Fable

Kemono Cafe 005

Kona returned to her chores and Sandy was left to look out at wonder at the unknown. She’d used to daydream when looking out the window of a train, but the mysterious shapes in the distance captured her imagination. She liked to try and guess what they were in the fleeting moments they appeared, only to have them vanish like smoke in the wind. 

That’s when the brightness of another world caught her eye. The inky blackness paled in the vibrant beautiful color they were approaching. If Sandy leaned in extra hard against the glass, she could see it coming. And it was getting easier with every passing moment. Kona looked like a rooster with the approaching dawn, and rose one of her enormous hands to her mouth to call out.

NEXT STOP, FABLE!

She cried out with all her might. Sandy shifted back and forth in surprise with a growing look of worry as Kona yelled that loudly right next to her. Sandy had to look up and down the car in confusion. Who was she talking to? Maybe it was just habit. Kona reached into her coat and pulled out a large golden watch, one that was big enough to fit into her palm as well as a large coin would fit into Sandy’s. She waited for the moment the train hit the light in front of her with her thumb poised on the knob on top.

Sandy could see the growing light in front of the train start to bend inward through the windows and Sandy had to look. She pressed her hands against the glass and beheld what looked like a massive painting in front of them, approaching like it was set up over the invisible tracks the Escapade was traveling upon. It was the size of a massive building and emitted light like the front door of a dark home, full of the warm color only sunlight could bring. Sandy felt herself drawn towards it after getting used to fleeting shadows and the hum of red light under the train tracks. The Escapade glided into the painting effortlessly and Sandy could feel the instant real tracks appeared beneath the wheels. There was a small jolt that Kona braced for habitually and released her grip on the seat the instant it passed, clicking her watch and stuffing it back inside her coat. She turned to Sandy and offering her hand to help her up.

Sandy was both anxious and excited as she beheld where they were. They’re appeared in a forest somewhere and were surrounded by the sounds of the life within it. The trees were swaying with a gentle breeze and let through just a little bright, golden sunlight. Sandy felt a sense of wonder as a bright red station roof passed overhead and shaded them from a gorgeous day. Kona helped her off the train just after it came to rest and white steam hissed out powerfully from underneath. The station they’d stopped in was rustic and forlorn, nearly reclaimed by nature. Ivy grew up over the ticket box and the gray cobblestone had thick patches of grass in the cracks. Kona and the Escapade looked right at home with it, as its bright red roof and brass signs matched their style perfectly, even if the paint had faded slightly with time.

They had stopped at a small town with brightly colored roofs. Most were red like the station, yet almost every other hue was playfully present like pieces of candy on a red plate. The houses were an old Tudor style with crossed beams of wood pushing up high steeples of bright shingle. The shops had wide open faces toward the plaza, letting everything they sold entice those walking by. Sandy had trouble adjusting to it looking like it was noon out after a long hard day of work, but she couldn’t look away from such a beautiful day and the sparkling sea beyond. Where had they gone?

This is Fable? Beautiful, huh? You wanna walk around a bit? I really should get back to my apartment. I need to prepare for work tomorrow. If I’m late, I’ll lose my job for sure. You’ll need to get a ticket, though. WHAT?! You said you could take me back home! How expensive are they? Easy… Easy. They don’t cost anything. But you do need to find one. Can’t you just take me home? Please? I’d love to, hon. I really would. But the train has a mind of its own. And I’ve never seen it move without a ticket to tell it where to go. Trust me. I’ve been at this a long time. You’re talking like the train is alive. If that helps you picture it, sure! Go talk to Maxine. She has one of the shops in the plaza there. It’s the nice looking one with the leaves all over it. Kona… What if I can’t get a ticket? If you really want one, nothing’s gonna stop you from getting it. You should hurry and talk to Maxine. I’ll be right here when you get back. Promise. It is a lovely day. How long do I have to explore? It’s your day. Go have an adventure. If that’s the case, Fable here I come! See you in a little bit. Atta’girl. Have fun!