First City of the Realm
“Act as if, think as if, feel as if – be as if”
I peered dubiously at the layer of flat, damp stones and enquired phlegmatically: "Why do I have to go first?"
I wasn’t exactly afraid, but this hadn’t been my idea; anything could have been down there and it may have been something sinister. One thing was for sure - we weren’t supposed to be there - maybe I was supposed to go first because rule-breaking was my specialty. “Or maybe it’s because I was owner of the magic vehicle”.
The young woman standing by my right shoulder leaned over to explain (actually, I’d thought that there were two people with me but maybe I was mistaken) ‘Its because you’re wearing the golden boots’ she intonated dispassionately, ‘it would be impossible for anyone else to attempt a safe entrance - those stones would kill them’. I caught sight of her out of the corner of my eye but could not see her face properly. She was smaller than I was, possibly a bit younger – “unless I just felt older”- with mid-length brown hair. I trusted her judgement– she seemed to have some innate sense of logic - although I wasn’t sure if we were actually friends, or merely acquaintances for this mission.
What she had said sounded reasonable enough, however, especially as the others had bare feet. I looked down at my own feet dangling over the ledge where I was sitting. I had to admit they were looking pretty damn fine ; two perfectly smooth and symmetrical round-toed boots that were clearly made of solid gold peeped back at me proudly. They were really shiny.
I admired the boots for a second and then started to act. Stretching my legs down as far as I was able, I managed to graze the nearest stone with my toes, but it seemed slightly out of reach to touch properly and I heard them discussing that the best way might be to just jump down onto the platform. This was all very easy for them to say and I had genuine doubts about their suggestion. Seeing as we had no idea of how far down we would have to go, or whether the stones would suddenly collapse leaving a gaping hole, it seemed foolish to make a leap that might lead to sudden death or discovery...
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