Tim tossed and turned in his sleep, muttered words fell from his lips as he rolled over on his back and kicked off the covers. He sat up with a start, sweat making his bangs stick to his forehead. He rubbed his eyes with the heel of his hand and tugged absently at the tank top he had slept in. He was hot and cold all at the same time and Tim wondered if sleeping in sweat pants was a better choice than boxers. He kicked off his blankets and got up and padded over to his window and looked out.
A strong breeze blew the branches of the trees and fallen leaves were caught up and made to dance across the lawn. The moon hung big and silvery in the sky. Tim leaned his forehead against the window pane and let out a slow shuddering sigh. “It was just a dream.”
“Are you so sure of that young one?” A cool voice said from behind him.
Tim whirled around and scanned his room. The room was quiet and dark, the shadows seemed to stretch across everything and whatever warmth there was seemed to disappeared. “Who’s there?!”
“A visitor. A traveler. Someone who has been misplaced. I suppose that is the best way to describe me.” The shadows seemed to deepened and bend, to take shape and form until woman draped in black robes and a horned headdress stood before him. Her skin was unbelievably pale, it looked sickly off color to Tim in the almost nonexistent light in the room.
“Who . . who are you?” Tim asked quietly as he shifted toward his bedside where he kept a spare bo staff.
“Are you so needing a name?” the woman asked as she stepped closer, the staff she held sounding unnaturally loud as it was tapped against the floor. With a slight wave of her hand Tim stopped and seemed rooted to the spot. “Maleficent. You may call me Maleficent.”
“What did you do to me? Why can’t I move?!” Tim snarled. His limbs felt heavy, almost frozen as he stood there.
Maleficent said nothing for a moment as she took the time to circle Tim. Her golden eyes seem to drink in every inch of Tim. “Calm yourself. I mean you no harm. You’re perfectly safe with me.
“You’ll excuse me if I don’t quite believe that,” Tim said softly.
Maleficent’s smile could almost be called gleeful as she settled in front of Tim. Her long slim fingers tilted up Tim’s chin so he meet her gaze. “I am not of your world. I am uncertain of how I arrived here. I spent some time exploring this place, see if there would anything useful for me here. Unfortunately except for a few instances your world is rather dull. So it is time for me to return to my world, but it is not an easy task. I need … certain elements to open the gateway up.”
“Sorry magic really isn’t my thing, but I could get you the number of a rhyming demon,” Tim said as he tried to step away from Maleficent but failing.
She let go of Tim’s chin and caressed his cheek for a moment, “A selfless heart is what I need. A soul who puts the wants and needs of their loved ones before their own. You, I have watched you. You who strives to be the perfect son for neglectful parents so not to be a bother to them. You strive to be the perfect Robin for your mentor, so past mistakes will not be made again and he will never regret allowing you into his life. How could I not choose you? But you are not the only element that I need. I have the damsel, now I need the hero.”
“I am no one’s damsel in distress,” Tim growled, only managing to clench his hands into fists.
Maleficent laughed, “You are whatever I make you into my Princeling. Now then the hero … you must give me his name.”
The corner of Maleficent’s lips twitched as she stepped closer. “Oh it’s not that easy Princeling. There is a name that echos in your heart. I can almost hear it, it beats so loudly, that is the name I want,” She raised her staff up to Tim’s face, the orb glowed with a sickly green light that Tim couldn’t look away from. “Tell me his name. Speak the name that warms your heart.”
“N-no,” Tim whispered shaking his head.
The light brighten and seemed to surround Tim. His mind felt sluggish and all that seemed to penetrate the light was Maleficent’s voice and Tim couldn’t help but obey. “Roy, his name is Roy.”
“He won’t come for me,” Tim whispered. “He doesn’t even know I exist.”
“The road of true love is a long and winding one child. You are just at the beginning of it,” Maleficent said simply. “Now the evening draws close to ending and we must be away before your so called family is aware of our leaving,” Maleficent said beckoning Tim to follow after her. “Though, perhaps a different attire for you.”
She raised her staff and once again the green light enveloped him. When it faded he found the the tank top and sweat pants he had gone to bed in was gone and instead he wore a red silk tunic that was belted at the waist, black leggings hugged his legs, and soft leather boots were on his feet. Tim turned his head and saw his reflection in the mirror and circling his head was a silver crown.
“So much more fitting for your role in all of this don’t you think my Princeling?” Maleficent strode to a wall of his room and waved her staff in front of it. A doorway that had never been there appeared leading to a long hallway that Tim knew had no place in the Manor.
“Come with me Timothy. Let me show you what your destiny truly is.” A ball of the green light formed before Maleficent, and, as before, Tim had no choice but gaze upon it. With a wave of her staff Maleficent sent it down the hallway and Tim obediently followed after and the door way disappeared after they walked through it.