(This excerpt from “The Cookie” is the intellectual property of Forgotten Lore Publishing, llc) – continued from A Story’s Beginning Ends.
Chapter Two: In The Dark
Dab awoke with a start. His first discovery was that he still lived; although he almost wished he did not. He didn’t have the strength to move, and his body no longer seemed to work. He was in total darkness, with only the company of a few meager thoughts; any they were most unpleasant. He began to wonder if maybe he was dead, and that this is what death means.
He had often been tired before but had never felt real pain, until now. It occurred to Dab that if he was in pain, maybe he wasn’t dead. The cookie tried to move again, but his body did not respond. So he laid there, immobile, for uncounted hours until gradually, a little of his vigor began to return and he could feel something other than pain. Soon after, he realized that he was lying, face down.
His left arm, pinned underneath him, was now the main source of his agony. With sustained effort, Dab managed to rollover and lie on his back. His left arm remained stuck to his chest; and did not respond when he tried to move it. This was no doubt caused by him landing on it, after the tremendous fall. The gingerbread man still wondered why he wasn’t a pile of crumbs.
He tried to stand up but with only one arm working, and nothing he could see in the darkness; he wasn’t able to do it. He was dizzy and extremely weak, so he lay quiet again. After a time, Dab realized he felt something hard in his left hand; which remained firmly pressed against his chest. Strelia’s yellow stone! He must have fallen on it!
With some difficulty, Dab managed to sit up. If he still had the stone, the witch would likely come looking for it! It was clear she wanted it back very badly. He struggled to get up. He almost made it, but lost his balance and fell once more; as he tried getting to his feet. When he landed on the floor this time, his arm popped free of his chest. He laid there and rested more; but now he worried about his mistress finding him.
Presently, as he felt better; he tried moving his left arm and hand to make sure they continued to work as they should. Once Dab satisfied himself that he wasn’t seriously damaged, he used both of his hands to steady himself; and was soon back on his feet. He stretched his arms out as wide as he could, and turned in a circle; but his hands touched nothing.
Dab suddenly realized that his left hand was now empty, and decided he must have dropped the stone during his last fall. He sank to his knees and felt around for the stone on the floor, hoping he would find it. He searched for some time with no success. He did not want to move from that spot, but in the darkness there was no way to tell where the stone might be.
Still on his hands and knees, he muttered aloud to himself, “I wish I had a little light.”
To his amazement a faint, yellow glow, began to light up the floor underneath him. Dab searched to find where the light was coming from; and to his surprise, discovered that it shone from his chest. For the yellow crystal was firmly jammed into his body, like a pale yellow beacon!
He stood up and stared down in wonder at the stone glowing faintly in his chest. Dab raised a hand slowly to the yellow crystal, and rubbed the area around it; and then the gemstone itself. The stone was cool to the touch and did not budge, when he gently tried to remove it. He raised his gaze and took a look around; but the weak light from the crystal was dim, and revealed nothing.
Snak was right after all, Dab realized; there clearly was magic in the yellow stone, that could work for anyone who had it. He began to understand why the crystal was so important to the witch. He’d heard she held many such stones, and he was sure she was very powerful. He could also see why it was not smart to act against her, she likely did have the power to destroy them all.
Unfortunately Snak hadn’t understood how to use the magic gemstone; but even if he had, how could one jewel overcome a witch who had several of them; and understood their hidden nature.
“I can’t tell how to use them,” Dab told himself. “But I’d better learn before she finds me.”
The memory of supervisor Snak’s burnt remains again made him shudder. He realized the witch could have killed him at any moment, and how lucky he was that she didn’t.
“She was just making sport of me,” he decided.
He pondered Snak’s last words. It seemed the supervisors found some one in town willing to help them. Dab wondered what kind of magical creatures lived there. Maybe there were other witches; who weren’t as cruel as his mistress. Especially if they were helping her servants learn how to fight against her. And if that was true, it was important he find them to save himself.
Dab would be glad to have anyone’s help, but understood he didn’t have clue what town was. Maybe it was a place, but if so, what kind of place was it? How would he find it? He couldn’t guess how to get out of the mine, or even if that was possible. He was sure he needed to decide quickly, but could come up with no plan for what to do, or how to begin.
To read more of the story, follow this link: A Story’s Chapter Two Continues.
J. A. Stubbs, Editor-In-Chief
Forgotten Lore Publishing, llc