look around,' said Susan, 'the rain is too heavy for us to leave, here, anyway.'

'But you don't know what's inside it. We could fall or slip, and get hurt. Then what would we do? Nobody could help us.'

'Just come inside, with me, just a little way.\" Said Susan.

'Alright.' Said Lizzie.

Lizzie followed her friend, inside the cave. She reached out to touch the walls, which felt moist and soft, against her palms.

'Look,' exclaimed Susan. Lizzie followed her friend's hand up to the stalactites.

'The're beautiful,' said Lizzie, 'what are they?'

'They're called stalactites. My teacher said that it took millions of years for them to look the way they do.'

The girls stepped carefully across the rocks, but Susan slid and pushed Lizzie backwards, into the dark cave.

She knocked one of the rocks over a ledge, and nearly fell down, into the deep chambers of the cave.

'And look,' said Lizzie, pointing along a wall of the cave. A small suspension bridge was hanging in mid air, loosely linking each end of the cave. Susan pulled her friend through the darkness, to the bridge. When they reached it, they saw two electric globes perched on the poles that tied the bridge to the ledge. The warm light of the globes made the passages of the cave seem enchanting, to her.

'It's just lovely,' said Lizzie, 'come on, we have to keep going, we can't stop, now.'

Susan followed Lizzie as she crossed across the bridge. Holding tightly onto the rope, they staggered to the next ledge.

An opening appeared in a wall, near the bridge. Susan stepped forward, in the lamp glow, to find an unusual set of stairs, leading into the depths of the cave.

'Keep away,' she warned Lizzie, pushing her backwards, 'it's a set of stairs. This is where the cave ends.'

'It can't finish,' said Lizzie, 'and why would a cave have stairs?'

'There's something strange about this cave.' Said Susan. 'Someone has tried to convert it into some kind of building.'


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