The Master demanded of the masks to float into his cape, and they did. I did too, I just had to think the thought and I floated right to him. Heat emanated from him and the crowding of all the soft bodies disturbed me. I felt helpless and my will was totally controlled. I let everything just happen, but I was aware that I shouldn’t, my mind seemed to have turned into a vihicle controlled from the outside. All I could do was glide along.
He wrapped the cape tightly around all of us, as if it had turned back into his skin. Slowly he carried us down into the sand, through it, and after a while of darkness, a shimmering of light came through the holes of the lacy cape. His hot body cooled, we all got cooler, a pleasant freshness took over as he lifted his cape and bid us to float out of his embrace.
The light glowed eerily, all colors that one could imagine, but dimly, shifty, flickering. I floated into the cool air and was surrounded by all the other masks. Close by were Mauve and Plum. For the first time I saw their empty eyes. There seemed to be no life, nothing. The expressions on their faces were stiff, dead just like objects, but they babbled on in a way that I did not hear before. They seemed to have changed. Fear crawled up within me, had I changed too into a dead thing?
Foggy Air Swirled Inside
In this endless place the light grew stronger and stronger, the surrounding became clearer. The master hissed with his fluty soprano, much smaller now, his shape changed into a long body with many arms on his side and a bundle of short legs with suction cups for feet. In one of his arms he held a large jar, elongated in shape, lamp like with what seemed like a moving, foggy air swirling inside: fog mother.
— Mother fog light —
He sat the elaborately decorated jar down onto the floor of the space, slowly the jar with the fog mother in it emanated light that grew brighter and brighter until the space we stood in became quite visible and glowing. It seemed to me like an underwater landscape of coral trees and anemones, of kelp without motion and of dry character, dead looking and before my very eyes the colorful elements of the space turned gray, crumbled and fog mother's light turned dim.
Her husband hissed and ripped the lacy coat off of himself, threw it down and thousands upon thousand of red spiders crawled out of the heap of lacy skin. He stood silent now, the spiders collecting on his naked form and covering him until he stood like a flaming object, moving spider skin rippling and shifting. The masks with the hollow eyes slithered toward him and let the spider skin absorb them.
I hid behind a grey and mottled looking growth of some kind, for a short moment looking at the glass jar, almost dim now. Fog mother gave me a look of unbelievable tenderness and mouthed to me: “Go my child, go, I can not help you.”
And Then There Was Only Silence
The Master underwent another transformation, now turning into a human form again, wearing a huge billowing coat of saffron colored cloth, a very blond beard braided and studded with gold beads. His crown was graced with the body of a golden snake. No sign of what he had been before was left. He picked up Mother Fog sitting in her prison and walked over the edge of the cave in front of him.
— Mask Master in human form —
I heard a splash and then there was only silence.
I pulled back quietly, feeling feet, feeling a body, touching my face and feeling no feathers. The master, was he my father? He vanished from my sight as I backed out slowly and crawled through loose sand towards a small fleck of light above me. I finally reached the fresh air. It was dark out and I did not know where I was. I ran and ran until the day light glowed, my direction to go was with the sunrise in my back.