Chapter 1 –

She's flying high above an enormous body of water. Waves crash, making blue water turn white. There's fish, flickers of colour under the water's surface. Flying fish, flying with her. Blues and reds, oranges and yellows, purple, green, of all shades, all around her. They fly, swoop, in front, behind, below. Fins turn into wings. Horns protrude from the top of enormous graceful heads. Demonic eyes, all bizarre colours, stare at her as they fly ahead.

The water falls behind and she's above a city on two enormous peninsulas. The harbour forms a crescent, perfectly circular around another body of deep blue water. There is a palace on the tip of the two peninsulas, a bridge connecting them. Fish are back, flying around tall turrets and towers, colours flashing against glass and marble.

Beautiful…buildings and homes beautifully constructed, designed like something out of a dream. Dream…

Landing on top of the tip of a tower, she tries to examine the city, the palace. A fish blocks her vision. The bright red reminds her of blood. Scarlet and crimson and ruby, scales flashing all sorts of the colour. Fins change, the face, the body, morphing into a long reptile. Different from the reptiles before, this thing was a dragon whose body floats gracefully, all around the tower.

Small hands reached forward, about to touch its face. Demonic eyes, violet and amethyst and bright, stared at her with curiousity… Palm feels the cool scales of its nose, hand flat against its snout.

Bright sky turns dark for moment, swirling colours around it, around her. It clears, and her hand is cupping the cheek of a man. Red hair, violet eyes….she notices his ears are pointed, longer than natural, but he's…beautiful…he opens her mouth to say something, but she's being pulled away…

"Miss Elise. Miss Elise, it's time for you to wake up," a man said, waking her up.

Groggily, Elise lifted herself, her eyes clouded with sleep-sand. "Good morning, Jonathan," she said as she rubbed her eyes. The dream quickly fades from her mind as she speaks with her manservant.

"Good morning to you too, Miss Elise."

Elise yawned, stretched, and turned her attention to the man. "What's on the schedule today?"

Jonathan straightened and crossed the room to open her curtains, letting the bright morning light shine into the room. "More physio and lessons, then you will be tended to by your mother and sister to prepare for the dinner this evening." He turned to look at her. "So, let's get you ready for the day then."

He went to her dresser and selected a few things for her to examine to wear, and when she had chosen he brought them next to her on the bed. Quietly, with a small blush on her cheeks, Elise thanked him.

"I'll be back in a moment to help you," he said and left the room.

She pushed the blankets down her legs, and stared at the lifeless things that lay out before her. With a sigh, she begins to unbutton her nightgown. She realized quite early on that it was easier for her to change herself when she didn't have to wear trousers, and that included sleeping garments. If she didn't have to lift her hips, which had dead weights attached to them, then it was easier to change oneself. She didn't need or want to rely on Jonathan for something so basic as that. It was bad enough that he had to choose her underwear for her every morning along with whatever else she was going to wear.

Without thinking too much about it, she chose a dress she could slide over her head, and a cardigan. In only a short moment after Jonathan reentered, and he wheeled her wheelchair over to her. It was decorative, in an old fashioned sort of way, but more comfortable than anything most people could afford. He helped her reach the edge of the bed, careful to not let the skirt fall above her bottom, and assisted her in getting herself from bed to chair. Her arms were stronger now, and though her legs were still largely useless, sometimes she could stand on them if she had something to hold onto on either side of getting around by herself was still tricky, and embarrassing. She had to rely on him, just so she wouldn't fall to the ground by accident one morning. It was humiliating, that she couldn't even get out of bed by herself.

He wheeled her out of her room, and towards the elevator at the end of the hall. It was built in from the renovations her family did when they moved in, but no one had used it, until Elise needed it. They loaded into the lift, and went down to the main floor for her breakfast. It was already set out, and was in the customary spot where there was no chair. She ate slowly, and in quiet, and alone. At one point, she asked where her sister, Melanie, was, but Jonathan said that she was still sleeping. Elise knew that her mother and father were out already, and her brother was likely on his way home from somewhere else.

After breakfast, Jonathan retrieved her coat and purse and prepared the car for them. The black town car left the Watson estate, and Elise waited to arrive at the physiotherapist. Since she had feeling in her legs, they thought that she would be able to walk again, and were working towards that. But it was a long, difficult process, and one that she hated and yearned for at the same time. Her doctor was a conservative man, who only told her things on a need to know basis. Her family doctor often arrived near the end of her sessions; of course, it was to give her own parents updated reports. Although it was her body, they didn't deem her fit to look after herself. Or perhaps they thought she was incapable of it.

She was sweating by the time she left the physiotherapist's office, though she hadn't even managed to take a single step. Jonathan had a bottle of water ready for her as she was put back into the car, and she thanked him for it. As she stared out the window of the car, she muttered to herself, "Sometimes, I feel like you are my only ally."

"Miss Elise, I am honoured, but I am your servant; I am here to serve your every need," he said, hearing her comment.

"Right, sorry," she said. "I didn't really mean it like that anyway." Elise returned to staring out the window.

The world passed her by, and there was nothing she could do to try and catch up to it. No one wanted to get close to her, or stay near her, and at this point she couldn't get close to anyone anyway.

Her tutor treated her much the same way as everyone else did. She was unwilling to open up about herself, disallowed Elise to have any freedom, and made it near impossible to have fun during her studies. Elise could remember a time when she enjoyed going to school, but that seemed like a long time ago.

During her lessons they didn't speak about anything besides the topic at hand, and Elise supposed that her tutor was just being thorough, but she couldn't help feeling like even this woman was purposefully blocking her out. Six long hours went by, with a few breaks and lunch in between. Eventually, Jonathan came to retrieve her. "Miss Elise must prepare for the dinner party this evening," he said, going to the back of her chair.

"Thank you, Jonathan," her tutor intoned.

He nodded to the woman and wheeled Elise out of the room. "Thank you for saving me," Elise said.

"Anytime, Miss Elise." He pushed her chair down the hall to her room. "Miss Melanie is going to help you prepare for the evening. I shall take my leave and see you in a few hours time."

He closed the door behind him, and Elise was left alone, waiting until her sister arrived. She just prayed in the meantime that the dinner would not be so boring as her day, and every other day since her accident.


Author's Note:

It's short, and I'm unsatisfied, but it's my NaNoWriMo, so we can't expect too much of it anyway.

Leave a comment if you feel it's necessary, but if you are going to point out grammatical errors, please save yourself the breath; I haven't edited this at all so I know there will be issues, and I also know that I am perfectly confident that I can find the problems when and if I go back to edit it.

Thanks for reading!