She wandered in the desert. Hot. Scorched. Her skin cracked from heat and dehydration. Rana no longer knew if she was alive or dead. Dead, she thought. She hoped. The heat of this Hell was pressing her further into the sand.
Crawling, the stinging sands scoured her body as she tried to pull herself to Steven’s body…whevever it was. Salt entered her wounds. Four days in the desert was the same as four hundred. Rana searched for her lover. The man that she knew was the other half of her. The thieves of her heart killed him and threw his body to the vermin of the desert to be picked apart. She wanted to take him back; to treat his dead body with respect. The same respect with which he had treated her. It was least she could do.
When they threw her out of the car, they sent her west; knowing that she would wander aimlessly until the same fate befell her. Her mind finally gave in. The tears were no longer able to flow with her cries for her lover. Her body had gone dry. She wasn’t sure when. Her wails for him didn’t, however. Her love pushed her on through the dryness, through the pain that ripped through her as her skin cracked and the sands stung her until she had no more strength to move her forward. Her mind and her heart seared for him, just as her skin had been seared by the sun.
She lay in the sand awaiting death. Welcoming it. Yearning for it like she had once yearned for her lover.
A noise. A voice.
She couldn’t focus enough to know if it was a human voice or some animal screeching for her death so to feed on her already rotting flesh. A shadow blanketed her in a moment of seeming coolness. She couldn’t lift her head to see. She didn’t care to see. She knew her time had come. This was the end.
She began to rise off the ground. Something was moving her. How unusual the softness she felt now. The yang of the yin of the sand. The stinging began to subside. The biting sands no longer beneath her. She was bouncing as she heard a rhythm being pounded. Hooves? She tried, but could not open her eyes to see. Perhaps she was delirious. Perhaps her brain sent her false hope.
All went black. The sounds disappeared.
When Rana opened her eyes again, her mind raced. Panicked, she began searching for her lover again. She found herself tethered to the bed. The machines beeped out a rhythm each time the morphine dripped into the IV. She tried to focus. Still cloudy, the memories of the past week began to float back to her.
When the nurse entered the room, Rana asked her where she was and how she got there. As the nurse began to tell her, the doctor walked in. The doctor.
He had been the one to bring her to the facility. His eyes. His voice. He reminded her of someone. Who? She thought and thought. Her former lovers face came back to her again. She leapt from the bed ripping the IV from her arm. “Your face is exactly like his! You sound like him!” Her chest rose and fell quickly as she her breath raced to escape her.
“Calm down. You are not in a position to put your body through anymore than it already has been. I am Steven’s brother,” he said trying to lead her back to the bed. “He and I have been apart for many years, but when I found out about what happened to you two, I knew I had to find you. Please, you need to rest. We have a lot we need to discuss, but it won’t be today. You stay here and trust Steven, if you don’t trust me.”
Reluctnatly, Rana laid her head back on the pillow. Oh, the downy of the pillow was heaven compared to the burning sands. They gave her more med and she slept.
Days later, it seemed, she opened her eyes again. The doctor came in again. Startled by his uncanny resemblance still, she had to refrain from detaching herself from the IVs again. He sat on the edge of the bed. He began to tell her their story. By the time he finished, her tears had returned and she asked for death. She had no desire to live a life without Steven. Sam refused her.
Rana cried and begged, “Please put me out of my misery. Take these damned IVs out! I don’t want to live! I want to be with Steven!” she cried.
“Then, stay with me,” he said. “I will love you and take care of you just like Steven did.” His eyes bore holes in her just as his brother’s did.
“NO! I will have ONLY him! No one can ever replace him!” She leapt from the bed again. Running from the room, she ran into a cart spilling plates upon plates. The morphine still coursing through her veins, the pain had thankfully subsided enough to bolt herself down the hall. She pushed through a door to take the stairs and a man was coming in as she was going out. She pushed by him, but she fell.
Rolling from step to step, her head bounced on the floor with each crash. She lay motionless at the bottom of the flight. The man standing above her said, “This is too easy.” He put a bullet in her chest. “Now, I can tell the boss you are done for sure, this time.”
He tucked the gun back in his jacket and headed down and out.
Rana got what she wanted. She had preferred death to life without Steven and now her life spilled from her body as her soul drifted out to find Steven.
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© Tania Dakka and Chaotic Musing, 2011