Low, dark grey clouds hovered over a wide, short brick building. Wind shook the few trees that stood in the small green yards that lay on either side of the two doors that made up the main entrance. A long gazebo, with a tin roof, hung over the entrance, support from two brick columns held it up. On each side of the doors, four windows peered out from the building. Orange and brown leaves blew down the street, around the numerous cars parked on the curb-side of the road.
Rustling from the leaves echoed through the eerily quiet town. All life seemed to have disappeared from the streets and outside world. Nothing moved or made a sound. The silence was broken by the fall of footsteps on the concrete sidewalk. A teen, dressed in a red winter-coat, blue jeans, and a pair of gray and green Nikes, quickly ran towards the big building. This is where I introduce myself.
My name is Kelian Nunguesser; I am a resident of Tempton, Mont, States United. I ran like a mad man until I reached the double doors of the brick building. Tempton high-school, my least favorite place in the whole town of Tempton, it was a small high-school, but it still functioned like a big school. High pitched squeaking, from my damp shoes, rung through the empty halls. Posters with smiling people dressed in graduation gowns, leered at me as I rushed past.
Two men yelled at me when I dashed by the small school office's door. "HEY, QUIT RUNNING!!!" Like always, I ignored them and sprinted ahead till I reached a door with a little red sign that read, "Mr. Hughes thirty-six". The door creaked when I opened it and thirty faces looked up from their books at me. A brown haired boy with hazel eyes, smiled proudly and said, "See I told you he would show up. I believe you owe me ten bucks Reece!" The small blonde haired male, beside him, sighed as he handed over two five dollar bills.
I rolled my eyes and replied, "Thanks for betting on me again Brad." A hand firmly gripped my shoulder and its owner calmly stated, "And yet again, here you are, disturbing my class Mr. Nunguesser. Go sit down." Mr. Hughes released me and I walked over to my seat that was –as always- saved for me. The rest of the class went back to chatting and waiting for the teacher to resume. To my right a huge grin was plastered to my friend's face.
"What do you want Terral?" I asked in a mildly annoyed tone. He shrugged and flicked his head back to get the hair out of his eyes. His tongue ran along his lips and he took a breath before saying, "I hope you studied for this test." A small smile broke out across my face and I chuckled, "No I didn't, but let's wing it!" We looked at each other and grinned. We both knew this was my least favorite subject, and that meant we were going to fail this exam.
Mr. Hughes walked back into the class with a stack of papers. His short grey hair shimmered in the light and his eyes were squinted while he handed out the tests. With a sharp snap, my test was placed in front of me and Mr. Hughes loudly announced, "Don't try to fail this one too, it would be a shame if your classmates thought you were highly ignorant."
I glared back, "And it would be bad if they thought the teacher was over confident or cocky even." The class buzzed with excitement and echoed, "Ooooohhhhh, someone has an attitude." I whipped around and growled, "No I don't… be quiet." Mr. Hughes left and I reached into my pocket to retrieve my lucky pen. Immediately I set to work. Silently I thanked the world that the quiz was multiple choice.
Scratching of pens and pencils resounded through the deathly quiet room. I became nervous and realized that I knew little to nothing about the functions, jobs, and parts of a cell. Terral exhaled loudly and ferociously erased half of his page. I closed my eyes and breathed deeply. It was important to stay calm and breath, I might remember something if I just focused.
Nothing came to mind. No miraculous illumination of the cell revealed itself to me. I did then what every reasonable person would do, I started filling in random answer bubbles. When I had finished, I strolled to the front of the class and set my test into the tray on Mr. Hughes cluttered desk. The thought of how big of a fire hazard it was, made me chuckle. Being a pyro had its advantages, like finding a catastrophic fire, amusing.
Shortly after I sat down, the bell rang and the class scuttled off to their next class. Terral and I went to gym class. Mr. Flich, a tall, average looking man, announced that it was weight lifting day. I groaned, today was proving to be a tedious one. The rest of the class blurred by and before I knew it, I was in World History. My right arm smashed into my desk as I went to sit down. A giggle made me turn to my left. A girl with blonde hair smiled and teased, "Smooth."
"Thanks Ash," I rubbed my bruise and she continued giggling. Across the room, Terral waved his arms, trying to catch my attention. Pretending to not see him, I opened my bag and grabbed the notebook I used for taking notes in. "Kelian… KEEEEEEEELIIIIIAAAAAAAAAAN!!!" Terral threw a book and hit my left shoulder. "KELIAN!"
With an almost physical snap, my patience broke, "WHAT TERRAL," I yelled at him, "I will walk over there and stick this book up your," A call from the hall interrupted me. "Kelian, do ten pushups for your profanities," A man stuck his head in the room and Terral cheered, "Yay not me for once!" The man glared at Terral and said, "Terral, ten for you too, mind your own business."
A tall boy jumped up and exclaimed, "Yes, not me," the man's hands went over his head and he groaned, "Realan, what the heck, do ten for not minding YOUR business." "Awww but Mr. Buski, I wasn't doin' nothin'," Realan whined. Mr. Buski shrugged and left. The three of us got down on the ground and started to do our pushups. "Kelian, we are going to drive to the jetty at lunch," Terral told me. After we finished, Ms. Fargo preached about long lost civilizations –that, to me, should have stayed hidden- and cultures.
The bell later rang and I bid my teacher farewell. I followed Terral outside to his shiny, blue Nord L one-sixty. He opened the door to the box-shaped cab and hopped in. While I crawled in, Terral pushed trash and other miscellaneous objects out of my seat. "All right, time to go for a nice cruise." We grinned when the engine fired up and together, we sped off down the road.
Houses of all shapes and sizes flew past. I tried to count them as we drove by but Terral took a right turn onto a dirt road. The urban population started to thin out as more trees out numbered the homes. Ahead of us, a vast spread of trees grew densely together. Terral proceeded down the road and soon the gravel turned into a bumpy, unused trail. "Terral," I shifted uncomfortably as we went into the dark forest, "We are not allowed to leave the town, it's the rules."
He ignored me and drove on. The vehicle came to a stop in a small clearing with tall grass and a dead tree right in the middle. Its gnarled, twisted limbs resembled a skeletal hand breaking through the surface of the earth, reaching for freedom. I knew this place, we were in the Clearing of the Corpse. Legends and tales spoke of this place as being a nightmare land.
Terral sensed my uneasiness, his jaw clenched and he stared at the tree with both hate and respect. "Get out Kelian," my eyes widened to the size of dinner plates, "What, are you serious!?!" He sneered at me and repeated himself but his tone had become deeper, demonic even, "Get out… NOW!!!" In a panic, I threw my door open, and jumped. My feet landed unsteadily, causing me to collapse to the ground.
Our eyes locked. My heart froze in fear; Terral's eyes had become pitch black, without any white or a pupil. The door slammed shut by an unseen force. Roaring from the truck caused me to jump. The vehicle turned and headed at me. I rolled out of the way. Terral flew back up the trail at a crazy speed. Watched and felt the crushing force of despair and hopelessness press down on me. I was stranded; it would take me hours to walk back to Tempton.
"You will not be going back to Tempton. Not for awhile." A feminine voice gently said behind me. Slowly I looked behind me. I bit back a shriek of terror. Standing ten feet from me, was a scaly, two legged lizard. She stood about my height and had wings, a tail, and two white horns that angled out behind her head. Her dazzling light green scales could have hypnotized any foolish person that stared for too long. Two silver eyes gazed kindly back at me and I relaxed enough to stand.
Shakily I questioned her, "Why can't I return home? Do you plan to eat me?" She moaned and rolled her eyes, "Why do you humans always assume that we are going to eat you?" In answer, I shrugged. Then she spoke again, "No, I have no plans to harm you. I am here for your help actually."
"Who are you, since you are asking for assistance; I think I have the right to know who you are." I replied with my arms crossed. She smiled –revealing white, sharp fangs- "My name is Tremeá. I suppose you wish to know what I am as well?" I nodded and she put her hands on her hips, "I am a dragon."
A loud snort of disbelief escaped my throat and Tremeá glared at me. "What, are you serious? You don't believe me?" My tongue ran across my lips and I said, "Dragons don't have arms or walk on two legs." Tremeá opened her mouth and a loud rumble sounded from her throat. With only a millisecond to spare, I fell to the ground as a burst of green flames –that closely matched the color of her scales- erupted around me. "Is that enough proof for you, or do I need to find a knight and eat him? I would rather not, I am on a diet."
Standing, I brushed myself off, "Yeah, looks like you need to be on one," I smiled and got ready to duck for cover. Tremeá idly picked at a loose scale and replied, "Either you are really brave, or just really stupid," She looked up at me, "I go with the second option." Quickly my smile disappeared and I sighed, "Okay, jokes aside, explain what you want from me."
She walked closer and stopped when she was just a few steps away. "I want nothing from you. I need to work through you actually." Wind rustled the tall grass around us. Again I quizzed her, "What do you mean by that?" Her tail swished back and forth behind her, "What you just saw in your friend, the darkness in his eyes, was an alien being. It is known as anti-conscience, a form of evil that has only one goal, to destroy life."
I shuddered at the thought of Terral being possessed by an evil influence. Tremeá saw my fear and took a step closer, "My kind is sworn to destroy them and save life from being consumed. There is only one problem," my hands rubbed together in a nervous twitch. "What is the problem," I asked her. "This plane is not the main source of their power. It is on another reality, similar to this one." The wind picked up and leaves blew in a flurry around us.
"How will you get there?" I waited a few seconds as she thought. Her wings rustled and she simply stated, "We are going to use your connection to your alternate self and build a bridge between us and the opposite dimension." It sounded so easy, "Why me? Why not choose someone else?" Why was I being chosen for this job and not someone with better endurance or at least a handsome face?
"Because you and your alternate self are closely intertwined with dragons," she closed the small gap between us. Her hands gripped mine tightly and the world began to spin. I felt nauseated; my eyes slid shut. Once the weird sensation left, I slowly opened my eyes and discovered Tremeá was gone. Instead, I was standing in a clearing by a river. The dead tree was gone and the path had become a used trail.
In my right hand, a small tribal talisman lay. It had etchings all over its body and two eyes stared up at me. Suddenly Tremeá's voice said, "Don't lose that." I spun in circles, desperately looking for her. "Stop that! I am a part of your aura now, my physical being is gone." She scolded me, "So you are stuck in my head for good?" I placed my hands in my pockets. "Well it is a little more complicated than that, but in a way, yes." She calmly explained. Sarcastically I replied, "Oh that is just fabulous. Where are we?" I shuddered as I physically felt Tremeá's body.
It was as if we had somehow become one. I moved an invisible tail and wings, and she could also move my physical being. "We are on the planet earth. The country is known as The United States of America, the state is Montana, and the town is known as Fort Benton. Here you are called Cullen Noonkester."
Memories of my alternate life rushed through my mind. I never did any of these things, yet I did. "How are we going to fight the anti-conscience?" Tremeá shifted slightly and answered, "Through the spread of creativity and imagination. Free thought destroys their influence. Here, reading, writing, and other creative arts are dieing at an alarming rate. We will write and help contribute using your imagination and my draconic writing style."
An urge set in. I had to write. Ideas of stories surged through my mind and Tremeá encouraged them to keep flowing. "Who am I?" I queried, Tremeá answered in a mysterious tone, "At times we are Kelian Nunguesser, others we are Tremeá, but now, we are Cullen Noonkester. The names do not matter, you have joined me and that makes you an agent against my enemy. You are a part of the legacy of dragons now."