(Taps on the computer screen.) Hello? Hello, is this thing on? (notices readers.) Ah! Well, hello there, readers! Welcome to my first 'Alice in Wonderland' fanfic! Based of course, on Tim Burton's fantastic new movie!
I'm a bit hesitant about posting this: it's a biiiiit darker than some of the other fanfics I've read for this fandom (let alone pairing) but I can't really do anything about that. It is, I believe, still a good story (even though it's not finished yet) but I'll let you be the judge of that: If no one likes this here prologue, I don't know if I'll post the rest of the story. I want to, but not if no one is going to read it. So please, for the sake of my creative muse (and this story) please let me know what you think! A review, an alert, I don't care. I would just love to continue this story, simply because it's both fun and challenging to write! And of course, because I love to entertain, despite my rather dark muse.
She knew this was a bad idea. From the moment it had been proposed, a knot had lodged itself in the pit of her stomach and refused to loosen—proof that somewhere, somehow, something was bound to go wrong. Right off the bat, she knew.
And yet, she had accepted anyway. Did not even give it a second thought. Granted, it was not like she could hesitate upon such a decision; so much was already at stake. The time for waiting had long since run out.
Besides, she reasoned, swallowing down that lump of uncertainty, just because something is a bad idea, doesn't mean it isn't the right thing to do.
So now here she stood, frantically pacing back and forth on the balcony of the White Queen's castle; her heart racing a mile a minute in her acutely poised ears….senses tuned into the night atmosphere intently…..listening….watching….
She jumped, biting her lip hard to keep from squealing. A timid laugh followed her sudden addressor, and as Mallymkun looked up, her deep, crimson pupils met the apologetic eyes of the White Queen.
"Oh dear," she whispered, touching a hand to her lips, "I'm so sorry I frightened you." The fair-haired woman extended her free hand towards the dormouse, but Mallymkun brushed it—as effectively as a mouse can brush such a large thing as a hand—away, her cheeks flustered under her fur in embarrassment.
"Think nothing of it, my queen." She replied, the words 'I wasn't startled and y'didn't sneak up on me' laced within the phrase. At such dire a time, it did no good to appear vulnerable. Especially to the ruler of Underland.
Despite the dark, Mallymkun saw her queen shake her head, bending down so as to better speak to the small—though she was rather tall for her species—mouse. "Please, call me Mirana." The queen….or 'Mirana'….said, a curtain of platinum hair falling over one shoulder. "We've no time to spare for formalities."
That same, foreboding knot twisted in the Dormouse's stomach, but she suppressed a grimace, instead wiping her face clear of any expression at all. Her voice, however, was unable to keep her true emotions hidden from her reply. Bordering on urgency, she answered the queen with a hasty "right" before cursing the exposure in her statement and abruptly closing her mouth.
Mirana, observant as she was, noticed this, and smiled—if not somewhat sadly—at her furry companion. "Mally," she began, "It's perfectly understandable be upset at a time like this. I….everyone is, you know."
"I know. And I'm not upset. Jus'…." The Dormouse sighed, her tail drooping around her ankles "….concerned, I guess. He's getting worse."
A small gasped escaped the White Queen's throat, and she closed her eyes, pressing a curled hand to her bosom. "I feared as much." She murmured, taking a breath so as to calm herself. Like Mallymkun, Mirana often chose which emotions to drape around her sleeve, and which to tuck away. Fear, anxiety, and desperation were not among the list. Yet here they were, threatening to break the usually strong woman's composure and consume her. Despite her nonsense about it being okay to be upset, the queen herself seemed to have very little practice in that area, as was clear by the crease in her brow, and the tight line formed across her lips.
To make it worse, Mallymkun could do nothing but sit there and wait until her queen regained composure. Bloody 'ell.
"Did…." Mirana said suddenly, "….did anything….specific….happen?" Her eyes had opened once more, sorrow floating behind each of her chocolate irises.
Mentally, the little sword-wielder swore, memories from a few days past flashing across her mind. "I…." She started, but stopped just as suddenly, clutching the hilt of her blade tightly. Mirana just had to ask that question. "….Well…."
The mouse's gaze dropped to her feet. "Two days ago….h….he told me something. Something I…." Again her words died; rapidly losing her battle against her vulnerability. "I…." her tail curled further near her feet, face contorting into a look of pain. "H-he told me was considerin' things that started wiv the letter 'D.'"
A gasp of alarm, shortly followed by one of understanding.
A small bob of the mouse's head was the reply. "Tha's right." She whispered, her eyes round with memories of a few days past, "devastation….despair…." her voice dropped an octave lower "….and…." Mirana was forced to lean even further in to catch the concluding line from Mallymkun's trembling lips, "….death."
A long silence fell between the two after that, each struck differently upon hearing that dreaded word. Both had suspected the seriousness of the situation, but somehow, hearing it confirmed aloud—even twice, in Mally's case—made it seem so much more real. More tragic. Standing there, bathed in the soft glow of the moon, both the queen and the Dormouse took a moment to absorb the truth of the matter at hand; no matter how close they may be to him, or how dearly they loved him, if the task they had so carefully planned failed, he was going to die.
Mirana was the first to speak, clearing her throat in attempts to get back on track.
The silver-furred mouse raised her head in response, blinking rapidly to clear the—dust, it was dust—from her eyes. "I suppose we ought to get a move on then."
The White Queen nodded, before reaching into a concealed pocket of her dress and pulling out a small vial. "This should be enough to take you there and back." She informed the Dormouse, setting the glass container down by her side, "but drink it carefully—remember, you won't be alone when you return."
Grimacing at the violet liquid sloshing against its translucent confines, Mallymkun bent forward—though not very, as the vial was half her size—eying the amount with mild revulsion. "And 'ow, if I may ask, does it taste?" She inquired, imagining the numerous—or few, it was uncertain—possible flavors such a rare yet vibrantly colored substance could be. If she was going to drink the stuff, a heads up would do to benefit her.
Mirana, on the other hand, thought otherwise, as she chose to ignore her companion's question and continue her instructions. "Absolum has informed me of her location; a bit tricky, if I do say so, but not at all unattainable. As long as," and here she attentively paused, "you're immune to sea sickness."
Mally scoffed, tearing her eyes away from the vial to glare rather flatly at the Queen. "'Ardly seems to matter. I don't 'ave a choice."
"True. I just thought it best to warn you." As before, the fair-haired woman extended a hand towards the Dormouse, who, no longer dueling with her previous embarrassment, hopped accordingly into the Queen's palm, clutching the small container to her chest. Her heart, whose tempo had been gradually building, thudded against her ribcage as Mirana raised her hand so that Mallymkun was now only inches from her porcelain face. "Be careful, Mally." She warned, a faint line of worry etched into her forehead.
A slight grunt, followed by a clink as the silver-furred mouse removed the vial's lid served as her answer. Flattening her ears against her head, the sword-wielding rodent exhaled through her nose, tilted back the bottle, and took a swig of the liquid inside. A bitter taste flooded her taste buds and she nearly gagged. Figures something as vulger as the Jabberwocky would contain equally repulsive blood.
Barely restraining herself against making a face, Mallymkun swallowed, straightened, then wiped her mouth with the back of her hand. "Guess I'm off." She murmured, popping the lid back onto the glass container and securing it to her body with the sash around her waist. She turned back to the queen; startled at how suddenly vague she appeared—nothing but shadows against a hazy outline. However, amidst the evaporating world, Mirana's stern gaze shown through. "You cannot fail, Mallymkun." She whispered, her voice bouncing off invisible walls in a hollow echo, "she's the last chance he has."
Gritting her teeth, the Dormouse balled her fists, clutching her dominant hand to her heart. "I know."
This is a prologue, as previously stated—but whether it continues, is up to you! The first chapter (after this one) is already written, so let me know if you'd like to read what happens next!