The title of the novel has not been finalised.....
“Take me by the hand; it's so easy for you, Angel, for you are the road even while being immobile.” Rilke
Above the land then high over the ocean: drifting; floating. Flying across the star filled dark sky before dropping to rooftops and below, through slates and attics to bedrooms. Whirling past sleeping children and through walls to room after room of sleeping couples and singles. Spinning round pensioners and restless insomniacs. Finally she comes to a stop in one bedroom, like all the other bedrooms, and hovering above the ceiling, she is looking down: looking directly down onto the bed. On the bed, naked and unashamed are two bodies entwined in each other, writhing and caressing. Flesh mixed with a floral patterned duvet, patterns interchanging, flowers and flesh. Then a brief glance at the faces. It is who she feared it might be and yet knew it would be. Glimpses of faces, engrossed in passion: eager to please and oblivious of the world. The invisible peeping tom, who wasn't really there, blushed in awkward embarrassment. The room was filled with a swirling mist and in the swirling shadows flew faces, all familiar, all stern and all disapproving. There was also noise. Above the clinical noise of the lust and passion and the eager bouncing of the old bed springs was the murmur of many voices speaking together in an incomprehensible babble of confusion. The whole scene turned red. Not just red but deepest crimson as in the colour of blood. As if the mood suddenly changed, dogs rushed in towards the couple on the bed, their teeth grotesquely sharp, and their smiles salivating. They were wild, fierce dogs, snapping and snarling, searching for blood.
She looked quickly away as she couldn't bear to see what would happen next and found she was under water. All had turned from red to blue. A dolphin smiled and encouraged her to follow. After a short swim there were the same copulating couple, now in blue tints surrounded by shoals of sparkly small fish. At that moment a huge shark appeared. It was focussed single mindedly on her, heading directly towards her. Its mouth was open and its numerous teeth were regular and very sharp. It was huge. It was getting closer. The big mouth and the teeth was blue and yet also stained with red. It was too close. Her heart was pounding. She screamed.
And sat up in bed suddenly awake and remembering all that had happened. The room was dark but it was far from quiet. The wind howled around the outside of the small Hebridean cottage. A hundred yards away the fierce Atlantic breakers crashed onto the beach. The storm had been raging since afternoon would blow for a few hours yet. From the open door to the living room, the next room in the tiny cottage emerged a soft gentle light.
She eased herself slowly to sit on the side of the bed, careful not to wake the sleeping man and she pulled her dressing gown round her shoulders. She stood up slowly and reached out in the darkness for the walking frame and, finding the comforting handles within reach, she shuffled slowly through the familiar route into the living room.
There was a soft light here, but not from the dead embers in the fireplace. The room just seemed to be glowing. She looked expectantly at the straight backed chair beside the dining table and sure enough he was there.
“Hello, I knew it would be you” she said.
“Take your time and sit down, we have all night!”
He was young, perhaps, but his age, like his origin was difficult to tell. He had never seemed to change no matter how many times she saw him and she had seen him many times over many years. He was dressed in simple clothes, quite nondescript yet very light coloured and the pale glow of the room emphasised their ephemeral lightness.
She moved slowly round the room with her zimmer frame and settled herself down in her own armchair, close to the fireplace. Though the embers were long dead there was still some warmth that she could feel through her nightdress.
She was old, very old. Her hair was white and thin. Her face was wrinkled from years of stormy winds and marked with many signs of age, the thin translucent skin pulled tight to her skull bones but her eyes were clear and bright. She moved slowly and deliberately and every movement indicated the rheumatism and other aches and pains below the surface of the old body.
“I…. I've been dreaming again. Its them two. They are…” she paused, embarrassed “ well you know what they are doing”
“I know, that’s why I'm here. How’s the arthritis?”
“Pah, old age! One part stops aching for a moment just to give you time to be aware of all the other aches you have in so many other places.”
His gentle smile oozed empathy and concern.
“So what’s it all mean?” she asked, “What is going to happen? I can feel that something will happen.”
“You will lose her for a while” he said, “but do not worry. She will return and it will all be well.”
“You’re always so impossibly imprecise!” she moaned to her old friend. “I am not happy with what she is doing right now.” She paused and said sadly, “I thought better of both of them!”
“It had to be. She will learn from and through him and from what he gives her. He will give her a most valuable gift that he himself will never see.”
“There you go again, making up your prophesies; all mystical and imprecise. They are being immoral and I feel he is using her to ease his loneliness and pain. It just doesn’t seem right.”
“You feel so much and you and she will both get your reward. You know she is very like you”
The wind howled and there was a crash as something moved in the yard outside.
“You must go back to bed and try and get some sleep old faithful one” he said, “you can’t be sitting chatting to me all night – your man will be getting jealous”
“Aye right, as if…” she stopped as she knew there was no point in saying more and smiled as she pulled herself up stiffly out of the old armchair and shuffled across the room towards the bedroom door. As she reached the doorway she could hear her husband of over fifty years snoring regularly in their old double bed. She turned and looked at the young man. He smiled and raised a hand in farewell and she went on and climbed back into her bed.
The cottage was suddenly empty and was as still as if the visitor had never been there and many would argue that he hadn't.
She pulled the covers over her and gently laid her head on the pillow, feeling a deep sense of peace in spite of the roaring storm without the old stone walls. Within a minute she was deep in a peaceful and dreamless sleep.
Image "Woman With Wings In Flight"courtesy of Victor Habbick /FreeDigitalPhotos.net