(The first and most recent post in this series, A Mystical Treasure, is here.)
“What bus is this, anyways?” Lora thought to herself, swinging herself into one of the back corner seats. She knew it was heading in the opposite direction from the shelter but she didn’t really care at this point. At least she was safe on a well-lit public bus. Relatively. She put her feet up on a rail under another seat and hugged her backpack tightly.
Half asleep already, she gently drew the chain and pendant out of her pocket, feeling warmth thrill through her, beginning in the hand with which she held it.
The pendant was a beautiful, sea-green stone wrapped in twists of silver-white wire. Emerald? It was rough but translucent. And the clasp was at the front, just above the pendant: a simple loop of metal with a small bar that fit through it.
Lora fastened it around her neck, letting both the clasp and stone fall hidden under her jacket. She fell asleep.
The sound that woke her was that of happy voices and gentle laughter. She smiled in spite of herself; the voices sounded so familiar. Wait. Something was wrong….
She sat bolt upright. She had been lying down, covered in blankets that smelled like home.
And around her was her old bedroom. She was in her old bed. The room was dark but she could see from the daylight coming through the blinds. It looked like nothing had changed since the day she left. Her old posters were up: System of a Down. Red Hot Chili Peppers. Audioslave.
She was even wearing a nightgown she used to wear when she was twelve. Her hair was smooth and long like it used to be. And her body had gone back in time too. She could almost believe the last five years had just been a nightmare.
No; Lora reminded herself that she hadn’t really woken up, she had just fallen asleep. Into a soft, secure, and warm dreamland.
Those voices… her family.
Maybe this was a chance to see her little brother again. And her mother…. Suddenly she was gripped with fear that she would wake up before she could speak with her, be held by her. Even if she was just a ghost in her mind.
Lora stood and walked toward the door.