Finally, the four could lay down. They had bought a night’s stay in a hotel on Fuzz. One more boat ride to bring them to Kenol. Then, they could see Bear again, they could sleep in their own beds. The thought seemed far away. It was just out of reach with the children being so prone to disaster.
They tried to push bad thoughts out of their heads as they squished into the queen-sized bed. “I’m so glad,” Kaylin whispered before they drifted into an unsteady sleep.
Della woke up with a shudder. “Guys? Guys?” Della whispered. They were nowhere to be seen. She worriedly searched high and low for them. “This is not funny guys.”
A shuffle came from the door. “Are they talking behind my back?” Della wondered as she pressed her ear to the door. There were no voices, just an awkward shuffling. A horrible thought came to her head and she swung open the door.
“Bear?” It was him, standing there. His feet shifting around the ground slowly. His expression was blank. Della came in to hug him, but halted. It wasn’t the same Bear. He said nothing with his mouth open just ajar. “Guys…” Della started.
Bear’s head cocked farther than it should’ve. Della’s mouth hung open, and then she screamed out. “GUYS!” Their voices came from the dark room. She moved toward them, Bear following creepily. Hard skin brushed her hand and she looked down to see Elmi, who was an orange. Her sisters sat in a row, Annabel a banana and Kaylin an apple behind Elmi. “This is no joke!” They yelled.
Bears hand gripped Della’s shoulder. She squealed and sprinted out of the room. Her feet slipped on the floor as if it were ice, and she couldn’t gain any traction. The crooked Bear slowly came towards her, but even if she sped up and turned and jumped, he would stay the same distance from her.
She sprinted out of the hotel, and horses blocked her way. She weaved in between them. Bear was slowed and frustrated, so he grabbed them by the ear and flung them at cats. Della looked around her, incredulous at her surroundings. “Seriously? Also, why am I in Central Park?”
Della dove into the pen with the sea lions, and mounted one. It turned into a Unicorn and bucked it’s magnificent head. The smile drained off her face when she saw Bear, opposite from her. He was riding a highlighter dolphin and drinking some sort of… fruit juice?
Della was filled with fury, she directed the unicorn out of the ocean pen and accepted the randomness. She held out her hand in expectancy of a sword to fall into it from the sky. Instead, a thorny vine crawled up from her arm and scratched her until a small dribble of blood trickled from it.
She took a nearby chipmunk and made it knaw the horrible vine off. It did, and then licked the blood from her arm. She held it up to give it a kiss but noticed a tiny, demented Bear riding it. “Augh!” Della screamed and them onto some squashed banana she found on the sidewalk.
The youngest cub slowly rode the unicorn into some brush, and they emerged into a clearing in which cute bear cubs were playing. Silent waving willow trees surrounded Della and the cubs and her beautiful unicorn was nowhere to be seen. She didn’t seem to care. She was more interested in the bear cubs.
“Excuse me?” She asked. She did not know why she thought they would talk back. They stared at her for a moment, then resumed wrestling each other. “Excuse me!” Della insisted.
The two paused and grumbled in a very bear-like way. They stood on their hind legs and came up to her. She was a bit scared but crunched her brow. “Where am I, and how can I get to my- OH!”
The cubs were growing visibly fast. Their bones sprouted like a plant in a time lapse. The two bears were now more grown than any Della had seen before. One grew wings and flew away, but the other towered over her. “So, I see you are an animal-person!” Della observed.
By now she didn’t expect it to talk back. It stared at her with terrifying, shimmering eyes. It’s brown hair blew in the wind and it opened its mouth. “No.”
“I’m sorry?” Della asked.
“I said no,” The bear replied. “I am not an animal person. No, not a person, our level of intellect is far lower than theirs.”
“Theirs?” Della asked.
“Yes. The humans.”
“Won’t you think I am one?”
“No, I wouldn’t. You can’t take me for a fool and I know what one looks like.”
“Of course I am!”
“No you’re….” It’s face went blank. “What were we saying? Who are you?”
“Just a second ago-” Della started, but the bear interrupted her. “Whoever you are, go now! I don’t want to see you in my territory again!”
Della would have reasoned with the bear, but it had raised its arms and came to its full height. It was a terrifying sight to see. She stumbled back but tripped on a root at the edge of the thick treeline. She braced for impact, but never got it. She was floating in space.
Space was brilliant with stars, planets and clusters far away. She couldn’t help staring at the vast sea of stunning sights. She wished she could slowly, very slowly float around forever. Seeing a new attraction every few years would be good enough for her.
A furry figure with a space helmet on was floating beside her. It must be the Bear! She scrambled to wake the creature up, but came to look in the helmet window and screamed. No noise was heard in space, but she could feel her vocal box panicking frantically. It was her adopted father, Bear. He was still misshapen in space and his part floated around freakishly.
She tried another scream but could hear nothing. Bear started clawing at her with his real bear paws. SCREAM!
Wake up.... WaKe Up.... WAKE UP! Her sisters were staring down at her. She breathed a sigh of relief. It was all a dream. “I-I had a bad dream about Bear… And then there was a real Bear and you guys were fruits and I was in-”
“Woah, woah, woah, slow down!” Kaylin breathed. “I had a dream about the lifecycle of a frog.”