Mistica Chronicles

Welcome to Issue 34

_Starlight_ Winning Entry

Where am I? I thought to myself. I was lying on a beach, my clothes were damp and clung to my body. Who am I... I asked myself. And I didn't know. I sat up, my paws sinking into the sand around me. My surroundings consisted of a small beach and a lighthouse atop of a ledge, its white and red coloring standing out against the green grass.
I pounced to my feet and began walking towards the ledge, but I stumbled over something. At my feet were a hat and a bag. These must've been mine. I shouldered on the bag and set the hat on my head, where it fit perfectly. I scrambled up the ledge, and saw a path leading away from the lighthouse. Seeing no other choice, I followed it. I soon came upon the road that split into three; I had no idea where any of them led. I hesitated, debating which one to take. In my hesitation, I gazed at the trees around me. The forest was beautiful. The trees were tall and sturdy, full of singing birds and small creatures—Misticpals? Yes, that's what the creatures are called. Finally, I remembered something.
I studied the forest again. This place was just so wonderful. Not just the forest, but even the lighthouse I had been at before, everything around me was dazzling and I couldn't get enough of its beauty; I could travel this strange, unfamiliar place for months and never get bored.
Suddenly, a small, feminine figure approached me from the trees. Aha—that creature is a sprite. Her small wings poked out from each side of her.
“Hi there, I’m Holli, are you lost, sir?”
“Yes, I’m afraid I am Holli,” I replied. She curtsied and asked, “I will show you were to go, but first I would like to play a game. Would you like to play, sir?”
As I thought about it, I saw no reason not to, so I agreed. She pulled out a small deck of cards from the pocket of her green plaid skirt as she explained the game to me, a game called “Higher or Lower.”
She said it costs 100 MC to play, but I had none on me, so she let me play for free. I didn't even remember what MC was. Obviously some kind of currency.
Too soon, the sun was beginning to dip low behind us, and I had not realized how much time had passed, or how I was up to 500 MC. “I'm sorry Holli, but I must be on my way. We'll play again sometime,” She curtsied again. “Take the path on the far right, you can get help from Pandoria there,” before I could reply, she skipped off into the forest.
Who is Pandoria?
Continuing my short journey, I took the path Holli had appointed me to. It led to the clearing filled with shops that were quite busy with customers coming in and going out, seeming to make an endless cycle of leaving one shop to go to the other. I ducked into Health Foods and grabbed a few on-the-go snacks (like strawberries and an apple) with the little bit of MC I had.
Placing the items into my bag, I tipped my hat at the cashier and ducked out of the little restaurant and into the clearing once again.
Movement to my left caught my eye; the curtain made of leaves covering a large opening at the base of the tree was pushed to the side, revealing a Braenon unlike any other I’d seen before. Her coloring and wardrobe was so different and mystical that there was no way she was just any normal Braenon. Her gaze roamed the clearing before setting directly on me.
Without a word, she motioned for me to come inside. I threw a glance around the clearing; no one else seemed to notice our small exchange. Once inside the chambers, she spoke. “Hello. You look quite lost. Where are you from?” the Braenon asked, her voice ringing with a hauntingly beautiful echo.
“I honestly don't know, Miss. I woke up on a beach by a lighthouse fairly close to here. I have no clue of where I came from or who I am.”
“Strange, strange,” she tilted her head to one side. “I am Pandoria, goddess of Mistica.”
My mouth hung open slightly; so this was who the sprite was talking about. The Braenon was no normal one, as I had suspected. This amazing creature was the goddess of the beautiful lands around me. She straightened up.
“You have a fascination with the lands of Mistica,” Pandoria stated; though it wasn't a question, I nodded. “Yes, ma'am. The few parts of what I've seen are gorgeous beyond belief.”
“How would you like to roam the lands, with my permission and my protection?” she tilted her head to the side once more. A surge of joy rippled through me. “Yes, yes! That would be wonderful, ma'am!”
“Then so be it, Traveler.”
And that's how I got my name. The Traveler.