"The Gods Dream Green Dreams"
Bright, green light steals Angel from the dream world. The softness of earth is remembered, felt. His eyes open like blooming flowers and they cast his sentience upon the forest, his home. Angel hears birds caw-cawing to one another and the buzzing of a billion insects comes together like fine gossamer music. He feels nothing beside him on the ground and wonders where Feather has gone.
"Fishing?" Angel asks.
River looks up from his water-face and sees Angel appearing from behind the brush. He lowers his spear, nods.
Angel treads through the shallow stream and stands beside Feather, who stands beside River. The three of them share a quiet moment, gazing down at the fish behind their water-faces.
"I had a dream," Angel says. The others say nothing, wait for more. "There was a car."
"Car?" River asks.
Feather kneels down, traces her fingers in the water. "It's too quiet today," she whispers.
Angel stares at River, who stares down at Feather's water-face. River feels Angel's eyes on him and turns away.
"Come on," River says and begins to walk down the bank. "You've scared all the fish away."
Thomas gazes out the backseat window, his own face gazing back at him, both of them bored. Outside, foliage looms down on the car, shrouding it in an emerald shadow. Beyond the road, Thomas watches as nature blurs past. His whole life he has wanted to see the trees, but after so many hours amidst the wilderness, the wonder begins to wear thin.
Thomas looks to his father and mother in the front of the car. "How much longer?" he asks. Neither of them answer.
"Yes, son," Thomas's father says, staring straight ahead.
"How much longer?"
A little while still, Tom."
"Try and take a nap, dear," Thomas's mother says. "It'll go faster that way."
"I'm not tired," Thomas says.
"Well..." his mother starts, but trails off, distracted.
Thomas's mother sighs. "Just listen to some music or something, Tommy."
Thomas stares back out the window. Pouting, he puts on a pair of headphones, presses "Play" on his CD player, and rests his head against the glass.
Angel and Feather hold hands and River tries to grab at fish with his. Feather sits, Angel stands, and she keeps staring up at him, admiring the golden light that falls on him through the naked spaces in the trees.
"You are beautiful," she tells him.
Angel says nothing. Her compliment bothers him. He is scared of it, and other things.
River splashes wildly in the water, catching only mud and pebbles between his fingers. His spear sits on the riverbank, useless to him and thus, forgotten.
Angel glares at River.
"Do not swear. The forest will be angry."
River laughs. "The forest I can deal with. It's these fish that I need to worry about."
Feather leans against Angel's leg.
"I wish it was night," she says. "You only hold me at night."
Angel lets go of her hand.
"I'm going to check the road." He looks down at Feather. "Stay with River. Help him fish."
"I hate fish."
Feather nods. Angel disappears into the green.