Its already been a good 15 minutes on her bike and Eli has not been this happy and excited in years. Sure she overpacked her bag. Yes it was 5 kilos too much for her back, Yes she didn't have to bring her computer and charger, 4 sets of sports underwear and bras, 5 different pair of shoes and a shit ton of "not-going-to-be-used-for-this-trip" extra change. She'd had her mind set on revealing her feelings to Tomoyo during this summer break since they had all organized this event. Which meant a week ago. Resulting in a not so - more like not at all - ready Eli for her confession.
She had a week to prepare everything for the camp and she thought confessing would be the best idea when you're not at all prepared. Eli sometimes asked herself was she was so unorganized when anything concerned her heart.
In a week, she had found the most romantic camping spot in the region, the best activities to do with a group of good friends and some to get closer to other friends. However, she gets so stressed when it comes to love related things, she could not decide what to wear, what to say, or what to do as a matter of fact.
Should she kiss her and then confess?
Confess then kiss?
Confess and wait for an answer?
Eye contact really hard and wait for Tomoyo to say it herself?
Too many questions filled her mind so Eli took the initiative to stop thinking about it and just act on the spur of the moment. She focused her brain on the beautiful day set ahead for her. The music she so loved to listen to through her headphones and the feeling of the soft breeze through her whole body from the biking.
She adored to take this path. A little away from her house and Tokyo center, a delicate area of still untouched land made a mini forest that could be visited like a park for strolls, bike rides or just picnics. It was made for humans from nature. A simple, yet exquisite gift that is nowadays so rare in our big cities full of buildings and ugly constructions.
Here Eli felt at home, she remembered the wonderful memories of her family at their old estate. The smiled shared over a picnic, a swim in the lake or even horse rides in the fields.
Silence of nature. Nature's breath. All made Eli happy and forget her horrible past.
So she smiled and sung out the loudest she could to express this feeling her heart so wished to feel at that precise instant. She sadly remembered the park lane was almost done and she would soon reach the perpendicular concrete road up ahead.
Once she was ready to take a right turn, she miscalculated her turn, break, and the skippering rocky floor. Needless to say that at almost full speed, Eli fell like a mosquito on a car windshield.
Eli might have been a dancer but when she fell it was the most ungraceful thing anyone would ever see in their life. Perhaps an whale was more graceful when it leaps from the water and crashes back down.
Dear Eli now sprawled on the floor, her heavy bag crushing her under its weight, slowly got up to find that she ripped open one of her favorite pair of jeans and was bleeding from both of her hands, knees, and front foot.
"GREEEAATTT!" she rolled her eyes in exasperation. This was supposed to be a good day, why did it have to turn out like this-
"Stop right there Eli Euphemia Marie Anne Ayase! You needn't worry, today will be a great day. So whatever happens, stand your grounds and don't lose hope for it will be fantastic." Eli encouraged herself out of her negative thoughts. They were not going to help her at all.
She therefore walked back to her bike, still with her headphones on and her music ruining her ears. Started to get down to put her bike back on tract but stopped the very instant an immense defeating screeching noise burst beyond her loud music.
Before she could look up she knew it was a car. Her instincts took over at that instant and perhaps even a divine power to help.
Her body jerked so fast it was like it got electrocuted by 100000W and flew backwards into the side road pond. Barely missing the car by an inch.
Wait. She had ended up under water thanks to the pond. It kind of felt comforting in a way. She was going to die in a much simpler yet relaxing way ever. Different from the horrible death her family went through. Not too bad she thought to herself.
God that pond was deep, even with her body fully elongated and arm outstretched she still didn't touch neither the surface nor the bottom.
The pond looked so shallow from the road it didn't really make sense in her mind. In addition, she knew these waters all too well. Alisa and she used to play in it . It's barely a foot high.
That realization got to her and the reality hit her. She swam back up the surface and just like she suspected, she ended up siting a low pond. Their was only one thing she didn't really grasp.
Where was she?
She had been by the side of a road just a moment ago but now she was in a fountain.
Shocked because of the car that almost hit her to her death but also by the fact that she was not in the same environment anymore, she barely noticed the 2 men dressed in 18th century french clothes look down at her questionably.
" Allez-vous bien, mademoiselle?" The red head man leaned his hand to get her out of the fountain. (Are you doing alright miss?)
" Prendre un bain de si bon matin, c'est un peu a osé de votre par?" The short orange hair man snickered next to him. (Taking a bath at such early morning, isn't it a little pushing too far?)
"Are they speaking french?" Eli asked herself taking the stranger's hand.
"Merci beaucoup, je suis tomber par erreur, a cause d'une voiture" She let the men know. (Thank you very much, I fell by mistake, due to a car)
But wait just a second, Eli did NOT see any car around, and these men had an all too feminine voices to be male.
She stood back in shock for the second time this morning and fell in the fountain once more.
" Je veux bien comprendre que vous aimez l'eau chaude de ce bassin mais il est d'une saleté. Vous devriez vous y abstenir" The orange damoiseau laughed this time helping her himself. (I can understand that you like the warm water of this bath but it of such dirtiness, you should abstain from it)
Eli took some time to get up from her position this time. Something was so offsetting she couldn't understand her situation. Where was she? She had registered that she was speaking french with them, a language she picked up from Georges, but didn't understand why anybody dressed in 18th century french costumes would speak to her in french in JAPAN.
She finally got up with the help of both her interlocutors. Apparently her bag had followed her in her fall and had been one of the reasons for her not standing up properly. Once out of the pond, with the heavy bag disposed off on the floor, she looked around to understand where she had ended up to make a proper scientific analysis of the situation.
She might have ended in the other side of the pond. The one that was opposite to the road and onto the field.
Wrong. Oh how wrong was she.
A grandiose palace overlooking a never ending Royal Avenue was certainly not the scientific explanation she wanted to get.
Gratefully for her she had recognized the place from all the pictures she'd seen online. That enormous castle with hundreds of fountains and thousands of acres.
Statues of roman mythology and gardens of different styles.
How had she ended up here?
How did she end up in France? In Versailles?
The red head men seemed to have caught on to her discovery and awe and stepped a little closer to her.
" You are not from here, nor are you from this era. Am I right? He said in perfect Japanese.
" From this era, what do you mean? I'm not from here that true but how did you know? Where are we exactly? Why are we speaking french? " Eli more awed than ever looking him right in his eyes.
"I know because I'm just like you, follow me if you want more answers" He turned around and signaled for her to stay close.
" Maki, où veux-tu l'emmener? Je pense que ce serait défavorable qu'elle soit vue par quiconque." The second man asked. ( Maki, where do you want to take her? I think it would be really bad if she was to be seen by anyone)
"I'm taking her to the Trinity Estate" He barely looked back still on his way to what Eli thought was the trinity house they were talking about.
There Eli had ended up in unknown place, next to strangers that dressed and spoke funky. Still bleeding from her wounds and drenched from the soak.
Just what was this summer starting up to? What did it have reserved under it sleeve for her?
She didn't know; however the voice in her head, repeatedly telling her to follow, told her she was going to have one hell of a summer !