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The crowd, which had gathered to depart their favourite merchant and his curious helper, stepped aside as Mathias dashed passed them. The ship had already started sailing downwards.

“Look Sakul. That boy is trying to get to us” , said Lalbu as she sheepishly pointed at Mathias. Sakul did not even have time to react properly to what Lalbu had just said, for the ship suddenly rocked heavily.

“Bless my hat !! What did just happen ?!?!”

“The boy jumped and it seems he managed to grab a rope of ours. Should I help him get up ??”

“JUMPED ??!!”  Sakul thought bewildered as he looked at the port side of his airship, only to see heavily breathing Mathias as he’s holding for his dear life onto the rope.
 
“C..can I come aboard ?? I need your help ! … Please !!”

Sakul blinked as though he had to think this over. Somehow he still had to process the fact that being just jumped the distance towards his ship. Lalbu looked at Mathias amused. Her black eyes were locked on him as she reached out her hand to pull the rope.

“Alright I will pull you up !”

“Thank you !! Thank you”

Relieved Mathias set foot on the deck and then let himself slump down, sighing heavily out. Lalbu happily jumped up right next to him. With a wide smile on her face, she said:
“That was pretty stupid you know!”

Mathias rolled his eyes and muttered, ”No shit Sherlock...”

“Who’s Sherlock ??”

“NEVERMIND!!” He remarked as he jumped back onto his feet and pleaded, “Sakul I need your help ! My friend Detlef has been kidnapped by some weird knight and he jumped off the island. I have to find him quickly before his mother skins me ALIVE !! Please help me !!”

That snapped Sakul back into reality.
“What ?? Are you seriously asking me to go after two lunatics who jumped off a cliff into nothing ?? There’s no way they could have survived that."

“Sakul I don’t know what to do otherwise.”

“How about getting off my ship and go tell the boy’s mamma that her son is dead ?? Poor woman...”

“Are you crazy !?! You know how she is !”

Detlef’s mother is not a woman to be around as everybody included her once husband figured out. She was a hot head and whatever she said was right and law. She had the strength of a cow and quite frankly looked like one. It was near to impossible for any possible living being to even interact with her. Yet she had one soft point: Detlef. Unfortunately for Detlef it turned out to be more of an overprotecting relationship. She never allowed anyone to even set a foot near him, not even his own father was able to talk to his son for 3 minutes without being interrupted by her. When Mathias appeared and crashed onto Detlef’s working bench, she threw a tantrum. It’s a miracle that Mathias was even allowed to befriend Detlef. But deep down she was just waiting for a reason, may it ever be so small, to finally kick his butt off Cabmor.

No one on this ship wanted to see the reaction of her the moment they tell her son is mostly likely never able to come home again.

“... Yeah. I do .. B-But you still have the responsibility of him”

“That’s why I want to find him ! Or at least his dead body... and also kick that knight’s bum ...”

“But I am telling you that there’s no way they could have survived that in any possible way !”

“You did Sakul.”

“Stay out of this Lalbu”

“They could have landed on some plants or in the water. I mean Pitt lies just underneath Cabmor...”

“Stay out of this Lalbu!”

“BUT THEY COULD BE ALIVE !”

There was silence. The two men looked at Lalbu. She had puffed up her cheeks and stared angry at Sakul. She knew that he knows that there’s a chance of surviving that fall. Sakul had fallen off his ship many years ago, landing only a few metres away from her. He survived so she could not possibly think of any reason not to help this weird looking creature.

“Stop staring at me like that young girl! You know that’s unacceptable... Look I can’t just ditch my course for some boy. I have a family to feed!! “

Sakul pulled out a photo of his wives and daughter as he did in all such situations, but that didn’t impress Lalbu.

“If you don’t want to help him then FINE !” She grabbed hold of Mathias’s hand and pulled him towards the edge. “I am going to look for his friend. Let’s go”

She climbed up the railing, pulling Mathias with her. Mathias looked bewildered from Sakul to Lalbu.

“W..What are you doing ??”

She looked down. There was nothing but clouds. Full of confidence, she moved her foot away from the railing. There was a spark in her eyes as she plunged herself down, dragging Mathias with her. In the distance he could hear angered Sakul crying her name out loud. Mathias’ eyes were open and he didn’t dare to close them. The ship went tinier until it disappeared fully. The wind blew into his ears. Lalbu was still smiling as she turned around to look at him. Mathias couldn’t see properly as his eyes were drying out with the cold wind blowing onto his face, but he felt her hands interlocking into his. Suddenly he wasn’t falling anymore. It was as though time had stood still. They were hovering in mid-air.

“H..How the hell ??”

“Hehehe Didn’t you know that Kies can fly ?” She held his hands tighter.“If you keep holding my hands, you won’t fall”

Mathias looked beneath him. There were still clouds. They were still nowhere near the ground...

“Man  I am starting to believe Sakul now...”

“Don’t worry. I am sure he’s fine. “

“An ever optimistic, eh ? “

She blinked.
“A what ??”

“Whatever... Can we continue our ... search ?”

“Okay !” she cheerfully replied as she let go of his hands and he fell like a stone downwards.  

“NOT LIKE THAT !!!!” screamed Mathias as he dashed through the clouds. There was just an echo of the Kies’s giggling and the wind hissing in his ear again. This is going to be his end. There’s no way that gravity won’t have any effect on him. The white fluffiness of the clouds dissolved away and for the first time since this morning, he felt the sun shining. Even though he was about to die, it was a very beautiful scene.

It seemed like an endless fall. For how long has he been falling now ?? Seconds ? Minutes ? Maybe even hours ! It surely felt that long. Mathias has no idea. He wished faith would finally catch on and get him out of this misery. Out of nowhere lush green patches appeared beneath him and they grew larger and larger.

“Where the heck are you, Lalbu ?!?!”

“I am right next to you”

She had her legs crossed and fell simultaneously with Mathias towards to what seemed like a rainforest biome.

“Do you mind ?”

“Mind what ?” she asked innocently.

Dammit ! Sakul might have said that Kies are primitive, yet  it is anything but primitive. She’s acting childish !  

“Why so serious ??” she giggled.

“I think everyone would act like this when they are ABOUT TO DIE !!! “

“Hehehe ! You won’t. I promise. Just trust me...” She patted his head as though she tried to reassure him. Mathias had an unsure feeling about this. The ground was very near by now. About 2km away.  He could not bear it to see his death so Mathias wanted to closed his eyes again. But Lalbu gave a gentle push to his shoulder.

“Look boy !  We’re not falling anymore!”

It was true. The air suddenly felt as soft as cotton and thick. It didn’t feel like air anymore. It was as if there was a cushioning above the ground. As smooth as a feather both Mathias and Lalbu descended until they gently touched the ground. Mathias couldn’t believe that he was still in one piece. He looked swiftly at Lalbu.

“But how ...”

“Pitt is full of huge plants as you see around you. Their pollen fills the air around us thus making it really thick and soft. It’s not possible to crash land into these areas.”

“That’s why you insisted that Detlef is still alive... and that jackass knight”

She nodded as she looked above her.

“Sakul knew this too. I don’t understand! He usually would have wanted to help willingly. I wonder why he didn’t this time...”

She let herself drop onto a root and set her eyes on Mathias. He was observing his surroundings for clues or a possible route his friend might have taken.  Lalbu jumped off the root and let a deep breath out. She took his hand and muttered,“C’mon ! We can’t stay here for long or else things might take a nasty turn...”

Great! That’s exactly what Mathias WANTED to hear...
I will excuse myself for Mathias's potty mouth, but it's funnier this way.
--
Being on Time  Askya Pizzuto
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