rolled over on what he thought was his bed, pulled up what he thought was his
blanket, and pushed his face into what he thought was his pillow.
quickly noticed that what he thought was his pillow tasted an awful lot like
rose with a start. After he rubbed the dirt from his nose and spat out a tiny
leaf, he realized that his "pillow" had actually been a bluish hedge, and his
"bed" was nothing but the ground. It seemed as if all the things Miles thought
he knew were quite unlike anything he had thought at all. He looked around,
pushing his dark blonde bangs out of his eyes.
he had come to be in a forest, a darkish, bluish forest whose highest boughs
blocked out all but the most persistent streams of moonlight. Miles had heard
stories of people sleepwalking before, but walking outside your house? Into a
forest somewhere? That seemed like a bit much. He dusted the soil from the
bottom of his green pajama pants, and decided to do some exploring, if not
discover how far away this place was from his home. There was even a wide dirt
path, winding through the trees up ahead, inviting Miles for a stroll.
he walked down the trail, he couldn't help but notice some of the peculiar
plants that grew along the sides. Miles didn't know much about what different
plants looked like, but he knew what they weren't
supposed to look like, and more than one of the specimens he encountered fit
into that category.
of the flowers looked exactly like a violet butterfly, its wings spread as if
in mid-flight. When Miles leaned in closer to smell, he raised his arms as a
strong breeze whirled around them, and an inexplicable lightness came over his
feet, as if he could leap beyond the tree tops and glide between the stars.
soon as the feeling came, it was gone.
strange flower grew in the shape of an arrow, and its bent stem created the
image of an arrow pointing straight down. After smelling this one, a dizziness
overcame Miles, which provoked him to look at the ground. For no reason at all,
the ground seemed to be rushing at him terribly fast, as if he were falling
through the path itself. Miles quickly closed his eyes and shook his head.
sensation left him in an instant.
so often, Miles would come across a completely black flower, a plant that
looked as if someone had dumped a bucket of ink on top of it. There was
something ominous about those flowers, the same kind of ominous that hung about
poisonous mushrooms, or a single crow perched on the branch of a dead tree. So
Miles made sure to stay away, and give those plants a wide berth.
he had seen so far, though, could have prepared Miles for the masked flower. It
stood at the center of a flowerbed, as though it was the watchful protector of
its own little patch. Miles wondered what the actual flower itself looked like,
but draped over it was a white leaf with two little holes, almost like eyes. It
seemed like the leaf looked up at Miles' presence, regarding him with a curious
sort of attention. Of course, he knew that plants couldn't pay attention to
things, but it intrigued him anyway. He uprooted the plant and tucked it into
his pajama pocket; he'd be sure to tell his mother to put it in water when he
past the flowerbed was the edge of the forest, and the canopy above Miles was
beginning to thin out. At once, all of it disappeared behind him, leaving him
in a grassy plan under a perfectly clear night sky.
constellations! Miles wasn't good enough to find his way home by the stars, but
he knew how the Big Dipper looked from his house at this time of year, so maybe
he could use that to help. A rhyme his father had taught him made everything a
from the right.
found the Big Dipper right away, and followed its telltale "handle" with his
points...away from the..."
was fairly certain that he was looking at the Big Dipper, but if so, it was
definitely pointing away from the left. Was he remembering the rhyme wrong?
Perhaps it was "towards" the right?
very unsettling feeling churned in Miles' stomach, as he surveyed the rest of
the stars surrounding the Big Dipper. Other constellations he had thought he
remembered were all doing the exact same thing. It was as if someone had
flipped all the stars in the sky, shone them through a mirror so they would all
face the wrong way.
was as if Miles had ended up on the other side of the stars.
took a dizzy step back. No, that couldn't be right. Could it? What rhymed with
the word "left"?
it hit Miles that he was all alone, in the middle of the night, by a big, dark
forest, on the other side of the stars. He wasn't sure why he hadn't been
scared until now; perhaps because he had just assumed it was all a dream.
thought of a dream calmed Miles somewhat. Yes, that would certainly explain a
lot. The strange flowers, the flipped stars, how he had ended up here in the
first place. And every time Miles had ever realized he was in a dream, it had
only been a matter of moments before he sprung awake.
felt a sharp tug.
So it looks like this blog entry has inherited the font for the rest of the entry. Not bad, is it?
Anyway, this is the beginning, and I've been getting a couple of different opinions on this. The two schools of thought are a) that it starts off a little too sudden without proper pre-characterization/setup of Miles, and b) this works well because you feel like you just sort of fell into the world with Miles, and you're getting your bearings the same time he is.
b) was kinda what I was going for, but that's what ALL we writers say. We're trained to do that, from an early age.
So...don't be shy now, feel free to critique. Maybe you don't like Miles' hair?