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Thursday, May 16, 2013
The Little Jewel - Chapter 5
After Z went home that night, I allowed myself to think about that moment when she had asked me to ride her hawk. If anyone else – including my mother – had asked me to willingly get close enough to a hawk to ride it, I am pretty sure I could have refused until the end of time. Yet something about Z made me want to be close to her, even if it meant riding a large predatory bird!
That's when I knew for certain that I loved her...
I went to sleep thinking of Z, and I suspect that I also dreamt of her. I woke up missing her, and couldn't wait to see her again.
Our days together fell into a kind of pattern. I would take her riding on Ferocious each morning, and then she would take me flying on her hawk each evening. In between, we spent as much time together as we could.
Somewhere along the way, she began spending the night at my house, and I stayed at hers every now and then. Not having her by my side was torture, but having her in my bed was torture as well! I was so afraid that if I touched her, she'd become repulsed by me, and then I'd never see her again.
I wonder what my mother would say if she knew how I felt about Z?
A couple of times as we rode Ferocious or the hawk, we saw a girl spying on my mother's house. She didn't get too close and always managed to disappear before we could sneak up and spy on her. My curiosity to know what she wanted got deeper and deeper.
One morning, the girl left something outside our door, and then ran off. It turned out to be a basket with a blanket in it and a note on top. Z flew up to grab the note, and then set it on the ground in front of us.
I read it out loud. “Dear old woman, if my grandfather is right, you are his mother who had to give him up when he was a baby. He said his adoptive parents always kept an eye on you and showed him who you were. According to him, you were raped when you were my age, and that is why you couldn't keep him. Well... now the same thing has happened to me, but I managed to hide this from my parents. It is my dearest hope that you will care for this baby of mine since I cannot. Sincerely, your great-grandaughter.”
I had tears in my eyes by the time I was finished reading, and I knew that my mother would be so happy to finally know what happened to her son. Not to mention, she would now have the baby she so desperately longed for!
“Mother!” I yelled. “Mother, come quick! There's a baby here!”
My mother did not respond, so I figured that she must be napping and couldn't hear me. I ran into the house excitedly, shouting all the while. Z must have decided to stay with the baby because she didn't follow me.
I found my mother asleep in her favorite chair, and impatiently tugged on her skirt.
“Mother! Wake up!” I shouted at the top of my lungs. Sometimes it took a few minutes of me yelling for her to wake up, so I decided to climb up her skirt and get closer to her ears.
“Mother!” I jumped up and down on her leg to get her attention. “Wake up! There's a baby here!”
The tea kettle started to whistle, and that caused the baby to cry. I stared in astonishment that Z had somehow managed to carry the baby inside the house, and waited for the combined noise to wake my mother. The tea kettle always woke my mother with it's high-pitched whistle.
When not even the tea kettle and the scared squalling of the newborn combined woke my mother, I knew that something was wrong. Ferocious – frightened by the baby's cries – started barking as if warning the baby to stay away from him. This made the infant scream in terror.
“I'll make the kettle stop if you tell Ferocious to be quiet!” Z yelled across the noise.
“Ferocious!” I roared imperiously. The dog stopped barking, but continued to show his displeasure by whining.
Z kept her word by disappearing into the kitchen and silencing the tea kettle. I slid down my mother's skirt and ran to the baby. I couldn't think of any way to calm it, so I gestured for Ferocious to lay down so that I could climb onto his back. He stood up and I could see the baby for the first time.
My only tool for expressing myself at the moment was my voice. So I sang a soothing song. It worked; both the baby and Ferocious stopped making noises.
“Jewel...” Z flew over to me once everything was quiet, and hovered next to be with a solemn expression on her face. “I do not see the spark of life in your mother.”
I knew she was right. There was no way my mother would have slept through all that noise. Plus – now that I thought about it – she had felt cold to me. I began to sob from a deep and gnawing grief.
Z landed on Ferocious and pulled me into her arms. I cried until I was hiccuping, and then cried some more. I didn't think I would ever be able to stop, but then the baby started crying again, and I knew that I had to stop.
“Z... What am I going to do?” I asked as I wiped the tears from my face.
“I don't know, but whatever you do, I'll help,” Z promised.
I was so relieved by the reassurance that she wasn't planning to leave me to deal with this all on my own that I kissed her. I didn't think about it, I just did it. It felt so right!
The baby cried louder, prompting me to end our amazingly powerful kiss. Again, I had nothing I could do except sing, so I sang.
Go To Chapter 6
Go To Chapter 6