The Lands of Forever, yet undiscovered, sat as fresh as a flower in the Atlantic Ocean. They were not exactly a part of Earth. Since Forever’s many universes varied in immortality, this tiny one found itself to be one of the mortal Worlds.
Forever, the lost Continent, had once been a Star. When Earth came along, Forever found favor with its procreative atmosphere. And since Forever’s atmosphere was similar, it roosted itself comfortably in the warm, deep ocean.
Forever, a Spirit and a Land omnipotent and of its own mind, watched as Earth’s continents moved and molded. It observed the creatures of Earth as they evolved.
Having been in existence already, Forever knew about the creatures. It had brought into being many kinds of Creatures on its own Shores. Once, it sent dreams of its own Creatures – Fauns, Fairies, Centaurs, MerMaids, Vampires, and Dragons – to the people of Earth. Throughout generations and in their own cultures, the people idolized the dreams of these Creatures. Humans were rare to find in Forever, but as it watched the humans of Earth from its perch in the ocean, Forever decided it wanted no humans from Earth in its Lands. It was happy with its rolling Meadows, lush Forests, and its secret Fountain of Youth.
Forever was not civilized yet. Its Creatures ran wild in the Forests, glorying in the riches of the Land. Did Forever want to be civilized? Eventually, yes.
Over time it had nearly fallen asleep to the world of Earth, looking instead upon the gifts of Magic it bestowed on its own Creatures and on its Lands. But one Day, a great fleet of ships sailed very nearly into Forever. At once it became invisible and permeable, so that the ships passed right through Forever without even knowing it existed.
That had been Columbus’s first voyage. Forever looked on in wonder at how civilized the men had become in only a few thousand years. Then Forever became curious. Just what would happen if it opened its shores to the men of Earth? Would they appreciate its natural gifts of Magic? Or would they misuse it?
As the man named Columbus made a second voyage, Forever nearly showed itself to him. But it changed its mind at the last minute and became invisible just as his fleet cleared the horizon. Forever told itself to wait. It knew that the men of Earth would make another voyage. Because when man was curious, he never stopped exploring until that curiosity had been quenched.
Now, along came this gold-hungry Spaniard with his hopes set on the Fountain of legend that humans had wittingly dreamed up all on their own. Little did they know that it was real. Forever wanted to see what they would do if they knew it truly existed. More importantly, it wanted to see just what Ponce would do if it gave him exactly what he wanted.
So, Forever sized up Ponce de Leon and his crew. 200 men. 6 ships. It decided that if they should enter the Lands, they would have to know just who was boss.
And it wasn’t Ponce.