“When he was alone outside and had nothing to do, Charles often thought about the strange coincidence that revolved around his birthday.”
When he was alone outside and had nothing to do, Charles often thought about the strange coincidence that revolved around his birthday. He was born at the same time as the opening of an obscure musical called “Chivalry.” He liked to acknowledge this, but he made sure the other boys didn’t see the unicorn poster he had in his desk. He didn’t want to be called “Uniboy” or something.
The unicorn nodded its head in agreement.
Yes, there was a unicorn standing in front of him in all its unicorn-y glory. He whinnied (it looked like a “he”) and motioned for Charles to get on.
“No. I can’t,” said Charles. “You’re not real, so I can’t.”
The unicorn made the same motion.
“Fine,” sighed Charles, and swung himself onto the hallucination (it was not.) The unicorn seemed to smile, then looked surprised.
“What now?” said Charles.
Suddenly, the unicorn twitched intensely and whinnied as a pair of wings sprung from his back. The poor thing seemed to be having an identity crisis of some kind.
“Well. This will be fun,” said Charles. “Wanna fly or…?” he trailed off.
He felt at ease, strangely. The unicorn turned around and nodded.
That peace was not to last, for the unicorn, unaccustomed to his wings, accidentally flew at the sun. They almost were done for, when what appeared to be a bolt of lightning hit Charles’ new friend and mount. He whinnied, and they fell through some sort of shield. Charles was no longer flying on a unicorn. Instead, he was almost burned alive.
He couldn’t see a thing, then a wave of cold washed onto him. He sat up and stared into the face of a young man carrying a staff of some kind.
“You almost missed the shields completely,” the young man said.
“Okay…” said Charles.
“That’s why I had to do that,” said the stranger, and gestured with his staff.
In that direction, a voice said, “What a day… what a…”
Charles turned to look and saw another man, also young, in clothes and with hair the same color as the unicorn’s coat.
“Is that you?” said a shocked Charles.
“Yes, it is,” said the man with the unicorn hair. “It was fine and all, you know… I thought you would like me that way.”
“Enough with this!” snapped the wizard. He was looking at a screen-like device. “That cold spell I casted will end soon!”
“Teleportation?” said the former unicorn.
“They need him!” shrieked the wizard. “Go!”
And in a flash of light, they went. The wizard did not come, but the used-to-be-unicorn did.
“Um…” said Charles. “Where are we? Who are you?”
“I am merely a messenger who knows that you like unicorns. This is the center of a star, or the sun if you’d like.”
“Why are we here?”
“You are supposed to be here. We needed a human, so we made a way to choose one.”
“Chivalry was a device to select you.”
“So was there, like, a prophecy or something?”
“No. Just, only a human can cross the Bridge and save us all.”
The “Bridge” turned out to be a bridge with a switch on the side farthest from Charles and his companion. This switch would shut off the power that was on the verge of destroying the sun, but why only a human could have the determination and drive to cross the bridge and hit the switch? No one knew. Charles was human, so he ran across the crumbling (this was scary) bridge, finally reached the switch. He turned around. His friend was on the other side.
“What are you waiting for?!” shouted the non-human.
“Was ‘Chivalry’ an actual musical or just a way to select a human?” asked Charles.
“Why do you care?!” shrieked his friend.
“Well?” Charles asked.
“It was written with the intent of choosing a human, yes.”
“I loved that show…”
“SAVE THE WORLD! WE’RE RUNNING OUT OF TIME!”
Charles hit the switch. With no unicorn to carry him home (the wizard popped in and apologized), Charles had to be teleported magically. He said goodbye.
“See you?” said the former unicorn.
“Don’t know,” said Charles.
“Oh, yes… hello, my name is Aquila.”
“‘Bye, Aquila. I’m Charles, by the way.”
And he was home.