What separates a dream from reality? Is it the unusual nature, the impossibility, of a dream that crosses it from reality into fiction? What then do you do when something impossible happens in your waking world? Does reality then become a dream? And then, in that case, does that mean the dream is now reality?
All you heard was four words. "I need your help." All you saw was darkness. At least that was the only way you could process what you saw before you. The pit that was entirely empty. Not just empty. Devoid of existence. Pure nothingness.
You didn't have time to feel fear, or anticipation, or anything at all. Yet you had no idea how long you were in that nothingness. And how long you, too, were nothing.
When you're enveloped in a blanket of nonexistence it's impossible to tell where you are, when you are, and perhaps even who you are. Thoughts floated past like driftwood. Just out of your reach. And the nothingness continued on for only a moment. And yet, as well, for eternity.
When you opened your eyes, or were they already open and you only now had something to see, the landscape was much different than you were used to.
It was uncertain where you were and there were only two things you could be certain of. One was that wherever it was you found yourself it was not where you were before. Nor was it the nothingness from an uncertain amount of time ago.
And the other was that someone was calling for you. Not audibly. But calling nonetheless.
The end of one chapter begins another.
The park was empty. At first. And then in a blink, a moment, there were several people standing in its midst. For a second or two they seemed to not really be there. Their outlines blurred, the details of their faces and clothing uncertain, and then there they were. In shocking clarity.
To call it a park would be an overstatement to some of them. It was rather small, they could see the end of it any direction they looked, and the number of trees could be counted on an average human's fingers and toes. Several benches were scattered across a path that weaved around these scant few trees in a loosely circular formation.
Near each bench was a flowerbed. Perfectly rectangular, which could be proven if one had the proper tool and were inclined to check, and only five feet wide, the flowers in them were as varied in appearances as the people who were now standing in this supposed park.
The only noise was a soft bubbling that came from a fountain behind them. It was larger than even the trees, which themselves were 15 feet high, and the base was diamond shaped. The height came from the large statue of a dragon, on two feet and aiming its mouth, from which sprang three arcing jets of water, towards the sky, standing in the middle.
Other than the group that had appeared the park seemed empty. No citizens out for a stroll or vagrants using the benches for a bed despite it being nighttime. Not even an animal could be seen.
And surrounding this park, which seemed separate somehow from anything else, was a city.
Even those from what might be called a "modern world" would think it somewhat unusual. Large buildings could be seen in every direction and neon lights flashing various advertisements and names of establishments. On several buildings were large screens filled with news broadcasts. Subtitled in a language that, though none of them should know, was perfectly understandable to the group. And titled with the words "Prana News"
"Seems that the sports stadium will reopen tomorrow. In other news; an attack on the police station was thwarted earlier today. More on that after these sponsors." Followed by an advertisement for some kind of breakfast cereal for children "It glows in the bowl and in your stomach; who said breakfast can't be fun! Try Nuk-O's today!"
As they tried to get their bearings each of the group would, again, hear something calling to them. They felt a mental tug which seemed to want them to go somewhere. Somewhere that they instinctively knew was in the center of this city of metal and lights.
Whether they followed this tug willingly and directly, or instead went in another direction and tried to ignore it, was up to each individual.
Their first steps into a brand new world had begun.