There it was, all alone. Half in the dark, half in the light. I reach down to take my favorite book up from the ground. My mother had given it to me right before she died. At the time, I didn’t understand that my mother would be gone soon. I knew at some level, that she didn’t feel well, but I had no idea how bad it was. That I would never see her smile or hear her silvery voice again.
No at that time, I thought that... that... I thought... I don’t remember anymore what my thoughts were. It was so long ago; I was just a little girl, when my mother closed her eyes, never to open them again. I did cry. That I remember. But I also remember it wasn’t because I felt sad or because I understood what had happened. But because everyone around me was crying. I just thought that my mother had gone to sleep. After that, our grandparents took me and my sister in and raised us. I thought that she would come back. Back to us. But after some time, both my sister and I started to understand. Understand that the woman we had loved, and who had loved us with all her heart was not coming back. No matter how hard we prayed and begged to see her again. She was gone.
My mother loved this book, this was the book she would read from every night. I don’t know how many times she read this story to us. We must have heard it a hundred times. But as time went on, the memory of her reading to us disappeared little by little. I read through this book whenever I can, so I can be closer to her. It is almost like I can hear her voice in the pages of the book even though just like the memory, her voice is disappearing more and more every day. If you take a good look at this beautiful book, you can see how the book has been loved for many years. You can see it in how it has been opened and closed every night, chapter by chapter, on the off-color, and the splits on the pages. By now the illustration on the book cover is almost invisible to the eye. Some colors still shine through, but the illustration is almost gone. And it has been like that for longer than I can remember.
I took the book over to my blue chair on the right side of my room just close enough to the window, that the midday sun rays wouldn’t bother me but still give me the perfect light. And for a few seconds, I just sat there breathing in the world I knew would come to mind the second I open this book. Just for a little while, being in an entirely different world. So once again I start to read the story, a story I can by now reside from memory; in my sleep. But I can’t stop reading it. Something about the story. The way the words are speaking to me, something keeps pulling me back to it. And I have absolutely no regrets about it. Absolutely none. My eyes fell upon the first line and then the next and the one after that, and it was like the world became more and more blurry, line by line until it disappeared altogether consuming me. A whole other place, where you could see the colors, smell the plants, you can almost feel the sun and wind on your skin but still never leave the comfort of your room. You become a part of the character’s life and you know them, feel what they feel. It’s a safe place.
But by being so consumed by it, you are not really seeing what is happening around you. Sometimes that is the best feeling in the world, other times, someone or something could scare you; half to death. You become an easy target. I didn’t see anything or hear anything; I was in my happy place. And just like with the snap of a finger, I was ripped out by the scare, somebody was breathing down my neck; somebody I had not realized had even come into my room. In the first few seconds after the first breath, it felt like I was just waking up, and then reality hit me like a rock. I could hear a scream. I had not only been scared so much that I felt like I was having an out-of-body experience, but I had also jumped up from my chair, thrown my book from me, and then I was back in my body, it was me, my own scream I just heard. I turn my head and lock eyes with no other than my own sister, twin sister with a smirk on her lips.
“You. Are. Dead.” You could hear the ice in my voice and see the hate in my eyes. She just looked at me, shot me a smirk, and ran out of the door, just as fast she had come into my room, she was gone. And then, the chase started. But right before I ran from the room, after my sister. I turned to my book and the next second, I was gone.
So, there the book lay again. All alone, half in the dark, half in the light. But on the inside, the book was jumping with life. However, it is also in there that the story really begins.