The magician found Ren’s question quiet amusing, even though he was a bit surprised “A riddle? No, no, no, no, no” he said, waving his hands in a dismissive manner. Clearly he hadn’t expected that, did he really give out that many riddles? “No, I have no intention of giving riddles, not yet anyways. But in all seriousness, this world truly exists like many other worlds hidden from the human eye. All of them, just waiting to be explored! Sounds like an adventure, don’t you think?” Although he didn’t give much detail, from the way things were going it seemed like the prospect of another world will only be explained more regardless.
When Hell continued asking questions Swetini looked overjoyed. This was the sort of curiousness he liked. “We’ll be leaving very soon, hopefully. I’ve the perfect way to get there too, a door, a magical door in fact. According to the city’s records it’s been in this shop for awhile, a long while actually. Was owned by the previous owner of this shop I believe. He was a carpenter, or so they say.” For a moment, Swetini looked at Lily, and as doing so let her know that the last bits were details concerning the one answer he gave her. He only needed the “how”. Looking back at Hell, he continued, “The sunlight looks like any ray of sunlight, only it’s something you can touch. It’s sort of dusty looking, you can’t miss it. Like powdered gold. And the rainbow, it doesn’t move at all. It’s fixed in place. What it does do is disappear, but that won’t be a problem. As long as the sun stays up it will be visible.” W hen it came to the question concerning the prize he shook his head no, “Can’t tell you. It wouldn’t be a surprise if I did. And that wouldn’t be fun, now will it? But I can tell you this, you may share it if you wish to, it’s how you will share it that might be the issue. But as long as the person you’re sharing it with has the same mindset, things will be okay. Also, I would rather not you leave anyone behind if you win. I’d like to see that most of you get back.”
At the sight of the dog plush, Swetini smiled. A companion doll, a great sign of great imagination! It was one of the wonderful things about children. And the girl was thinking about the long term too, another good thing. “Yes, you may bring anything you like. Odds are the days in that world may change, and the more prepared you all are the better.”
As Christopher glared onwards he would see that once again the magician was frowning. He almost looked disappointed in a way. Never before had he met such a skeptical child, and to say the least he wasn’t very impressed. But he still listened to the child regardless, his head lifting slightly up at the sound of “reliable information”. He met the child’s stare with a mix of concern and calmness, for the course of a few seconds. When Lily spoke up, he looked at her too, and the stores atmosphere seemed to change again. It felt tense, but it also felt like the store’s age was leaking through its walls, mingling with the tension. It seemed like the magician was in thought, remembering something maybe. After a moment he lifted a finger, as if he had just remembered something. “I have just the thing for the two of you! Wait here, please. I’ll be back in a jiffy!” With that, Swetini walked into the back room, closing the door behind him. A number of sounds soon followed, sounds that hinted that he was looking for something. Moments later, when he had found what he was looking for, he came out of the backroom carrying in his hand what looked like an old worn out journal. He walked back to the spot where he was standing before with both eyes on Christopher, and when he reached there he looked around at the rest of the children. Holding the journal up so they all could see, “This is the book that holds all of your answers.” On the outside it looked like an ordinary journal with a brown leather cover and yellowed pages, some of them sticking out slowly. The binding was still in touch despite threatening to peel off in some places. It looked around a hundred years old, give or take a few years, yet was preserved well enough to be readable. “This belonged to the carpenter I mentioned earlier. I found it hidden in the cupboards in the basement. Would you believe no one touched this place? It starts out like an average journal, the average day-to-day records. The life seems very quiet at first, but around half-way through he starts writing little stories, which according to him was told by his granddaughter, named Lucy by the looks of it. All of them took place in the same place, another world full of candy and gingerbread people, a giantess even. And the candy there is actually made out of pure sunshine. Interesting, isn’t it?”
“However, something happened before the stories could go into more detail…” As he said this he was flipping through the pages, as if looking for something. Then he paused, and held the journal up. The page on the left was halfway full, with a neat cursive handwriting that looked as if the person writing it took his time. The date at the top read, December 31st, 1908. But that was the end of it. There were no more passages after that. “In the last entry he wrote of the disappearance of his granddaughter, and then after that, nothing.” Swetini brought closed the journal and held it against his side. “I looked into the possible reasons behind this of course, spending much of my time in the public library and such. It should be noted that many thought I was crazy when I announced that I was opening my shop here. Some said this place was haunted by the spirit of a young girl. Can you believe that? Haunted. While I was cooped up in the library, I found plenty of articles related to this Lucy girl. According to them, she went missing, on the exact date the former owner of this shop stopped writing. Of course he was blamed for her disappearance. Poor man had a stroke three days after New Years. The shop hasn’t been touched ever since… And then I came!” After finishing his little tale, Swetini looked around the room to see how the children would respond.
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