Part 01

“I can’t be long. I need to be up there. I’ll see you again soon.” Mira exclaimed, hastily finishing her drink and darting towards the forest. 

I stood there, watching helplessly as Mira fearlessly ventured into the thick woods. I wanted to yell for her to come back, but deep down, I knew it wouldn’t make a difference. 

Amidst the trees, I glimpsed the branches rustling, Mira navigating her way through the House Tree that perched on the tallest pine. The House Tree, a breathtaking embodiment of both nature’s grandeur and human artisty, stood as the jewel of Rimba village. Anchored on the tallest pine, it was a towering marvel that seemed to reach for the sky itself. 

The House Tree looked like a mystical haven suspended in the canopy, its rustic walls adorned with woven vines and enchanting lanterns. It offered a panoramic view of Rimba and its surrounding landscape. Its uniqueness made it is impossible to miss.  

The House Tree is a home for the Impian; Mira is one of the residents there. She was there on the day they built the House Tree. It has been 5 years since, and she has shown no sign of leaving the place. But it is not her fault, as she has undergone a lot of challenges to belong among the Impian.

With bated breath, I awaited the sight of Mira scaling the tree. In the distance she battled her way upward, nearly faltering, but she clung to the vines tenaciously. 

I let out a deep sigh as I looked over my shoulder, I saw a figure awaiting an answer from me. 

Mira’s ascent finally brought her to the House Tree. Each climb etched its toll on her knees and hands, leaving them marked with scratches.

“Someday, it will all be worth it”, she whispered to herself, the only words of wisdom that fuelled her soul these days. 

Seated in the corner of the room, Mira resumed weaving the tapestry. Her fingers tracing the intricate patterns of the tapestry. What was once an array of vibrant colours had evolved into somber and darker tones. 

Her tapestry is the sole thing she has left to become an Impian. She took an oath to complete this tapestry, as it’s her only ticket to travel to Bahtera, where Impian from other realms gather to explore the wonders of the world. 

Mira selected a new colour of thread, a darker tone than what she had used earlier. As she carefully examined her tapestry, she couldn’t help but sense that her intuition was telling her something wasn’t right. Usually, her tapestry conveyed certainty, but on that day, it didn’t. Instead, it screamed of impending harm. 

“How much left?” Kasih asked softly, her eyes locked onto mine. 

“Not much…” I replied

Kasih’s hand found mine, her cold, wrinkled palm enveloping mine. As our fingers intertwined, I couldn’t ignore the gentle frailty of her touch. I could see the question forming in her eyes, even before she voiced it. 

“Can you tell her, please?

I sighed, a heavy weight settling over me.

“You know the rule, Kasih. I wish I could,” I answered, looking down at our intertwined hands. A tear escaped Kasih’s eye, falling onto my hand.

“I wish there was some other way,” I added, my voice tinged with regret. 

Kasih managed a tearful smile. 

“I know. I wish that too,” she said as she wipe her tears away with a nod. 

Part 02 (Coming on 24th August 2023)