003. (an unfinished draft of an unfinished story)

Here’s a 15-minute quickwrite output from a 13-year-old.


red smoke2

I’ve been here on this world for a few hours, walking. I overshot, missed my mark, and now I’m lost, here in this strange world. I didn’t know I’d be stuck here, but I’d just wanted to be alone. And now I am, mostly.

I glance back at the two wisps of red smoke trailing behind me. These are my pets – figments. Usually they’d be thoughtforming into something that could get me out of here, but something seems off in this world.

Far behind us is a black dot in the horizon, silhouetted against the murky orange sky and empty silver sand. My tessership. I don’t know what’s wrong with it, it just suddenly stopped working. I’m already a long distance away, and I’m still in this endless desert of grey sand. I need to find a tesseract, a wrinkle in space and time. All worlds have them, a doorway into Dreamspace.

My figments suddenly appear as flowing smoke on my shoulders, whispering wordlessly. They’re scared. Scared of what?

I try to listen to any sounds beside the crashing of waves in the distance, but hear nothing. I feel something’s following me.

I quickly shape my figments into wings and take off, flying a good distance into the air.

Then, I see it.

A hulking brown creature in the horizon, with no eyes and a gaping jaw. Six clawed legs and matted fur dripping with some liquid, the creature seems to teleport, whizzing and zig-zagging towards me. I raise my hands and my wings turn back into smoke, which I breathe in.

I yell, and a whirling torrent of thought smoke shoots towards the creature, distracting it.

I run towards the sound of waves. The ground suddenly gives way, and I fall. Twisting, I see a glimpse of lavender sea below me, dark red sky above me, the grey cliff I fell from, and the pale orange sliver of moon up above.

I slam into the waters that engulf me, cool and…breathable?

My vision starts to cloud, and the last thing I see is a violet glowing symbol.

I open my eyes, breathing heavily. Closing my eyelids, I try to return to my mind. Everything is intact, from the domed glass ceiling to my many black monitors glowing softly red.

My tessership is gone, and in its place is a glowing violet thoughtthread, forming a letter T

The symbol of the Tangler, the most known Dreamspace outlaw.

She’s locked me out of Dreamspace.

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