The night was dark. I could hear the rain pattering on the dirt streets outside my house or what you could call my house. I was hugging my knees with my back against the cellars wall. I was crying into my dirty red dress that barely fit me, my dirty blond hair covering my ears. Outside the cellar I could hear my drunken uncle calling for me. Earlier today during the Festival of Pearls I had tried to run away, knowing that my uncle was buying some wine because I knew he would kill me. My uncle wa
The night was dark. I could hear the rain pattering on the dirt streets outside my house or what you could call my house. I was hugging my knees with my back against the cellars wall. I was crying into my dirty red dress that barely fit me, my dirty blond hair covering my ears. Outside the cellar I could hear my drunken uncle calling for me. Earlier today during the Festival of Pearls I had tried to run away, knowing that my uncle was buying some wine because I knew he would kill me. My uncle was a cruel man. He had dark shaggy hair and dark eyes that pained you if you looked in them. I have lived with him for two life threatening years, after every festival or when ever traders came would he buy wine and get drunk. This has happened so many times I have gotten used to it. But this time, this time was different...
“Erica! Erica!” my uncle yelled. He shouted my name at least ten times. Each time I cried harder and shivered. Last time he had gotten drunk he had thrown a knife at me head, fortunately I had ducked. Since this had happened I knew he would kill me; after all he wouldn’t care since my mother sold me to him through poverty. But I cared. I looked around the dark damp cellar; there was no light except for a little window that I could barely crawl through. My uncle was getting closer to the door. Suddenly he started to pound his fat fists against it. Quickly I tried to run to the window I had to crawl through it (or try to). As I stumbled towards it blindly something caught the corner of my eye.
“Erica! Erica! Come out now otherwise you won’t be fed from my household for a month!” I shivered at this as I walked towards the thing that had caught my eye. I couldn’t tell what it was but I kept walking. It looked like a piece of wall coming into the cellar. As I got closer my uncle pounded so hard on the door that it fell over and hit me. Everything seemed to dance and I felt pain. The next thing I knew I was falling down a slimy tunnel, or hole in the ground. I could feel rocks and roots scratching my sides, and my red dress got torn as I slide down the tunnel. Then suddenly I hit my head on a rock and fainted. When I woke up I could see a ray of moon light coming down a very steep mound. I tried to stand up but realized that the ceiling of the tunnel was to low down for me to fully stand. I made myself slide on the damp mud until I reached a cliff. When I looked down I could see that the cliff was actually a steep slope. The slope led up to the steep mound. This looked impossible to climb. I brainstormed about which would be easier, going back up the tunnel or trusting the moonlit rays shining down on the steep mounds. I could hear my uncle above yelling my name. Instantly I started to pull myself up the slope. I looked down, I cannot tell you how scared I was as I began to let myself slide uncontrollably down the muddy slope and could not stop screaming. Once I had reached the bottom I fell unconscious again.
It must have been morning when I woke up, because there were sun rays shining through the tunnel. The air smelled warm and comforting as I started to climb up the huge mound. The mound wasn’t as steep as it had looked, but I still couldn’t help myself from sliding. It probably took me almost an hour to climb up. When I got on top of the greasy hill, I took a deep breath and looked down. I was amazed at what I saw. There was a beautiful cave with grapes vines griping its sides. Next to that there was a small waterfall that ran into a fresh water spring. As I carefully slid down, I could feel the mud getting softer and drier. Through the caves entrance I could see the ocean. It smelled so refreshing I couldn’t help myself. This place was the most beautiful place I could ever dream of. With the fresh water spring, grape vines growing everywhere, two beautiful apricot and olive trees on one side of the cave, and last but not least the pleasant smell of the ocean. When I finally got down from the hill, I stumbled toward the spring and started to drink. I guess I was very thirsty because I couldn’t stop drinking the sweet fresh water.
I stayed in the cave for many days. Sleeping, bathing, eating, drinking, and walking along the beach. Then one day I woke up to see a set of clothing laying on a rock. I had forgotten all about my red dress that had been torn up several times. On the rock there was a white Guinevere style dress that had gold trim on the sleeves, neck line, and the seam at the bottom of the skirt. The fabric was very light. When I put it on I felt like I wasn’t wearing anything. Next, on the rock there was a beautiful pair of flat dancing slippers. They were a light green color with a big satin bow resting on top of them. Surprisingly everything fit perfectly. There was even a band to put my hair back in with an old comb and mirror. After I had combed my hair and had gotten all the rat nests out I ate breakfast (apricots and spring water) on the beach. Suddenly I heard a noise. I turned around and saw beautiful women wearing a silky silver cape and a light blue dress of fabric that looked as light as mine. Her bright blond hair was shimmering in the golden sun and her bright violet eyes looked into the distance and then at me. She started to come toward me, so I stood up.
“Hello Erica.” She said very calmly. Her voice sounded ancient but pleasant. I liked it.
“Hello.” I said in an unsure voice. “How did you know my name?” I was puzzled.
“Oh, because I’ve been watching over you for days now.” Her voice was so soothing I wanted to keep her talking.
“Where am I?” I asked.
“I would think you would know. But maybe not.”
“That doesn’t answer my question.” I stated.
“I know.” She said calmly as the wind blew her hair. “That’s because they’re really isn’t an answer to your question. This place is your everything. This is your memories, your thoughts, and your future.” She winked, took her cloak of and sat down. I decided to sit down across from her.
“You see you actually have been here before; long ago. So long ago you can’t even remember.”
“Is this heaven?”
“To you it might be. To others it is middle earth, paradise, or just a land of opportunity. You can call it whatever you wish.”
“So, am I dead?” I asked
“ No not quite.”
“But I thought that I had escaped-” she cut me off.
“From your uncle? No. You just simply got stabbed in the back and fell unconscious. But I am saving you, you see?”
“Why though? What am I to you?”
“You are everything; don’t you realize that your mother sold you because of it?”
“Because of what?” She slapped me across the face. The slap stung.
“Because, you are destined to become the new speaker of the god!” I was in a state of shock. I couldn’t even feel how bad my face was stinging. The speaker had power over the god himself! This was the highest of the high. So this is why my mother sold me, not out of poverty. She sold me because traditionally the mother of the speaker was required to sacrifice herself. She sold me because she was afraid and too weak to perform her duty. I just couldn’t believe this.
“Does anyone else know?” I asked in disbelief.
“Of course people know. The whole town does, besides your uncle!” the woman shouted.
“So you are saving me just because of this! I would rather die than stay with my uncle!” I yelled. She slapped me again; harder.
“Don’t you ever……!” she paused “You surely didn’t think that when you’re in the cellar now did you?” she half whispered.
“Who are you?” I said after I thought about this.
“I’m everything that’s surrounding you.” She grinned softly and looked me in the eye.
“Mother Earth?” I probably looked really confused when I said this.
“No! Are you clueless?”She shouted and then whispered “I am Calypso.” Then she started to fade into the air.
“Wait!”I yelled but it was too late she had disappeared leaving only her silver cloak behind. It must be true then I was the next speaker and all of this was a dream. I grabbed the cloak and looked out into the sea. I shut my eyes and listened to the gulls screeching above and breathing in the salty crisp air. Then I turned around and walked to the cave. I had been here for months now enjoying myself and the nature surrounding me. The entrance were I had come from when I first arrived was completely shut. Have I stayed here to long? I asked myself. Thinking about all that had happened today I walked over to the rock by the spring where I had been keeping my clothes and mirror. I looked into the mirror and saw a beautiful girl of fifteen, with bright green eyes and wavy honey blond hair. That girl was me. I had definitely changed from when I had first come here.
I stood up and looked at my muscular but thin body. After all living on an island and eating only fruit would make you stronger. The sun was starting to set already, I guess Calypso and I had been talking for a very long time. I decided to watch the sunset on top of the cave. By the time I had climbed up I was very tired and feel asleep.
When I woke I was laying in a bed with creamy white silk sheets covering me. There was a white comforter covering me, and my head was resting on three white feather pillows. I sat up against the head board. To my right there was a window that was open and curtains were waving back and forth in the wind. I was wearing a silky white nightgown. There were slippers on the rug below me. The floor was marble, and the walls were white with Elven writing on them. There was a small table with flowers in the middle.
I started to get out of my bed when I noticed a sharp pain in my back, I looked to see a long scar etched into my skin. Suddenly the door to my room burst open and there were several court women including Calypso. They all filed around my bed knelt down and started to pray. Calypso winked at me then continued prayer. Then the all left except for three maids and Calypso. One maid had a tray with food on it.
“Hello again dear Erica” said Calypso grinning. “We are blessed that you decided to return. It has taken four months for you to heal, so therefore we crowned you the speaker on what we thought was your death bed.”
“I am very pleased that I have returned. Thank you for greeting me. But, where am I? What am I doing here? And what has happened to my uncle?” I was very surprised that I was able to say all of this confidently.
“Well”, a tanned, brown- eyed woman said.
“Calypso here sensed your troubles and sent soldiers to bring you here to the place of Gea, and the soldiers arrested your uncle. Last but not least you are here in behalf of healing and dedicating yourself to the life of a speaker. Now here is some food for you to eat.” The maid with the food gave me the tray and left.
“We hope you shall eat well then meet use down in the courtyard. A maid will come to give you some help finding it and to give you your clothing. Good day.” They all bowed their heads and left.
Three hours later
I had been sitting in the courtyard with the three women for three hours discussing what was to happen to me the rest of my life. The first lady I had talked to was named Marian. The other two were called Myra and Wenonah, they were twins and had flaming red hair and bright blue eyes.
“Now all of us have decided that before you become truly our speaker you must face your fears… namely, your uncle.” Myra revealed. I gasped. I couldn’t do this, I just couldn’t.
“And if you say no we shall send you back to your uncle since as we have discussed your mother has committed suicide. All of them were staring at me. I felt the cool breezes blowing around my silk robes and my hair. The only sounds were the bees buzzing around in the roses and lavender; and the birds chirping in the glass bird bath. I had to do this, I just had to.
“Yes I accept I will do this.” I said bravely. Calypso looked very proud, the twins grinned and Marian said:
“Good. We will leave you alone now.” Then they left. I was alone. My knees started to get numb and I bit the insides of my cheeks. I couldn’t do this I just couldn’t. I took several deep breaths. Suddenly the courtyard doors burst open. Two soldiers pushed my drunken uncle into the courtyard. He was very drunk. Drunker then I have ever seen him. He was sort of dancing with his tongue falling outside of his mouth like a dogs. Slowly I backed away and hide behind I fountain.
“Erica! Erica! I know you’re there!” He yelled, drool dripping out of his mouth. I shivered. Stumbling he came over to the fountain and tripped over a rock. Face first he fell into the fountain. Then he really got mad. He jumped out and started screaming, water drops plummeting toward the soft grass.
“Erica, I know where you are!” He screamed. Then it was very silent, I could hear something moving but didn’t know what. I started to stand up when suddenly my uncle threw the bird bath at me. Luckily I ducked. I was shaking like crazy my knees making my whole body vibrate. Then for some weird reason I started to think of the island, courage building up in my body. I could do this.
I felt a sudden feeling inside me and closed my eyes. My uncle was lumbering towards me; I could hear him. Then with a frightening strength, power burst out of me. I could hear my uncle scream with pain has blood gushed out of his eye sockets. I opened my eyes as I saw him turning into ash. The ash slowly dissolved into the ground. Then I collapsed, when I felt pain rushing through my body, I felt weak, very weak. It seemed like I was going to die and someone was cutting my body into a million pieces.
I few hours later, or what seemed like hours I woke up. The moon was shining very brightly. I started to stand up. Surprisingly I didn’t feel weak. I felt strong, stronger then I had ever felt before. As I walked towards the door in the beautiful moon light I realized no matter how weak or afraid you are of anything, you should still do it. Trust in yourself.