A/N- About a girl. That's the description I had for this before. I like this one alot, it won me 3rd place in a Short Story contest. Kinda depressing, but not really.
This Thing We Call Ordinary
Soft grass tickled my back as I lay on the hill, looking up at the stars and wondering about Life. Wondering if, among the thousands of stars and millions of planets out there, in the vast infinity of our universe, where I could find life. Wondering. Perhaps there is life more intelligent then us. Perhaps we are the more intelligent ones.
So my imagination was off, shooting up into space, faster, faster. I saw fleeting glimpses of people, humanoids and strange animals, but hey changed quickly, spinning around and around like a hurricane. Sometimes places would appear to me, but these, too, didn't stay long. Landscapes flooding each other out, changing as fire swept over it. I glimpsed thousands of stories, too many to retell, too many to elaborate on. Only once did I make contact with one.
It happened for a moment, yet lasted many years. She was my copy, the same person in body and mind, yet more different then me then I thought possible. For a brief moment, our eyes locked, and I experienced her life through her eyes. I saw what she saw when her father died when she was still a young child, felt what she felt when her mother stopped caring. I knew her eldest brother was away, in a war, and dreaded like she that he wouldn't return. I felt as betrayed as her, for her for her two other older brothers thought themselves too old to care for her. I felt her confusion as to their endless nights spent in strange houses, how they came back and couldn't walk straight. I remembered the endless hours her older brothers had spent raising her, when her mother had left her in mind. They had played with her, laughed with her, and comforted her, and she had loved them. Now, she felt lost, and afraid, for they were no longer there to guide her.
I longed with her to be something, to do something with her life, to be remembered long after her death. I feared with her that this would not happen, for she still had two younger brothers to care for. She would not desert them as her older brothers had deserted her. She was strong and true, and there was more to her then could ever be written here. I felt her eyes boring into mine, and I knew she was accessing my life as I was hers. She knew my deepest thoughts, hopes, wishes, fears and loves. As I her.
Eventually the moment passed, as all moments must, and I was left with a feeling of loneliness, of emptiness. Something had just passed from this realm, but I did not yet know what. My whirl of thoughts, emotions and imaginations stopped abruptly. My heart slowed, and I drifted off to sleep, as the soft grass tickled my back.
She died that night. The eve of my sixteenth birthday, when I slept on the hill behind our house, a tradition we had long forgotten the purpose of. That night she died, and part of me with her.
Of course I knew it a soon as our connection had been lost, as soon as I no longer felt her presence. I had felt something wrong, something missing. Only later, when I noticed my mother was not there to greet me the morning of my sixteenth birthday, did I realize.
I was sixteen when my mother died. I can still see her sometimes, hear her voice, smell her perfume, the one she made herself from the wild plants growing around our house. But she is but a memory, and when I reach out my hand, she is gone like mist.
I still remember the look on dad's face when I came home that morning, the morning of my sixteenth birthday. The darkness of dread filled my heart as my mind raced through the possibilities. Why wasn't my mom there to greet me?
I raced from dad and his heartbroken face to the kitchen. Surely she was there? She wasn't, and my breathing quickened. I ran to her room. Surely she had slept in?
She was there, on the bed. The broken shell that had been my mother. I knew her spirit was gone. It wasn't coming back. I will never forget that sight, though I wish I could. My mother's silent, unmoving body.
Up until then, I had never welcomed a tear. Up until then, they had been a weakness. Crying, I had thought, was for weaklings. Now, they flowed freely. Now, I didn't care. My mother had died, and I felt wretched. I could cry if I wanted to. A terrible sense of loss filled me, mirroring what I had felt when my connection with that strange girl had been lost.
"Her last words…" my father's voice drifted off. He took a breath, and said quietly, "Stars… tell her…" he took another breath, as if the last word pained him. "Magic," he whispered, and my heart went cold.
What did she mean, my mom, the woman I had called ordinary? Was she the one I had seen, looking up at the stars? The one I had mistaken for alien, from another world? It made sense, almost. Magic.
My dad looked at me, an unspoken question. What did she mean? He was asking me. His eyes were red, as if he had no tears left. I couldn't trust myself to speak. Perhaps I was wrong, after all?
As the minutes passed, I became more certain. The girl I had seen, looking up at the stars, was my mother.
We think of our world as ordinary. We are used to it. It is normal. Take the time to go back a generation, and who knows what you may find. Your parents may have been heroes in their times, whether or not they are devils brought here to torture you now.
We call our world ordinary. But it isn't. It's as fascinating as any made-up land far, far away. How can we take for granted this bond, from daughter to mother, father to son? How can we take this thing we call ordinary for granted? It isn't.
My mom was once worried she would never be remembered. But I still remember her as she once was. After all, in a way, I am but a continuation of her. I am a continuation of a long line of great people, heroes and villains alike. All people who used to live here, on this thing we call ordinary.