The Keeper (Part 5)

Mona had stepped into a large regal ballroom, with tall decorated ceiling that featured stained glass. The floor floated in front of her and the many candelabra dotted around the hall flickered invitingly. There were larger than possible fireplace on either end of the hall, roaring with fire. The hall echoed with music bouncing off its walls and Mona spied the small stage towards the centre of the length of wall opposite her, and upon it sat a grand piano, a harp, a cello, flutes and symbols, and many more instruments she recognized and some she didn’t. Astoundingly enough, the instruments responsible for the classical music in that moment were all hanging from invisible hands in the air. Floating. And not a soul in sight.

Mona stared back at the dim corridor she’d come from, and to her surprise, the doorway now was sealed with a brick wall. She had no other option than to go further into the hall and let the heavy wooden doors shut behind her.

‘Hello? Anybody here?’ She asked of no one in particular because lets face it, there was no one there for her to speak to. What was really going on?

‘Would you care to dance?’ And again, Mona got the fright of her life. Behind her, Lucifer had appeared again. From where, she didn’t know. The door through which she had come from had vanished, and nothing but the wall of the ballroom remained.

He was holding out his hand to her. What was she to do? Dance with the beast? ‘It’s quite all right if you don’t wish to. Many don’t.’

He retrieved his hand and held them both behind him, and turned. ‘You are in my home, dear Mona.’

‘Why?’ she let out in shock. His home? The devil had a home?

He turned around and glared at her. Anger flashing in his eyes and she remembered, he most probably could read her mind.

‘Yes, I can.’ His voice sounded somewhat hurt. He turned away from her again and approached the other end of the hall. As he approached, a door just like the one before became visible and Mona gasped. ‘You are free to go to your room, if that is what you wish, before my guests start arriving. The company might somewhat shock you.’ Then, through that very door, he disappeared once more.

Mona swore she had somehow hurt his feelings by rejecting the dance. Suddenly the music stopped and all the instruments floated down to the floor of the stage. It was an eerie space to stand in alone, so she followed his exit. After all that was the only door out, and who knew how long it would stay open for.

Her heels clipped on the parquet floor as she ran for the door. And what had he meant by she was free to go to her room? That dark, dank mossy dome where she had woken in the first place? The thought made her shiver. She did not fancy seeing her body again.

As she crossed the threshold of the door, it suddenly and fiercely slammed shut behind her. The force of it pushing her away from the door. She was standing in a grandeur foyer, with a large ornate wooden staircase spiraling up and into the darkness. Here, once more, the light was meek. Though it looked like a foyer, there was no front door she could see as far as the light revealed. She walked around the space only to find it circular again, and again, with no other exit than the stairs that waited to swallow her up.

She took a deep breath and started up the stairs. Alice had gone down a rabbit hole into a strange land, but here she was, going up, who knew where. Stranger land perhaps.

To Be Continued….

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