The darkest part of this part was inspired by Ernesto Cortazar’s “Beethoven’s silence” so I advise you to listen to it while reading this. After that try to play Schubert’s “Serenade” and “Waltz No. 2” by Dmitri Shostakovich. It will put you in the same mood I was in when writing this part.
In the afternoon she told me to leave the cave. My wounds healed up and I didn’t need her help anymore. I left it the way I entered it – through my waterfall. When I stepped on the lake bank the grass wasn’t sharp anymore, neither were rocks nor branches. It all seemed like a nightmare that ended in the cave. It was late afternoon when I left my lake. I needed to hurry up to get to the village before the night fall.
When I entered the village, women greeted me as if I wasn’t missing for two days and one night. No one asked me where I were nor what I was doing. No one wanted to know what it’s like to spend the night outside the village. In a way I was glad they do not ask me about anything. I really didn’t have anything to say about that.
It was my turn to guard the village that evening. I stood on my post, watching the jungle. A visitor came in the village and I was grateful I do not need to watch another visitor’s island session. I could hear the music and women’s laughter in the background. They were dancing. Suddenly a visitor showed up in front of me. I mean like – one step away from me, looking me in the eyes, thinking I will focus him instead of the jungle. When he grew bored of waiting for my attention, he sat on the floor keeping his eyes on me.
Then I heard it, a sound from the jungle. I jumped over the visitor and ran into the jungle. He was following me…what a fool! I turned and hit his knee cap with my spear. That stopped him. I was running fast, the sound was louder and louder. Even though it was night and I was in a forest, nothing was hurting me like it did last night on the lake. I had no time to think about that, I was almost upon the creature. Finally, in the dark part of the forest (yeah, even during the night the dark part of the forest is visibly darker than part of the forest that is sunny during the day) I saw her.
She didn’t see me nor hear me. She was wearing some kind of sleeveless night gown with bare back. The gown was made of white silk and it was ending right above her knees. Actually, it was torn right above her knees and had some mud stains here and there. I presume it was originally reaching her ankles but she tore it off for some reason. Her hair was curly in the color of old gold and when the moon rays touched the curls, they would have orange glow. Half of her back was concealed by her hair. Her skin was white but not ordinary white, it was too pale to be called white actually.
I rushed to reach her. When I stepped in front of her, I saw the glow in her eyes. Those were tears. She wasn’t even aware of my presence and passed right through me. To my surprise, that didn’t scare me, I continued to follow and observe her. Her toe and finger nails were painted black. Some thorns stuck in her gown and her ankles were full of scratches. Some scratches were bleeding but she didn’t care about it.
The night was really cold and I could see she was freezing. She staggered from one tree to another, looking around her, trying to figure out where she is. A strap of her gown refused to remain on her right shoulder and was persistently falling off it. She was lifting it on her shoulder automatically. As if this strap is the only thing standing between her being decently and indecently dressed. At one point she stopped and reached for her cheeks. Only now she became aware she has been crying. For a very long time she just stood like that, watching her tears roll down her cheek and fall on her palm. Then she drank those tears as if it was the only liquid she drank that night and continued to stagger. From one tree to another.
When the sun got up, we were still in the dark part of the forest. Sun gave me a bit of warmth, but she was still cold, inapt to feel the warmth of the sun on her skin. In the middle of the dark part of the forest, there was a small breach of the sun. She stood underneath it, lifted her head towards the sun. Now she could feel the warmth but she kept her eyes closed as if the sun was too strong for them, as if she didn’t want to see the sun, only to feel it.
Finally she decided to take some rest. She laid on the ground in a position of a fetus with her both hands under her cheek. She fell asleep under the warmth of the sun. I squatted above her, trying to figure out who she is, what brought her here. I knew for a fact she wasn’t from the village. She looked too fragile and too broken to be any of the women that lived there. When she turned to sleep on her back, I saw a cut in the inner part of her left leg. It began next to her knee and was ending somewhere up the leg in her night gown. It wasn’t bleeding anymore. The blood was dry but the amount of it led me to conclusion the cut was really deep. No wonder she was staggering between exhaustion, this wound, hunger and fear. Oh you can bet she was afraid. I just do not know what frightened her.
Sun set and the moon came. It was a full moon so the darkness seemed even spookier than the night before. Even though she seemed hopeless, she got on her feet and continued to search for a way out of the jungle. How long have you been here? Why don’t you sleep during the night and try to find the exit during the day? How come you didn’t freeze yet? Nights here can be truly cold. Her lips showed a sign of dehydration, the weakness in her movements showed a sign of starvation. She has been here for a seemingly long time.
I heard a noise. Something was walking next to her. She didn’t notice it but I did. I couldn’t see what it was because it was always walking in the shadows next to her. It reached for her hand and she gave him her hand. I don’t know how I knew it was a HE. I don’t know how I knew his hand was warm, soft and gentle either. She stopped crying, still not looking at him, allowing him to lead her. Her feet are not tripping anymore. He is giving her his strength.
He slowly led her to a glade. There were no shadows to hide him anymore, only a full moon shining above him. Each time she wanted to turn her head to face him, he would gently touch her chin and direct her head to watch the moon. He could not do anything to hide himself from me though. I saw him in all his glory.
He laid her on the thick layer of green grass in the middle of the glade and touched her lips with his finger. She felt so safe ever since he came. I didn’t, I put my spear on the ground. If I try to pierce him with my spear and he dodges it, I might pierce her. Knife is more reliable. With a knife in my hand I sneaked behind him. As I jumped on his broad shoulders to stab him in the neck, he just stood up and shook me off them. I jumped on my feet and came at him again but he was much stronger than me. His hand hit me in the chest so hard I lost my breath for a moment. When I hit the floor I rolled away, as far as I could. Good thing he wasn’t following me because neither my spear not my knife were near me. I had no means of getting alive from that fight.
He forgot about me in an instant and leaned above her. Her hair fascinated him. Wrapping a lock of her hair around his finger took all his attention. He unwrapped it and watched it fall down gracefully. What about her you ask? She was just looking at the moon, smiling, feeling safe in his hands, not knowing who he truly is. His hand touched her lips again, it even seemed he will kiss her but he changed his mind. Instead, his hand slid down her chin and neck to her tummy.
He was wrinkling her night gown pulling it up, keeping his hand still on her tummy. When wrinkled gown fully exposed her tummy, he placed his big, warm, soft, furry hand on it. His hand covered her whole tummy. She started to breath differently and I couldn’t figure out was it fear or excitement. He spread his fingers so her bellybutton was right between his thumb and index finger. It all happened in an instant – I saw my knife in his hand, she turned her head away from the moon to see who he really is and he scored my knife in her belly. My knife!
She was dying slowly. Fresh blood sprinkled her white night gown. He kept looking at her eyes. She kept looking at his. There were no tears, no sadness at all. Only contempt. In the last moment of her life, he pressed his lips on hers and took her last breath. He lifted his head, looked at the moon and howled at it. In that moment her body turned into a violet mist. Wind lifted the mist in the air. It brought it straight to me. Mist wrapped itself around me. No, no, it wasn’t like that. It became me. When I heard her voice echoing in my head
“He got what he wanted but lost what he desired”,
I knew better, I knew that was me. He turned his head towards me, his nostrils caught my scent. I started running. He was hunting me and boy was he fast, faster than any human could ever be. I felt his breath on my back as he was getting ready to jump but I turned, just like she did, I mean just like I did earlier, into a violet mist. He fell on his paws and tried to inhale the mist. Wind took me in its hands and drove me to a profound. His hands let me fall in it. As I was falling, I saw his eyes and knew he wont follow me to where I am going.