Rory looked up at the tree, it was like looking up a mountain. His small stature made him look like a flea to the tree. He began to climb, quite a few little cracks and holes went up the tree. He carried on for a good hour until he was exhausted. How could he climb this tree? It might as well have been the largest mountain in the world.
He got to a ledge after following the lit path. Rory sat and rested, not for long as he heard rumblings from below. He peered down the sheer drop and saw little heads coming towards him. Little heads with two thin lines coming out.
The heads grew larger as they approached Rory.
Rory scrambled backward and hurt his back. The rumble got louder, almost deafening. Two thin lines slowly crept over the ledge.
Two little eyes peeked up from the ledge, ants. These creatures seemed to communicate telepathically with Rory.
“Friend of Margyle, we here to help” the ant said telepathically, it turned it’s head sideways as if confused “I not know?”
The ant started to poke Rory with one of its ligaments, it’s mouth clacking excitedly. “Bring to queen”
Rory was overwhelmed with fear, this ant looked absolutely monstrous. Then he remembered what Margyle told him, he was meant to be invisible. He looked at the creature and tried to communicate.
“NO QUEEN! ME GO UP TREE. MARGYLE!” Rory pointed upwards at the gold illuminated path. The ant followed his finger upwards. It shrugged.
Rory went on. “MARGYLE MAKE ME INVISIBLE. HOW YOU SEE ME?”
He was met with laughter, the ant was stomping on the ground guffawing. There were other ants poking their heads up from ledge.
The ant suddenly stopped and replied.
“YOU INVISIBLE YES. ME ALIVE CAN SEE.” It’s leg rose up as in imitation of his “DEAD CANNOT SEE.”
Rory looked dismayed, dead things up there in that tree. What had he gotten himself into? His parents voices echoed in his mind, warnings.
He looked up to the ant and firmly said “NO QUEEN. UP!” The ant started stomping and squeaking fast as if trying to fight some primal urge. It rushed to Rory, panicked and in the moment Rory put up his hands in defence.
The ant gently grabbed Rory with its mandibles. The ant started to climb, as it went up, Rory could see down behind the ants thorax millions of ants climbing. The weirdest feeling that an ant could carry a human being.
The ant followed the golden path around the tree roots and made steady progress. The powerful legs of the ants made the tree easy to climb.
They reached a massive ledge to which the golden path stopped. The ant left Rory on the ground and went to turn away. “STOP!” Rory screamed telepathically. The ant slowly turned it’s head, the two little eyes showed no emotion.
“WHATS YOUR NAME?” He asked the ant. Laughter from the ant.
“ME HAVE NO NAME, ME NO NEED” With that the ant crawled over the ledge and descended down the tree root.
“THANK YOU ANT” Rory replied.
Rory decided to make a little camp here on the ledge, he could see Margyles little cove from here. Not so far off but to Rory it was a huge distance.
As Rory relaxed and thought of what to do next he heard scraping metal. It was coming from inside a hole just west of the ledge. Scraping of metal against a wall, it was getting closer and closer.
There was a giant eye looking from that hole, it looked left and right as if searching something. The scraping carried on and the eye left the hole.
“His name is Magnus” came a familiar voice “Magnus Barefoot, a trapped viking. His spirit lurks in the tree, beware.”
Rory looked over to see across the water it was Margyle.
Rory looked back to the hole and the eye was back. Scraping of metal. Rory decided to move but the eye stayed in place searching frantically. The path was wide and Rory was able to move quite stealthily.
He sneaked around until he was at the back wall, he was able to reach the eye. He looked around on the ground for something. All he could see was dust, he remembered he had his torch. An idea formed in his mind, he took the torch out. He stepped in front of the eye and turned the torch on. Rory aimed at the eye with the light but it did nothing.
He didn’t know what else to do, this eye was horrible and the metal scraping sent shivers down his spine. He threw the torch down harshly, the eye went straight to the noise. Rory heard a foreign language being uttered and mumbled. He couldn’t quite make it out.
He made a mistake, the eye was motivated to find something and went back to frantic searching. Rory picked up the torch and stabbed the eye with all his heart.
As he did loud bellowing pain erupted from Magnus. Howling in a strange dialect. The eye was gone but the metal ceased scraping, it was now chopping.
Rory had to find somewhere . And fast.