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.


15. X

“These,” Sebastian took another bite, ”are delicious!”

Lina grinned and took another cupcake. He was right; somehow all the ingredients had matched up to the perfect muffin flavour and the soft bread crumbled under her tongue. 

Sebastian had changed into a simple shirt and a pair of black jeans, leaving his feet cold and bare. He seemed ready, but almost too much. It was as if he wanted to jump up and straight march into the throne room of the Queen. Lina knew how he felt, she wanted to the exact same thing herself.

“Are you nervous?”

Sebastian was putting away some of the muffins for his mom, and was standing at the kitchen counter.

“Well… a bit,” Lina admitted, and took another bite. “How is she?”

“I don’t really visit her often, or anything. But she’s nice. Her name’s Cordelia. Queen Cordelia Rex, if we’re going to be really precise. She hasn’t really made any drastic changes, but that was before we had the curse around us. A lot of people are upset that she hasn’t done anything yet, but I just think they have been looking the wrong places.”

“Have you ever suggested her to look in Coriadalle?”

Sebastian played with one of the cupcakes and took a sip of orange juice.

“If I told them, I’d have to tell wherefrom I got the information. And…”

“then Edmond would be the bad guy.” Lina caught his eye before he got the possibility to look down. “It’s OK, I get it.”

Two touchy subjects at the same table, the same morning. Must be a record.

Lina finished her glass of orange juice. A half-eaten, multi-coloured cupcake was glaring at her from the plate.

“What exactly is it we are trying to accomplish by speaking to the Queen? Besides giving her blessing, or whatever.”

“Permission to leave.”

Linas eyes widened and her mouth dropped. “Wait, so what you’re saying is, is that we don’t have permission to leave?!”

He shrugged. “Technically not. Her Highness ordered everyone to stay inside city borders as long as the curse is roaming.”

“But how come there are no guards?”

“Well, I didn’t say you couldn’t leave. Just that you’re not allowed to.”

Lina’s eyes widened. “Then why are we even getting permission when we could just leave?”

“Because if we ask, she could give us horses, weapons, if we’re lucky a dragon…”

Lina wasn’t even going to ask. Instead she flicked a crumb from the table and shook her head. “She’s not going to say yes.”

“You don’t know that,” Sebastian’s brows were furrowed.

Until now his plan seemed about as accurate as one of those instruction manuals that tagged along whenever you were supposed to piece together your own furniture. Step 1: Find brother and save everyone.

Instead of asking any further, she felt safer just letting things go their way. Somewhere along the road he’d have to eventually come up with a plan. She needed to trust him.

Sebastian was staring out of the window as if awaiting Alma to return any moment. Lina opened her mouth to say something, but Sebastian was quicker.

“I haven’t shown you the garden yet. You want to pick up some berries?”

Lina nodded excited and almost jumped up. The two of them put on their shoes that were still standing in the hallway and walked outside.

Lina hoped that Alma had thought of buying shoes too, flip-flops were most likely not the wisest footwear on a visit at the Queen’s. Or for going through the woods.

Thankfully it was a warm day, the sun tickling their skin and luring out birds and butterflies. The front yard didn’t seem as much at first. Wild growing bushes and flowers fought their way to the small patches of yet untouched grass, only leaving a little path that led from the gate to the front door.

Sebastian walked in front, showing that near the entrance there was a small opening in the bushes were one could walk along the wall, and that was exactly what they did. As it then showed, there was actually a quite large patch behind the bushes. A wooden table with benches stood in the middle, looking old and forgotten.

“You had picnics there?” Lina nodded at the table.

Sebastian looked at it and shrugged. “Not really, would have been nice though.”

He turned to Lina and pointed at the bushes beside them. “Everything here are melliberry bushes.”

“Melliberry?” Lina frowned. Sebastian nodded.

“What, you don’t have those?”

Lina looked puzzled and shook her head. “Not that I know of. What are they?”

Sebastian walked to one of the bushes and pulled aside a few twigs and leaves while explaining.

“They are usually in the middle of the bush, growing close to earth. The rest of the bush is mainly to protect them from too much sun exposure and animals.”

He got up again, this time his fists were clenched. Lina drew closer to him, and he opened his palm. 5 berries were in it, about the same size as an eye. The melliberries were oval and in a bright yellow.

Sebastian noticed how she studied the small fruits and placed one between his thumb and index finger. “Watch,” he said. With his teeth he pulled of what had been the skin of the berry and revealed a softer looking bright orange core, like a huge, multi coloured grape.

“Here.” Sebastian held out his palm with the remaining 4 berries. “The seeds are edible.”

Lina hesitantly took one and put it into her mouth.

Lina’s teeth ripped through the skin, and felt the core. It was a sweet fruit with something that tasted like honey. The seeds felt quite small, like those of a watermelon. Lina swallowed the berry, and immediately wanted more.

She sat down beside Sebastian and tried to find them. True to what he had said, they were almost hidden and hard to detect through the fairly big leaves.

Lina got a handful of them and popped one into her mouth. Sebastian had taken more at once, and now tried to communicate with a mouth full of berries. The words came out muffled and Lina was hit by a stroke of laughter, which only made Sebastian laugh. He finished chewing and swallowed them.

“We’ve got more behind.” He paused. “You do know what strawberries and blueberries are, right?”

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