A Soul.

Here is a picture for you. There is a mountain side, crawling with pine trees. You're looking at it from both an aerial view and from the ground level. Depends on what part you want to see the most. There are several mountains, a range, stretching into the distance. They slope down from the sky toward an ocean that is deep and rushing, blue and white with froth toward the shore but flat and smooth in the deeper parts. The atmosphere looks like the water does, and there are the feathery remains of fog misting up as the air becomes more humid. The sun is brightening. In the forest, everything is flushed green, more so than you've ever seen before. Even the greens that would be considered closer to browns, the dusky colors, are luminescent. This is a different sort of place, and you want to understand it (as most people do).

There is a waiting here. In the forest, something is moving; you can tell right away. The ground is fluttering, trembling. There is a tremor flickering up the tree trunks and the plants are simmering in the soil - a great hush has fallen in this corner of the earth, but the sun is pouring through the cracks in the leaves, into the darkest parts of the woods. Everything is flaring green. The air is bright with the buzz. If someone were to walk through this forest, they would know something was about to happen. But they wouldn't drive themselves crazy trying to figure it out; it isn't that type of waiting. But then again, it is, in a way. They would want to stay and breathe in the colors and the sounds until they faded into it all. Anyone who is at this point wants to become a part of the scenery.

And then, the stirring can be heard. A shaking some would say, a rumbling in the deep. Out of the ground, somewhere in the middle, something is suddenly hurtling from the ground, shooting toward the sky at a great speed. A stalk of some sort, a giant stem. It is a vine, you realize all at once, and as you watch, the tendrils curling out at an amazing rate, wrapping around the tree trunks and rushing down the bluffs toward the sea in a great surge. There is nothing fearful about watching this, though; only a feeling of awe, maybe a bit of mystery. This is what you've been waiting for, although you never knew it before.

Now, the vine is blooming. Bursting with buds and new growth, everything fresh and vibrant, every corner of the mountain range. The forest is suddenly alive with this beautiful vine, and it is reaching out toward everything. As time goes on, twelve moons, twelve suns, maybe you lose track of the days, the vine changes its speed. Some days it slows, other days it only grows in one part of the woods. Once in a while nothing seems to happen at all (although, it is always altering, even if it's in a different part of the forest that you've never been to). Once it grew, but only on the inside; a photosynthesis of sorts. You most definitely didn't see that part happen.

The parts of the vine that are in the ocean are the most peculiar to you. Instead of ceasing growth on the shore, the tips simply resting in the remains of waves, the plant kept stretching, straight into the sea and down below the waves into the deep water, wrapping around the cliffs in the lower parts of the ocean. You wonder what this means. Also, in the last few days, the vine has been growing fruit. Citrus-like shapes that you've never seen before, reds, purples, richer brilliant colors. When they drop into the dirt, they melt into the soil, make it richer; everything is becoming healthier now. And right when you didn't know the forest was even sick (it was dying, actually). You always heard that plants gave off oxygen, but this vine is doing something even greater to the air. The trees, the birds, everything seems to be breathing more deeply. You certainly are. This is a big part of what the vine was about from the beginning.

You suddenly realize, though, that amidst all this glory, during this vine and everything it's been doing, the forest has been under a great attack.

This isn't how it was supposed to be. But it's where everything is now beginning.

This is the start of the grand adventure.

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