The next day, Keira stood peering out her bedroom window waiting for the arrival of the horse carriage. Lost, wondering to herself when the carriage would arrive to take her and her new found companion to the Forest of Duskmere. But after gazing out the window of her tiny room for some time, she felt herself growing more and more anxious as time passed by.
Slowly, she pulled herself away from the window, turning back towards the bed that stood behind her. The room was a simple one, dressed in nothing more than plain stark white walls, a wooden dresser, and a tiny bed wrapped in plain cotton beige colored sheets.
Upon the bed, she found herself gazing at the small rectangular leather-bound book Thomas placed in her hands from the previous night. A gift given to her from her mother on the night she had left her tiny infant daughter on the doorsteps of the Durnshire Monastery so many years ago. But to Keira this was more than just a mere book, there was something more about this journal that caused her to hesitate from reading it. Why-- she did not know, or at least not clearly.
Keira could only ponder upon the many random thoughts that ran within her mind. Would she be betraying the only family she'd ever known if she were to open this book? Had she already betrayed them by leaving to seek out answers? Did she abandon them, as she felt her mother had done to her? Or was it perhaps the pure fact that knowing the truth would make her different from the Blakelys, when being a part of their family was the only thing that brought a sense of normalcy into her life. Did she really want to be different from the others, or did she want to be as the others were? Blinded from the truth and lost within a false reality. "No, there must be a reason for all this. Why now?" she thought to herself. "Why now of all other times was this happening, just as the dreams were worsening, just as the dreams were becoming stronger, demanding of their attention? There must be a reason to this riddle." she thought.
There was more to this book then she had originally realized, and soon she began to understand, that what scared her most was the pure thought of knowing the truth. Accepting that she may truly be different from the others of her family, and not just solely divided through the simply boundaries of blood. Accepting this, meant that she accepted that she was not of their family, and that she did not know who or what she was for that matter. Still, she questioned if this was a chapter in her life she was willing to accept, as she stared upon the tiny book.
She had only glanced briefly at the journal from the night before. Hesitate to break open its many dusty yellow bound pages. Afraid of the hidden truths that may reveal themselves through the various handwritten entries within. And now she was unsure if she had regretted her decision to flee to the monastery in search of answers.
Over the previous night, Keira had lain tossing and turning in her bed, questioning her decision over and over in her head. But it was too late; she had already closed a door to a past that could not be reopened once more. And so, she found herself wondering what her family was doing at that very moment.
She could picture their familiar faces in her head. Her short petite olive toned mother, hovering over the hot kitchen stove. Her three younger brothers, Anthony, Michael, and James, sitting scattered about a large oversized table, in their tiny dining room. James, the younger boy with piercing blues eyes, most mischievous of the three, and always first to run into trouble, a statement their father made sure to announce each mid afternoon. She could imagine the three boys speaking out in their usual raised voices, making wise cracks at each other, while little May, youngest of the four siblings, sat glaring across the table at her older brothers. Her face positioned in its usual cocked eyebrow, and skewed lip expression, as an unsaid gesture of sarcastic disapproval.
Keira's Father, Wilburn, walking back and forth from behind the chairs of the children, as he helped their mother set the table. Also making wise cracks of his own, in response to the three adolescent boys. And then there was Ermina, Keira's adopted mother, who she could imagine so clearly in her mind. A tiny four foot eleven woman of fiery goodness all in one, always prepared with a saucy quip. Who at times found herself having to raise her voice just to be heard over the loud crowd in the Blakely household. Rolling her eyes at the various jokes, as she continued placing meals into the ceramic dishes she handed off to her husband. This was the families usually morning routine. This was the same routine, that had taken at place each of the family's meals, company or not.
Then as if out of nowhere, Kiera's thoughts pulled away from her beloved family's daily routine. And suddenly, the thought that after all these years of growing apart of her adopted Blakely family, she realized, they were not her own. But weren't they? She questioned herself. She felt as though she had betrayed them in that single thought, just as she had when leaving the cottage from the previous night.
Then she remembered, she was not the only one to make a decision. Mrs. Blakely had wanted her to go with Brother Thomas. She had wanted Keira to know the truth. She was terrified for her daughter. Though she did not know much behind the realities of her daughter's troubles, she knew enough to remain terrified for Keira's safety. Scared, that in some way the dreams themselves would cause the destruction of Keira's mental well being. But after what length of time, she did not now.
Perhaps, after all these years, the dreams had not only haunted Keira, but her mother as well. Leaving her consumed with guilt. Knowing her daughter knew nothing of her true family, and the relation of her dreams. Unable to give any explanation to her little girl. It was only Brother Thomas who knew anything of Keira's origins, of Keira's tragic family past. And it was Thomas, who Mrs. Blakely knew would one day reveal such things to her daughter; as a promise kept to her true mother. This, Keira now understood. But what did her mother mean when she said "...what if he has control over her through these dreams?" Keira thought. "She knew something... but what... had she known all along?" After being lost in thought, Keira heard the quite footsteps of Thomas creep up from behind her.
"The carriage has arrived." He announced, now standing on the threshold of the doorway. Keira grabbed her bags and journal from off the bed, following him to the entrance of the monastery. When they reached the doorway, Keira watched as the carriage rode up the graveled dirt road. As the carriage pasted her eyes, from behind it she saw as her family stood silently waiting her arrival.
All four children were standing in a solid row, one next to the other. Each with smiling faces, as they launched themselves into Keira's arms, followed by their mother and father.
"We wanted a chance to say goodbye...a 'gan!" Her mother cried, gripping her daughter tightly, as tears welled in her eyes. Keira returned her mother's embrace and as she did she glanced back towards her father, who stood only within arms reach. She watched him, as he desperately tried to uphold his composure. But it was obvious that he was just as torn up inside as the rest were; struggling to remain strong for the others of the family.
Thomas stood silently aside; watching as the family gave their somber farewell. A slight smile sweep across his face, as he watched their expressed love and acceptance for Keira as one of their own. He was touched to see that after all these years, she had been given a propure home with a family that loved her. A family that was there for her when she needed them most. But the hugs and kisses were short lived. After the family had said their saddened goodbyes, with tears in their eyes, and lumps in their throats, it was off to Duskmere for Keira, and Thomas. And soon after, the Blakelys watched as their sister departed, drifing slowly away down the dirt path to Duskmere. She starred out the blurred window of the tiny black carriage, waving her final tear filled farewells, until she could no longer see their saddened faces.
And for a moment there was an awkward silence that filled the tiny cabin. Thomas had wanted so badly to say something of comfort to the poor girl, but he knew that he had said enough from the previous night. He decided that perhaps what Keira needed most, was a moment of peaceful silence. So the two remained quite for the duration of the trip; starring upon the last remaining bits of rural countryside and brick buildings that lay scattered across of the lands of the hometown they soon left behind.
© Copyright 2008 Nataliya Maize. All rights reserved.