We slipped out of Algeron, out from behind that small moon. Just a heart beat away from deep trouble. The kind of trouble you really didn’t want to have to figure a way out of, the kind that would cost you lifetimes of confusion.
There had been a moment of hesitation before the star drive kicked in; and another moment of wondering if the repairs and updates on the cloaking would stand up to the probes’ tentacles reaching, searching, trying to snare a just a hint of a trace of us.
And then we were gone!
We both sighed with deep relief, and I glanced over at her. Damn she was beautiful. In a fight: fearless and unrelenting. Fierce like a tiger fighting for her own! There was nobody better at your back. And did she have my heart! To be that lucky was such an amazing blessing.
She was so intent on what she was doing, with that little furrow between her eyes, and tight, slight downturn the corners of her mouth got; I don’t think she realized my sigh was both of relief, and at how amazingly lucky I was to have found her. Damn she was beautiful!
There had been those moments of hesitation, and wonder, and then gone. Now, gone to where?
Isn’t it funny?: life? You think your thoughts and look at life and the way life looked was different than the way your thoughts said it should be. Then you did something to make it more like you thought it should be, and all hell would break loose!
The next thing you know you’re smuggling rum onto the coast of Ireland with a small sloop on a foggy night, dodging the English frigates, and having some great tavern fights with the red coated custom agents, or firing up some lost small planet to form a government of its own. The changes one could go through. It was all good, and could be a lot of fun.
You would dance from lifetime to lifetime, through time and space, adventure, and project, each seemingly unrelated, but all with a common purpose. And through all of these, some of the people you shared it all with were the same.
She had been there for a long time, and their adventures had been seemingly infinite in variety.
That time could fold upon itself and form textures. That the adventures which were like they had a life of their own, were actually the effect of your own decisions. They were creations to achieve goals of your own making. This was a fact and facet of it all that seemed to be lost on most of the people and places they had encountered. There was true freedom in this fact of existence.
What they were really trying to do was to remind people of their own natures.
Damn she was beautiful! Where to now to continue this dance they did so well?
The other thing that was funny was what people thought of them. Some people called them gods, and some called them demons. Some tried to deify, and some to crucify, some seemed totally unaware of their existence. Some even denied they existed at all, and some even worked to convince others that they didn’t existed at all. What was the really funny part is that all of these beings were just like them, but had simply forgotten, and mostly were pretending they never knew!
Slipping in and out of time and space demanded that you were free from it, or weren’t attached to it. But sometimes things happened that you didn’t really intend, sometimes you slipped. Sometimes people got hurt. You got slower.
Sometimes at the end of a particularly glorious battle, up close and just between your scimitar, and the other guy’s,
At the end, when you were still standing, you had looked down into the eyes of a small child. And through those eyes you saw you had destroyed a world.
You didn’t mean for that to happen, and you couldn’t forget those eyes
And you got “careful” of “wishing you hadn’t”.
And you got slower, and slower, and finally caught.
There was a jerk and wrench as the beam latched onto their ship and a spinning sensation that increased in velocity, like a ball on the end of a rope winding on to the pole, and then a flash of blinding light, and then, for what seemed like infinity, nothing.
Just before that last blinding flash, he looked over at her and had two thoughts: the first was how the question about the cloaking upgrades seemed to be answered (in the negative) and the second was that they would find each other. He saw the same in her eyes. Weren’t those a pair of eyes!
He liked walking by rivers in the springtime. He had for as long as he remembered. He liked the smells, and the flowers, even the mud, and the almost cold, and the future.
It didn’t matter if it was the Euphrates, or the Mississippi, the Rio Grande up by Taos, the understated stream overstated as the Tularosa River, the Humboldt, the Nile, the Themes, the Cumberland or the Buffalo, he loved walking by the water. There were pictures that would float through his mind, which he couldn’t connect with anything he remembered actually seeing, feelings he couldn’t remember actually feeling, and it was very free. It was a bit like he was reminded that he had forgotten something, like an itch he couldn’t quite locate, but he wanted to scratch it. He remembered flashing focused eyes, a tight frown, a sense of warmth and connection, and he knew that was true too!
It was freedom, not like choosing a movie, or having the time to go to the store, but freedom! To exist, to really be able to choose, like to really create! To cause to exist!!! And he knew it was true.
In the spring he wanted to know where it had been true. In the spring he wanted to know when it had been true. And, what the hell, finally, he admitted; he wanted all of that to be true again.
When? Now! How?
This cocoon of an identity he had been hiding in, first suspecting, and then knowing that it was simply that, a cocoon, a superimposed identity, was finally cracking. It was like a fog was starting to clear.
It seemed to him that people were just pretending to be what they thought they should be, and more: that they were acting like they thought other people thought the person they were thinking they should be, should act.
But it wasn’t really them. They, like himself, didn’t know who they really were, so they were being who they thought they were supposed to be.
That would make life a bit confusing.
It also was a bit of a cumbersome thought for a Saturday morning walk.
He could see that it wasn’t him, and finally, he wanted to remember who he really was.
Not like it was a nice idea, perhaps tomorrow.
He had questions that needed answers! Today!
He loved spring! He suspected that this spring was going to be interesting!
“I never missed you before we met, why do I miss you now?” he hummed, it kind of hung up in his mind. “Where does this song go, and what does that mean”, he wondered.
Writing songs had this trick about them: they didn’t mean much if they weren’t true. So what made that true? What made it not true? It felt like he did miss her before they met, he just didn’t know who or where she was.
He had always known that “she” was. Whoever “she” was, he had always known that “she” was. Well, sometimes he had forgotten, or lost patience, or mistook someone else for her.
What a pain in the butt writing can be: You get this thought, it won’t go away, you don’t know what it means, or how to say it so that it makes any kind of sense, and it won’t go away until it does! AAARRGGGG!!
And, really, he was getting it wrong. He missed her; what a wonderful thing it was to have someone you could miss! And besides that, who wanted to be missed by some sad sack Nashville guitar player who liked to write? Who wanted to be the subject of some sung before blues song? Certainly not the one he was missing!
Now, if he could make it rhyme!!
Walking alone in the moonlight, the stars high and crisp in the winter’s night, the full moon floating like his heart.
Looking across the golf course, the day’s snow fresh with a crown of ice from the evenings cold, sparkling.
There along the side of the path was a bouquet.
The flowers fresh, and pale blue, yellow and red.
Blushed with the breath of hope, dreams just as they were born
in lovers hearts.
A bouquet of flowers, lying beside a bench half under a winter bare bush, itself covered with fresh snow.
He picked them up, and slipped them under his arm,
And continued on his way.
Ah, Nashville on a cold winter’s night did have its magic.
He rolled over and opened his eyes, and smiled, he thought he had just thought it, and maybe he had. “Well, there you are…..”. She said, “of course, where else would I be…”, or maybe he just thought she said it. He pulled her close and she wrapped her arms around him for a long time. Then she said, “We’re not getting anything done here, get your lazy butt out of bed”, and jumped out herself. In the shower they held each other again until the water ran cold.
It never ceased to amaze him, those eyes, that flashing smile, the absolute certainty that this was home. The temper and the dedication and the trust he felt. Wasn’t that something! When they had first met she had looked at him with that amazing smile and said: “Hi, I’m the girl of your dreams, someone told me you were looking for me”. He had thought to himself, well, that maybe she was right, and she had been.
The children were into their day, the dishes done, she was set up for her day. She looked at him and said: “Write me something I really love listening to”, which, besides the apparent fact that she seemed to enjoy everything he wrote, was really all he wanted to do anyway.