Tower of Plants

Stairs spiraled around a tall, tall, tall tower whose diameter was only three meters wide. I climbed, step after step for what seemed to be miles. Needless to say, I felt tired. I had to save the princess though, at the top of the tower.

The worse part was, there were no railings. I peered over the side of the steps to find the dizzying display of miniature mountains and oceans. I quickly withdrew back to the semi-safety of the steps.

Every few steps were potted plants. They were lush and sported giant, green leaves. They sometimes spoke to me, and whenever I felt sick from the height, they would comfort me, telling me that “Even if you fall, you can just continue where you last left off.”

After I passed a layer of clouds, I was dreary. My lungs gasped for breath, my heart…beat for blood, and for some reasons my ears started to hurt. Not my actual ears, but the space between my ears and my jaws.

“Don’t give up! You’re almost halfway there,” the plants encouraged me. I gave them my thanks, and begrudgingly stepped onwards. They needed to work on their encouragement.

“You look tired,” one plant said. The plant had a strange shape that reminded me of Victreebel from Pokemon. It poured a somewhat translucent liquid into a cup-shaped leaf. “Please, have some tea.”

I took the leaf cup and thanked the plant. I drank thirstily. I mean, how else would I drink? The tea tasted sweet and smooth, but also very savory and refined. It gave me a jolt of energy and I felt pumped to take on the tower.

I ran several more miles up the tower, then slowed down again back to a mindless march. The plants continued to encourage me.

I noticed the steps were made of different materials. Some were tiled, others were made of marble or cobblestone. I hated the slippery polished steps, but I loved the wooden steps. They felt very homely to walk on. There were also strange black steps that seemed to pulsate but those didn’t occur often, and I never bothered to take a closer look.

After walking for nearly a day, I felt hungry, naturally. I asked if any of the plants had anything to eat. “Up ahead, there are fruits,” they told me. I thanked them and continued on my way.

And indeed there were fruits. Apples, oranges, grapes, mangoes, pineapples, cherries, bananas, kiwis, blueberries, raspberry, everyberry, and peaches. I bit into an apple, and its sweet juices gushed out as I took a mouthful of the crispy meat. The everyberry tasted like every berry. Which, isn’t as great as it sounds. The water chestnuts were great too, but I’m not sure those qualify as fruits. The bananas and peaches gave off a wonderful aroma as I ate them, akin to fruity shampoos except with less shampoo and more tropical.

After a few more hours, I reached the top. A castle was built on the thin tower, wobbling this way and that as though it were dancing. I’m surprised the structure still stood, and it resembled an elephant balancing on a pole. Except a castle has even less motor skills than an elephant.

A thorned vine guarded the entrance. “What’s the password?” it asked.

“Password?”

“Of course! You haven’t met any obstacles yet, you should overcome at least one if you intend to truly save the princess,” the vine said.

“Obstacle!”I puffed indignantly. “What do you call those flights of stairs I’ve been climbing for twenty hours? Straight up! I’d like to you see you do that feat.”

“You say that only because I have no feat.”

I continued, “I demand you let me finish my goal, else what’s the whole point?”

“You’re just desperate to meet the princess!” it taunted.

“Who is this princess anyways?!”

“You mean you don’t know?” the vine asked. “Well you need to know if you want to get past. It doesn’t matter. The princess isn’t into other girls.”

“I’m not a girl!” I exclaimed. I stomped my feet angrily. “I’m a boy and you’ll let me in!”

“There’s no one to trick up here,” the vine said. “We’re all plants. No need for a charade.”

I stared at the vine in a drawn out silence. “There’s no princess is there, is there?”

The vine shook its nonexistent head. “I’m sorry, no there isn’t. This is a castle, and the only thing in here is a mirror.”

Suddenly, raged welled up within me. “Hey wait a second! You’re trying to be all metaphorical on me!” I ran at the vine and ripped it apart. Its thorns cut deep into my hands and drew blood, but I didn’t care. I rammed the door of the castle open.

There was just one, giant room. And in it, was one, giant mirror decorated with gold.

I rammed the mirror too, and it shattered like glass (what else would it shatter like?). Gold bits fell down, and I picked them up into my pockets. The castle started to shake and crumble, probably because I upset the balance.

The princess stood behind the mirror, surprised. She was an ethereal beauty, with pale skin and dressed completely in a white dress. Like a ghost, but I didn’t come all the way up here to rescue a ghost. Her hair wasn’t white at least, more of a smooth light brown, and her eyes were dark blue. She did seem to glow though which I admit is suspicious. But all the ghosts I met didn’t glow either.

I grabbed the princess with my right hand, and with my left hand I continued to stuff gold into my pocket.

Can’t have too much gold after all.

I jumped out of the castle as it collapsed and fell to the Earth. We fell for miles, as the air screamed past our ears. We survived the fall though, probably because the princess was magical.

Kind of makes me wonder why she didn’t jump earlier.

Kind of makes me wonder the whole deal with the tower, the plants, and the fake mirror.

I love my gold though.

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