“What do you mean?”
“I once had everything, power, money, respect and luxury but I was lonely. Then one day, everything was taken away from me. Because of that fake!”
“I still don’t understand,”
“I was the king of the Tengu. It was a lot of work so I decided to duplicate myself. I have heard of an ancient legend of the wishing mirror of Aokigahara that can grant wishes. What I didn’t know is that my duplicate had it’s own mind. He bribed he guards and they put me in this cellar. Unfortunately, the fake is a bad ruler and is very greedy. Now everyone hates me”
I listened to every detail of the Tengu’s story. After that, I believed that this Tengu is good. I offered the Tengu my hand and introduced myself. He looked shocked but he still shook my hand. He introduced himself. His name was Itsuki. Clayton and Henry was shocked at my sudden friendliness.
“What are you doing? Who knows why he is in jail,”
“If we help you get back your throne and lean your name would you allow us get out of this place,”
Itsuki nodded. I told Clayton that this was our only chance at escaping. He thought for while and nodded. All we needed was an escape plan.
“You make it sound so easy to escape and wait, you have a friend Tengu?” Wolf asked.
“Shhh! Don’t interrupt!” I shushed.
I counted three guards outside holding spears. After a good ten or twenty minutes, we came up with a plan. Now, it is time to put our plan into action. We waited until supper, that’s when we would get our food. I looked through the small, barred window and saw the sun had set. I informed everyone to get ready. Not long after, the guard came in with four bowls of worms and some flesh. Though it is 90% bone and 10% flesh. As expected, the guards drooled at the sight of the littlest food.
“We don’t want your food. You guards can have it. We might as well die,” I said trying to sound convincing.
“Really?” all three guards drooled
We nodded. The guards rushed into the cellar leaving the keys in the keyhole. They fought for the food, pushing and pulling each other. We slowly moved towards the door, and when we were near enough, we sprinted to the door. We quickly locked the guards in the cellar and tossed the keys aside. The guards turned their bird heads and were shocked. I stuck my tounge out at them and we ran to a dark spiral staircase. We reached the end of the staircase and we found ourselves in the kitchen. It was a messy kitchen with pots and pans not washed and cockroaches crawled on every surface. There were many Tengu in the kitchen. There were Tengu that wore stained white aprons and tall chef hats. There were also some Tengu that were dressed neatly and had a moustche made of two feathers. The chef was shouting and giving orders to everyone. Then he turned around and looked at Itsuki.
“Ah! My king! What are you doing with those intruders,”
“Ummm… They are… going to be torchered by yours truly,”
Itsuki pulled us by the arm and pretended to bring us somewhere. After that, we dodged the helpers and guards. We managed to escape the palace and we ran (or flew) out of the village. Itsuki led us and Clayton realised something. There was a card with Japanese writings on it nailed to a tree. Clayton said that we were here before. Itsuki said to put our hand across the tree with the card. We were confused but we did it anyway. The second my hand passed the tree, my hand disappeared.
“It is called the invisible barrier and it keeps people from finding our village,” Itsuki explained.
“I see,” I nodded.
“Watch this,” the Tengu said.
He flew through the barrier and he said to come to the ether side. We went to the other side of the barrier but all we saw was a vulture on a branch.
“Itsuki! Where are you,”
To our surprise, the vulture giggled. He raised his wing and waved it at me.
“We Tengu transform into vultures when we pass the barrier so no one would know of our true identity,”
We marvelled at the the Tengu’s ability. Clayton snapped his fingers and all attention was on him. Itsuki flew and perched on my shoulder. His talons were digging into my skin.
“Ow. Would you mind, not poking your talons into my skin,”
He released his talons and hopped on the ground instead. Henry was curled up into a ball at the side repeating that he wants to go back home. I clenched my teeth in annoyance. Clayton said that we had to come up with a plan. We gathered in a small circle and we discussed. Henry started crying. I clenched my fist in anger.
“SHUT UP!!” We said simultaneously.
I asked Itsuki if there was a way to make the double go back into the mirror. He nodded and we devised a plan.