I open my eyes and all I see is darkness. It wouldn't matter if my eyes were closed or not, I'd see the same exact thing. My hand comes in contact with soft carpet when I try to push myself up and I run my fingers along it. Shakily standing up, I keep my hand on my head, vertigo overtaking me almost causing me to faint. Walking forward with my arms outstretched, I look for a wall or anything. My hand comes into contact with a solid drywall and I feel along, walking around the room till I find a solid wooden door.
Opening the door slowly, I step outside. Looking around in amazement, I watch as people who all seem to be at most 18 and the youngest 1. They're just walking, talking, laughing, along with animals trailing behind or next to them. My bare feet come into contact with the bright green grass, the blue sky clearer than crystal. I wiggle my toes and the grass tickles my skin. The door behind me shuts with a soft 'click' and I turn around quickly, only to come face to face not with a door, but a large mountain lion.
I am paralyzed with fear but its eyes bore into mine. The big brown eyes hold a soft intelligence and I immediately become at peace. Not wanting to break eye contact, I reach a handout and pet its soft muzzle. She nuzzles her face into my palm like a kitten and I smile at her innocence, petting her softly and slowly. Moving around next to her, I give her a name. Concolor. She purrs softly when I forgot to keep brushing her soft fur, so I begin walking one way, Concolor following right beside me with my hand resting on her tan fur.
Watching the other people, I realize each of them has different types of animals with them. I see some butterflies, a hummingbird, a tiger, a few cats, a couple different birds. Most of these people’s animals are cat or dog-like. Shaking my head, I take in everything around me in wonder. Now to figure out who I am and where I am...and why.
Approaching two people who seems a bit older than me, I speak up to them and interrupt their conversation with their friend. I'm afraid they'll be typical teenage jerks but they seem very friendly.
"Excuse me," I speak up and look at both of their faces, noting their animals, the older male has a baby black bear and the female has a deer. "I've got a few questions to ask."
The two exchange a look and the male speaks up. His blue eyes latch to my mountain lion before looking to me. "We can't remember anything except our names and ages. I'm Bennett, and my sister here is Jace."
Stress fills me with worry as these people don't seem to have any answers either. "How old are you two?" I ask them before sitting down on the grass at their feet, anxiety causing me to become lightheaded. "I'm only 13..."
Jace speaks up for the two of them now, "I'm 17 and my brother is 18. Do you remember your parents or your life?" I shake my head no and they both sigh, whether of relief or stress I can't tell. Suddenly, a loud buzzing sounds throughout the clearing causing everyone to stop in their activities and be quiet. We all look to each other, our animals, and the sky. A face appears in the sky, such as a hologram would, of a very pale woman in her thirties.
"Hello, people of Mesia. I am Celeste, and I will explain everything momentarily. Will all of you, including your animals, approach the podium to the far east of the clearing? You will find me there." Her face disintegrates into clouds and it is quiet and still. Wind doesn't blow, animals don't chatter and none of the other people talk. We all turn to the East and sure enough, spot a large stadium-type area.
Grouping up, everyone begins silently walking to the podium which feels like it only takes seconds. It honestly feels like we're walking to our deaths. The majority of people sit down in the grass while the rest opt to stand on guard. It appears I am not the only one with very little memory of the time before this place.