Author: Ray-Anne PM
A Finished repost: She's your average dead-beat-dad-mother-abandoned-girl. But everything becomes not so average when the reservation kids myths and gods don't seem so fictional. They've taken a liking to this Girl of the Desert. M for drugs/lang.Rated: Fiction M - English - Adventure/Spiritual - Chapters: 18 - Words: 25,902 - Reviews: 2 - Favs: 2 - Follows: 2 - Updated: 07-27-11 - Published: 07-10-11 - Status: Complete - id: 2931545
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
It was funny. Not funny in the entertaining way, but the weird way. She walked across the sand which radiated the intense heat of the sun. The air felt like a sauna. Yet she was so cold. Not her skin, strange again, it was indescribable. Her skin recognized the heat of the world around her, but just a tiny layer of skin beneath her fluids ran like ice. Heavy like blocks of ice, each movement splintered it into chips. She half expected blood to drip from her healthy mouth. How could her body hold such two extremes? It couldn't. Each step was heavier and she was too scared.
She could explain the stiffness; her arms already ached from the awkward position of cuffs. It was as if the burden of guilt was layered on like drying plaster. Dull, hard, worn and unbreakable despite her livid life underneath that skin. Peter...Would Peter ever forgive her? She wondered that idly. She had seen his face before she turned herself in. She watched Aquene hold him back as he tried to follow the cop. Aquene stood with a sad understanding face. At least Valerie would be able to take that with her.
The buzz filled her ears. Just five more steps. The cop shook his head and sighed while he put her carefully in the back of the car. The door slammed. She wanted to scratch her ears because they popped. But she couldn't from the confines of the cuffs. She felt so deaf without the buzz of heat. Felt so weak and she could feel the spirit wailing inside her.
Just forgive me. That's all I ask, just forgive me.
She waited until night. After all, as cliché as it was, it was the most practical. Peter had long since fallen asleep. She realized he snored. She smiled to him on the floor in an endearing way. Aquene had gone to sleep on the single chair sofa. He looked so peaceful.
Valerie slipped out of the room.
She had a vague idea of how to drive. True her father had never owned a car so she was unsure. She sat at the wheel contemplating on what to do next when it really hit her. They killed her father. A few tears fell and she almost felt like she forced them knowing it was the right reaction. She was just coming to know him. She put the key in the drive and pulled back the break and let it go. She was just beginning to understand him. She realized she had Aquene to thank for a lot. It was only once she forgave her father and tried to understand was she finally able to smile. And he had taught her a lot. Life wasn't goddamn fair. She drove off. The idea of the right reaction was flooded by real tears and she coughed at the bile in her throat. It didn't seem so fair now.
She wasn't really sure where they were but she drove around and after about ten minutes recognized where she was. She drove to the direction of town. The headlights were on now that she was away from the cabin. She bit her lip while more as more memories flooded her mind of her father. The main upheaval was over though she believed. Then she saw their home. She couldn't go without ... She stopped the car and ran back to the trailer; ducking underneath the police tape. She noticed they put a new padlock on her door. She outlined the padlock crying anew.
"I'm so sorry, I'm so sorry," she said between her tears. She couldn't do it now. She couldn't confront them bravely like this.
She turned to face the desert, the place she had called home and had often entrusted her life with. Her sobs quietened to a few tears and she drew the back of her hand over her eyes to free her cheeks from those liquid crystals. Slowly the dot in the distance came forward. Valerie sat down on the sand with a dull numb. She was beyond the grieving; she was just tired of it all by now. Just tired, just so tired she couldn't put it into words. Nothing would have gotten her out of this state.
The dot came forth though and displayed a coyote with red dirt fur, curved funny at his shoulder, and with black fur outlining his eyes. He came and sat next to Valerie. Since it didn't have her attention he whined and displayed his belly for her much like a puppy does begging for attention. She continued to stare dully at the dawning sky. The coyote sighed and sat up to lay his chin on her shoulder. They stayed in this position until the sun stretched the first of her rays over the horizon.
Slowly, ever so creakingly slow, Val lifted her hand to stroke the coyote. As she did the desert dog disappeared underneath her hand. It howled in her skin though. She heard the sirens and turned the corner of her trailer to see the cop car drawing near. In the far away distance she could see Peter running and then Aquene grabbing him.
"Valerie McConnel?" said an officer stepping out of the vehicle. He slowly came near her. He held a gun and on his hips laid a pair of cuffs. Funnily enough that is what gathered the most of Valerie's attention. She knew how they would feel around her wrist. "Valerie McConnel, you are under arrest for the murder of Derek McConnel and resisting arrest."
The wailing of the animal stopped then. And her vision went in black and white briefly. She saw the desert move as if in a heart beat. She knew it was the goodbye. "Okay," Valerie replied...A weak crooked smile came up when he came up to her. He put his gun away and put on the cuffs. Sure enough the cold felt so familiar. The steel seemed to bite into her skin. Wasn't that crazy...
Just forgive me. That's all I ask, just forgive me.
"They will be taking you to a jail in the city soon for your trial. You are seventeen so you wouldn't normally be tried as an adult..." The monotone voice began.
"'Wouldn't be' or am I?" Val asked the state appointed lawyer.
He looked at her for a moment in that dead pan way he had from the beginning. Then took off his glasses and rubbed his eyes. He sounded genuinely sorry. "They are holding off the trial until you are eighteen so they can charge you fully. You were waived to an adult court either way."
"Can they even do that?" The outrage didn't even come into Val's voice. She had given up to the hollow a long time ago.
"Well...loop hole." That's what he always said when it was some law thing she wouldn't understand. She never questioned after that.
"When do I leave?" Val was already staring past him. She felt something in her body. A quiver was just rippling along her skin and awakening the cells of her mind. It reminded her of a distant day when the spirit of the desert loved her. She wondered if it still did.
"Tomorrow morning." He gathered his papers and began closing them in the briefcase. He did the formalization of asking if she had any questions and then said his goodbyes. She said the same things back. Same things she had been saying for the past two weeks.
It's old fashioned...Isn't it? She thought to herself. She had the necessities of a toilet, sink, bed and barred window. The window is what captured the most of her attention. Wasn't it a beautiful thing? That desert with the rainbow of sand. She heard some of the guards complaining of the heat. At least no other inmates were in the county jail. But to Valerie it just felt like a blanket against her permanently cold skin.
"Does it change the more you stare Val?"
Val waited a second before turning to face the burly guard. He had bought from her father many times, and knew Val didn't commit the crime. Maybe he even understood why she had to turn herself in. She couldn't risk letting the tribe take the blame. She couldn't let them have that burden. She couldn't take their land away when she just gave it.
"It's always changing Garret, it is just about seeing the magic," she replied.
He slicked back his greying hair which matched his grey dull eyes which were sometimes slightly bloodshot. "I have some good news."
"What's that?" Val asked.
"They keep the land; it's in the paper today. No fight at all, no one accused them of holding a…um…criminal." He held up the newspaper and Val got up from her position to read it through the bars. Sure enough it stated that the reservation was able to keep the land because it was entitled before the crime was committed and some other law stuff that Val skipped over. She stopped reading and merely looked at the photo.
It was Aquene's back to the camera man and staring at his land. You could see the buildings, the busted old truck, the outlines of where Val knew would be a bonfire ash. If she looked closely she would see a vague shadow of a person walking from the corner side of the photo. She'd guess that was Peter. Just because she wanted to say she saw him one last time, even if it wasn't really him.
"You don't look good girly." said Garret.
She went back to her window and the view of the desert and sighed. He left without her answer.
The rainbow of sand was her comfort. The sun was falling in the horizon basking the usual golden sand a red colour. Just a bit was being kicked up by the wind which she knew would only be the softest of breezes filled with the magical ability to make the sand dance. Creatures would scurry and the land would meet the sky in the end of the horizon.
She slept without remembering her dreams.
She had goosebumps just under her skin again. She shivered pleasantly. She was cuffed again and all dressed up. They walked her without holding her to the car. They were used to her being docile. She hadn't planned to run anyway. The light from the sun hit her as quickly as the heat of the outside. It was like a wave flooding through her body unexpectedly. She breathed in a dry throat, a gift from the desert. She stumbled as her eyesight briefly wasa filled with the image of Aquene letting something crawl from his hand and it scuttled closer to her. She didn't look on the floor but only at the wavy image of Aquene. Was it real? Was he there? But of course he wouldn't really be. Never trust your eyes at the desert. The desert came back into her view.
Whether he had been there or not a scuttling creature did come near. She glanced down with a sense of shock. A scorpion for some reason poised in a dangerous attack mode. Scorpions normally ran away first, especially this breed. They travelled in packs. They were rare. Valerie knew that scorpion stings rarely caused death...but something was singing in rightness. The Centruroides was in a peculiarly alone and without the guards noticing enough to stop her- She fell straight towards it. Falling and it struck.
It didn't hurt as much as she thought. She barely heard more scuttling; many more. She heard screaming. She could hear some people screaming about what type of scorpion it was and they were yelling because the others all attacked her strangely; weird behaviour for the scorpions. They attacked to paralyze, not kill and eat. The sand was meeting the sky in her sight slowly. It was bleeding together in a strange light colour. She felt her airways closing and her body jerked in pain.
"She's going into anaphylactic shock!"
She heard that and her lips quirked while lights turned into topaz lines and she rolled her eyes and head back. Now that would kill her.