I. Finding Neverland
"WILLIAM STEWART DASH! YOU GET YOUR ARSE BACK IN THIS HOUSE OR I'LL…!"
"You'll what?" I snapped back at my cranky mother, her wild red hair flopping about her sweating face.
Not bothering to find out what the rest of her sentence would be, I pulled my jacket closer to me, and stormed down the quiet street of Rochester Lane. It was the middle of the day, so people were either working or at school. Why am I not in school? I'm doing what they call "skipping," children; try asking your parents what that means if they aren't too anal to answer you.
It wasn't particularly that cold for this late spring day, I was just always cold. My father hypothesized that it was because I had thin blood, so my body didn't get the necessary amount of heat. And during the winter I might have a little cigarette to warm up my "thin" blood.
The City of Westminster wasn't a bad place to live in. In all of this Great Britain, it was foretold as one of the most picturesque suburbs a silly little Brit could live in. Trees smothered the moist landscape, and most of the buildings were historical with elegant architecture from the medieval period. And not only this, it also beheld Kensington Gardens, a wonderful park full of trees where a troubled teenager such as myself could find some solitude.
I went to my usual place that took a great deal of climbing through some dense wood until you reached a small little clearing. I'm sure that a lot of people have been to my Secret Spot in this crowded park, but it still helped me to feel that the world's condescending eyes were no longer focused on me.
It was on that day, the 12th of May, after lying on the dirt for some odd hours, when I flickered my eyes open and stared into two of the most beautiful jade gems I had ever seen. They swam in a milky sea of ivory and were framed by silky brown curtains. I blinked again, but this time I only saw two emerald eyes watching me curiously from a stupidly grinning face. I screamed.
"WAHHH! Woah! Wha..?" I shouted unintelligible noise as I scrambled backwards to get a better view of my spectator.
"Are you alright?" he asked me, his voice like the wind whistling through the trees. It was so soothing that my heart slowed its' frantic racing to a rate below the heart attack level.
I finally got a good look at my curious new friend and, boy, was there a lot to look at! He was very tall, and had a thin built, but his arms were round with well-developed muscles. Auburn hair framed his boyish face. He looked no older than me, but there was something about his manner that made me think he was much older than me. But that wasn't what made this boy so…queer, for lack of a better term. He sported a worn, sun-faded green tunic that was torn along the sleeves and hem. It looked to be a little to small for him, so it hugged his muscles tightly. What was more astonishing was the fact that he wore green tights. Luckily his too small tunic was long enough to cover his groin so I couldn't see any other unnecessary bulges. Even his tights were torn at the ends so that they came short below his knees. His feet were bare and dirty. He looked like he had just survived a plane crash on a deserted island.
"He's a silly one, Tink," the boy said over his shoulder with a little chuckle.
I can't believe I never noticed it before. A little golden glow danced around the boy's head, sparkles falling from its' path and twinkling out.
'Oh, I get it!' I thought to myself. 'I'm dreaming. I must have been playing Legend of Zelda for too long last night. Though this is a very normal looking Link, and he called Navi Tink.'
"I think I'll just go back to sleep," I told myself, flopping down on the ground again, head propped up against my hands, "maybe then I'll wake up."
"Well, yes, eventually, you will wake up," the boy replied simply, even though the statement wasn't directed at him. "It happens every time. I don't think I've ever once met someone who didn't wake up after going to sleep."
I glared at him. Okay, freak, you can go now. I'm obviously tired.
Because my eyes were closed, I couldn't see where the sudden jingling of a bell came from.
"No, Tink, we can't just leave him here," the boy said. "He looks sick! I mean, look at those black rings around his eyes! I bet Curly might know what to do with him, or maybe Tiger Lily. Her tribe knows all sorts of herbal medicines!"
It's called mascara, you dumbass.
"What do you mean this will be just like last time? I haven't taken anyone home with me since Jane!"
"It's not like he's going to stay there. It'll just be until he gets better, and then I'll send him back home, I promise."
A small jingle.
"Thanks, Tink! Now, let's wake him up and he'll fly home with us."
Oh great. Kidnappers. Maybe it wasn't such a good idea to pretend to sleep in front of this weirdo. I opened my eyes and propped myself up on my elbows.
"Sprinkle him, Tink!" the boy said with a mischievous glint in his eye, or maybe that was the little ball of light. Speaking of, said ball of light was flying around my head like some annoying gnat, and dripping sparkles all over my head.
"Ah! Hey, what are you…? Ah...Ah-choo!" I sneezed and sparkles flew out like cannon fire.
The boy laughed, and his face was so beautiful (Now don't get me wrong, I'm not gay, or anything. I can compliment a fellow male, can't I?), that I didn't resist when he grabbed my hand. "Ok, off we go!" He leapt into the air, still holding onto my hand, but was cut short.
"Ugh!" he sighed, floating in midair, but still holding onto my hand. "Your thoughts are so depressing and heavy. Think light, happy thoughts, or else you'll never get off the ground."
I was too busy staring in awe at the boy floating in midair that I didn't think rationally. My only thought was, 'I can fly in this dream? Sweet!' I hadn't had a dream about flying in quite a while, and each time, it was such an exhilarating feeling. Well, the feeling must have been really exhilarating, because the boy grinned foolishly at me. I was floating with him, dripping sparkles, like he was.
"Come on!" he nearly squealed with happiness, and shot into the air, nearly ripping my arm out of my socket along with him.
I don't know if anyone saw us flying into the clouds, after all, it was only eight in the evening, and I'm sure people were still out and about and looking up at the sky at the wrong moment. But at the moment, none of that seemed to matter. There is nothing more awe-inspiring in this small world, than watching the clouds fall beneath your feet, feeling your heart soar along side you with happiness. Maybe that boy's grin was contagious, because I found myself smiling broadly. This made the strange boy very happy and he pulled me along faster.
Suddenly, the clouds parted to reveal a starry night sky, and a small, green island in the middle of a never ending ocean. I had never seen so many stars in my life.
The boy pulled me closer, since we were still holding hands, and whispered into my ear, which made my heart jump. "This is Neverland, my friend. A place where children like you and I never have to grow up. Where we can do whatever we want without any stingy adults bossing us around." My god, it's paradise!
He withdrew his lips, along with his warm breath, and cold air rushing past my sensitive ear made me shiver. But I didn't have enough time to think about how wrong this should feel, because we suddenly plummeted downward in a spiraling dive. I screamed at the top of my lungs, but it was lost in the other boy's thrilled whooping. As we neared the island, we pulled up a bit, so as not to come down too fast, and slowed our descent, until we were like a feather floating in the breeze. We landed on a rocky cliff on the sea shore. The moon and the little glow ball were the only source of light in the dark night, and they illuminated the boy's green eyes so that they almost glowed themselves.
"This is Skull Rock Cove," he said to me in a jittery excitement. "The mermaids live here. They're really pretty, but they like to play tricks on people."
"That's nice," I said, not really paying attention to what he was saying. "I would like to know who you are, rather."
"Oh, I'm sorry. I forgot to mention that!" he bowed, but not mockingly. "I'm Peter Pan, leader of the Lost Boys, and this here is Tinker Bell; she's a fairy. It's her fairy dust that helps you to fly!"
"Yeah, I figured," I muttered, surprised at my amount of calm. Well, if it was a dream, I might as well go along with it.
The little glow came closer to me so that it was right next to my nose. I found out that Tink wasn't just a glow, but a tiny little person with a little green dress similar to Peter Pan's tunic, and thin, insect-like wings that fluttered behind her. She however, had the decency to wear shoes, and they had a little white puff ball at the top of each foot. She opened her cute little mouth and began shouting at me angrily, but all I could here were little jingles.
"Hey, Tink, don't be rude!" Peter pulled her back towards him by her wings. "He's a guest here! And since he's a guest, I should show him to our base, so he can get some rest. Come with me…uh…what's your name?"
"Dash. William Dash." I had always wanted to say that. "But you can call me Will. I don't like my full name."
"Alright, Will," Peter grabbed my hand and pulled me along as he guided me inwards. "Just follow me!"
I did follow him through the dense jungle, until my feet ached and my knees felt like they were about to collapse, and we reached an opening in the thick trees. I came upon a series of tree houses, and a door in the trunk of a giant tree. Peter led me through the door and into a small little room. There were stairs to the right leading both up and down. There was a small makeshift bed with a patchwork quilt and a nightstand made from a very poor craftsmen with a little glowing mushroom to serve as a lamp.
"You can sleep here," Peter led me to the bed. "In the morning, I'll show you around our hideout. I'll sleep downstairs."
He waved to me in a giddy manner before leaping down the full flight of stairs and into the darkness. Tink followed him loyally, but not without a particularly nasty glare towards me. Well, here comes the end of the dream.
I lay down on the bed of leaves and feathers carefully, afraid that this poorly crafted bed frame might break. Needless to say, I woke up with back problems the next morning.