Week Three | 2,648 words
One day, however, Idelle became sad and unsettled, and she found herself frowning and wringing her hands; a lazy cloud of anxiety followed her wherever she went, and Lady Rime watched her carefully and with concern. All at once Idelle understood what this feeling was. She was desperately, and surprisingly, homesick.
“I fear I must go home,” she told Lady Rime, “but if it does not go as well with me there then please may I return?”
Her mistress replied “It appeared to me you were heartsad for your world, and since you have been so true to me, I will fetch you there myself. Please take this and wear it for me.” The lady handed Idelle a corset made of finely forged gold, and instead of lacing up with cord it knitted together most ingeniously using a ladder of tiny golden chains and a number of prettily engraved dials. Idelle slipped it on and it shrank to clasp her waist perfectly.
“You may keep this,” Lady Rime told her, and Idelle thanked her for the handsome gift.
“That is only the first thing you must take,” the lady remarked, and she took Idelle by the hand and led her to a great door, which she unlocked using a most complicated key; it appeared to be made entirely of empty cubes which bore no similarity to the patterns engraved deeply into the very ancient door. Lady Rime took the door by the handle – a large glass orb, filled with a moss-like green smoke that shimmered in pearlescent clouds, and gave it a twist. The door swung open easily, and revealed a room no bigger than a cupboard. The walls, which at first glance appeared to be painted the same clean white as the rest of the cottage, showed themselves to be rather more complex than a normal wall. Idelle peered into cupboard and could see shifting shapes, creamy grey and silver ivory, drifting over the white surface below. Above her the ceiling twinkled and glistened, as though stars had made tiny spyholes, and were cheerily peeping through. A cold, but entirely comforting breeze swept up from the floor, and beckoned her into the mysterious and beautiful space.