Alice Rinner was always an unusual girl. She often made up stories in her head and took joy in telling them to her cat, Dinah. The large, orange fluff ball had been her sole companion since she was seven years old. One day this loveable kitten trotted up to her as she was lying in the garden during one of her Sunday naps, the fluff ball refused to leave her side, causing Alice to beg her parents to allow Alice to keep her.
Dinah had grown much since then, seeing that it had been nearly twelve years ago.
"… then the mermaid got her wish, her fin split into two and the scales fell away revealing two human legs." Alice laid the book down on the grass. "Well that doesn't make much sense. How would her fin work properly if there were legs under it! It wouldn't be able to bend the way it needed for her to swim. That's just silly." Dinah meowed, for a cat she was always good at responding at appropriate times. "Plus, why on earth would she want to come up here? If I could swim in the ocean forever, never needing to come up for air I…" She sat up, tossing Dinah, who had been lying on her stomach, to the ground. "How do mermaids breathe underwater?" She stared off into the trees, concentrating.
Dinah perked her head up. She stared off into the bushes just to the left of them. Her ears went back as she let out a loud hiss. Alice, having never heard her cat make that noise before, was startled. She rolled onto her knees and crouched down to her cat's level, trying to see what got her so riled up.
"Oh, it's just a rabbit!" Alice chided. She flopped back onto her rear. Dinah wasn't satisfied though, and took off chasing the poor thing. "Dinah!" Alice pushed herself up, quickly brushing her denim shorts off and straightening her tank top. "Dinah!" She yelled again. Giving in, Alice began to chase after her cat.
They were lying in Central Park, Alice's apartment being only a block away. Alice tried dodging all the joggers and couples out on their usual walks. Having to leave the trail, stumbling over several roots and small bushes, she finally found Dinah. Her cat cornered the terrified rabbit against the base of a large tree. Looking at it, the tree seemed much too large to be in Central Park.
"Dinah, leave the poor rabbit alone. You're… scaring… him?" As Alice crouched to pick up her cat she realized scared was the last word she'd use to describe the rabbit. His fur was sleek and white allover except for a yellow stripe along his side. Looking closer, Alice realized the stripe was actually a golden chain. The rabbit wasn't twitching as most do, nor was it cowering away from the still spitting Dinah. Alice crept closer to the rabbit, it was staring intently at her. If it had a mouth she swore it would have smirked.
"Dinah, hush." She tried petting her cat to calm it, but the closer Alice got to the rabbit the more Dinah thrashed in her arms. "What?" Alice could have sworn the rabbit winked at her just then. He took a large hop to the side, still staring at her. Intrigued, Alice followed the rabbit around the tree, Dinah's actions becoming more frantic. Just as Alice was about to reach the back of the tree, Dinah broke free and tackled the rabbit, biting his neck as they both toppled over the large root in front of Alice.
She quickly jumped over the root to pull Dinah away, but she found a large hatch was behind it, with a ladder leading down. The two animals had plunged down the hole, and she could hear them fighting below. Looking down, Alice couldn't see the bottom, and imagined that the echo must be enhancing the sounds, for two little creatures couldn't possibly be making that much noise.
Grumbling to herself, Alice climbed down the ladder, wishing there was more light in the tunnel. The sounds of fighting got louder, and she could hear grunts. What is going on?
Suddenly a loud gunshot sounded, causing Alice to jump and accidently let go of the rope. Thankfully, she was only a few rungs from the bottom. She stood up and followed the sounds, realizing they were coming from around a corner, where there was a little light shining. The closer she got, the more it sounded like two humans fighting, but that wasn't possible.
Apparently, it was. Alice froze as she watched a girl with bright red hair deck a man in the face. She was short and skinny, with think hair that seemed untamable. Her eyes were a deep green, the exact shade Dinah's had been. The man she punched quickly jumped off the ground; he was incredibly pale, with the brightest blonde for hair that was tied back into a ponytail, which was coming loose, most likely from the fight. His eyes were a deep grey, nearly silver, and his growled, actually growled, at the girl.
"Ches, you better watch yourself!"
"You better be watching yourself, you great oaf! Wait until Jem finds you, ya bastard!" The girl, Ches, made a sound that was too close to a hiss for Alice's liking. The man stood up and fixed his pinstriped vest. It was shame he was covered in dirt, for he was very well dressed, wearing a pinstriped suit, with a golden chain dangling from inside his jacket pocket. He pulled out a pocket watch and cringed as he looked at it.
"We'll have to postpone this match, Kitty. I can't be late." He winked over at Alice before snapping and vanishing into thin air. Alice's jaw was dropped. Ches sighed and walked toward her.
"I guess I can't just ask you to forget what you've seen here and go back upstairs with me?" Alice turned to the woman. She was wearing an odd assortment of clothes: a torn up shirt with white shorts and way too many belts. She shoes were heeled boots that couldn't be easy to walk in, and there was a choker around her neck that looked exactly the collar Alice gave Dinah.
"Who are you?"
"You don't recognize me? I'm hurt, Alice! It's me, Dinah." The girl winked at Alice, a huge grin on her face."
"No." Alice answered simply. Ches, not Dinah, shrugged her shoulders and scratched the back of her head.
"Yeah, I wouldn't believe me either." She sighed. "Alice, I really need ya to pretend none of this happened.
"I've got to be dreaming." Alice said after thinking for a bit.
"No! No, no, no, no! You can't think that! Stop!" But even as she spoke, they could hear the sound of the hatch above them slamming shut. "No! Jem is going to kill me! And Gideon! Oh man, oh man." Ches grabbed her hair and pulled at it.
"What's the matter?" Alice asked, concerned as the girl was clearly very upset. "This is just a dream, nothing to fuss over." Ches sighed and looked up at Alice.
"I'm no good at this. I told them I wasn't right for the job." She continued grumbling to herself for a few seconds. "Aha!" She turned back to Alice, who had been patiently waiting for the girl to calm down. Ches winked and just as suddenly as the man had vanished, she turned into a cat. Alice's eyes grew wide.
"Dinah!" She bent down and picked the cat up. "What an odd dream." She said as she examined the cat. Dinah hissed at her before changing back into Ches.
"That's not what you're supposed to say!" Alice quickly released the girls waist and backed up.
"I'm sorry?" Ches sighed.
"No, it's not your fault." She placed her hands on her hips and examined Alice. "Well so long as you think it's a dream there's not much I can do. Come on!" She turned and began walking towards one of the dark tunnels.
"Dinah, where are you going?" Alice asked, suddenly afraid she'd be left alone.
"Not me, us!" Ches cried. "You need to meet Gideon, he can explain better than I can." Alice quickly hurried after the girl.
"I can come with you?" Ches raised her eyebrow.
"Oh, right. No friends." She snapped her fingers. "We haven't really been introduced. I'm Ches, not Dinah anymore. I mean really, what kind of name is that?" She scrunched her face up. Alice flushed.
"I'm Alice Rinner. Oh! But I suppose as you're Dinah you already knew that. Sorry." Dinah waved her apology away.
"Hey it's cool! It's kinda creepy that I know everything about you, so you can just pretend I don't and we'll start off as new friends now."
"Friends? But I hardly know you!"
"So? We're about to start off on an exciting adventure! Obviously we'll become friends eventually so why not just skip all the boring drama and say we are now." Alice's eyebrows furrowed.
"I don't understand."
"Don't expect you to! Half of what I say never makes sense!" Ches grinned again and started walking. Alice quickly followed after her.
"Where are we going?"
"To the Clock Tower. Gideon can talk sense into anyone. Plus you might get to see Jem!" She wiggled her eyebrows at Alice.
"Who is Jem? And who was that man, the one you were fighting earlier?"
"William Hareden." Ches spit the name like it was poison on her tongue. "That bastard was the 'cute' white rabbit you so stupidly followed here."
"He was a rabbit?" Alice asked with a laugh. "You honestly expect me to believe that? This dream is just getting stranger!"
"Hey, it's your dream." Ches rolled her eyes. "Anyway, Jem is this bastard who is going to save the world one day."
"Is everyone a bastard to you?" Alice scolded.
"Pretty much." Ches winked, something she seemed to do more often than blinking, Alice thought.
"Save the world? From what." Ches flinched like she'd been slapped.
"Ehhh, heh, that's not important right now." Alice opened her mouth, she had that gleam Ches knew meant she was ready to argue until the cows came home. And as there were no cows in the underground world, Ches desperately tried to cut her off. "Mermaids have gills!"
"I… what?" Alice stopped in her tracks for a moment. "You know that does make sense. But how would they come to the surface ever?"
"They've got a mouth too. They just switch between the two."
"More like weird." Ches grumbled, grateful she'd changed the subject in time. Alice continued her ponderings on mermaids for the next several minutes. Ches, used to her ramblings, easily listened as she led them out of the tunnels.
"How do you know you're way out of here? It's a complete maze to me!"
"I don't." Ches quickly realized this was the wrong answer as Alice froze.
"We're lost! In these tunnels! What are we going to do!" She screeched. Ches cringed and covered her ears.
"We ain't lost!" She shouted over Alice's panicking.
"But you said…"
"I said I don't know the way out of here. Big difference."
"No it isn't, it's the same thing." Alice argued.
"I know exactly where I am, and I know exactly where I need to go. I even know that it will only take us another three minutes of walking to get there."
"So you do know how to get out of here?" Ches shook her head.
"Not a clue."
"But that doesn't make any sense at all!"
"Exactly." Ches winked. Alice pulled her long blonde hair over her shoulder and began to twirl it through her fingers; Ches recognized it was Alice's 'thinking habit'. Eventually, when she had reasoned things out in her mind, she would stop. Ches smirked, knowing Alice's hair was likely to fall out before she got it if she didn't stop dreaming.
Exactly three minutes later, Ches pushed a path through a large bush, making sure Alice followed closely behind. As they stepped out into the sunlight Alice took in a deep breath.
The air around felt different, as if just from the air she could tell she was in a new world. Alice had been sure the tunnels had led them deeper into the earth, but she could clearly see the sky above them. Perfectly shaped clouds floated above her and she could feel the breeze brushing her hair gently across her face. There were flowers, ranging from normal sized to ones larger than Alice lining the path before them. In the distance to the right Alice could make out a river, smoothly flowing away from them. To her right was a forest, the trees so dense, even at the edge, that she could hardly see through them. There were little pricks of light, flickering in and out of view between the trees. She had the nearly irresistible urge to follow them. But right in front of her, looming far above the trees of the forest (which were quite large, themselves) was a massive clock tower.
The architecture seemed to come right out of ancient times itself. The spires were huge and arches were all over the place. Ivy was growing up a majority of the walls, but it only seemed to add to the grandeur of the building. In the center of the spires, rising far above them all, was a four sided clock, much like Big Ben. Only the hands were spinning wildly, and in opposite directions. Ches watched as Alice's jaw dropped, taking in all of her surroundings. Even if she wasn't supposed to be here, Ches was glad she could give this to her longtime friend.
"Alice…" The blonde looked at her, her eyes glittering with excitement and wonder. "Welcome to Wonderland."
Whoo! That was fun! So this idea randomly popped into my head and I couldn't get rid of it. It's very obviously Alice in Wonderland inspired. The original is personally my favorite book ever, and I adore most adaptions of it. The manga Alice in Hearts (based on a game) was definitely a huge inspiration, as was the new Disney movie (yay for Johnny Depp!). Also, I read a story on here that showed me just how far I can get from the original story yet still have it be amazing. Everyone should go check out Penelope P's The Rabbit Hole. It's a fantastic story and it's completed ;)
Let me know what you think! Love it? Hate it? Suggestions? Random comments? I love them all! Constructive criticism is grand, as this is my first non-fan fiction story I've shared with others!
Love to you all!