Once Upon a Time – Chap. 21.4


Sylvia took a few cautious steps toward the man, feeling confident she could do so unscathed now that he was nearly out of books to throw. “Um, excuse me,” she instinctively ducked as he moved also, though thankfully it was only a sidestep and not another attempt at lunging from his literally arsenal. “Who are you?”

Instead of speaking, he stared back gape-mouthed.

“My name’s Sylvia.” She took another step. “And this is my Uncle-

“Sylvia, you do not share your name with strange people that show up unannounced through some sort of portal without knowing theirs first!” snapped Uncle Albert.

Sylvia put her hands on her hips. “I’m trying to learn his, be patient! I’m the one who brought him here anyway.” The hands fell back down as she considered her guest. “I’m pretty sure I did. What’s your name?”

Whether it was his name or not, whatever came out of the man’s mouth equated complete nonsense. He pointed at Uncle Albert and then shot the fingers around to her and just about everything else in the room, asking questions she couldn’t understand.

“What language is that? Uncle Albert flung an arm toward the stranger.

“Eh,” Sylvia shrugged, smiling at the man in attempt to still convey no one meant him any harm, “maybe he’s from wherever grandfather came from. His clothes don’t look like anything from around here.”

Uncle Albert gasped in a considerable amount of air, a particularly odd action for someone that didn’t breath any longer. “Of course, yes! Father spoke about going through a portal of light to come here. It is conceivable that this fellow is a scientist or inventor who became victim of the same occurrence!”

Sylvia pouted. “No, Uncle, it was magic not science!” She motioned toward the bewildered statue in front of them. “Does he really look like he could possibly be any sort of scientist?”

“Sylvia, if he is from another world, there are a great many things that would appear unfamiliar to us,” Uncle Albert argued. “But if he did mistakenly travel here the same way as father, that means the method can be reproduced.” He began taking a few excited steps forward. “And if that’s true then-

Their guest gained the ability to move again at seeing the zombie swiftly moving towards him. He clutched the bare bookcases and yelled louder than before.

“Okay, backing up, backing up.” Uncle Albert raised his arms with open palms, retreating back twice as many steps as he’d taken. “No one’s eating anyone, relax.”

Uncle Albert’s attempt at consolation was ineffective as the man actually began trying to climb the bookcase closest to him. Obviously more accustomed to holding the weight of several books more so than the full weight of a person, the bookcase came crashing down to the the stone floor.

Sylvia raised a brow at the stranger who now made an unsuccessful attempt to hide within the shallow recesses of the fallen bookcase. “Uncle Albert, I really don’t think he’s the scientist sort.”

Deigen and V rushed into the room, followed by about ten or so guards. It seemed the second round of yelling and possible destruction of large furnishings had finally alerted everyone in the Kingdom of Fools that something had occurred, whether magical or not.

“What is this?!” demanded V, staring at the man crouched in the middle of a broken bookcase. His exasperated question seemed directed to anyone in the room who might be willing to provide an explanation.

Seeing the room now filled to near capacity with vampires pointing weapons at him did not help the stranger calm down at all. He bolted from the bookcase, fleeing through a doorway on the other side of the room while shrieking.

“Sylvia, who is this individual we’re chasing after?” asked Deigen, leading the entire group on a hunt after the man.

“Why do you automatically assume him being here has anything to do with me?” she asked.

“Sylvia, who is this individual we’re chasing after?” he repeated.

Sylvia rolled her eyes. “Fine, truth is I don’t know. I accidentally summoned him here. Uncle Albert thinks he’s-

“Summoned him?” V came to a halt as they entered the castle’s kitchen area. “Why, how?”

Before Sylvia could answer, a loud crash of pots and pans poured out of a large cabinet door. Their visitor apparently decided to try hiding again, this time being as successful as the first. He remained squatting among the piles of pots and other kitchen implements, staring at everyone for a moment. Then, with as much gusto as his race to the kitchen, he grabbed a frying pan by the handle in one hand and began swinging it wildly. His other hand bore a small wooden cutting board as a shield. This would have all been a touch more menacing had he not done so while baling like a frightened cow.

V lowered his sword, the rest of the group following suite. “Well, I doubt he’s much harm but he’s certainly missing a few eggs in the basket.”

“He’s not crazy,” argued Sylvia, “he’s just frightened.”

The stranger took a daring fencing stance, aiming his frying pan ‘sword’ at the mob of undead and the woman before him. “GAFEAFADWAWW!” he yelled nonsense words at them with new confidence.

Deigen attempted to mouth the foreign words. He quickly raised his weapons again. “He’s a magician attempting to make a spell against us!” He threw a dagger, which his opponent managed to catch with their cutting board ‘shield’. The man lowered the cutting board just enough to gawk at the six-inch blade sticking through it. He continued staring at the cutting board and screamed at it as though the item itself was another monster trying to attack him.

“On second thought, never mind.” Deigen lowered the other dagger he had been preparing to throw. “I agree with V, the fellow is just a bit daft.”


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