Daughter for the Stars
Colors danced and swirled above my head. The night sky was illuminated more than I had ever before witnessed. Yes, I thought, tonight most definitely was the night. I brushed the layer of snow away from the ground around me, revealing the frozen blades of green grass. Inside my gloves my fingers tingled from the bitter chill. The snow twinkled in reflection of the beautiful sky. I watched as the blue, red, and green hues raced across the cold world. Oh, if only I could have followed them. I would race past the snow and ice, dance beside the water, and look down upon all those who now rested in their homes.
Under the two full moons I lifted my shovel and stuck it deeply into the hard ground. The dirt eventually gave way to my will and lifted from its bed. I tossed my load from my shovel and it scattered over the pure white surface of the snow. Slowly by slowly I dug into the earth around me.
After an hour had passed I set down my shovel to admire my work. The hole was only a foot deep, but it the perfect shape of an eye. I could almost feel it staring up at me, drawing me into its stare. As I watched the sky cast its colors down upon the eye it continued to tempt. Come, come and lay down. Sleep forever. I felt a tear escape my eye.
Since the day I was born, maybe even before that, this day was inevitable. At an hour till daybreak I would lay down, in my self-dug grave and Бог would take up my soul. Forever I would join the stars and watch over my people. It was an honor. I looked around at the field. Dozens of little mounds surrounded me. In each one slept the body of a star. Now they were just memorials of the girls taken up each hundred years.
The wind blew the snow up around me and pierced my skin, through my thin parka. I held my arms tightly to my body, preserving all of the quickly depleting heat that I could. The moons continued to look down upon me, the eyes of Бог watching my sacred work. I picked back up my shovel and continued to dig my frozen crypt.
With two hours left until daybreak and one hour left for me to breathe, I finished the beautiful grave. I pulled off the parka, my gloves, and my boots, allowing the cold world to take me in. Finally positioned in my final home, right in the center of the eye, I looked up to the sky where my new home would be. I watched the stars twinkle in the distance, each showing off their beauty. How sad a life it seemed, to never move and just watch those below, each night hoping that your light would be bright enough for someone to notice you. I would rather be one of the auroras. They got to dance and bring joy to those below.
My hands seemed to be missing at my sides. I longed to be able to feel again. Shivering had long ago stopped and I could feel my breathing slow and become painful. I prayed that I would go soon. Couldn't the world just let me fulfill my one purpose and let go of this cold numb pain?
Each day of my life they taught me my destiny. I was a star child, one of our saviors. I had neither a mother nor father. My life was at the temple, where people could come and tell me their needs and give me blessings for my "long journey." All of them were depending on me to fulfill their wishes. I had to become a star.
Cold tears ran down my cheeks and my frozen body shook with sobs. I didn't want to leave. I didn't want to become one of the motionless watchers. The colors continued to dance above me, calling for me to follow. Come, come and dance with us. Run forever. I shut my eyes tightly and clenched my teeth together. I had to do this. Everyone, yes everyone needed me now. Oh, but I didn't wan to die!
My eyes shot open at that thought. I was going to die, not become a star. I was a sacrifice, about to give away my body and breath and join the dozens of mounds. In less than an hour the villagers would come and cover my soulless form with the earth I had dug. No, I couldn't just die. Oh Бог, I prayed, please save me. This could not be what He wanted. No, he loved each of his children. Even at night when the warm sun disappeared and left us to be lost, He watched us and kept us safe. Why would He have me be a helpless star when I could do so much more?
I opened my eyes once more and saw the aurora dancing in they sky. Come, come dance with us. Come run with us child. Pulling all my strength together, I clenched my fists tightly and pushed up from the ground. I sucked in a shaking breath of the icy air, and somehow, against all my body's urgings, I began to run.
The ground stretched out forever in front of me, but I smiled. I danced and ran with the lights above me. Colors swirled beneath my feet and I hoped all over me as well. All morning I followed the aurora, running for Бог, running for my father. The cold saturated my being, but as the colors faded and the sun broke out over the horizon I was knocked back by its warmth. My body gladly soaked in every gentle ray that settled upon my stone skin.
I could see a small patch of grass not far off, so I went there. Once I arrived, a wave of fatigue struck my body. I curled up on the ground and let myself slip into unconsciousness. Dreams came, and He spoke to me. I'm proud, my dear child. Come and run with me forever. That night and each that followed, I ran with the auroras. My colors shining out over the land as I danced. I felt alive. I ran with my father.