a journey into Wonderland
|You are a stranger in a foreign land – try to communicate with the locals in an attempt to find your missing pet – short story. (<1000 words)
Once upon a time, in a land far, far away from the place she had gone to sleep in her own bed with her mama's kiss on her cheek, Fia woke up to the sensation of a raspy tongue on the end of her nose. “Stop it, Reia,” she said as she stroked her kitten's head and moved it away from her face. An incessant mew was the kitten's only response.
“Wake up! Wake up! I like this air. I like this grass. It's time for Fia to play with ME!”
At the last word, Fia felt Reia jump away. That was better. She sighed and snuggled into what had been her pillow last night, but under her cheek she suddenly realized she could feel long blades of grass and it smelled like the outdoors instead of peach candles like in her house, and the sun was too bright and there weren't any covers to pull over her head. She sat up and opened her eyes.
Instead of her bed in her room in her house, she found herself in a meadow full of the greenest grass she had ever seen, punctuated with little purple clovers and bright, bold buttercups. She looked around for Reia, but the kitten was no where in sight.
Fia stood up, brushing her nightgown off and noticing that she didn't know where her slippers were, so she had to be barefoot, which was nice because she liked the feel of grass between her toes. She turned around. A white rabbit was standing behind her, munching on an apple with a pocket handkerchief ready in his other hand. When he'd finished his bite, Fia cleared her throat.
He jumped. A long way. Fia could feel her eyes getting wide, but she was polite so she didn't mention that he'd lost his shoes and was suddenly four feet to the left of where he'd started. She wished that she could jump like that, but when she tried, she landed smack down on her bottom, which was the case a lot of the time when she wasn't trying to jump, to be completely honest.
“Excuse me, sir,” Fia said, politely, “but have you seen a little kitten? She's small and orange with three white feet and one black one with the cutest little pink nose and whiskers that are kind of see through, kind of like yours, and sharp ears like triangles on the very top of her head and two green eyes and her name is Reia and she wanted to play but she didn't wait for me to wake up.”
“Oh my,” the White Rabbit said, spitting apple bits that Fia carefully didn't notice. She preferred applesauce, anyway. “Where is your Mother, young lady?” Fia sighed. She'd hoped that he would understand her, but apparently grown-ups refused to hear even when in White Rabbit form.
“But certainly, you have to have seen her. I know she's only a little kitten, but you were right here, and she is not very adept at camouflage. Although we're working on her stalking capabilities.”
Ignoring her once more, the White Rabbit bit his thumb and said, “I must consult the authorities, immediately.” And without hesitating, he rushed off, hopping in long bounds that Fia couldn't have kept up even if she hadn't seen the tip of Reia's tail waving upright as the kitten crawled in stalking position right behind where the White Rabbit had been.
“There you are, Reia,” Fia said, and toddled towards her, only sitting down twice this time. They quickly tired each other out with a game of tag and collapsed with Reia on top. “How do you suppose we got here, Reia?”
“It's your mama's fault,” the kitten said with a yawn.
Just then the White Rabbit came back, this time with a cat, a dormouse, and a funny looking man with a shock of red hair under a light blue top hat. Fia sat up, gently stroking Reia like Mama taught her to.
The White Rabbit looked down on Fia and Reia and wrung his hands, the Dormouse let his eyes drift shut and leaned into the hat where he was sitting. The Cheshire Cat winked. The Hatter squatted down to be at eye level with Fia. “Hello, little girl,” He had fierce, staring blue eyes. “And what should we do with you?”
“Hello.” Fia shrugged. She didn't know what to do. That wasn't her job. “I found Reia.”
“I'm the Hatter. What's your name?”
“Fianche Marion Alicia Little.” Fia had to speak slowly to get the big names out. Mama said she'd grow into them, someday.
The Hatter looked startled. “Alice?”
No, that was Mama. “Fia.”
The Cheshire Cat grinned. This didn't change anything because he always grinned. “I thought the rabbit hole was filled in?”
The White Rabbit looked flustered. “Well, yes. Mostly. I just left a little crack. I sometimes need to find someone to repair my pocket watch.”
“How did you get here, little Fia,” the Hatter said.
“Well,” she said, closing her eyes to try and remember. “I don't know. Mama kissed me to bed last night, and when I woke up, we were here. You are a funny man, aren't you.”
“Funny!” The Dormouse snorted and dropped back to sleep. Everyone ignored him.
The White Rabbit shook his head. “I'm still not getting this. Anyone?”
The Hatter ignored them. He lifted his hand to stop their buzz of conversation. “Your Mama kissed you. Who's your mother?”
As if anticipating her answer, the White Rabbit jumped backwards, landing awkwardly on his hind end.
“She's Mama,” said Fia.
Reia yawned and blinked. “The grown-ups call her Alice.”
word count: 961