I’m between books. I’m not completely done with Mr Tumnal, but I’ve not started something new. I think I want to write my In Your Own Words story I have brewing (which is every bit as weird and wonky as Mr Tumnal, but at the same the follow up story to The End Of All Worlds is still nagging at my heart strings.
Just like in the original, when I needed some friends for Eleanor, Alice and Kirsten wandered into the story straight out of one of my earlier (unconnected) stories, so Alice has continued to talk to me through here diaries. She’s given me one such entry which could well act as a prologue for some more Loki/Freyja action.
Possibly don’t read on if you are wary of spoilers…
5 September, Reykjavik
It was weird seeing Andy again. He had looked just as ever he did, but different too. I guess I had never really noticed it before but he had something of a hawkish look to him since when we first met. No, not a hawk but a corvid – both he and and that Valdis woman – Ódinn’s two raven friends.
I still don’t know why Kirsten and I accepted that we should go whilst Ellie, Ben, and Hanna went back into the other world. We did though. I think it was worse for Kirsten though. She and Ben had only just recently – and she was convinced that this was forever. I told her to be strong, I mean like really told her, like I had the metaphorical baseball bat in my hands and was really telling her. We went down the stairs and we didn’t look back.
I say we didn’t look back but I definitely sneaked a glance over my shoulder so I’m sure that Kirsten must have.
It’s hard to describe what the Bifrost is like to walk through. When you are up high, at the top of the arch, the bridge is almost transparent. You can see the world outside; storm clouds and burning mountains. Actually, sometimes you can hardly make out the colours. Down near the entrance it is more like a cave, or a stone wall with steps hewn from single pieces of rock. And then you leave the entrance like a mouth of a cave but you take no more than two or three steps and the bridge is gone. You can see the rainbow, but like rainbows they always seem to jump further from you the closer you get to them. We couldn’t have followed the others then if we had wanted to.
And we did want to, we really did. It had felt so much safer on that bridge than on this hillside right then. The wind was howling – no, raging – and behind us we could see the molten lava spitting from, and a surge of melt water ice, and rock pouring out of a fractured glacier. We looked about us, but on the exposed ridge on which we found ourselves was quite isolated.
And aghh, I couldn’t breath! Kirsten too was choking on the air. It was thick with dust – ash I guess – and sulphorous fumes. It burnt at that back of my throat. I was soon on my knees and squinting through my eyes because it hurt so much.
The next time I woke it was in a bed in Reykjavik Hospital. I turned my head to one side and saw Kirsten lying in the next bay along. She was sleeping and I wondered if she had woken up yet.
I tried to remember what had happened back on the mountain. I remembered the ground quaking, and the following eruption. I remembered lying with my face on the ground paralysed with fear and eating dirt.
That was when I first met him – Luke, the male nurse who was on duty the afternoon that I woke up He was passing through the ward at that moment and saw that I was awake. He crossed the floor and got me to drink a little water – my lips and the back of my throat were so dry.
I remember trying to sit up, and wincing in pain. Feeling numb in my body because it hurt so much. Just bruising I think, or that’s what Luke told me later. Kirsten too, we had been so lucky. Luke helped me to sit up a bit and copy of the National Geographic to read – I think it was one of the few they had in English.
He was really very attentive to me. Too attentive I thought, actually. If he shows this much care to me then he can hardly have any time for his other patients. Not that I was going to complain because he is hot I mean like seriously fit. He had waves of thick, dark hair that hung over those dark eyes of his – eyes of mystery I called them.
The hospital was really insistent that we spoke with our next of kin – which we did – for all the good it did us. My folks were still cross with me that hadn’t got the next flight home and had put myself in further risk even after I had pointed out to them that the only airport was a complete no go area. Still, we need to go when we were discharged and Luke helped us. It seems that everyone knows Hanna’s pabbi!
When the morning came of our departure, Luke helped us down to reception and waited with us until Baldur and Lára arrived. He hugged me, held me tight, and I pressed him a kiss. I wasn’t going to see him again. Kirsten couldn’t believe I had done that but she has always been so much more reserved than me.
It wasn’t until later that night, when I got this journal to write this journal that I found Luke’s card slipped between the pages. I’m staring it now; his name, personal address, email, and mobile number in clear type.
Of course I can’t ever do anything with this information. Not ever.