Through the doors of an ancient palace, she found herself in the room of illusions. A transient sanctuary of power, a realm beyond life, where dreams manifested into reality. She explored its sparkling treasures, felt its elusive walls, and wandered deep into its beguiling lacuna.
They say the room appeared only when summoned, engulfing all it encountered.
From the room of illusions, she wandered into the hall of mirrors, where sapphire walls blended into antique faceted glass. Above her, a starry cosmos, turbulent with swirling clouds. She saw a hundred versions of herself in each mirror, a hundred stories of her life. Alternate realities for every decision she would ever make.
Down a golden staircase, through the dense foliage, into a hidden garden of trees. She found a man seated at a table with a majestic tiger at his knee.
He told her stories of the realm beyond, an endless continuum where one had to sail through misty vapour and tangled weeds. He invited her to travel with him, and promised her the riches and dreams she desired. She politely declined.
"Find yourself here," she said.
In the depths of an ancient step-well sat a bustling souk, glittering with treasures from the Silk Route. Precious jewellery and rich embroideries, fine shawls and porcelain cups – she searched for something that could truly be hers.
She found it eventually in a quiet corner: a hand-etched vase of tuberose flowers, a window of filtered light.