- The Mad Hatter, “The Clock Strikes Black”
A young girl had fallen down a rabbit hole one day. She was a rather rude child, for no invitation had stated that such a sacred path could be taken by a stranger like her. “Curious.” She had whispered with an insatiable curiosity as prying fingers curled into the cool damp earth at the entrance of the rabbit hole. “I wonder where it leads…” Unsteady arms had yielded to the pull of Wonderland, allowing her to fall into dreams that revealed a land the likes of which her parents scoffed at.
Such immeasurable innocence guided her from the dregs of Wonderland to the blooming potential of it all. Barely able to comprehend such a world, she balanced in her hands what she believed to be magic, unaware of the consequences that would befall the world due to her unannounced visitation. Those fragile hands, the very hands that had made delicate crowns of looping daisies, had twisted the heart of a man not strong enough to take it.
But now this was a different girl who had fallen, one slightly older who screamed in terror instead of looking around in childish wonder. It was pitch black when Emeline plummeted through the wide tunnel, not the rosy room Alice had drifted through. Emeline wasn’t the innocent young girl Alice had left as, because she had seen too much to ever go back. Once a girl becomes aware of the harm that could be done to her, they grow up, because little girls never think about the dangers in their lives. It was the very reason Alice had gotten into trouble. She had left a whole world to die, had she even known?
Emeline didn’t know what would happen to her when she hit the ground, if she ever did stop falling. Perhaps I will be blasted into a million pieces, they will have to carry me around in jars. She wondered if The Hatter would dance with an unattached head, unaware that the rest of her was missing. I would never doubt it. “If only there was a candle.” It would be slightly less unnerving if she could see the floor, the smooth journey making her wonder if she was truly falling.
There was a sudden hiss near her head and a dim purple haze littered the room. The shoddy illumination showed that the hallway wasn’t wide at all, but stood barely a foot away from her on all sides. Looking down, the vertical tunnel seemed endless and foreboding. “I suppose I shall be trapped forever.” The realization wasn’t as jarring as she would’ve previously imagined as her voice reverberated off of the stone walls. She surely wouldn’t get into any more trouble if she remained trapped there.
Although the majority of the book series takes place in Wonderland, there are a few scenes that take place in the Victorian era. After being with The Mad Hatter for so long, Emeline (the heroin) can no longer differentiate between Wonderland and her home, making those around her believe her to be insane.
Emeline doubts her sanity throughout the novel and must often tell her loved ones that she’s sane even as she herself doubts it.
What will Emeline have to do in order to fight against her inevitable fall into madness?
“Alice is not as sane as she pretends to be.”
-The Mad Hatter from The Clock Strikes Black