The wind gushed to meet me in the station.
I pulled my shawl to hug my chest. There was none but me and the mist. A more fitting goodbye I could not have imagined.
The sirens echoed through the station as the train arrived. As I stepped towards my prodigal return, I turn to see the Undertaker's giant edifice looming over the sky. Surreal, I blew him a kiss and bow my farewell.
As the train moved, I stood in the pedestal and willed my heart to taste for one final time this journey. As the city rushed before me, so did trailers, of the boy and the girl. Just cut moments. Too fast. Too hard.
He did not think I would remember. Defying his chimera was my memories of coffee, streets, garlands of marigold and basil, sand, sea, Lord, him and her. Overwhelmed, I hummed to myself:
But if every wish I wish went answered,
Oh wont I be the queen of your dreams...
Why did I take this journey? Oh yes, to embrace saturation with contentment. When the point finally arrives, I would smile, pull my arms forward, tilt my profile and run swifter than the wind. If I could emote the point, I would imagine it agape while it hesitates to chase. In that second, my fate and I will become saboteur of the other's will, dreams, love. It would chase me and I would defile it in every turn.
For every story must be told, and mine will be painted in circles. Endless, it would spin to illuminate the mirrors in the world.
I look out the window and see my breaths are not misty anymore. A pain, dull and throbbing, return to my knee. I lift my hand to hold my knee and feel it tepid, like a memory, to the touch. I look at my hand and see it slowly turning a crimson hue. The thought of blood hits me like an afterthought and I lift my hand in shock and see my knee covered in blood.
Oy, oy girl! Is this coach free? The old man panted as he entered. He looked at me, wiggled a finger and said, Ah, the pain of journey... I see you are already half deep in it! He laughed and dropped his bags in the coach. I looked at him speechless, baffled as he fumbled with his things. Tears, shed free of my eyes, dropped in a thread across my cheeks.
Ah, I see, he said and embraced me. Now you hold on to me and you wont be lost again. As I looked at my drying hand, he turned my palm, took it in his and smiled into my eyes.
He was old and would fit into any old person stereotype. Cuddled in his embrace, I felt a warm gush return slowly to my lungs and stomach and an unanticipated pain emanating from every muscle in my body. My knee lit my senses in a blinding pain and I gasped for air.
Ah girl, hold on, the journey is not long afar.
Hold on my dear and I will see you through.
This time, I promise, I will see through.
His words seemed to comfort my soul beyond belief. I managed to conjure a smile and studied his palms. Wrinkled, relentless with time. As the blood in our hands dried slowly, the train picked a blinding momentum. I looked away to watch the scenes rush and whispered, You said lost again. Was I lost before?
He sighed as his lungs rose and fell in tangible pain. Time had failed to heal his wounds and memories locked him in a prison where time stood helpless. Do you not remember, he asked. I turned to look at him and said I don't remember.
He laughed. As his eyes, filled with love and gratitude, locked with mine, I gasped. Humbled, cornered, I partook his gift. He cupped my chin, kissed my forehead and said Live well, my dear.
As we moved away from our embrace, the entire train shook as it sped. Prostrate, I looked to hold on and for the first time noticed that the train was smooth without railings or hangings for support. When the finality of the thought embraced its truth, the train crashed and I was thrown headlong into the compartment.
I opened my eyes gasping for air.
I was surrounded by masked men and women and one held my shoulders to calm my efforts. As I blinked, my eyes hurt from a brilliant light shining atop my face. I slumped back exhausted. As I gasped for another lungful of air, one of the masked pricked my arm with a needle and I could feel myself drifting to sleep with almost nil effort.
As I opened my eyes again in the hospital, I could see my mother sitting beside me. She was on borderline insomnia and as she saw me, she said oh, and trembled with tears.
Beside herself, she hugged me, kissed my entire face, laughed and said oh, you were so weak, so weak, but you pulled through. Oh, you pulled through.
I grinned, not knowing why. Oh, it was so good to see her face and be loved by her.
I sat up with some effort while she adjusted the pillows to my back. As my eyes rested upon the bandaged knee, she took my face, kissed my cheek, and said, its ok dear, it will heal; and, all it will leave is a scar for you to remember.