Curved black spirals 4
Darkness engulfed them as they were silently setting foot after foot through the couloir, passing doors and portraits on of creepier and more suspicious shapes. It was by that time, when they reached the dead-end with a portrait, that yet again a dark figure appeared behind them.
“So it has indeed entrapped us,” 2 claimed.
She sprayed sacred water towards the shape, but it was a vain deed. Condensed darkness moved forth and as the distance was closing it changed to a cold, black-haired woman with predatory hostility, the same one that 4 and 5 saw in that very place.
3 stepped in with torch, yet right before he could have stroked her, the flame got sniffed, as if she did that. Not by blowing air, but by psychic power.
She was reaching them and with scream started to touch both 3 and 2 and the man on the portrait started to scream back at her.
Suddenly the glow of light manifested in the gap that was separating 2 and 3 from the rest of the group. The light expanded into a magnificent rings of sun-like beams that rendered visible the whole couloir as far as the eyes were capable to see.
Three shapes of white light formed in the epicentre and with that all the darkness of the black woman melted away. After the clash the light faded away and the three figures stayed.
They had to flip the flash-lights on to see who were their new acquaintances.
It was 4, 5 and young woman with a wizard hat. And there was a hare too.
“What have you guys just… and you brought someone with you. Hey, hi, who are you? What happened,” rushed 3 out of his tongue.
“We came back from a different realm that we got soaked into… through that portrait over there, actually,” 5 explained.
“Um… my name is 7, I’m a witch that got entrapped here for a very long time.”
“Ah so you’re free now?” asked 6.
“Not quite, you see, we used the switch to get from a more pleasing gardens to this dead-end of a manor. If you think you can leave by the front entrance, you are wrong,” she explained.
“I’m glad to see you guys again, with a new friend even more. So what are we going to do under such circumstance?” asked 2.
“We are free to roam, looking for new things, but that gave me only illusion of moving anywhere through the course of days,” 7 said.
“We ought to turn back and explore the upper floor nonetheless,” 2 proposed. She was not entirely pleased with what she learned, yet was willing to keep the spirit of her active attitude going.
“There is this creepy basement we tried to open in our moment of despair too,” said 5.
The moment he did so hare jumped its way the other way, towards the original entry room and thus the staircase too.
“Hare settles it then, no freaking way we go to a doubtful basement in the darkest couloir after what we’ve gone through the past moments,” 6 said.
So they went onward as journey would have sung. Although they were turning back for a brief moment in time, that seemed to have been rendered relative.
They reached the main room and decided to rest a bit on the couch and chairs at nearby tables. Glanced through some papers, looked at some books, not doing much, all of them rather weary.
“So… care for some storytelling?” 3 proposed.
“What would be of interest to you, or is it you that proposes to speak?” 7 asked.
“I propose… that 1 tells us the whole story and the contract he stroke,” 3 replied.
“It wasn’t that complicated,” 1 said. Voice tonality either annoyed, or deceitfully reassuring. No one knew that for sure just yet. “Man in charge proposed that we search the place, turn it upside down, harass dark entities not only to exorcise but to discover hidden messages and traces… virtually anything that could be used to get the picture… so as to expose relics and possible people, ghosts leading to a gate to another world. Not just any gate, but some sort of ancient, stable and well-known gate by the old.”
“I think the gate, as you speak of it might actually be an evil portal,” said 2.
“You might not be wrong, we might have been ordered to perform neutral treasure hunting to accomplice sinister ambitions,” 5 said.
“Nonetheless it makes little sense for people to just let evil enter more,” 1 said.
“It might as well be just a transitory state of the gateway. I came here and felt the goodwill stored in ancient stone’s site around this manor. You never know how much evil can take over an originally good place,” 7 kicked in.
“Yes, but we are talking about the portal itself. The portal might be from a bad plane, perhaps leading to a bad star system, from our point of view speaking,” 5 said.
“Well we don’t know that for sure, nor do we do much without any further exploration of the place,” 4 said.
All members of the group silently nodded to the claim and resumed on resting, closing eyes, thinking, or just waiting.
Your weary eyes beg for silence, void is your place, 6 heard in her head as she was mildly falling asleep. She opened eyes hastily, saying: “Oh my Gosh, I heard a strange voice, mesmerizing me to fall asleep, inducing the temptation of numb oblivion.”
“I’ve heard a voice too, bit hostile in its colour,” said 2.
“No use trying to stay idle if something dark is coming our way. We don’t want to let it materialize. We should move on,” said 1. Retaining the leadership after being oddly quiet a considerable time ever since the dark couloir’s recent exploration.
“But do we have any plan? How prepared are we, without having set any strategy we might as well get confused and sucked into uncontrollable circumstances, just like we did there at the dead-end with man’s portrait,” 5 said.
“He is the owner of this place,” 7 jumped into the conversation.
“Yes, we met him with that woman of his,” 4 agreed.
“What have you learned about him?” 5 asked 7.
“Probably what he wanted me to learn about his ways. I observed though, he cared quite keenly about his collections, also liked this place very much.”
“Did he treat that woman of his like an equal?” 5 asked.
“Hard to tell, she’s been more of a silent companion to him,” young witch said and the hare hopped into her lap once again.
“Speaking of companions, who’s this?” asked 3, looking at the hare.
“I’m a Watership Down survivor,” hare replied with a human voice.
“Oh my God did it just speak?” 6 asked.
“Rofl no, I’m just joking,” hare replied.
“Did it just say rofl in spoken speech?” 3 marvelled.
“Lmfao that’s funny,” 5 added.
“Now that you learned it’s a he, he’s not gonna talk any more. He will stay silent to convince it was just your insane imagination… or perhaps just a voice in your head,” 7 noted.
“Lol witch, don’t mess with them like that,” hare replied and both of them started to laugh.
Original group of six found it strange. Except for 4, she found it amusing. Once the awkwardness vanished 2 realised she even liked it. It was somehow comforting to have a trace of humour and a tiny piece of magical world always close to her.
“Very well then, shall we depart?” 3 proposed and they packed and moved on to the first floor.
As they ventured through the 1st floor a cheerful mood was hanging above the group. It provided comfort to have greater group and sunbeams of time around two hours past noon gave a nice colour to rooms. “You’ve been in all those rooms before?” 5 asked 7.
“I might have been, but they actually do change,” she replied.
“If such oddity be set, are we approaching the thing appropriately?” 3 asked.
“Sometimes you have to patiently play by others’ rules. Otherwise you wouldn’t learn a thing about their ways,” 1 said, “I don’t like it either, but the projects of magical worlds are the expressions of shifting by the ways of parallel universes and hidden principles we might have never imagined before.”
“Figures, where are we gonna go? Room by room or farthest point?” 2 asked.
“Let us stretch it out far,” 4 said.
“Very well,” 2 affirmed and as they set feet few yards a grey shape happened to block their route. It wore hood and started to form a fireball in its belly area. Everyone widened their eyes struck in fear. The fireball was cast and they had to lean onto the walls from both sides so that it could just fly through the central space without hitting anyone.
“Damn fireballs,” 3 said.
“Now you talk about some ancient old-school witchcraft,” 5 noted.
“So what do we do, we ain’t used to shield that much of a power,” 1 said.
“Oh I can help,” 7 said and cast a bolt of ice that froze the grey figure.
“How the heck can you do that?” 5 asked.
“I’ve studied a nice traditional path,” 7 winked.
6 approached the icy figure, touching it with tip of her finger. “Cool, quite literally,” she exclaimed.
“We might be moving on or we might just find a room and talk us through the shock,” 1 proposed.
They lanced into first door that seemed to be less suspicious and this one was quite spectacular. Old piano and wooden furniture all over. Enough fancy chairs for everyone to sit.
“Alright, first of all what are we going to eat and how much water we have left?” 1 asked.
“We’ve got supplies for about 30 hours more,” 2 replied.
“That means we either figure it out quickly, or get ourselves into trouble. You witch how do you survive in here?” 1 asked.
“Quite a commanding way to ask. Anyway I do eat from that garden where we met each other with these two.” 7 replied.
“How come you do that? Those plants were so surreal,” 4 marvelled.
“How can we get there again?” 5 asked, rushing on with curiosity.
“Why don’t you just calm down? I told you we can’t really leave this place,” said the witch with dreamy voice.
“Yup, that adds up to rendering my mind peaceful,” 3 noted sarcastically.
“Well it means that what we need is not a survival plan but a mystery-solving attitude,” 4 said.
“Correct, although I already told you I renounced on seeing to the end of it,” 7 said.
“Why would you do that? Isn’t it that we set the target firstly in mind, to reach it outwardly? Also that the hope dies the last as they say?” 4 continued.
“Indeed, hope dies the last, thence we die first,” 7 noted.
“Rofl, ye so sarcastic now,” hare jumped into the conversation.
“Oh why did you chose hare as a companion,” asked 3 looking at 7.
“I chose her because she’s a witch,” hare said jokingly.
“Stop that,” 4 said.
“Hare him out,” 5 joined, “what’s your story hare?”
“Oh I can indeed tell you my story,” hare started and so the endeavour of solution searching turned into a storyteller’s circle, forgetting the real issues for a while.