the labyrinth

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Melbourne, Australia
November 19, 1987
Queen Victoria Market
10:32am

Belle's POV

I see Michael drop to the floor, face in hands, and my heart drops. I've never seen Michael react this way, he seems almost ridden with anxiety and fear. Naturally I stand in front of him, to protect him, of course,  but I soon realise there's not much I can do. We are in the same boat, there's no use. I need to get us out of this mess.
As the small shop begins to flow, over capacity, with a rush of energised people, I decide to make a plan. My breath shortens as I feel my throat closing with stress, I struggle to see above anyone's heads now. With all my might I begin to kick the back door, thrashing the wood against itself. The cracking sound becomes louder with each kick as I feel my face go as white as paper. Michael is now pushing with his hands against the door, clearly acknowledging my plan although he wasn't much help, but he was trying.
Seconds after, the door fell in to reveal some dark shade of... black. Although it looks terrifyingly mysterious, I dismiss the enigma as it's  our last resort. I pick up Michael, my arm under his, and rush into the room. It then hits me that I can't shut the door behind us, so I walk quickly into the room in search of yet another escape.
Our haven soon becomes another madhouse.
This dark room inhibits any control. And so do all the members of authority, absolutely useless.
I trace my hands along the dusty walls, to feel them fall into a hole. I soon discover this hole is a hollow archway leading elsewhere. I drag Michael's reluctant, tired body with me, as he steps slowly beside me.
The humming of wild fans deducts as we step further and further into this mysterious archway; I think we've lost them. They're too busy freaking out to sensibly search for a way out.
"This must lead somewhere." I mutter to myself, my voice echoing slightly.
As I walk further and further, the room begins to be fading out of its dark state and into a place of sunlight. I squint to see this path is leading back outside, and begin to pick up my pace.
"Are we out?" Michael says with no energy.
"Almost." I say sweetly, holding him up to keep him from possibly fainting. I guess the anxiety took over him today which is completely understandable, luckily my maternal instincts kicked in.

I step out into another world. The ground follows down a cobbled, asphalt coloured path, making our walks both unsteady and wobbly. The sun blasts down upon us as I feel my dark hair begin to heat up. It's so peaceful. The Kookaburra's bless the air with heavenly chirps making the atmosphere calm and idealistic. There doesn't seem to be anybody around, which is highly contrasting to the previously condensed situation. The pathway goes on so far I must squint to see advanced scenery, walls up either side of the slim yet stunning path.
"Wh-where are we?" Michael stutters as he begins to stand with his own two legs again.
"I have no idea. Some sort of..." I admire the views.
"Heaven?" Michael squints up at the sun. I giggle at his humour as a smile and some colour return to his face.
The beautiful sound of an accordion blankets us as I scan the surroundings to try and find the source of the instrument. Soon do I see a small woman sat leant against the wall. Her blonde hair is tied neatly up into a scraped back bun, a tartan skirt hanging from her hips. She pulsates the accordion completely clueless to Michael and I stood in front of her.
"Excuse me?" I raise my voice with guilt for ruining her unique music.
"Hi there!" She belts which for some reason took me by surprise.
"Sorry but, can you tell us where we are exactly?" I block out the sun with my hand, looking down at her.
"Well you're only on the best street in Melbourne! Peel street, of course!" She grins. I start to feel like I've been sucked into Alice in Wonderland as I blink repeatedly trying to comprehend this whole situation.
"But we were just in the Queen Victoria Market?" I frown.
"Ah, yes! You must of came out through the Shoe Delights store, right?" She continues.
"Uh - I guess, yeah. But how do we get back to the Main Street?" I push.
"I don't know why you'd want to go there but... just follow this path and make a left and you'll reach the big lay-by. The ugly, man-made lay-by..." she mutters, clearly passionate about this subject.
"Oh, thank you." I nod and begin to step away as the accordion starts up again. "Come on Michael." I pull his arm desperately trying to get out of this unusual turn of a day. But I see Michael is mesmerised by this lady and her musical ability. "Babe, we don't have time for this. What if the fans find the archway?"
"It - it's amazing. How she..." He struggles for words as my eyes flick between him and the lady in disbelief. Is he kidding?
"Michael, come on." I tug his arm get again.
"So soon?" He frowns at me. I return a face as if to say 'Are you kidding me right now?', which makes him raise his arms in surrender and traipse behind me, his ears still clearly drawn to her music.
"She was amazing." Michael gushes a few steps behind me as I can almost see the main road from out of this labyrinth of a world.
"Yeah, yeah." I huff impatiently before stepping out onto the stone sidewalk of the main road, releasing a sigh of relief. "Here! We made it!" I throw my hands up with joy.
I turn to see Michael stood, his back to me as he's looking still at the lady. "Michael." I say sternly.
"What?" He crosses his arms over his body with sass.
"Forget her, please." I beg.
"Why? You're jealous, huh?" He smirks with a shrug.
"Nope. I could play the accordion if I wanted." I reassure him.
"Mhm, I'm sure." He giggles, his arm around my shoulders.

Soon enough, Michael and I are perched in the back on the limo, Ben and Simon in the front as the somehow escaped the self-caused mayhem. The car starts up as we swerve out of the lay-by. Thank God.
Fans run behind the limo as we begin to zoom down the main road.
"Stay safe." Michael says quietly while watching the fans running beside the speeding cars.
"They'll be okay, baby." I gently put my hand on his thigh. I love how much he cares for his fans, it's so sweet.
"Tour tomorrow, Mike. And Belle. You ready?" Simon chirps happily, still probably clueless of the absolute mess he and Ben had caused.
"I'm so ready. Sydney here we come." Michael's face lights up when tour is brought up, making me just want to hug him.
"Me too, I can't wait to get back into it all. And see Hannah." I chuckle at the end.
"Oh God." Michael cackles.

We quickly rush down the motorway after a busy day, going back to the hotel to pack up ready for our flight at 3:35 in the morning. This is going to be busy, but it feels like home.

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