Travelling through the portal was basically like flying through space, really fast though it felt like we were watching a movie. It didn't feel like we were moving, it just looked like it. Sort of like light speed, except I'm pretty sure we made some turns, and we were kind of like disembodied spirits. I could feel the presence of everyone else, but I couldn't actually see them. Just blurs of light flying past at insane speeds. The end of the trip was a very sudden stop. We went from watchin the universe fly by to standing in a forest. It was so disorienting that I almost fell over, and Marcus and Brogan, did fall. Lily looked perfectly fine, and she started laughing as soon as she saw the other two on the ground.
"Who brought the alcohol, and why didn't I get any?" She tried to look upset, but the bell giggle noises ruined her image.
"Aren't you too young to drink?" Marcus looked completely serious as he started lounging on the ground.
"Hey! Do not bring your laws into my fantasy. I bet I can drink way more than you." She started walking angrily away.
"I feel like that was a bit of an overreaction. It was only a joke about her height."
"Some girls are sensitive to height comments, but, you also made an age comment. So that just made it worse." Brogan got up and started to brush his clothes off.
They kept talking about what to say, and not say to girls, but I wasn't really interested. I was a lot more interested in the forest around us, and the lack of a portal. The sun was shining, but there was plenty of shade from the trees. They looked like some kind of pine, or something with needles, but they were hundreds of feet tall, and really wide. There were some smaller trees, and some bushes, and lots of ferns. I could also hear animals, like birds, and squirrels, so I was pretty sure it wasn't an undead forest. Unless undead birds make normal bird sounds.
It definitely reminded me of fantasy forest where there's elves living in the tree tops, or giant animals walking around, even if I didn't see those, I still expected them at any moment. I wandered around a little bit, but stayed close enought that I could still hear the boys talking, the sound echoed a little bit, but my superior dragon hearing helped me to keep track of them. Eventually, I found Lily. She was lying in the middle of a bunch of ferns, holding a squirrel. They were both chittering away, like squirrels do, so it seemed like they were having a conversation. I watched for a little while, but eventually the squirrel saw me and started making the really loud squirrel noise. Lilly just patted its head, and chittered something which made it quiet down, but it kept staring at me.
"So, you speak squirrel?"
"It's a fey thing." She shrugged. "Where are the others?"
"Uh, where we first got here. They were talking about how to talk to girls."
"Oh, really? What were they saying? Was it good, or are they just idiots? I need more ways to mess with Marcus. Tell me everthing." She sat up and stared at me, filled with anticipation.
"I kinda stopped listening after they said you weren't supposed to talk to a girl about height or age. The forsest was distracting."
"I know, I only walk a little way, and this squirrel started asking me for food. I told him I did not have any, so then we started talking about our favorite types of food. Turns out, we do not like the same food."
"I never would have guessed that your likes would be different..." I was going to say more, but Marcus and Brogan found us.
"Lily, Bwyd. Can you access the game system?" Marcus looked very concerned.
I tried to bring up my stats, but nothing happened.
"Do you think it's broken?" I looked at Marcus, hoping he would have an idea.
"I have no idea. I got a notification before we went through the portal, but I haven't gotten anything since then."
Lily chittered to the squirrel, then looked at us, "Mister squirrel doesn't know either. He just thinks we are all crazy."
"We might be." Brogan was holding a MUD. "It looks like we were briefly in a strange dimension, but only for a moment. We probably didn't even get to see it, but then we were sent here. If I had a better device I could probably figure out where here is, but this thing can't process that much data."
"You can track where we went?" Marcus looked interested.
"Not with this, but back in the city, before, everthing. Before the attack." He looked like everything finally sunk in. He had been running on adrenaline, but now that we had stopped. He was overwhelmed. He dropped to his knees and a few tears started running down his face. "I can't believe, this. Everyone I knew is gone." He started shivering.
For a brief moment I was shocked, but it kind of made me remember that this wasn't a game. Especially not to him. His whole world had been taken from him. He was lost with a few strangers, and none of us knew what was going on. So since he was shivering, I figured he could use a blanket, and a pat on the back. I briefly considered hugging him, but I didn't want to take Lily's job.
"Hey, Brogan, they still had the portal. They can still get out. We just have to find them."
"That's easy for you to say, everything I've worked for is gone. Everyone I knew is gone. You can't understand." He sounded a little angry.
"If that's how you feel I'll take my blanket back." I glared at him, glad that I didn't hug him.
"Look at us, we're no different than you. Well, for the most part. We all had lives, families, friends, and now we are here, and they aren't. We don't even have our bodies, though this body is probably better than my real one."
"Oh, no." Marcus put his hand on his head. "Our bodies. Who knows what's happened to them. I know they don't go into the game world with us."
"What if the same amount of time passed there as it did here?." Lily was also starting to look worried.
Marcus looked really pale, "If that's the case, I'm dead."