November 28, 2016 | Posted in The Mermaid & The WolF Adventures
It seems to take both an eternity and no time at all to arrive at the gates Elbath had spoken about. They rise out of the darkness, crafted from alabastor and moonbeams; woven with starlight and shards of crushed diamonds. Rather than any sort of door, the lights of the aurora borealis are stretched out between them.
“Beautiful,” breathes MeaZea. She pushes herself up high as she can, arching her back to try and get a better look at the gate. “Look at that, WooFZee! Elbath, does this mean that we made it?”
Elbath hums. The ethereal deer stops, head swiveling around as she tries to spot something. “This isn’t right. We’re late. The gates should already be closed.”
“I’m known for having good luck,” jokes WooFZee. The comment earns him a dour look from their star studded guide.
“It’s no matter to joke about,” says Elbath, firmly. “This is of the utmost seriousness! The moon is never late! He is absolutely, positively always on time.”
MeaZea purses her lips. She threads her fingers through her wolf companion’s gray fur. “Could something have happened to him?”
“I shudder at the thought,” says Elbath. She takes a few more haltering steps towards the gate. “It is not just our kingdom that relies on him, but the entire world. He is what turns night to day, and day to night, and creates the twilight that rests in between the two.”
WooFZee takes a few quick steps towards the gate, only stopping when MeaZea gives a sharp yank on his fur. “What?” He grumbles and grouses, tail swishing angrily behind him. “This is our chance! You heard her, MeaZea. The moon is late. That means we only have until he shows up to get out of here!”
MeaZea asks, “but what if something’s wrong?”
“Is that our problem?”
“We can’t help everyone,” insists WooFZee. “At some point, we have to start thinking about ourselves!”
A new, graveling voice says, “I hope that you wait a little bit longer to make that choice. I’m afraid that I could use every bit of help around.”
Startled, WooFZee spins around – and comes face to knees with an old man. He is impossibly tall, so much so that his spine is bent and his shoulders stooped. A long white beard has been thrown over one shoulder, where it dangles and spreads out over his back.
Clearly, this man is the moon. It shows in the way that his sad eyes twinkle, and in the star dust that has been woven into his skin. Creases, crevices, and craters mark his skin.
“You’re here,” breathes Elbath. “I thought that something was wrong!”
“Oh,” says the moon. “Something is very wrong.”
Katelynn E Koontz – Author