Across the Barrier, fantasy, Short Story

Across the Barrier Chapter Six

Gods ruin everything.

They accidentally made us

Played with us only to punish us and to abandon us.

Well, that’s what Baldemar thinks.

I’ve never met a God.

It’s all he talks about. Being stuck inside this place for days has lulled me to believe I will never leave it. I’ve even accepted the goo that they call sustenance.

A prisoner in the void stuck with jail mates that are a little cuckoo.

One is an old man who has killed a God, perhaps multiple times but won’t say.

While on the other hand, I have an automaton that speaks many languages fluently, knows advanced science and math and has the strength of ten people.

Both creating a device right now, that will somehow blow open the doors of heaven, or the gateway to the realm of the Gods.

This could drive me mad and join them in their reverie of a life.

I sit cross-legged on the floor under a window far from them, watching like a bird perched on the wire.

I have tried running, but the moment I stepped out of the house, the world literally turns dark. I could not see anything but infernal darkness, it still haunts me in my sleep.

Baldemar glances at me, ‘You ok, Benny? You’ve been rather quiet these past few days. The dark hasn’t scared you into madness has it?’

Perhaps he knows by experience.

‘I would prefer to be in the world I come from, I would eat a real bittergourd than the mush we eat here.’

Baldemar puts down a laser-like pen and takes off his gloves.

‘I’ll bring you some after my trip since you asked.’

‘A coke would be better.’

‘We’ll see, Ava is putting the final touches and soon I will have a key to the Realm of the Gods, now I just need Divine blood.’ Baldemar pats Ava on the back.

‘Don’t do that!’ she growls. Ava’s gets lost and obsessed when she works. It’s quite fascinating to watch from afar. I would love to see what they are creating, but I’ve been forbidden like a child with the TV remote.

‘Sorry! I’ll go get washed up and make some lunch.’ Baldemar smiles and leaves in a really good mood.

‘He seems happy.’ I stand to move closer to Ava. My legs were aching.

She simply grunts.

I move towards her. Moving around large metal boxes slowly not to scare her.

Past glass cabinets with odd items in Petri dishes sending shivers down my spine.

Ava hunches over her project protectively.

I am a few steps behind her.

Today she looked oddly ordinary.

Dressed in a normal although worn out long sleeve shirt with black jeans and black boots.

I am inches away but just as I peek over, she pauses.

‘I know you’re behind me.’

Ava is suddenly closing a wooden box and begins to wrap it with suede cloth.

‘Glad I’m done, or else you’d be in trouble.’

‘Why can’t I see it?’ I moan. I was so close.

At least I know it’s small enough to fit in a box the size of a book but what could have taken them days to complete that was that tiny?

‘You would go blind and turn into dust!’ she embellishes.

‘Right.’ I snort.

Ava pats me on the back. ‘Don’t worry, I’ve got a plan.’

What plan? For what exactly? The last time I had been left alone with her she had bullied me into answering thousands or more questions about the world I came from.

She looked hysterical, eyes glinting like a mad scientist or it could just be the glass layer over her eyeballs.

Yet, madness could run in the family. Baldemar has definitely lost his mind obsessing over the Gods.

We head down together to the kitchen just as Baldemar sets down three cups of the disgusting goo on the table.

‘Drink up boy and girl. After, I am on my way.’ Baldemar grins raises the cup to us,  a salute.

‘How are you gonna find God’s blood if they blocked us out?’ I take the cup and try not to hurl as the scent rises from the cup sending my tummy roiling like a stormy ocean.

‘A friend of yours is a God’s child. I just need their blood.’ He gulps down the content of his cup quickly like an excited child about to go outside and play.

‘Are you gonna kill them?’

Baldemar puts the cup down and stares at me lost in thought.

‘Maybe.’

My stomach turns upside down and rolls around a bit before I could muster a reply. Who was the God child? Luna is special and Metior definetly looks like a God. Lucian and Kera looked so normal it couldn’t be them.

‘Please don’t hurt her.’ I say but Baldemar simply shrugs.

‘Aren’t you playing the same role as the God that you hate so much? Doing this will take away the one I love.’ I protest further.

Before I know it Baldemar slams his fist across my face sending me backwards smashing through the table and against the wall.

I feel something besides my overwhelming emotions for the first time in a long time.

I could feel blood oozing down the side of my head.

Baldemar laughs, ‘Well, it seems your not so immune after all. I lashed out with some of my Godly essence and BAM!’

God’s are a pain.

My head hurts and the world felt like a roller coaster ride.

I feel Ava at my side.

‘He has a small concussion. He’ll be immobile for a while. He needs to rest and heal.’ As unmanly as it can get, she carries me in her arms to my little cot in the corner of the living room.

‘That is good then, I won’t have to worry about him running into the void again. I don’t have time to go looking for him. Take care of him Ava, when I’m back we can go knocking on the God’s Door.’

Baldemar doesn’t bother leaving the house through the door, he simply creates a portal and without a word disappears into it.

Suddenly the world starts spinning excessively. I’m back in Ava’s arms and she’s sprinting towards the void.

In a second, a blink, I am somewhere else.

In the middle of a crowded street of a place, I’ve never been. Or I could barely recognize with all the spinning my head was doing.

‘I’m finally here.’ Ava gently drops me on a bench and begins to walk away.

That’s not good.

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Across the Barrier, fantasy, On-going Stories, Short Story

Across the Barrier Chapter Four

She didn’t want to see me.

It’s been an hour or two or maybe forever, or it felt that way.

Since she knocked on the door just as we were about to eat breakfast, it felt ages.

Why didn’t she want to see me?

Metior must be being protective.

‘Relax lover boy, everything happens for a reason.’ Kera pats me on the shoulder as she passes by, pity written all over her face. What was the pity for? Did Luna meet someone else? How long have I been dead?

I rise off my seat and head over to the patio where they were keeping her away from me. I couldn’t even see her through the curtains. What was all the secrecy about? Was it not the plan to unite us a while ago?

Kera rushes from the kitchen catching sight of me heading out.

‘It’s not a good time, be patient.’ She holds me back although I push against her. She is stronger than she looks.

‘Why?’ I begged in a whisper, feeling her palm dig deeper into my shoulder as I press forward.

‘Your death’s made it complicated is all I can say.’ She pushes me back to the dining room gently.

I deflate, unable to fight.

Yes, I had died, and now I live. How I am here has been slithering around in my mind but ignoring it was easier when all the crazy things unfolded. Now that Kera has smacked it to my face, I fall onto a seat disorientated.

‘This must be all maddening to you; I will never forget my first time. Getting dropped into the middle of a jungle, getting chased by naked people and meeting Misty for the first time as a bat or was it a monkey? He seems like a monkey.’

I try to smile, but I couldn’t bother anymore to seem stable.

Kera passes me a new cup of coffee, ‘It will be ok. Things happen to us so we can grow.’

‘Do you have a book on positive things to say memorised?’

Kera shrugs, ‘Makes me feel like I’m helping.’

I sip the coffee, burning my tongue but it hurts less than the fear gnawing in my heart. Am I a zombie? Is that why it was complicated? I couldn’t be with her because I was rotting from the inside out. I feel myself begin to panic.

‘Your mind barrier is failing, I can hear you freaking out. You are not dead. Stop thinking whatever you are thinking. I don’t need to read your mind to know you’re overthinking everything.’

‘But-‘ I begin, but she interrupts, high on coffee.

‘You have a heavy frown on your face. Lines so deep Darya could swim in it, even Kai.’

The thought of that was funny, but I couldn’t picture it in my mind without imagining my face rotting and falling apart.

Something was wrong, and I don’t know how to fix it.

I try and force a smile so Kera can leave and do whatever she needed. She was itching to go, drinking her coffee in gulps.

‘Smile is fake but I’ll take it, I need to remind the others we have an evil villain to defeat.’ Kera finishes whatever is left of her coffee and drops it by the kitchen and swiftly walks back out to the patio to the others.

There was an evil villain to defeat? I could suddenly feel weariness spread through my body like a wave. There was so much to take in.

I place my cup on the table which is still filled with the breakfast made earlier. All of it was untouched and cold by now. As I reach for a piece of sausage to eat some of my anger away, the world seems to suddenly go in slow motion.

The windows by the dining table bursts into pieces of glass. Shards heading towards me like arrows. The wall tumbles down in massive blocks. An old wrinkly man floats in surrounded with a black halo.

It was black as night, you could see nothing through it, pure darkness.

I cross my arm over my face to block the glass. I fall back on my seat onto the floor with a slam. A block of the wall knocks me hard on the head. Dust clouds the air, entering my eyes, turning everything hazy.

‘Ben!’ someone is shouting my name but I can’t see anything the world has gone dark.

The same voice screams my name, and I realise it is Luna.

‘Luna! I can’t see anything. Go, get away, save yourself! I love-’, something knocks me down hard, and I’m suddenly in the air upside down.

In between a blink and within and below a second, the world turns silent. No rumbling blocks of cement, no screaming and shouting, just silence; pure emptiness. It sucks you in. It turns you into a tiny ball of existence so minuscule an ant could feel like a mountain.

I blink a few times, hoping to remove the dust out of my eyes. I could feel tears streaming down my face, washing away some dust and cleaning my eyes. Though it made no difference, if I opened or closed my eyes, I could not see. I was in darkness.

With a pop, the old man appears in front of me. In this place, he was black and grey, so was the world around us. There was no vibrant colour in sight.

‘Welcome to the in-between! This is the crack between worlds where nobody goes or wants to go. This is a place, a home, a shelter for outcasts like you and me.’

Before I could say a word, the old man moves in close, his face within and below an inch from my face.

He sneers, ‘you’re mine now little Ben. My own little Golem boy.’

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fantasy, On-going Stories, Short Story

Across the Barrier Chapter One

It was too early. There is barely any light going through the parting in the curtain. The clock reads seven in the morning, and my girl still had time in that dream of hers.

Above her head, floating like a marshmallow cloud is a dream. She is dreaming of me. The house where we would live, close to some trees near the bottom of a mountain. My office full of paperwork right beside hers which is full of colours made up of drawings of the characters she dreams of. It was all a future waiting to happen.

Except it wasn’t.

Her silver-white hair splayed around her head like the moons glow on her pillow. Her nose is as cute as a button and lips meant for me to kiss for a lifetime.

But it isn’t.

Luna Gold was my girl. To the world, she was simply another girl in the crowd, but to me, she was everything. She was my future home, the mother of my children, the beautiful angel to walk down the aisle into my supposed life.

Forever.

But here I am, looking through what seems like a thick ocean wall of dark glass. I don’t know what this barrier is, but there were creatures on the other side.

There were long ones and short ones, ugly and beautiful beings swimming and floating around. My favourite I would say would be the silver finned fairy-like fish. It had a tiny body like a little elf, with long elongated ears; eyes like a cat but it changed colour sometimes like a mood ring.

It had a flat nose like a catfish with the whiskers too. It had a bottom body of a fish. It was pretty much like a mermaid elf with a flat face. It likes to smile at me through the glass, and it would watch Luna with me.  I want to think she understands how I feel; Luna was a whole world away, and I couldn’t touch her or say a word.

A farewell.

I lean against the glass barrier, an ocean between Luna and I. We were meant to have a life together. Our first child would be named Juan and if it was a girl, Uno. She hated those names. I thought it was clever.

I slam my fist against the glass.

Being dead sucked.

She is waking up, as her everyday routine, she groans and moans, tosses and turns. Her body and mind were waking up before the alarm would ring.

She wants to stay in the dream longer. I don’t disagree with her, we were kissing pretty heatedly. I would stay in the dream too if I could.

Even better, be there to actually kiss her.

The alarm rings and she snoozes it. Again, then again, until she has to rush out of bed, hit her toe on the corner of her cabinet and finally wake up due to the pain. Her first few words of the day were curses. She was amazing. Adorable.

I, of course, look away when she gets undressed and slip into the shower. I am no peeping Tom. So stop looking or imagining. Luna’s my girl.

I start to move away from the glass wall to give her space, but I’m stuck. Then I feel my body sinking in through the glass until with a pop I’m fully inside. The world is frozen.

I see the mermaid elf smile at me for a second. I wasn’t sure if it was a menacing smile, considering I may be about to die my second death stuck inside the thick glass barrier.

My vision begins to warp into a kaleidoscope of the mermaid elf’s face with Luna in the shower and the dark world behind me with other drifting souls. The colours begin to warp much faster, sliding into smaller pieces becoming unrecognisable images into a mirage of colours. While my body feels like it’s being dunked in and out of frigid ice water.

My body shivers, goose bumps form all over my body, and I could hear the chattering of my teeth but sound like hammers slamming at the same time to my ears. My vision moving fast but my body feels sluggish.

I could feel myself moving, but I could not see where I am going. Everything is white. There were plenty of scary creatures across the barrier now that I think about it. The eel-like creature with red scales and red eyes, sharp ebony teeth that look poisonous.

What about the creature that looks like an ugly mass of hair with twelve human-like eyes. I had called it ugly to its face, not sure if they could actually hear me through the glass. It could strangle me with its hair-like tentacles, but I feel nothing but cold pour down my back like liquid metal enveloping me.

My vision suddenly sharpens, the white is gone and replaced with murky water. I’m floating in front of the barrier; creatures swim past, ignoring me. No sign of the one I called ugly. Thankfully. I’d just crossed through the glass barrier, other spirits a blur through the thick glass I had been encased in.

I’m floating in water with the odd little fish creatures, am I on the bottom of the ocean floor?

I notice the mermaid elf is now meters away, she is watching me. She points towards the direction where I had seen Luna through the glass. I could no longer see Luna, it was an endless open ocean.

I tried to speak to the mermaid elf, but there were only black bubbles coming out of my mouth. The mermaid elf laughs at me, it sounded like sharp piercing chimes to my ears.

She points again towards where Luna’s life had been projected. She swims towards the direction she had directed, and I follow.

We enter a current; I could not swim against it if I tried. The mermaid elf chimes as she rides the current. Her scales creating a sort of haunting tune.

I try to look behind me, but I no longer see the glass barrier. Looking forward, I see memories of life itself as it unfolds. It was like a lifestream. The current a tunnel.

I could see different people’s lives, little children dressed in rags as they play on dirty streets while a band practises right behind them. An old lady carrying a basket of food on top of her head as she crosses the road.

The stream changes again but it was in the artic. A polar bear so thin it looks like a ghost was walking alone in the vast emptiness of clean white snow. The lifestream shifts to a pretty little girl sitting on a bed. She is dressed all pretty like she was going to a birthday party but a sleazy old man enters the room, and if one were not looking, they would have missed the tear that slides down the girl’s cheek.

The lifestream shifts and then I see my family, they were at home sitting around the table eating. I realise I barely contacted them. A deep pang of regret twinges in my chest.

Flashes of different peoples life flash in the lifestream, but one meant more than anything.

Then I see the light.

The beginning of a second chance in life in the unlikeliest form.

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