Chapter 3: Amazements

Elizabeth took this stranger's hand and looked around the room. It was nothing like anything she had ever seen. The walls were colored an alarming shade of white, a shade that was quite blinding when compared with normal walls of brown wood. Throughout her last strange conversation, the stranger had walked back and forth to a strange glowing object. It seemed to radiate pictures. Even if it is not the future, this place is surely of world's foreign she thought. The stranger led her outside, where she was met by even stranger sights. The ground was gray and smooth, and the night was pierced by tall lamps worthy of the sun's brightness. On the smooth gray ground was a maze of weirdly shaped boxes. The stranger led her to one and awkwardly told her to get in. She did.

"Um, I don't believe we are fully acquainted" said the Queen, once they were inside. "What is your name?"

"James Theodore Cutner" he responded, a little embarrassed for not divulging this information before.

"All right" she said. She was calmly contemplating the leather seat, when a startling roar alarmed her. The box was now moving backwards.

"What's happening?!" she half yelled.

"This is a transportation device" James explained. "It's called a car"

Not quite comforted by this explanation, Elizabeth stared out the window at the strange rushing sights. They moved out onto a road made out of the same gray material. It was separated by two yellow lines that surrounded a black gap line.

"This is the way to your home?" asked a somewhat nervous Queen. Travelling with relatively unknown men was probably dangerous in any time.

"Yes" James answered. "This road is called an expressway. Each side of the yellow lines contains cars moving in different directions.

"I see" said Elizabeth. "So that is how all these cars avoid killing each other"

James laughed. "That and a collection of other rules; all drivers must study from a handbook and are rigorously tested"

Fairly soon, James drove up to his apartment. To Elizabeth's eyes, it was no palace, but it was the largest building she had ever seen afforded to common people. James led her up the steps. The building was wooden, but had somehow been colored blue. James entered the building. It was dark, but when James flipped a mysterious beige switch, the room was instantly filled with a light brighter than anything Elizabeth had seen at night.

"What sorcery is this?" she asked, surprised.

"The future contains a lot of advanced technology" James replied. "We have figured out how to light our rooms with lightning"

"I must say I am amazed" Elizabeth replied. "You can catch lightning?"

"No, well maybe" James responded. "It's uh… hard to explain, but we get the energy through fire and convert it to lightning"

Elizabeth still looked confused, so James offered further explanation at a later time. "Do you wish to see the bedrooms?" he asked.

Elizabeth said yes, but was surprised to see that both beds were flat. She found the guest bed and sat in it.

"Where am I to rest my head?" she asked.

Confused, James demonstrated. "You lie on it like this" he lay flat on the bed.

"What a vulnerable position!" Elizabeth exclaimed. "One could surely be snatched by bandits in the night!"

"I assure you, such incidences are rare" James said, now a bit annoyed. "Stick the pillow on the wall if you like, but I am going to bed in the meanwhile" He switched off the light.

Elizabeth decided to try this new position of sleeping. Shivers ran down her spine, not just from the newness of a position, but also from the surprise of this new, unusual reality. The last thing she remembered before arriving in the strange building was brushing her hair in the mirror, preparing herself for yet another visit, to her ailing, possibly pregnant sister. James had said she would be queen. Her sister must have died. Well, at least she would make a good queen… Elizabeth was boredly combing her hair, when her mirror stopped reflecting her, and began to display a black concave starscape. Elizabeth had hardly any time to scream before she was sucked in, spiraled through a space somewhat like the night-sky, and spat out into her new location.

Though shaken, by recent events, Elizabeth was still very tired, and fell asleep quickly. No dreams came to her.