Dusty Delirium

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Frans Van Heerden from Pexels

In Dusty Delirium, does doubt and fear stop the Princess of Camelot from doing what she needs to do?

Esther Opal, Guest Writer

The train station was dark, dusty and lurid. The tainted wooden walls and large metal pillars were longstanding, not helping the dingy vibe the place already gave. These pillars were so old and rusty that they barely held up the balcony shade of a roof; but still, they never failed.

Lyra looked up at the station, taking in the eerie impression it cast on all newcomers. She held her large brown briefcase in both hands, covered in numerous souvenir stickers from her trips. In a way, it reminded her of a faded red ball with many memorable scratches from tens of thousands of games of catch.

As the conductor yelled, “All aboard!” like a wailing banshee with nothing else to do, Lyra stepped onto the platform. But before her body passed through the tiny door of the roaring steam engine, doubt flooded her mind.

Where was she?

Why was she here?

Was this the right decision?

Well, her father–the KING–was dying, after all. Of course, it was the right decision. And how far were a mere 100 miles? She could take the train back anytime. She was, however, worried about her mother. What would she do? Would she even care at all? Lyra was deliberately defying her, after all. This was wrong. She knew that. What was she thinking?

She longingly looked at the opening of the platform, though her thoughts clawed at her mind, threatening to tear her in two. Freedom was only a hundred or so feet away. If she went, why even come back?

But before she could change her mind, the conductor poked her with his umbrella, “Make up your mind, young lady. The train is leaving now.” And the troubled princess reluctantly entered the train, falling into a dusty old chair.

The purple and yellow spring scenery came into focus as the sun rose over the rolling lime-green hills, covered in red and white dots of tulips and daisies. The dainty, silvery clouds embraced all of nature like a wonderful finishing touch. But despite all this beauty, Lyra still felt strange. It was somewhere in between rage and peace.

As the minutes slugged by, the feeling came rushing into her brain, filling her with hope, fear, excitement, calmness, and love… even… betrayal, as she felt tears sting at her eyes. But the betrayer just happened to be herself, a defiant teenage princess. She was GLAD she been disloyal to her mother. What does she know? She can’t stop the PRINCESS of Camelot from going to see her own father, now can she? Oh, yeah, she was very excited to get away from all that misery.

But through all this, the worry refused to leave her. What would her mother do to her? And would Father die? She had absolutely no way of knowing any of this, so she hoped… prayed… simply wished… that he would be able to see her father one last time.