“You.” said Alice, as she backed away. He just stood there, staring through his dull, plastic eyes. “What are you doing here?”
“Oh Alice,” he says, words coming out in poisonous strings, “I never left.”
Then, she ran. Through the Wonderland that had grown and changed, flowers dying, trees looming over and casting eerie shadows. She ran as fast as she could, until she ran out of breath. As Alice looked around, she saw she never left. There was the white rabbit standing in front of her, the surroundings the same.
“W-what?” Alice stuttered. “How?”
The rabbit just chuckled through his mask. Then, he glitched, like he was on a screen, and disappeared.
Alice was baffled. How could be just disappear? Even in wonderland it was peculiar. She observed her surroundings. The trees were shadowed with long, outstretching branches that looked like twisted arms reaching out to the sky.
As Alice walked on, she noticed mushrooms that got bigger and bigger. And there, on one of the mushrooms, was a pipe, a cocoon, and a butterfly, lying dead, it’s wings beaten and battered.
“Poor mister caterpillar.” Alice muttered, moving past him. “What has happened to this place?”
As she walked some more, she came to the place of the talking flowers. They were all wilted and had no more strength to speak. As Alice walked through this field of death and destruction, she pondered, “How could a place so beautiful and strange turn into this? What had happened? Where’s the queen?” Her thinking was put to a pause when she realized she was now in a forest with short trees covering the sky. A tattered sign read: this way to the Mad Hatter,
and another sign beaten up sign read: this way to the March Hair. Alice recognized these signs. This is where she met the Cheshire Cat. Oh how she missed that trouble-causing cat.
She took the road to the Mad Hatter’s palace. Maybe they would tell her what was going on.
When she got to the famous tea table, she gasped. The Mad Hatter and the March Hair were lying on the ground and the place smelled of booze. The teacups were broken and the pots were chipped and shattered. Alice looked in one of the cups in one piece. Alcohol. Whisky to be exact.
She turned around to see the Mad Hatter standing behind her, a mask depicting a happy person on his face. There was a mask on the March Hair’s face as well.
“Why is a raven like a writing desk?” He asked in a robotic voice.
“Please, Mr. Hatter, if you could tell me where to go, or what happened?”
Why is a raven like a writing desk?” He asked again, as the March Hair joined in. They stalked towards her. Alice ran. As fast as she could. Once she was a good distance away, she heard a panicked voice whispering through the cold air. And then he was there. The Cheshire Cat. His eyes were dodgy and his voice was frantic.
“Alice, Alice!” You need to listen to me. Before it’s too late. They’re trapped. We all are. We are trapped within ourselves. Nothing is how it seems, and how it seems to be is how it is. Remember this Alice, you’re not in Wonderland anymore. At least, not the one you know. Be careful and don’ trust-“ His words were cut off when his eyes turned black, and a mask appeared on his face. A happy cat was depicted on it.
“Ah, Alice! Come, come!” The cat said as he walked towards a third path that wasn’t there before. Alice stayed put. She felt like she shouldn’t trust him, or at least, this version of him. She walked backwards, into a door that had just appeared in the tree.
She was now in a maze of walls made of thorns and dried up bushes. In the distance she saw a castle. Maybe the queen could answer my questions, hopefully without chopping off my head. As she walked up the castle steps, she noticed that the card guards were nowhere in sight. Curious.
When she stepped into the throne room, there was the Queen Of Hearts. Except, something was different. She also wore a mask, and ropes were tied to her arms and legs, reaching towards the ceiling, like she was a marionette. Like someone was controlling her. The question is who. Alice walked up to the queen, and started to climb. Up the ropes that controlled Wonderland’s Queen. She didn’t move an inch.
As Alice was almost to the top, her hand slipped, and she fell. She braced for impact, but none came. She opened her eyes. Alice was falling in what she could only describe as the abyss. Blacks and whites mixed around her as she fell down, down, down.
“Hello?” She yelled into the void. No reply. All of the sudden, Alice felt a heavy weight on her body and mind. A weight only sleep could bring. As she fell into a slumber, losing herself in dreams, a sliver of reality cut through and she realized that she was, again, alone.