A little more from the second chapter, where Rhoda gets an answer to part of her questions..
“Well” sighed Mee. “Your story actually begins many years ago, even before you were born, and even before I was born, and this, as I already told you, was almost four thousand years ago. I know its beginning from our old books, and the rest of it I heard from my grandmother, three thousand years ago. We, the demons, have a very long memory, as you will probably discover in the future.”
When Rhoda heard her say the word ‘demons’ she shivered. At once, she knew where the phrase ‘your wish is our command’ come from. When her mother was telling her bedtime stories, a lot of them were about demons that were caught by curse inside a lamp, because of their behavior, and their punishment was to be forced to obey anyone who held their lamp. But she had no lamp to control Mee with, so why did Mee use that phrase? What made her, Rhoda, the queen of Kedem? But all she asked was: “Is Kedem a demons land?”
Mee sighed again, ‘She is sighing all the time, that Mee!’ Rhoda thought with fury. She had no patience for this. Anyway Mee went on: “not exactly, your majesty. Kedem is really your country, and only yours, because you have invented it. But you filled it with many of my people, and we have to obey all of your orders.”
“I don’t understand” said Rhoda. “What do you mean by saying that I invented Kedem? Is Kedem not a real country?”
“It is real, your majesty” said Mee. “But it was not one kingdom until you united it, and there were no demons here, until you brought us here. But since you brought us here there are no more people here, we moved every one of them to foreign countries because that is what you ordered us.”
“What? I expelled all people from Kedem? Who were they? Where did I expel them to? Why did I expel them?” Rhoda was very troubled. The thing she had done sounded very cruel. She never thought of herself as a cruel person, on the contrary – she knew herself to be a very good person.
“You evacuated them because you didn’t want to see any person, forever and ever, your majesty. This is what you told us, anyway, when you ordered us to take every last person away from here. We moved them to different islands in the ocean around us. But we made sure that those are islands that will allow people to live on them peacefully. Islands with lots of plantation, lots of animals, houses – for them to live in, and ships – to allow them to sail from island to island.
All of our people worked on it for a long time, to move them all, and you stayed all that time in the mountain palace and didn’t want to see anyone, even us.” Mee stopped for a moment to breath. “This is the reason Dee took care of you in the mountain palace. She knows how to be invisible. The ability passes in her family – it’s hereditary. In the period you didn’t want anyone around you, she took care of your every need.”
“But why didn’t I want anyone near me?” asked Rhoda. She didn’t really remember anything about this.
“You didn’t tell us and we can’t read minds, your majesty,” answered Mee.
‘Good’, thought Rhoda, ‘that means that at least my thoughts are protected from them, even if Dee can follow me, invisible, to any place I go.’
“And how did I get to the mountain palace?” asked Rhoda. She thought maybe there is a way to discover what exactly had happened to her.
“Your Majesty ordered that one of us will take you to a beautiful place, with fruit trees, lakes and forests, and that there will be no one there. So I was sent by our king to take you, and all the rest of our people came to this place to evacuate from it all people who lived here and to prepare it for you. Meanwhile I took your majesty to the palace we had prepared for you, in the mountains. But when you saw me you started to scream you didn’t want to see anyone, ever, so we had to bring Dee as she was the only one who could take care of you, without you seeing her.”