“She understands, my friends, as I said she would!” Kullervo cried triumphantly.
Connie thought things over, while the Society may not have been right, Kullervo’s ways were not either. She was conflicted; yes, she wanted to help these creatures, but was the complete annihilation of humanity truly the only way? No, there had to be another way, there was always another way. But how to convince him…
“I do see what you mean,” she started, trembling slightly. She was walking on a thin line, she needed to be careful.
“Humans can be awful, they go about their lives harming the world without even considering the damage they do.” Many of the creatures surrounding her, including Kullervo, growled in agreement with her, “but, that can not only mean that there is no hope of restoring a cycle.”
Kullervo tilted his bird head, as did many other mythical creatures around them, making noises of confusion.
“By what do you mean when you say a ‘cycle’?” Kullervo asked, his eyes staring down at Connie, as though he could see right through her.
Connie gulped, regaining her courage, “I mean, a system, a way of life, a circle that everyone can follow. Where the lives of humans don’t have to harm the world. A cycle, like the circle of life, where everything has a place and can be put back into the cycle after its use.”
It was a long shot, a chance that may never really come to light, but she had few options to go on. With the way the world was it could be impossible to make such a change, however, it could also be perfect to fix everything.
Kullervo chuckled, “You think such a thing can fix everything? It would take a large sum of the human population to make such a ‘cycle’ come to life. And even then, it would take even more humans to uphold such a thing for the future.”
Connie still persisted, “Maybe, but I think it can happen. We just have to try.”
Connie had to try, as Scark said, she had not even tried, but she had to now.
“Please, just think of it, a world where humans don’t pollute,” Connie said as she stretched a hand towards Kullervo, “a world where mythicals can live happily,” Kullervo lowered his head towards Connie’s hand, hesitant, but intrigued by her words, “a world where we could live together.”
Connie’s hand touched Kullervo, a bond formed within their minds. Connie reached for Kullervo’s ocean, connecting it with her own. She formed shapes, a vision, showing the shape-shifter what could be. Together, they saw a bright world, filled with green and wild colors, within it was humans mixed with mythical creatures, living together under a blue and clouded sky. A rock dwarf tended to a garden with a tall woman, a dragon and pegasus raced in the sky with their companions on their backs, unicorns joined with humans in a field of flowers, water sprites played in a pond with children giggling. The bonds of companionship could be felt in the vision, strong and peaceful enough to seem like paradise. Connie could feel Kullervo adjusting to the sight, his mind and hers collided, making new forms appear in their shared vision. Wood sprites could be seen among the trees, a gorgon’s silhouette slithered in the dark shadows, frost wolves chased each other with their companions cheering them on, fire imps danced in the flames of a grill being used for a large party, mermaids swam up a large river to greet humans jumping into the water; it was perfect.
Connie could feel how happy the vison was, she could feel the companionship between humans and mythicals, even though it was just a dream. But she wanted this to be real and she could sense Kullervo’s feelings shift as he saw this.
Connie could sense the other mythical creatures around them grow restless. ‘They need to see this too’ Connie thought.
Connie spread her reach to them, finding the wavering bonds that had been cast away earlier. She connected them to the vision, showing them her shared dream with Kullervo. Even when it felt like her mind was being stretched in all directions, she held firm. She never had bonded with so many creatures at once, being cautious not to overwhelm herself before. Now, she needed to push her limits, regardless, they need to see this as much as Kullervo did.
Through the bonds, Connie felt every creature gaze at the scene with longing, want, desire, and other mixed feelings that began to overpower her own. The dream began to grow and more people and creatures appeared. Great bears cuddled sleeping humans, great boars basked in the sunlight on beds of tall grass, griffons cried in the air with humans riding on them, weather giants stood proud in the sky, trolls wandered with human companions, storm-birds flew higher into the endless blue; this was a utopia.
But just as everything was going so well, Connie began to feel herself reach her limit. Exhaustion caught up to her, making her mind darken, her hold on the bonds loosened and released. Connie lost her balance and began to fall over, she braced herself for the fall. However, she found herself landing on a cold but soft surface rather than the prickling nest of sticks. Using the last of her strength, Connie lifted her head to see what she fell on. To her surprise, Kullervo had taken the form of a three-headed dog, a Cerberus if she remembered correctly.
All three of the heads stared at Connie as she fell further into unconsciousness, their yellow and gold eyes had the faintest hint of care that Connie barely caught.
“You have intrigued me, Universal. I will speak with you more about this vision of a world you have shown me and my followers. Later, when you have rested well.” he said with a low growl in his voice, but not in an intimidating way. Kullervo seemed calmer and friendly, and overall not as dangerous. She briefly wondered if this was the same shape-shifter she had met earlier.
It seemed like Connie was not going to die and with all the loss of energy she could not resist falling asleep.
As the universal companion gave in to her exhaustion, she just barely heard the cries of a seagull draw close. Soon after, she welcomed the calm of darkness as she slept.