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A Walk in the Direction of the Eternal

What is it, the tween? 
It is the way from dream to dream.
And if we lose the way? 
We will wander the wheel until death finds us. 

Wake up.
Come with me.
Keep to the tween.
Stay close.

Where do we go?
There, around the wheel.
Why is it so dark?
We are far from the Obelisphere.

What is it, the tween?
It is the way from dream to dream.
And if we lose the way?
We will wander the wheel until death finds us.

The tween, then, it is safe?
No, there is danger, known and not yet dreamt.
How will we survive?
I will show you the way and teach you all I know.

Here is a field of flowers.
Pass among them without fear.
They may speak to you.
Do not reply.

What are they, the clouds of fire on the horizon?
A dream storm.
From where it comes?
From the direction of the ephemeral.

We must find cover.
Here, beneath this bower of a tree of stars.
Around us, it rains bones and blood and burning flesh.
It passes now, and we must continue.

It goes where, the dream storm?
Back to the ephemeral.
But it continues still in the same direction?
Yes, it rounds the wheel.

We have come to a river of rocks.
Focus on a point on the opposite shore.
Move always toward your objective.
Step carefully.

In our path, stands a nightmare of the ephemeral.
It drools bile from between its pointed teeth.
Its claws are caked with crusts of dried blood.
It speaks.

Who encroaches upon my borders?
We are dreamwalkers in the eternal.
Do you dare to trespass my domain?
We see no boundary that could be breached.

You have passed between the near stone and yonder hedge.
My realm extends to the far tree and to the next breeze that blows in your face.
I am a troll baron.
None leave my fief while I live.

It sets upon me with gnashing teeth.
It rends my flesh with nasty claws.
I fight with strength and will.
There it lies, unmoving at my feet.

You are badly injured?
I am very cold.
What must I do?
Find the healing loam.

Where the ground is low.
Where the tall grass grows.
Bring the smooth mud from under.
Cover the wound.

The nightmare, it came not from the direction of the ephemeral?
Rather, it is made of the stuff of the ephemeral.
Nor does it go back there?
Yes, see, even now, it fades.

It is better now, your wound?
No, but we must continue.
How much further have we to go?
Until the colored clouds become clear.

I am feverish and weak.
I struggle to walk yet move no further.
The wheel turns beneath my feet.
Its colors flash across my vision.

Go on.
You know the way.
Keep to the tween.
We will meet again in the eternal.

* * *

I make a pyre atop a high hill.
Bright flames reach toward colored clouds.
I scatter your ashes into an eternal wind.
I grieve.

I will keep to the tween.
I will remember all that you have taught.
I will navigate the night until the clouds are clear.
I continue alone.