A few minutes later, the tunnel began to shake. Just a little bit at first, just enough to make you wonder if it was your imagination or not. Then the earth gave a very big leap and then stood still. Yolanda dropped her torch and it went out.
Everyone whispered frantically.
There was a light at the end of the tunnel (not metaphorically speaking, they were actually in a tunnel, and there was actually a light at the end of it) that looked suspiciously like moonlight, or maybe starlight (it should have been sunlight as it was that time of day, but it was the wrong color)
Lily-Ann pointed this out, and everyone began moving very quickly toward the light. Then they ran as fast as they could to get out of the tunnel, all holding hands though so no-one would get left behind.
They were running so fast they didn't notice that there was a drop below them. Yolanda (who you will remember was in front) gave a shriek as she saw this, but everyone behind her was still running and couldn't really see, and so she fell, dragging behind her the next person (Meghan), who dragged the next person (Peter), and so on, so they all sort of tumbled out and fell.
After a bit of terror and adrenaline, they landed on something soft and cushy. Maureen was the first to get her balance and stand up and look around (though it was hard because the cushy thing sort of sunk down beneath you; it was like walking through Marshmallow Fluff)
They were standing (or sitting, or lying, or struggling) on a great big purple gooey looking thing. To their right was a huge-and I mean huge- stone wall, and way up near the top was a little hole as big around as a nickel, which was apparently where they had fallen from.
Above the wall was a sky lit with a thousand stars, though of course they were in the wrong places.
How long had they been in the tunnel?
Around them was a bustling faerie city, which is quite a sight.
It was dug out of rock- on every side huge walls, or maybe cliffs, rose, with little holes dotting them everywhere and huge purple cushions the size of football fields at the bottom.
They were of course on the outskirts of the city, so around them were the little buildings- stone houses and towers, only about a hundred feet each, and mostly glass since there were so many windows, and all the roofs were glass, too, letting the starlight in.
As you go into a faerie city, the houses perpetually get taller and taller, and finer and finer, and in the very center of it all was a grand cathedral sort of building, with stained glass everywhere and statues (although the statues were very odd) and towers.
"Hello," said Iz, who had somehow appeared without anyone noticing. Iz looked very pleased.
"Welcome to Florence," he (or she or it) said.