Posted by: jolantru | February 14, 2012

Path Of Kindness: Ten

The stars sparkle in a pitch black night. I huddle under my blanket, feeling worse than before. The Dead Ships creak around me, metal rattling, wind slipping through the cracks. I shelter in one. Aurum. Just what my dream has said.

It is huge and ancient, filled with dead voices. Hollow, old.

Dead.

~*~

Morning is all aching back and sore muscles. Hungry, I begin scouting about. Ferns grow in the cracks. Fiddleheads, curled tightly liked clenched fists. I have seen Mother collect them before. Are they the right type?

I manage to start a fire, boiling the fiddleheads in a pot I found floating in the tidal pools close by. I have used up the rest of the clean water.

The fiddleheads taste tough and fibrous. And bitter, like herbal tea. As I eat my meager meal, a horrible foreboding settles in my stomach.

I miss Shu.

Are there people like me, huddled before a fire? Are there other fires in the Sea of the Dead Ships?

I need to find water.

I need to…

~*~

Swallowing my pride. My throat is raw, not only from the tastes and sensations, but from screaming.

It looks like I am going to travel Innerlands.

The wind hisses through the cracks. I have not grown used to the sound. I tuck myself into a corner of the Dead Ship. The dinner of half-raw fiddleheads burns in my stomach. I know that something is wrong.

Sleep comes slowly, creeping up my body in a slow heat. I imagine it is Pa tucking me into bed. The wind is content whispering in its ash-ash-ash voice.

I know that I am dying.

Pain wakes me up from violent color-stained dreams and I double over, spewing my guts while the after images flicker around me. Burning skies, burning stars, burning burning burning. Talons of flowing lucid red light slashing at me. I vomit even more. My stomach burns.  

Someone is gripping my head and squeezing my skull in.

Then all I know is to curl up and wish real death on myself.

~*~

In that horrible burning state, I dream of food.

Ayam porridge.

Oyster fritters.

In the dream, I feast on ayam porridge, my comfort food.

In the dream, Mother tousles my hair and Pa tells me tales of the Innerlands. I am happy.

When I wake, I retch even more.

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