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Welcome to the Forest: Chapter One

Darkness. Staggering, unfaltering darkness. Conscious, yet conscious of nothing. Time was slowed, if non-existent, it felt. After what seemed eons of this limbo, the pain came. Splitting, searing pain. As there seemed to be no body, it existed everywhere, piercing and blunt at the same time. It could have been this unfathomable discomfort, or time was in fact running, but the blackness abated. The waves of non-ingratiating, colorless curtains ebbed away to reveal pale light. The world became aesthetic, alive. His surroundings came to reason. He lay on his back, in the middle of a small field. Short, bright grass spanned its entirety, ending against the wall that surrounded the area. The wall itself darkened, weathered gray, and stood a good 40 feet on all sides. The pain had focused now, finding its home to be his head. It felt as if an incredulously blunt object had found its way onto his skull with considerable force. He decided to it up, and cringed as he did. He grabbed the occipital region of his head, and yelped in pain. Bringing his hand back into view, he found parts of a bloody scab. In a much gentler motion, he searched the area in question, and found a series of clean, diagonal cuts, starting above his left ear and ending under his right. It wasnt bleeding, but burned to the touch. To his count, there were five cuts all together. That was unimportant as of now, however. His real problem persisted, and it happened to be in the forms of three questions. One, where was he. He had no knowledge of this place, and its unfamiliarity made him nervous. Two, who was he. A serious question, for sure, for one is nothing without their identity. The physical body is only an image of the mind, definitely. And last, but not least, how was he to get from where he was to where he was heading, although he didnt know where exactly he was going. Unless this was some afterlife, some test of faith from the Gods of Chaos, he must be on his way. This required standing which he did slowly, in case of an injury not yet identified. His legs were weak at first, but found strength in time. As his body woke, so did his resolve to solve the problems haunting him. First priority was to search the premises. The ground was soft, healthy, with no obvious or subtle flaws or features. The walls, however, were not what they appeared. From where he stood, they were smooth all round (the wall was circular, he found when waking earlier). But upon close examination, they revealed writing, lines and lines of writing. It seemed random, as it lacked an obvious starting point, and it seemed to be snippets of a story or history. Names, places... a starting point, there must be one some place on this rock... he fell to unconsciousness.
He woke with a jolt, breathing hard. A nightmare. A shadow of childhood fears come to haunt his mind yet again. But doubt flickered. Something wasnt quite right. He blew it off. Silly paranoia. He hastened it from his mind, focusing his eyes on what had not existed before. It was an indent in the wall, and it seemed to shape a door. It lacked a handle, or hinges for that matter. Standing, he approached. There were two words, one on the right, one on the left. Start, end. Odd. Convenient. He began to read.
Several hours later, he found the doorway once again. It was still bright out, but his eyes and mind were tired. The writing had been hard to read, and it had provided a significant amount of information on him. His name, for instance, which happened to be Serimine. A strange name, but he enjoyed it, as it was his only option at this point. The writing had also provided his origins, as well as more recent past. What it didnt describe was anything in relation to his current position or situation, which troubled him. It was a strange feeling. But that was for another time. He approached the doorway, and read the new words under the "end" inscription. "Fly straight, with courage, and may good fortune follow you. You will need it. With that said, when you are ready, state your name. Welcome to the forest." His name... "Serimine." The doorway swung out, silently. Darkness once again. Damp, warm air hit his face. Welcome to the forest...

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