Friday, November 4, 2011

Chapter 1 Part 1

Nobody could read it. The sign, that is. It was a large sign, made of a silver-colored metal. It could have been steel, aluminum, or tin. That information is lost, now, as none of those present at the time were metallurgists and the sign was soon after scrapped by the impoverished people living near it. What is known is that the sign read, "Welcome to the Happiest Place on Earth" and had in fact been stolen from Disneyland.

Four people stood around the sign with a sense of awe, confusion, and discomfort. The discomfort from the frigid weather of the Canadian Shield, the confusion from the fact that none of them could read the ancient English sign (not that it would have helped), and the awe from the staircase behind the sign that appeared to descend directly into nowhere. The staircase itself was not particularly threatening, it was made of perfectly square, flat, polished granite. It was eery because of how effortlessly the surrounding natural landscape surrounding it transitioned perfectly into this very unnatural staircase that went down into utter darkness.

A small, dusty-brown haired young woman broke the stillness of the group by walking confidently toward the staircase. Almost immediately, a stocky black-haired man of about twenty-five leapt forward and grabbed her arm, "Esther! What the Hell are you doing?"

"Get off me!"

"Get back here!"

"I!" Esther brought her foot back behind her, "Said!" she started swinging it "Get!" her boot firmly connected with his shin, "Off!" The young man let go of her with a yelp, holding his leg and hopping on one foot.

"What was that for?"

"Don't touch me, Micheal."

"That doesn't mean you get to kick me!"

"Then don't touch me."

"Then don't go in there."

The other young man in the group, Ivan, pitched in, "Esther, Micheal's an ass, but maybe he's right, we don't know what's down there."

Esther glared at Ivan, "Then I'm going to find out."

"That sign could easily say 'danger' or 'certain death ahead' or even just 'no trespassing'"

"It might also say 'free candy and beer', besides, how bad can it be? I mean, there's a picture of a castle on it." Coincidentally, this is precisely the reason that the builders of the staircase decided to use a stolen Disney sign.

Michael stopped nursing his leg long enough to say, "Esther, we should at least come back later after we've planned this out. It's too dangerous to go down there by yourself."

"Well, then I guess it would be a real dick move for you to stay up here." as she turned around and started trotting down the stairs.

Michael hesitated for only an instant before he proudly and boldly started walking in the opposite direction, "Fuck that. Have fun dying down there, I'll gather a search party in the morning."

"You're a dick, Esther, wait up." Called Ivan as he took off after Esther down the stairs.

"Umm... what about me?" Piped a voice. Esther and Ivan both backtracked and looked up over the top stair at the girl whom the voice had come from.

"Oh," Esther sighed, "Sorry. Come with us, Steph?"

"Ok." Stephanie then meekly walked over to the stairs. She stopped before the first one, looking down. She checked her pockets and pulled out a book of matches, looked relieved, and put them back in her pocket. Ivan and Esther really can't be blamed for forgetting Stephanie. She was a plain looking girl, which isn't necessarily a bad thing, but she also seldom spoke and didn't contribute much when she did. She was the sort of girl who would go to a party and sit in the corner, behind the punchbowl, and put her hood up.

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