Chapter 2: Crystalline SorrowA Chapter by Minoru Kusari
A peek into Violet's dreams and a new character appears!
Chapter 2 :
I take a shower in preparation for bed. The time is approaching midnight. I try not to think about what happened this afternoon but it is difficult. It’s all still so confusing. I try not to think about anything. Stay numb Violet, I tell myself.
I hate sharing the showers with the other people on my dorm’s floor. It’s tough being a college student. I close my eyes and allow the water from the showerhead to spray all over my hair, face, and body. I scrub my body thoroughly, fervently, as if trying to cleanse myself of anxiety and fear. I then rinse off and exit the shower stall, wrapping myself with a towel. I am tired. I just want to go back to my room and sleep.
I enter my dorm room and close the door behind me. Luckily it’s a single. I had a roommate last semester. I hated the experience.
I take off my towel and stand in front of the mirror. I look the same as always: medium-short length hair, a decent body, modest breasts, and a thin frame"maybe a little too thin. I can’t help it though. I have trouble putting on weight. I don’t really think me being thin is a problem though, it’s my mother who worries about such things. Or should I say worried.
What I stop to examine more closely in the mirror are my ‘unique’ eyes. My eyes are a pale violet color, which is why I was named Violet. Real creative, right? People always ask me about my eyes. It bugs me. I’ve read somewhere that albinism can cause violet colored eyes, but I don’t have any such condition. I was just born with these eyes even though no one on either side of my family has ever had them.
I walk over to the dresser by my bed, examining the bottles of medication. I dutifully swallow an assortment of pills, put on some underwear and get in bed. I am so exhausted. Probably more mentally so than physically. Even at night, it’s still humid. I try not to think of anything, but my mind just keeps going back to what happened with the Philosophy professor. I definitely saw what I saw…right? Unless, it was just my imagination? I mean, no one else noticed anything, and after the professor disappeared, they all acted as if he had never shown up in the first place. What the hell! How is that even possible!?There’s no way that could happen!
My hands clutch my head as I curl up in a ball trying to force my thoughts out of my head. My breathing speeds up as I start to panic. Calm down, calm down…I have to calm down. I try to think of any possible explanations for what happened today. Wait! I did show up to the classroom a bit early today. I conclude that I must’ve fallen asleep while waiting for the professor to appear, and that I dreamt the strange events I had seen. That would probably explain everything. I do have really odd dreams after all. I release my death grip on my cranium and relax. I stretch my body out in bed and turn over.
I let out a sigh of relief. “Glad I sorted that out,” I say quietly, and then drift off into sweet sleep.
* * * * * * * * * *
A girl stands alone on an elevated platform. It hangs suspended high amongst the stars. Around her are the expanses of the universe. She is alone and crying. Crying so forcibly she falls to her knees as crystalline sorrow flows from her eyes. But strangely enough, no sounds are made.
Even so, the girl continues to shed her tears, even though she knows no one will ever come to wipe them away. For her, her lonely platform is all there ever is, ever was, and ever will be.
The darkness of the cosmos around her only serves to make her feel more afraid and alone. The stars too are simply a painful reminder that there is light in this universe, but it lies far beyond her grasp. She may never feel the warmth of light upon her skin again. Or maybe she never truly had before?
Suddenly, the girl feels someone gently put a rather large hand on her shoulder. She looks over her shoulder to see who it is. ‘Standing’ behind her is a quadrupedal animal of some sort. It has a long snout like a jackal or a wolf, but a thicker, longer neck than those animals. Its body towers over her, held up by its long, powerful legs. Its tail is full and bushy, and is almost as long as the silver fur-covered body of the animal. The fur glistens in the darkness and reflects many different colors, giving it the appearance of constantly changing colors. Its paws resemble a cross between human hands and a wolf’s claws. The girl stops sobbing once she looks into the majestic creature’s eyes. Its eyes resemble vast pools full of wisdom, perhaps more wisdom than anyone or anything has ever had.
The creature’s eyes are even more captivating than its august stature to the girl. Its left eye is a beautiful deep violet color, and the other is a fierce gold color. The girl is so fixated on her guest’s eyes that she is startled when she feels a large paw brushing her cheek. At first the girl is confused, but quickly realizes that the beast is wiping her tears. The girl feels comforted by the gesture, though she cannot discern what emotions and motives are behind her new companion’s actions. She has grown accustomed to questioning any acts of generosity or kindness towards her. Even so, the girl works up enough courage to break the silence of the cosmos.
* * * * * * * * * * *
I wake up in the middle of the night with tears running down my cheeks. I am not sure why. I must have had a sad dream or something. I dream often, and they are usually pretty strange, but I don’t usually remember them long after waking up.
I wipe my face and sit up, suddenly feeling a chill go down my spine. Why would I feel cold at this time of year? It’s so hot I’ve been sleeping in just my underwear. I lie back down and pull up the covers, but the strange feeling won’t go away. Suddenly a thought flashes across my mind : Somebody’s in here with me. I sit up quickly and dart my eyes around my room. Nothing seems out of the ordinary, and the dorm room isn’t large enough for someone to hide out of my sight. So why this feeling?
“Hi, there. Didn’t mean to startle you,” a voice suddenly rings out in the darkness.
I almost scream.
“Whoa, calm down, I’m not gonna hurt you or anything,” the voice tries to reassure me.
I am frozen.
The voice lets out a sigh. “Well, this takes all the fun out of it, but you seem like you’re about to wet yourself, so I’ll cut you some slack. Look above you.”
I manage to comply with the request. I look up from where I am on my bed, and cannot believe my eyes. Above me…there is a person sitting cross-legged hanging upside down from the ceiling! It’s as if he hasn’t heard of gravity! Wonder what those guys in the Physics department would have to say about this! I stare wide eyed at the person whose head is only inches from mine. He looks at me and smiles widely, obviously entertained by my inability to grasp the current situation. As if to mock me, he descends from the ceiling, but stays suspended in air, and rights himself so that now his head is pointing up and his crossed legs are beneath him, just like a normal person. Except that he’s still floating in the air!
He floats over to a wall and flicks on the light switch. I shut my eyes instinctively at the abrupt change in lighting, and then quickly remember there’s a stranger in my room and open them back up. In the light, I can now see my late-night guest properly, but that doesn’t prepare me for what I see.
Standing firmly with both feet on the ground before me is someone I can only describe as…some kind of mythological character. He is a young man, probably about my age or so, and fairly tall. He has dark skin, and looks quite fit. The strange part is his clothing. They are colorful and foreign looking, though his garments don’t strike me as being from any particular country or culture that I know of. More like a mix of West African, Ancient Egyptian, and Indian clothing or something. He has black hair that is tied into long braids behind him with some sort of gold ornaments. His clothes are unlike anything I’ve ever seen before so they’re hard to describe. He has a cloth draped around his shoulders with a beautiful pattern decorating it. His shirt has an intricate design on it and only one sleeve covering the left arm. His bare right arm has gold rings around his upper arm and wrist. A flowing deep red cloth hangs from his waist, coming down past his knees. He wears no shoes.
“How long do you intend to stare at me like that? Is it polite to do that where you’re from?” he asks, but with that big smile on his face, he doesn’t seem to be all that annoyed.
Suddenly I am aware my mouth has been agape in shock this whole time. I quickly shut it and feel my face grow hot with embarrassment.
“What are you doing here? Is it polite to sneak into a girl’s bedroom where you’re from?” I ask, trying to take control of the situation.
He simply laughs and makes a gesture as if he’s waving away a silly question. “Well, not exactly, but it’s not like I broke in here or anything,” he says casually. He really doesn’t seem to think he’s done anything out of the ordinary.
“What do you mean you didn’t break in? The door is locked! How else could you have gotten in?” I make no attempt to hide the hostility in my voice.
“Relax, relax. I’m not here because I want to cause you harm,” he says while holding up his hands in what is supposed to be a reassuring gesture. True enough, he doesn’t seem to be hostile, but he is a stranger, and he did get into my room without permission.
I let out a sigh. “Whatever, just go. I’ll write this off as another freaky dream.” Hell, I must still be asleep to have seen this guy floating around earlier.
He frowns. “Sorry, I can’t leave. At least, not just yet. I came here to tell you"“
Whatever. I am no longer listening to him. I’ve shut him out. I lie down and turn my back to him, pulling the covers over my head. I feel like I have a headache. Probably because I keep having so many weird dreams lately. I stick my hand out of the covers and finger the top of the dresser next to my bed, searching for my pills, but suddenly a hand grabs mine.
I shoot up out from under the covers. “What do you want!?”
My unwelcome guest is still here. He lets go of my hand and sighs. “It seems I’ve caught you at a bad time. I guess I’ll just let you sleep for now. But we will talk later, okay?” He punctuates this with a firm look as if to tell me this is a command not a question.
“Yeah sure, whatever.” This is just another dream. I won’t be seeing you anytime soon.
He smiles and pats me on the head. I hate being patted on the head.
“Don’t ever do that again, please.”
He tentatively withdraws his hand. He loses the smile and frowns again.
“Sure are crabby, ain’t ya?”
“Shut up. Get out. Now. And turn off the lights while you’re at it.”
He turns his back to me and crosses his legs, once again floating above the ground. Yep, I’m definitely still dreaming. He gestures towards the wall with the light switch and it flicks off like magic. Pretty convenient.
He looks over his shoulder and gives a friendly, “See ya, girl.”
“…That’s my name.”
“Oh, I see. That’s a flower isn’t it? Pretty name.”
“And you are?”
He seems genuinely surprised by my question. He raises his eyebrows and smiles widely then says, “You may call me Atum,” and disappears.
After a bit of tossing and turning, I quickly return to the dream world.
© 2012 Minoru Kusari
AboutI'm in my late teens. I'm a pretty laid back guy most of the time, but I get really passionate about certain things. I like to play guitar, video games, draw and read. I love music. I've always liked .. more..