As dawn broke, they were strewn across the bed. Corners of blankets pulled over shoulders and hips haphazardly. Feet pushed under folds of fabric for warmth. It was a scene of disorder. Christina felt like she had returned to some primal state of being. She hadn’t worn a scrap of clothing for over twenty-four hours. She had made love in the dirt under the open sky and watchful eye of the moon. She couldn’t help but feel that the moon was somehow her co-conspirator in this play, that it beckoned her out into it’s light so that it could illuminate parts of herself she had never seen.
She woke gently to the sound of tires on the gravel, padding slowly down the stairs, fastening the belt of a rose pink dressing gown that she had found on the back of the bedroom door around her waist. She peaked out of the window and saw a massive transit van skulking on the driveway with ‘Ron’s Removals’ written across the side in navy letters.
‘You’re not going to let them take your Grandma’s things are you Christina?’ Sep’s low voice appeared out of nowhere, speaking into the nape of her neck rather than her ear so that she could feel the vibrations of his voice rippling out over her throat and shoulder.
Christina’s consciousness eased back into the real world, it felt like the day she ran out of work in frenzy was just a dream, that this is how it had always been. It was past nine but frost still clung to the edges of the leaves in defiance of the pale sun that seemed to have hardly risen. It dawned on her, that legally this wasn’t her house, no contracts had been exchanged, her mother could throw her out at any time. Her mother! She could come here!
‘How can I stop them?’ She said, he couldn’t see the look of horror in her eyes as the removal men started to slide out of the van, smoking and laughing.
Sep grabbed her by the hand and dragged her to hallway, they were so close to the door that both their pairs of feet were on the welcome mat.
‘Bar the doorway’ Sep said, looking through the spy hole he could see the men approaching, one of them casually flicking through a bunch of keys attached to his belt by a chain.
‘With what?’ Christina’s eyes were darting around the hallway looking for suitable items.
‘With your arms’ Sep said flatly.
‘What?’ She looked at him in disbelief.
‘Just do it’ the same measured tone of voice.
Christina turned to face the door and raised he arms upwards and outwards to grasp the doorframe.
‘Now visualise those men never ever being able to get through the door, no matter what they try this door will not budge for them, imagine the wood holding fast against their attempts, the lock immovable. Mean it. Mean it with all your mind and all your body.’
Christina concentrated, the door was her single focus. She thought of every particle that it was made up of and how not a single one would ever move for the removal men, even if they had a battering ram. Straining, her muscles began to shake and sweat ran from her thick, tangled hair into her eyes and over her lips. Incredibly salty she realised that this sweat was some how carrying some power, some essence out of her and she pressed her forehead against the door until the sweat trickled down its surface in milky white rivulets.
She could hear one of the men sliding the key into the lock, and time seemed to slow down, she could hear the grind of metal against metal as the key began to turn. In a final effort, her eyes rolled back in her head as she willed the door not to open.
Click. Once and then click click in rapid procession as the key hit some unknown obstacle. Throwing his cigarette onto the floor, a kind of snarl playing across his face, the removal man rattled the key several more times. Swearing, he unclipped the bunch from his belt and handed it over to his workmate.
There was a serious of more clicks, Sep stood back with his arms folded and smug smile. He watched Christina twitching and jerking, up on her tiptoes, this was so powerful, this was magic from pure energy, no charms, no spells. As the convulsions increased in violence there was a demonic roar of deafening volume.
‘You will not enter here.’ Christina howled.
‘Bloody Hell!’ Both the removal men jumped back from the doorway simultaneously. ‘There’s something in there.’
‘Sounded like a goddamn bear.’ One of them said, clearly shaken.
‘A talking bear?’ The other replied, in complete bewilderment.
‘I don’t give a shit what it is, I’m not going in there, that woman can fetch her own sodding furniture.’ His tone was final.
His companion jogged back to the van in silent, panicked acquiescence. Gears jammed into first, the wheels span on the gravel for a moment before the removal van raced away from the house.
Christina turned to Sep, drenched, dark hair clinging to her face, her breath ragged from the exertion.
‘Can I borrow your phone please, I want to make an offer on this house.’ She said coolly.
Her composure was impeccable, he was beyond impressed. Christina strutted back up the stairs and showered. As the hot water beat down on her skin she thought about what had just transpired with casual amusement. Again she was engulfed in the feeling that this is the way it had always been, that sealing doors with her mind was something she had always been able to do. Her humdrum life of before, burdened down with childhood hurt seemed steeped in a thick mist, like she had simply imagined it all.
Wrapped in a towel, with water still dripping down her arms and legs, something in the linen cabinet caught Christina’s eye. Some kind of heavy cotton fabric in a startling azure colour was nestled in amongst other carefully folded bundles. Pulling it carefully out, she spread the fabric as far as she could, though it was much wider than her two outstretched arms. Catching herself in the mirror she pushed the fabric against her body, noticing how the colour almost made her pale skin glow. Arranging the fabric into deliberate folds, draping it over her shoulder and tucking it back into itself, Christina had robed herself in the fabric in the fashion of a Grecian Goddess. Plaiting her hair, humming and smiling to herself, she felt as if her true self had blossomed to the surface.
Darkness approached early that evening, in deep winter. It was an absurd scene: a radiant, beautiful woman, dressed like a princess from ancient history, chatting on a mobile phone, arranging sick leave from work, handing in the notice on her flat. It was an absurd scene: being observed by a strange face peering in through the windowpane.