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E - Everyone

The Mind and Those Who Visit

by Pomeroy

Where are you?

My tall rain boots sloshed mud up onto my pants as I struggled through the thick brush. It had been raining non stop for nearly a week, and with each step, I feared my feet would sink too low into the soaked earth, I wouldn’t be able to pull them out again.

I said, where... are... you?

A spiky weed whipped out at me. I must have freed it from its restraints around the other weeds, allowing it free reign to hit me across the cheek, the deep sting eliciting several foul words from my lips. Stupid weeds.

"Did you hear me?!" I screamed to the trees, disturbing the birds. "I said,where are you!" The only response I received was from the nature around me— the squash of the mud beneath my feet, the birds screeching at the intruder in their woods, the wind trickling through the leaves.

I was starting to believe the stories about the Visitors weren’t true. The beginnings of a fit of rage stirred up in my chest as shame and embarrassment set in ‘cause I allowed Philip to convince me to come out here. And for what? To ruin my good pants and make a fool of myself in front of Mother Nature herself.

A low growl hissed from somewhere within the trees, “Looking for me?”

“Oh shi—“ I stumbled away from the voice, quickly losing my balance and falling hard into the mud below. One of my boots flew off. Landing on the ground was… bittersweet. The heavy rain had softened everything to the point where it wasn’t exactly a painful experience. But it wasn’t entirely pleasant to be covered in sticky soil.

“Oops!” The voice trilled, a mischievous laugh almost tangible as it laced through the air and caught my ears.

I sat up and looked around desperately. “Where are you? Who are you?”

A creature dropped from above, hanging from a branch by its tail. I blinked several times in attempt to process what was in front of me. Its… fur— was it fur? — seemed to swirl and shift like moving water. Wisps of black smoke drifted off the tips of its disheveled coat. Its color was such a deep black, the only details I could make out was its outline, and the curious blinking white eyes that bore into my soul.

A Visitor.

“Don’t pretend you don’t know who I am.” It hissed out, revealing sharp edged teeth, shining white against its inky form. “You came looking for me, after all. Right,” It swung forward, grabbing my head and digging its claws into my skin, “Emery.”

My mind was spinning. I think part of me hadn't really expected to find anything. I had hoped, sure, but truly believed? And now... now I didn’t know what to feel. Fear? Panic? Pain? Fear, intrigue, fear—?

“Sweet Emery, don’t be afraid.” It cooed huskily, releasing my head, dropping from the branch and landing on my chest.

It was no bigger than my cat back home, Hastlehoff. Albeit, Hastlehoff was a large cat, definitely bigger than most I’d seen. Grandmother blamed it on steroids corporations were secretly injecting into cat food, and often complained that if she had wanted such a large animal stalking around the house, she would have gotten a dog.

I shook my head. How could my mind wander at such a time as this.

“Oh, sorry, that was me.” The Visitor said, crawling up onto my shoulder and sniffing around my ear.


“I was getting to know you a bit.” It replied, a frustratingly vague explanation. “You have a lot of thoughts about your little whiskered friend littered around in your mind.”

“You’re… reading my thoughts?” I asked, incredulously. Though, I was speaking to a wispy animal that spoke. A wispy animal that looked like Hastlehoff. Hastlehoff was grey and white, with speckles of black—

“We’re so much closer than that now, Emery. Thoughts are such a surface level of our connection.” It stuck its nose in my ear. Reflexively, I smacked it away, and it swatted back, catching my skin with its claws. “I’m everywhere in your mind now. Your memories, your thoughts, your desires— even the hidden parts of the mind you can’t access yourself.”

“Oh.” I said stupidly, suddenly at a loss for words. Visitors weren’t what I thought they would be.

“That’s obvious.”

Philip said they could read your mind, that’s how they found people in the woods. He said they were supposed to be guardians of the forest—

“That’s true.”

— and they granted requests to people who came to seek them, as long as the Visitor found them to be innocent or pure or whatever.

It shook its head, tendrils of smoke twirling through the air. “What are we, genies? Come on, get out of the mud.” It jumped off my shoulder and grabbed the branch, settling there and staring down at me with its beady eyes. Were they glowing?

I climbed up off the ground, balancing myself on my booted foot. “So,” I started as I glanced around for my other boot, “if Philip was wrong, what are you?” I spotted my boot several feet away. How had it cannonballed so far? “Do you have a name?”

It leapt off the branch to another tree, maneuvering toward my boot while avoiding the soggy ground. “Basselt.” It answered, landing on a rock by my boot and grabbing it with its clawed little hands, sitting back on its haunches. It now resembled more of a small monkey than Hastlehoff. A weird small monkey. It’s fluffy, smoky tail was long and swishing back and forth. I only just now noticed its little pointed ears sticking out from the sides of its head. “Your friend Philip was… mostly wrong. Visitors are guardians over the forest, but all that other hogwash?” It shook its head, a low rumble of laughter coming from it as it came back to me with my boot, hopping awkwardly from rock to rock.

I thanked it as I took my shoe, pulling it back onto my now muddy foot. “And what happens now?” I asked. “We’re all connected and crap, right? Do I just go home?” I gasped as a possibility came to mind, “Am I your slave now?”

Basselt cackled. It was uncontrollable, deep and honestly a little terrifying. I grew uneasy waiting for it to compose itself, it took quite some time. “Absolutely not, Emery. What use would I have of a human slave? You’re so large and bumbling. You’ve got the mobility of a rabbit tied to an anvil.”

I frowned. That was a bit harsh. It wasn’t my fault the skies decided to crack open and release a flood.

“No, I suppose now we’re more like… partners.” Basselt said. “Visitors are inherently rather curious, so I’ll feed off all of your vast human knowledge, and in return, I’ll tell you secrets of the forest.” It said. “But go home for now. Learn something delicious for me when you get back, won’t you?”

“Wait— “ I tried to stop it, but before my eyes, Basselt’s smoky figure dissipated into thin air. My shoulders slumped. I still had so many questions, and so many unresolved emotions about this whole encounter. I stood there a moment, wondering if it would come back. I heaved a sigh when it didn’t. “Philip won’t believe this when I tell him.” I said to myself, and headed back in the direction of home.

Oh, Emery, you have so much to learn… 

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67 Reviews

Points: 3377
Reviews: 67

Mon Jul 01, 2019 9:58 am
Awru wrote a review...

I really enjoyed this short story.Your vocabulary is as big as Son Doong Cave and that's a lot(Yeah i searched on the web for the biggest things in the world LOL!!Don't judge me).

eliciting several foul words from my lips
I LOVE THIS It is now my favourite phrase at certain situations*clears throat*Are you trying to elicit several foul words from my lips cause if they do come out they are gonna leave your petty ears smoking8) Moving On I am really liking the humour in this story it is so hidden,gentle and quite.Not too much not too less just RIGHT.I think the way you described the forest and the sounds and feels related to it was just perfect.I dunno reading perfect descriptions of nature is like a relaxing spa for me SO SOOTHING.Now lets talk about the plot.It seems like a super interesting plot circling around a human and a mysterious being and now their exchange of lifestyles.You got me hooked and i am curious to know about this furry adorable creature and about the whole guardian stuff.The conversation between Basselt and Emery was done to perfection(Where do you guys find such cool names).I hope you post the next chapter ASAP otherwise the curiosity might just kill me. PEACE OUT

Awru says...

Yayyyy!!!I can use BB code.Thanks to @Dossereana

User avatar
562 Reviews

Points: 14535
Reviews: 562

Mon Jul 01, 2019 4:35 am
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FlamingPhoenix wrote a review...

Hello, FlamingPhoenix here with a few things to say about this short story on this sunny day, and to help get your work out the green room for you.

Okay let's start.

So I didn't see anything wrong with what you have written here. I thought everything was done to perfection.
I thought your description was perfect, you didn't over load us with it when we first started reading, it was just enough for us to see where we are in the story, and what is happening, it also aloud me to have a good image in my head while I kept on reading the story.
I really like the way you described the mud and the rain, it kind of just put the rest of what I needed to is in my head, you didn't say anything about dark rain clouds, but that was but into my head when I read about the rain. So that is really good.
Now I just loved the spooky feeling I got when you described the forest, it was a perfect setup before you added in the animal Emery was looking for. And the way you described that was perfection. I got shivers down my spine. Just amazing.
I also love the small plot you have going here, it didn't feel rushed and like you were writing this with out a plan, everything went together really well. So great job.

I do hope there will be a part two, because I really want to no more about this strange animal, that has now got me very interested.
Well that's all from me for now, I'm glad I had the time to read and review your work, I do hope I will see more amazing things coming from you soon, And I hope you will post on YWS again soon, have a great day or night, ether one.

Your friend
Reviewing with a fiery passion.

I say, in matters of the heart, treat yo' self.
— Donna, Parks & Rec