Tuesday, July 8, 2014

The Story of Princess Orangemountain

Long, long ago, before written history, there was an island just East of what today is called Jamaa. It was home to a small, struggling village of animals. Truth be told, it wasn't always hanging on a thread. It was once a golden, thriving civilization, but war and drought had stripped it of it's glory, it's unity, and even it's name.

The village was centered in the middle of a massive crater, surrounded by sheer rock on all sides. This is partially what brought it down to it's knees. Explorers from far away islands had discovered a lush paradise and expected it to last for millennia, but they had established a colony and drunk the island down to the very last drop long before the predicted time. 

And because of the mountains, no one could escape.

This is the story of a small pup who with her wide-eyed hope gave everyone a push to freedom, and let the name Princess Orangemountain be known to all even to this day.


–––

It was a hot, dry day in the village. It always was hot and dry, rarely humid. Humid meant water was by somewhere, and was welcomed, even if it was only a putrid puddle of moisture. Unlike the bright and excited days in Jamaa, not even a bird song could be heard. 

But still, much to everyone's dismay, the animal children; the pups, the kittens, the owlets, all together played as if the sun was bright in the sky and the sky a blazing blue, as if promises of happiness hung as thick in the air as the choking dust that kicked up any time a harsh wind blew by.
The animal children were born into this life, and knew different reasons to celebrate. They knew not of the bright sun in the sky nor the blazing blue surrounding it. Only the fleeting blue of butterflies that made it to the highest point of the crater walls, escaping to the other land of freedom and nectar.

And as much as the older animals didn't like it, they all tried to climb the crater walls.

"It's like a fish trying to flop out of a barrel! It will never work," was a common excuse for the animal children to stop.

Scolding was either met by an exasperated whine or for the more upset pups and kittens, a long explanation about how sitting and sulking would never work, and that no matter how small the help, progress would be made with each small avalanche that their scrabbling paws and talons did in hopes of weakening the surface.

But eventually, no matter how strong-opinioned any animal child was, they would all eventually silence themselves and their behavior with a quick cuff to the ear. They all grew up that day, in the adults eyes.

Unless their name was Flora, however.

Flora was named after something that existed long before she was born, long before the only color loved was the glimmer of a small trout in a pond. She didn't care. She didn't care that hope was supposedly lost, she didn't care that all her parents did was sleep and eat whatever they could all day. She didn't care if her share of fish was stolen in a fit of hunger. Every day, she climbed that mountain until she fell back on her paws to the dusty ground below. And even when she was tired beyond repair, she climbed again. Even when the moon was at the height of the sky, she climbed until she fell asleep at the foot of the crater walls. 

It even reached the point where no one cared to scold Flora anymore. No one even cared to look at her as she accomplished the impossible, right in plain sight. 

And not even Flora cared to notice that she hadn't eaten at all in three weeks.

It was another hot day, and everyone could tell something was off, but in their bout of blindness from the dusty wind, they never could point out what.

The truth was, Flora wasn't seen climbing the wall today. She was lying at the base of the crater walls. It had taken three weeks and a day to fully register her hunger. She couldn't climb the wall.

And it was at this moment that her strong hope diminished, twinkling out of her eyes as quickly and quietly as closing a book.

But as she cried out in anguish, a dash of color passed through the top to the bottom of her vision.

A dash of... orange.

She looked down below, and saw something her people hadn't seen for years.

A fruit.

An orange.

It was like a candle in the darkness, glowing as strong as her hope. It was bright enough to force the light back into her eyes and her heart, and even though she knew not what it was she pushed away the rough skin to reveal a juicy, sweet pulp that tasted so good tears started forming in her eyes.
Even though she only ate a small piece, enough energy returned quickly enough to push her legs to move toward where her parents slept against a mangled bush. She prodded them awake, but only for a short while enough to acknowledge her presence, but as quickly as the orange fell from the mountain they went back to sleep.

Flora was too excited to care. She left the orange right by them, and went back to the wall of the crater.

––

That night, it seemed everyone in the village had a single dream. When morning arose and Flora was missing, everyone gathered around her climbing spot silently. It was her father who was jarred awake by nothing, and though the strength eaten in fish was little, he raced as fast as lighting to her spot.

He called out "Princess Orangemountain! Please come back to us!"

And like it rained pure happiness, bright orange cascaded down from the mountain. It was an avalanche. Everyone didn't know exactly what it was, but instantaneously light flashed into their dusty clouded eyes and everyone ate of the oranges until they felt so strong they raced back and forth through the village in laps.

But even in everyone's joy, Flora was still missing.

Flora's father padded back to the thicket where her mother lay, and though it was far away from where the oranges fell, there was one single orange lying next to her.

"Where's Flora?" He asked.

But Flora's mother just smiled.

Everyone knew where she was.

––

That night, Flora's father went out to the crater ledge, now picked clean of fruit. He did nothing but stare up at the top of the cliff.

"Where are you, Flora?" 

Silence.

"Where are you, Princess Orangemountain?" he whispered.

And just then, the silhouette of a small wolf shone down and he gasped.

And almost jokingly, the silhouette asked, "Where are you, Father?"

––

One by one, as if the ocean of oranges had set off an alarm, every single animal and animal child climbed up the crater as easy as if it had been a flight of stairs.

And I guess you know what kind of paradise awaited them.

The End

4 comments:

  1. That. That should be published. That was AWESOME. HOLY COW HOW IN THE WORLD DID YOU THINK THAT UP?? That was endless awesomeness! Someone could make that into an animation or a comic book! I wish I could write like thiiiiiiis! All my stories are so weird and I never like them. Although this concept is different from anything I've heard! Very original!
    ~113457

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    1. Oh and I also have to agree with you! This story is very original and has a message to it too! I'm predicting that the message is to never give up. I, too write weird stories that sometimes don't make sense. And i also agree with jhana, this story is very well written.

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  2. This story is amazing. Well written, it gathers up enough excitement to last. Good job!
    -jhana

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  3. This story is fantastic! This story is one of the best ones you ever wrote! I love it!

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