Aaron had no idea where he was or where he was going. On one side it was night, on the other it was day. They were walking on the day side. Aaron lied in the hands of the stranger, not being able to see his face. He accepted the fact that he was kidnapped, but could they at least get there already?
Hatter blamed himself, wishing he had put Aaron in a better hiding place. And for that, he yelled at himself. He would never forgive himself if Alice’s boy got hurt. She would never forgive him if she even remembered.
“Hatter, it’s alright! We’ll get through this…we always do.” Chessur reassured, evaporating into the tree in which Hatter was sitting under. Hatter looked up and half smiled. “You’re right. This is probably the third time our savior was stolen, and the two others we made it through all right!” Hatter fully smiled, remembering the memories.
“Don’t lose your muchness Hatter! Never lose that!” Malymkun yelled.
“I wouldn’t dream of it!” Hatter happily answered, getting his melodious tone again. He stood up and wiped his worn out jeans and looked around.
When his world was crashing down, he’ll turn himself around. No one will stop him. And he will not cry. Never would he cry…again. I promise I won’t cry again…I WILL get through this…no doubt about it.
Hatter began pondering where Aaron might be.
Aaron looked around at the place. Huge hedges almost blocked the view of the actual castle. The castle had the spade sign blowing gracefully at the top of the castle. When the man carrying him went through the hedges it seemed to take an hour. This queen defiantly wasn’t very social.
“I’ve got him, queen.” The voice was rough and deep. Aaron didn’t like the sound of it. It gave him goose bumps on his arms.
“Good! Show me!” Her voice was shrill and quite annoying. Aaron was surprised that she had gotten a husband. Surprised she even got as far as a boyfriend.
The hand was opened, but he knew he should not try to run. He knew that his friends would come and get him. They had to.
“This is Alice’s boy? This is the legendary Alice’s son? Not even trying to run? Much different.” She observed.
“Yes. We’re positive this is her son.” The man said.
“Will you show me proof?” The queen questioned.
“Of course queen.” The man told her. He put the boy in a small cage next to the queen and walked off towards the library. The queen stared at Aaron.
“So you’re the queen of Spades?” He questioned.
“Yes. What about it?”
“I was just wondering.” The boy quietly said and played with his fingernails. It was a habit of his when he was nervous or scared.
“How did you find me?” The boy asked, almost scared to know the answer.
“My son, Jack.” She smiled evilly, showing her perfect white teeth.
Jack? Why would Jack ever tell on them? But he sounded so innocent! Sounded like he’d never tell! But he told! He drank tea with the Mad Hatter! That’s probably a disgrace to his family! Why did he tell? Aaron looked upset, in which the queen seemed to take pleasure in.
“Jack come here!” The queen called.
“Yes, mum?” He questioned, seeing Aaron in the cage. He mouthed the word sorry to him. Aaron couldn’t believe him. Was he really sorry? Or was he faking it so he could do something else to Aaron?
“I need you to go get your brothers and your sister. I have exciting news to tell them. And you.”
Jack ran up the spiral staircase. About a minute later he came down with his three siblings.
“So what did you have to tell us, mummy?”
“Guess who I found?
“Who?” The little boy with black hair and an odd hat asked excitedly. It was blue and yellow and looked like a joker on a card’s hat. Aaron thought it was an odd hat. The boy was about Aaron’s age, maybe a little younger, maybe a little older.
“Calm down Jester,” The queen laughed. “Just look in the cage.”
Aaron now knew how it felt like to be an animal in a zoo. Once again he asked himself if this was all real or not. Could this be real? Could he really be trapped in a cage being stared at by a boy named Jester? He didn’t know. It all seemed so vivid, so real. But it also seemed to fake. It was unreasonable, unreal, illogical. So maybe it wasn’t real. But on the other hand everything felt real and everything looked real. So maybe Wonderland was real?
“Mum, who is that?” A boy with red hair asked.
“It’s Alice’s son! Who do you think!?” The queen yelled at the boy, surprised her own son didn’t know.
“Sorry…” He apologized for nothing, Aaron thought.
“Mum, how can you be sure that’s Alice’s son?” A girl asked, the only sister in the family.
“Your father is getting the proof right now. He went towards the library. Ace, go see if he’s done.” The mum demanded.
The red headed boy----named Ace walked off, mumbling something. Jester looked at Aaron intently.
“Mummy can I bring him to my room?” He looked at his mum with his big blue eyes.
“Not until we get proof that he’s really Alice’s son.”
“Um…I could always tell you.” Aaron offered, looking at the queen through the cage.
“But you might lie to try to protect him. To try to protect your friend if he’s really in Wonderland.” She answered.
“Oh…ok.” Aaron sat down against the corner of his cage.
Ace came back with a man. “Here’s the book.”
That was the man that carried Aaron here! The king!
“Here’s a sure way to tell if this is Alice’s boy.” The father said, looking in his eyes. He’s been told that he has the same eyes as her. Besides, if the Cheshire cat could tell he was Alice’s son by his eyes; he can too. But he wasn’t sure if that was a good thing or not.
“Yes. He’s defiantly Alice’s boy. Look at her eyes, then look at his.” He said to his wife.
“Yes, those are defiantly the same eyes. Good, now Wonderland has no savior.” She laughed.
“So can I take him to my room?” Jester questioned.
“Yes, just don’t let him out and try to torture him as much as possible.” She smirked.
“Ace and Jack, go with him. Just to make sure he doesn’t let him go by accident or anything.” The queen said.
The others agreed and all went to the room. Aaron was afraid. He didn’t want to be tortured.
“Ash, I need your help. Make sure the lunatics don’t get close to the kingdom.” Ash agreed. Ash had black hair, like all the others, except Ace and she was chewing gum quietly. She seemed about fourteen, as did Ace.
Aaron was carried into a room that had three beds. One bed had a puppet of a dragon with three heads. He didn’t know what it was. “What’s that a puppet of?” Aaron questioned, pointing at the three headed dragon.
“A Jabberwocky of course! You don't know what it is…you’re Alice’s son!” Jack answered.
“Um…is that the thing she slays?” He asked.
“Yes! Do you need the book on your mom or something?” Ace asked laughing.
Aaron wasn’t sure what to say after besides “Why’d you rat us out?” Aaron asked, directly to Jack.
“I did it for a reason. You see, I wanted you to meet my family and I wanted to make a plan, ways to stop my mother, you know?”
“Yeah…I get it. But…I didn’t like talking to your mother very much.” Aaron stated.
“Yeah…no one really does.” Jester smiled.
“So…how did you ever find Wonderland…and is Jester really you’re name?” He questioned.
“No. My name was Jasper when we came from the regular world. But when mum became Queen of Spades I became the Jester…though I’m not all that funny.” He sighed.
“My name was Jack originally and stayed Jack. Though our last wasn’t Spades. It was James. Sounds similar enough…and mum told us that we’d go by that now. And we would be royalty here in Wonderland. Well we are…but people wish we weren’t.” Jack sighed.
“My name was Ashton, but when mum came down here said it was Ace. My sister was Ashley, but now it’s Ash. It’s odd isn’t it, the idea of Wonderland?” Ace asked.
“Yeah…I’m still in-between this is real or not.” He said.
“I don’t even know if this is real or not!” Jack laughed.
“So….what’s the plan?” Jester finally asked.
“I’m going to get dad and Ash. You see, Ash is guarding making sure the Hatter and the others don’t get through…but Ash is on our side…so she’s going to let them in and make sure mum doesn’t see them. From then on we grow the plan and such.” Jack explains.
“I really hope this works.” Aaron says.
“It will…don’t worry.” Ace reassured, not sure if it was going to work himself. But the boy was much younger than he…Ace wanted to give him as much hope as he can. After all, he fell down a hole, ran for his life, and ended up getting kidnapped. He shrunk and he’s about to grow.
“Aaron, here. We snuck some Kinoko Cake from the kitchen. Mum doesn’t like food in our bedroom, so don’t tell her!” Jester handed him a small piece of chocolate cake.
“Kinoko Cake?” Aaron questioned, inspecting it, before taking a tiny bite. He had to admit, it wasn’t bad compared to that odd drink that made him smaller than a mouse.
“It’s a cake that helps you grow the regular size. OH! We have to take him out of the cage or it will seriously hurt.” Ace laughed and opened up the door.
“Thanks.” He nodded and clutched his stomach, it started hurting, like it did with that potion. Soon everything was normal. The beds didn’t look like they were miles long, the gap in-between the beds didn’t look bigger than the Grand Canyon, and everything just looked as it should; normal sized.
“So, you’re really Alice’s boy?” Jester questioned.
“Yes Jester! Just look at this picture of Alice…look at her eyes. Look at his.” Ace handed her the book all about his mother.
“Oh wow…those are seriously pretty eyes.” He said breathless. Wonderland, which has advanced to cameras, made a book about Alice only a few years back. The old kind of cameras. Not the seriously technological cameras with great zoom and great color and all those options. More like the old Polaroid cameras. Aaron knew about them because his mum had showed him one and he had even used it a couple times. When Jack and the others fell down the hole, they had an old Polaroid camera and Jack taught Mctwisp how to build one.
“Bayard! Hey buddy, I know you’re getting quite old, but please, will you show us where the Queen lives? And can you carry the sleeping dormouse? Malymkun can travel on my hat…but it’d just be easier if you carried Abundiantus.” Hatter called.
“I suppose. But be warned…I would not be surprised if they don’t let any of you guys in. Me? I’m not even sure about it. But you? Probably not. Mostly because you were hiding Aaron, but also because the queen thinks you’re a mad lunatic.”
“Well…she’s right about the mad part. That one I admit is true…but lunatic? I THINK NOT!” He stamped.
“Down with another bloody queen please!” He shouted to the world.
“Marchy, put Abundiantus on Bayard’s back please.” The Hatter said to the Hare.
The March Hare plopped the sleeping dormouse on the dog’s back and made sure he was holding onto Bayard’s collar.
“Malymkun, my hat.” The Hatter smiled, kneeling down and placing the hat near the chair she was on at the time. She jumped onto the rim and climbed onto the top of the Hat where she sat there making sure she didn’t fall.
“Anyone can go by horse or rail, but the absolute best way to travel is by hat.” He smiled and placed the hat on his head.
“Now we’re ready, Bayard!” Hatter called.
“Well then let’s set off. Let’s see, the queen lives Brimingdale.”
“That far? All well…we have to do it…for Alice.” Hatter thought out loud.
“For Alice.” The March Hare said.
“For Alice.” Bayard bowed his head, as if she was dead.
“FOR ALICE!” Malymkun yelled in her squeaky voice.
“You’re not walking, so you have nothing to worry about….Unless of course you want to eat Kinoko cake and carry me on your hat.” The Mad Hatter told her, laughing.
The Hatter tipped his hat over his right eye and started walking, thinking of Alice. She wouldn’t let any harm come to Aaron.
“Who could’ve ratted us out?” Hatter wondered out loud.
“Jack…” Malymkun suggested.
“Maybe…” The thought dwelled inside his head for awhile. Could Jack have done that to us? Why would Jack have done such a thing…He thought. But the man who grabbed Aaron was the king…not Jack. Could he have told his whole family and they went after us? He wasn’t sure…he just knew he was scared beyond belief. Come on Tarrant! He’s just a boy! Why has he taken over half your heart? WHY!? Because he’s Alice’s? He questioned himself, just to hear himself say yes in a mumbled tone.
“What Hatter?” Malymkun questioned.
“Nothing…” He sighed scratching the back of his head.
Malymkun said nothing else…they just kept walking. That was until they passed Hatter’s old town which was burned to the ground. Hatter clenched his fists to keep himself from yelling or screaming or crying even and walked on.
Bayard nuzzled up against Hatter’s leg and Malymkun said it was going to be alright. The March Hare smiled, showing his uneven buck teeth and hugged his leg. “It’s ok.” He smiled.
Hatter smiled and kept on walking. They kept on walking and walking until Hatter was pretty much demanding a break. “Do you think we can have tea there?” Hatter questioned. “I need tea.”
“Yes Hatter. I’m sure there’ll be plenty of tea…AFTER we rescue Aaron.”
“Oh ok…I just want tea!” He looked down. He knew that after the boy was done getting rid of the queen…then his work would be done. But maybe he’ll stay…Hatter thought…Hatter thought painfully of the goodbye he would have to say. His eyes turned red, he HATED goodbyes. But he wouldn’t see the boy again. He’s not going up in the real world and they certainly weren’t going to need him again!
“Hatter…is everything alright?” Malymkun questioned, jumping on his knee.
“Yes. Why do you ask?”
“Because…you look upset! Are you thinking of Aaron?”
“Yes…I’m thinking about when he leaves…I don’t want him to leave. I hate to admit it…but he has consumed half my heart. He’s my only connection to Alice…not that I’m going to ever see her again…” Hatter said upset. “Why did I get myself into this for the third time?”
“Because…you’re mad, Hatter.” Malymkun smiled, as soon as Hatter did.
“Come on, let us move on. We’re almost there.” Hatter told Bayard and the others. He was full of courage. He had his muchness…he nearly lost it for a second!