Looks like this week marks the end of Dallas in Wonderland II. I will be starting something new next week so I can finish Dallas up and send it to my publisher. What my new story will be is a mystery to me lol But what of Dallas? Last seen, he had been discovered by his nephew Oz, and then there was another country heard from. Who could it be? Find out in this week's chapter. And don't forget to visit the other Briefers and see what's up with them!
Dallas in Wonderland II: Chapter Twenty-One
Oh jeez, now what?
A startled Dallas turned to find himself looking up at a familiar dappled charger and its white armored rider. He breathed a sigh of relief as he recognized Sir Metaphor and Lady Simile. Thank goodness it was nothing worse. Rather, they were a sight for sore eyes.
“Good evening to you, sir!” The knight opened his visor and greeted him. He wrinkled his nose when he talked and his moustache fluttered. “And to you, young sir,” he added for Oz’s benefit.
“How do you do, sir,” Dallas’ polite nephew responded, adding, “My name’s Oz, you don’t have to call me sir.” He jumped to his feet with the vigor of youth. “May I touch your horse, please?”
“Why don’t we ask her?” The knight harrumphed deeply. “Milady, this young man would like to stroke you. Is that allowed?”
Lady Simile whinnied what Dallas took to be her consent. “She says you may,” Sir Metaphor gallantly interpreted. As Oz gently patted the horse’s long neck, the knight turned his attention back to Dallas.
“Have you found that for which you sought?”
“Yes... and no.” Dallas hesitated. That was a more difficult question than it first appeared to be.
“Ah.” He laid a long bony finger alongside his nose. “Sometimes what you want is not what you think it is.”
Isn’t that the truth?
But the question was, what did Dallas want? Or was that who?
He shook his head in an attempt to clear it.
“You’re out quite late.” He changed the subject with little finesse.
“Day or night. It matters not to the lady and myself. Although, come to think of it, one might ask the same of you?” White brows arched, as the knight gave Dallas a penetrating look. Dallas had no desire to explain having lost time, not to mention having lost his friend.
Time. Did time work the same way in Wonderland as it did in the other world? Dallas had no idea. Was it late back home, and if so... “Where is Paris?” he asked Oz. “And where does she think you are?”
“She went out. She said she had a date. Some new guy” Oz shrugged. “She told me to go to bed when it’s time and she’d see me in the morning.”
Of all the irresponsible people... And they called him crazy? Dallas sighed.
“Do you want to come back to my house, Uncle Dallas? We can have dinner together or something.”
Leave Wonderland? Now? As tempting as the idea sounded, he couldn’t do that. Campbell was here, somewhere. And Dallas had to find him. Then he’d be glad to leave this place, and everyone in it, far behind.
The wind began to pick up. Leaves skittered across the ground like nervous spiders. From far off a mournful howl could be heard, an inconsolable wail that was joined by others, forming a chorus of sorrow, before dying away. Dallas inadvertently shivered.
He needed to do some serious thinking. More than that, he needed to actually stop living in the past, and start planning a future. For too long now, he’d just been existing. Living day to day, but not really living. A dead-end job. A fucked-up relationship, if you could even call it that, with his psychiatrist. A past that refused to stay in the past.
But even so, there were two bright spots in his life, and one of them was sitting right there. His nephew, Oz. He loved Oz as much as though he were his own child. Dallas couldn’t love him anymore. And he was furious to think went out and left him to his own devices. He might be mature beyond his years and all, but he was still a nine-year-old kid.
And the other bright spot... was Campbell.
Just thinking about Campbell both calmed him and excited him. Made his heart beat faster. He called Campbell’s handsome face to mind, thought about his beautiful smile, his gentle touch, and his generous soul.
Just when had he fallen in love with Campbell Cain?
Dallas didn’t know. He’d been poisoned by his obsession for Dr. Samuel Levi. An obsession that had to end. Now.
This was it. He was done. He was going to find Campbell, and he was going to hold on to Oz. He deserved a stable, loving environment, one his sister obviously wasn’t capable of giving him. Dallas wanted to give him that stable home, that love. They could do it, the three of him. He had no doubt Campbell would want to be a part of this new family he was going to form. He could feel it in his heart.
“Traveling by night, through Wonderland...” The knight spoke up, his eyes fixed on Dallas.
“But you do it?” Dallas was sure there was something the older man wasn’t saying.
“There is no one who wishes me harm.”
Too true. Too fucking true.
He could take a chance and trust his ability to navigate by the light of the moon. But that wouldn’t be the wise thing to do, and Dallas wanted to make nothing but right decisions from now on. So, much as it pained him to wait, he knew he would have a better chance if he waited until morning. Plus, Oz needed his sleep.
“Oz, how about you stay with me tonight?” he suggested. No need to go into details. There was time enough later, once he found and rescued Campbell. “How does that sound?”
Oz looked up from the horse, leaning his cheek lightly against her flank, a contented smile on his face. “I’d love that, Uncle Dallas. Are we going to camp out?”
Apparently so, even if they were rather unequipped. But help came from an unexpected source.
“I have just the thing!” The knight reached into one of his steed’s saddlebags and produced two blankets, which he handed to Dallas. Dallas gave him a grateful smile.
Sleep tonight, while he formulated a plan of action. Tomorrow—Campbell.
to be continued
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Avery **FLASH VIRGIN HERE!***