When Miranda came to, she found herself laying on a straw mat in what appeared to be a cage. She sat up, and immediately fell back onto her back. She saw stars before her eyes, her head ached something fierce.
Ow, what happened? she wondered, rubbing her temples. She sat up again, slowly this time. Her head throbbed, but the pain was bearable. Oh, right. People in robes. Dark forest. Trees appearing from nowhere.
She stood up and walked to one of the cage's walls, running her fingers over the cold steel bars. Not steel, she realized. Iron. Why was she in an iron cage. She looked around and saw that she was in some sort of cave. The walls were rough stone, dripping wiht moisture. Where had these people taken her?
"Hello?" she called out. No answer. Returning to the mat she sat down to think. How did I end up here? She couldn't remember, her brain felt fuzzy. She felt disoriented. She remember the woods, the eerie, disembodied voice. She'd been in a car at one point, before finding herself alone in the woods. Going somewhere with...Chistine. Looking for something in the woods. Where was Christine? Had those strange people found her already, taken her somewhere else?
They're coming, the eerie voice whispered once again.
"Where is that voice coming from?!" Miranda demanded of the shadows.
"What voice?" someone asked. His voice was deep, and sounded almost like he was growling.
Once again, three people in robes approached her. What was with the robes? Flowing brown robes that rippled around their legs as they walked. They carried torches. Miranda wondered why they didn't use flashlights or turn on the lights. In the flickering light from the torches, she could see that there were two men and a woman, all three wore hoods over their heads, hiding their faces.
"What voice?" the woman asked.
Miranda didn't answer, just stared defiantly at them.
"We will not harm you, Miranda," said the woman gently. "We're very glad we found you. Will you let us explain?" She stepped closer to the cage and pulled back her hood.
"Christine?" gasped Miranda. "What's going on?"
The men removed their hoods and stepped closer as well. Miranda didn't regocnize them, but they looked strangely familiar.