I was always aware of the irony – wishing a government official was actually less well read. People always said reading helps you open the mind.
This is why she always worried her well-loved government might one day destroy her well-loved library. The days she had off she spent hours of within the walls, reading every single book she could pull off the shelves. And many more she couldn’t. She asked the Librarian to do that for her. He was as tall as a mountain. None of the books were beyond his grasp. Every single novel he handed to her made her eyes sparkle. It’s hard to imagine a woman like her is actually so stupid as to blindly follow the government.
This was why she was in the library, every single day. To read all of the books before her government destroyed it.
Tim threw a ball. He threw it very hard.
Reaching a window. Fortunately the very edge.
Yes, it’s okay to do it again. Just turn in a different direction, Tim.
Natie’s words, more broken than she realized, faded away as she heard the sounds of the rest of the town. They had come to see her. But then she heard what they were saying.
She had been taken by God. She had been returned by God. She had been chosen.
Unable to put together the words to explain that their God was simply a Giant, Natie was brought back inside her newly cleaned house and put to bed.
Natie had no way of telling her parents what she saw. There was no way to explain to Patty the truth of where they lived. In a glass box, tended to by someone that looked like a illimitable version of them.
Everyone in town kept repeating it. How she had been chosen. Everyone in town kept waiting for her to speak. Words of the one who tended for them.
Natie had nothing to say, but her future had already been decided. They waited and listened. Natie had seen a world much like theirs keeping their world in motion.
Natie had nothing to say.
She closed her eyes.
The wind blew past her as she moved ever upward. No wings, she didn’t need them. All she had to do was close her eyes. The city below shone of white, reflecting the sun and forcing her to look up.
She closed her eyes.
The water was cold as she sunk ever downward. No fins, she didn’t need them. All she had to do was close her eyes. The city above crept in shadow, absorbing the shadows of the depth and forcing her to look closer.
She closed her eyes.
Town looked different, but at the same time like home. By that point, Natie was limping, but she refused to stop walking yet. She had to keep moving, to find if her house was still there.
It was. Even from the outside, it didn’t look the same. It was the same building, Natie knew, but when Mom had said “clean” she had meant “clean”. Cleaner than anything they could have ever done.
Her mother came out of that clean house, rushing to her and gathering Natie up in her arms. Natie clung to her with the remnants of her energy. Not very much.
“Mom, it’s just a person. Just a big person. We live in a glass box and the sun has a cord attached to it.”
She rambled on like that, not certain how much Mom could understand. Not with her mouth muffled into Mom’s shoulder. After another moment, she could feel Dad’s hand smoothing down her hair, the steady influence trembling on her head.
Inspirational slaughter of reminiscence
Never seen because of the way I’m sealed shut
Sealed away, complete darkness, good for the gut.
It remains a mystery to me, ever since
Death began to take hold where I couldn’t see –
Everyone suffers the affliction that eventually sets free.
When Natie found herself lucid again, she was somewhere. Somewhere more familiar, yet not familiar at all. There was the river, but it couldn’t be the river, because it was going in a completely different direction. It couldn’t be her river, because the water was so clear she could see to the bottom.
But it was all the right size. She wasn’t looking at it from a distance and barely able to take it all in.
There were no Hands. There was no backpack either, but Natie didn’t remember if she had had it on when she had been pulled out.
Shaking, she eventually managed to get out of the tree. She climbed halfway down before she fell. Rolling onto her back, Natie wheezed for breath like her father after chasing her around the house as he used to. When she got to her feet, she stumbled away, not certain where she was, where her home might be. How long she had been gone.
She did not see the Hands.