Author(s): Sally Gardner
I looked back into the room. The floor had become a sea and my parents' bed a ship, seen from a great distance. I could hear their voices calling me from far away. It lasted a minute or less. Maybe I dreamed it. Maybe I didn't. It was an image that came to haunt me, and I have often wondered what would have happened if I had done as I was told and left the silver shoes alone. Would everything then have been all right?
It is the night, and I have lit the first of seven candles to write my story by. My name is Coriander Hobie, and I have a great many things to tell-of silver shoes that tempted me and an alligator most rare; of London, the home of my childhood, and another, stranger land, one that I thought only existed in dreams; and of an ebony box whose treasure only now am I beginning to understand. The box was once my mother's, but its secrets were meant for me.
This being my story and a fairy tale besides, I will start once upon a time. . .