If you missed part one of The Quest, stop now, go back and read it first! You wouldn’t want to miss anything, right?
If you checked it out already, here’s part two!
As she started on her quest, she lost herself deep in thought. This was not the first time she had to correct a wrong of her own doing, but this time it was different. A weight bore down on her; a bitter mixture of guilt and the contemplations of the severity of her punishment should she fail was a burden in itself. She looked down the road ahead of her. It seemed an endless tunnel, focusing and becoming narrow to the point of restriction. She picked up her step slightly, knowing that the inevitable would not fade away if she merely slowed her pace.
The road was smooth and allowed for quick movement, but it seemed as though months had passed by the time she found the opening to the path that spiraled up the mountain. She hesitated at the edge of the flat ground where she stood and the thicker, mottled brown carpeting that lay on the trail ahead. This is it, she thought to herself. She looked back down the road the way she came and drew in a long, deep breath. The afternoon air had not yet begun to warm, leaving her throat cold and stinging as she inhaled. She shivered. Without a sound, she exhaled slowly, concentrating on pushing out the fear that lingered in her spine, pulling at her to turn back and make the journey back to where she had begun.
Her first step felt heavy; unnatural. She felt her legs quiver slightly with the anticipation of meeting something wicked on the mountain trail.
“Let’s go,” she told herself aloud. “You cannot fail, you cannot be terrified.”
As she moved her other foot forward, it seemed that the world slowed. The sounds around her were dull, lifeless, without even so much as an echo coming from any direction. She felt as if she had stepped into a motionless, two dimensional atmosphere; it stifled her and caused a catch in her breath. For the first time, she noticed how dark it had gotten. The dim, ambient lighting surrounding her was the only thing keeping the trail visible enough to continue to move. As she made her way up the trail, the dense undergrowth and brush to the sides began to close in on her. More and more she had to step over tendrils of alien looking weeds and dead branches that had fallen from the twisted, gnarled trees that somehow grew from the rocky, decaying earth. At one point she glanced behind her and realized that she had not even begun to move far from the road, yet it seemed that she had hiked for hours. Her spirit began to fade and desperation slowly crept into its place, filling her with a voided feeling that she could not shake.
Come back tomorrow for The Quest, Part 3 of 7!
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