Disclaimer: Not mine. (Well, the female is mine; however, despite not being named, I'm sure we can all guess who the male is supposed to be.) Other disclaimers at end.
The song brushed his mind.
~ Drink with me only with thine eyes. ~
He blinked, pausing in his hammering as the unfamiliar melody softly played. He stepped away from the banister he was repairing, hammer firmly in his grip, and shook his head violently. It didn't seem to help. The tune continued. Turning, he noticed that the music 'sounded' louder when he faced the front door.
~ and I will pledge with mine. ~
Lips pressed in a grim line, he strode purposefully down the hall. At the front door, he switched the hammer to his off-hand and pulled his favorite axe from its spot in the umbrella stand. Opening the door, he cautiously peered out.
~ Or place a kiss within the cup ~
Without the barrier, he could feel the music try to take hold, the song tugging at him, urging him out of the house and into the street.
A woman, her pale yellow dress clinging to a willowy form, dark hair cascading to her waist, eyes so light as to look white stood at the end of the walkway. A slight smile upon her lips, one hand held out toward him.
~ and I'll not ask for wine. ~
“I should probably warn you, there's a number of people here who would be highly upset if you should cause any trouble.”
The smile faded and she lowered her hand. “You do not hear the song?”
He cocked an eyebrow. “I hear it. I'm ignoring it. What do you want? And I'd be quick before the others come to check on me.”
The song faded, though it didn't disappear completely. Her eyes, a light blue-gray now that he was closer, were puzzled. “I'm gathering crafters. Builders. Those who have been magic-touched, to help us. We had a battle and our city was nearly decimated." She hesitated, "You could ignore the song?”
A smirk played upon his lips, “I've had a lot of experience in warding off sirens.” He refused to elaborate and she nodded in acknowledgment. “So. Alternate reality? Demonic or divine dimension? Separate planet?” he prodded for more information.
“Planer shift. We're approximately two points off your current standard. Atmosphere and gravity are identical, but due to the amount of magic available, only those who have been touched by it can make the transition safely.”
He nodded. “What are the consequences of going with you?”
Hope replaced puzzled. “We -” she paused, thinking. “Only an hour here would pass for every day with us. You, yourself, shall not age – no matter how long you remain. Our enemies were destroyed and will not be an issue. The elders have agreed of the necessity, and so as a builder, you are protected from those who care not for mortals. You shall be richly rewarded as well.”
“How much work needs to be done? How large of an area needs to be rebuilt?”
“The city was half again as large as your previous hometown.”
He whistled, calculating. “And, how many builders have you been able to locate?”
“Approximately thirty men and women from several continents.”
“We have all the materials, we just don't have the knowledge of putting them together. Most of our builders died in the attack. Each Earth-builder will lead their own crew. Once the process is explained, much of it can be completed with magic. It should take no more than six of our months.”
He muttered to himself. “Six months times thirty -ish. 184 -ish. Divided by 24. About 8. So, I'd be gone about eight days?”
She nodded, then blinked in pleased shock as he said, “Let me leave a note.”
word count: 601
lyrics from 'Song To Celia' by Ben Johnson (1616)
completed September 9, 2010
Others may feel free to add chapters – who are some of the other builders? What happens while building? Have fun, but please keep it clean.