The world around Luna was a suffocating inky black. It twisted around her and bellowed through her bones. The loud sound around her tore into her mind like starved wolves into a fresh kill. It came and went, pounding louder and louder on each pass. The sound of metal screeching against metal, voices yelling. Desperation.
A name. An important name.
"I mustn't forget. I can't." Luna thought. She held on tight to that memory, but it was pulled from her, ripped from her mind without any regard for what she wanted.
"Please, let me have her name, at least! I can't forget her name! I can't forget!..."
"... can't forget...What? Luna wondered.
She could feel herself growing increasingly drowsy, her very being exhausted. Luna could no longer fight against the shifting of the void around her, and she fell deeper and deeper into a peaceful sleep.
Luna opened her eyes. Above her floated white cotton candy clouds swimming lazily in an ocean of blue sky. A soft breeze carrying the sweet scent of flowers wafted through the air. She looked around only to find a giant many-legged snake beast squirming in front of her. Luna yelped in surprise, sitting up.
"A bug," Luna looked at the former giant beast, only now seeing that it was just a caterpillar crawling happily on a leaf that hung off a flower.
She stretched and looked around her surroundings. Soft pastel hues of pink and blues all around her scattered the field.
"These flowers sure are pretty." Luna looked around, taking in her environment.
"But... how did I get here? Luna began rubbing her temples as she thought. Her long pink hair and pure white dress flowed delicately through the warm wind.
She knew her name, and she knew she was about five or six years old. Other than that, everything else was a blur.
Luna looked down at herself; from what she could tell, she was in top shape. Not a scratch on her.
"Okay!" Luna slapped her cheeks together and huffed a breath of defiance. "There's a tree line in the distance. If I head that way, maybe I'll find a grownup who can help."
Luna began stomping through the flowers, occasionally stopping to watch butterflies flutter past her; her favorite was the black and green one that sometimes landed on her before taking off again. It felt as if the butterfly was an old friend guiding her.
Finally, she neared the tree line as the butterfly fluttered through the tree leaves and disappeared into the distance.
"Ah! Wait up, and I haven't named you yet!" Luna shouted in desperation as she pushed through the trees stepping onto a dirt road.
As Luna stepped onto the road, a thundering roar and screech shook her from the left.
"Wah!" Luna shouted, falling backward and onto the dirt.
"Woah there!" An elderly man pulled tight on the reigns of his horses, and they clambered to a stop a few feet away from Luna. Suddenly, the door on the left side of the carriage blasted open, and a tall girl with wild red hair and a fierce face stepped out. Her hands were poised as if ready to pull out an invisible sword.
"What in Allora's name is going on out here!?" The red-haired girl shouted, her voice rich with irritation at the sudden and rough stop.
"I-I'm sorry, my lady. There's a little girl in front of the carriage." The old coach driver stuttered humbly.
"A little girl?" The red-haired girl stepped forward toward Luna and froze before running up and grabbing her by the shoulders. The red-haired girl pushed her fingers through Luna's hair.
"Your hair... it's pink." The red-haired girl stared so hard at Luna's hair that Luna began to feel a little sheepish. "Could it be a coincidence? In our Empire?" She muttered.
As Luna stared back at the red-haired girl, she was about to ask why that was so important when suddenly her head began to hurt so bad it felt like it was about to burst open. A flash of memories slammed into Luna like a freight train.
Luna grasped onto the red-haired girl for dear life. Painful tears dripped from Luna's eyes. The words that escaped Luna's lips felt like they had been trapped for a thousand years, bathed in death and regret.
"Elder sister?" Luna gasped.
The red-haired girl's eyes opened wide in shock, "Elder sister?"
In that instant, however, the black and green butterfly Luna was so fond of fluttered gently between the two. The world immediately froze into a dull grey and shattered around Luna like glass.
The inky black poured in, drowning Luna in endless sleep once more.
Luna felt her consciousness begin to return to her. The inky void that was once like an ocean was reduced now to nothing more than a puddle.
Luna opened her eyes, groaned, and rubbed her forehead. An unfamiliar ceiling, she thought to herself.
"You're finally awake." A gentle voice called over from Luna's side.
"How are you feeling? Do you hurt anywhere?"
At this moment, Luna realized she was in a gigantic downy bed covered in cute pillows, its frame detailed in gold and gems. Standing near the bedside, a gentle and plain-looking woman in a french maid outfit stared softly at Luna.
"Um, where am I?" Luna looked around the room in childish curiosity and wonder.
"You're in the guest room of my lord's Manor. Duke Wulfeas Solei." The maid stared intensely. Her voice was as clear as glass.
"It was my lord's daughter, Lady Raiza, that saved you when you collapsed on the side of the road."
"A Duke? No wonder this place is so fancy. "Luna responded flatly. Although the more she looked around, the room began to feel a bit more familiar. Had she been somewhere like this before?
The maid swiftly turned and began heading towards the door in the massive room Luna found herself in and opened the door expectantly, "It would be wise to give your thanks to my lord now. If you feel you can stand up, I'll bring you to his office."
Luna tested her legs and hopped out of bed, heading for the door and following behind the maid.
The girl had zero reaction when I mentioned my lord's name. This startled the maid as she walked deep in thought.
Any everyday commoner would have immediately panicked. The maid's eyebrows furrowed slightly in her confusion.
But this girl, it's as if she has no idea who my lord is.