Between the Pages

In a magical world, Between the Pages, lives Sebastian and his twin Edmond. That is, until Edmond decides to work against the Queen and disappears to join the Queens brother, and setting a curse over the country. Concerned for his brother (and the world), Sebastian sets of to search after him. But he needs help.

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13. IX

The bed she found herself in, when she woke up, seemed unfamiliar and new, and slowly faded imagery came back to her.

She sat up and looked out of the window behind her. Outside the sun was shining a bright, fiery orange. The sky was a clear blue only interrupted by a few wispy clouds. Everything seemed so nice; that for a second she forgot the reason she was here. Fear is an easy thing to ignore when the threat doesn’t stare you right in the face.

Lina finally stood up, afraid she might have missed something. Her clothes were still carelessly thrown at the floor and she quickly put on her shorts. There was no mirror in the room, so she carelessly brushed her fingers through her hair.

When she got to the doorknob she hesitated. It felt strange to wake up in another house; however it felt even stranger to intrude on a family’s private morning routine.

She shrugged of her worries and climbed down the stairs.  There was coming noise from the kitchen; Soft thuds and a metallic rattle reached her ears. She walked on her toes to the kitchen, not wanting to make unnecessary noise.

Almas hair created a dark halo around her head and she was wearing a huge, paint splattered t-shirt. Her head was buried in a cupboard above the oven, and she didn’t notice the newcomer until she stood with a cupcake tray and stared directly at her. For a minute she seemed surprised at the sight of Lina, as if she had forgotten that she was there. Then her eyes relaxed and she broke out in a wide smile.

“Good morning!”

Lina smiled. “Good morning.”

“I just thought about making muffins for breakfast, I didn’t realise you’d be up so early. I hope you aren’t too hungry?”

Lina shook her head. “It’s fine. Can I help with anything?” She nodded towards the tray in Almas hands.

“Actually, you can, if you don’t mind. Could you get the milk?” She pointed towards the fridge and Lina opened the door.

It was one of those fridges that were designed to look like an ordinary cupboard, yet the traitorous thermometer above it, showing the fridge temperature, proved it to be otherwise. After Lina had got the milk, they started mixing together the ingredients and making the dough. Alma had a lot of twists to the usual muffin recipe though.

When Lina asked what kind of cupcakes they would be, she simply answered that they were yet to be defined. Apparently yet-to-be-defined muffins required as many ingredients as a human could taste. Weird boxes labelled with banana, vanilla and blueberry, all containing various powders, liquids and fruits, all found a place into the dough.

The two of them didn’t do much talking, besides of the talk about flavours. With the noise that they made, it was surprising that Sebastian didn’t wake up.  When they were finished, they filled the trays with the dough and Alma slipped it into the oven. They looked nothing like the muffins Lina was used to bake at home, the dough being a lot less liquid and more colourful. She let herself sink to one of the chairs by the kitchen table, and Lina took place to her opposite.

They sat down, and Almas eyes drifted towards the atelier, and Lina wondered if she was keeping her from painting. Sebastians mother wasn’t one you’d guess to be old, but her weary eyes told a different story.

 “What a mess he dragged you in.” Alma rolled her eyes. “It’s not something you’ll get used to, fearing that a grey mass will take over your life any moment.”

Lina nodded, not sure if she was expected to answer. The mother let out a little yawn, and looked apologetic at Lina. “I’m tired, sorry.”

 “Sebastian is still sleeping?” Lina asked, brushing away a strand of hair that had gotten lost in her eyes. Alma laughed.

“He always is. You must know one thing about my son: His adventurous mind and time to time hyperactive behaviour is always balanced out by the amount he spends snoozing.” She leaned back in the chair.

“I guess he will learn other sleeping routines those next few weeks.” She cleared her throat and looked down. Lina didn’t know what to answer. She didn’t even know if there was a right thing to say. 

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