Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Light and Dark (05/21/09)
TITLE: Nara's Leap
By Autumn Ten
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He wasn't the kind of messenger typically depicted to the masses, but he was an angel just the same, and it was clear to Nara that he'd been sent.
The message he brought was not so clear. At least what the outcome would be, that is. It was rather disturbing, but Nara couldn't back out now that she had an answer.
Nara had sought guidance as to what to do about her brother for some time. For most of her life, as a matter of fact.
Blaine was different from the beginning. Devious, hateful and calculating. It never got better as he got older. It just grew and festered, as if the Devil himself had fathered him, and he was giving the direction.
Now that thier parents were gone, victims of the so called accident, Nara was left to deal with Blaine on her own. They didn't want to admit what their son was, even though they could see it as plain as day. It haunted them terribly. But maybe they found the peace in death that they could not find here on Earth.
At least the thought comforted Nara. If not for her unrelenting faith, she may have been conned into a similar fate, but faith was the one thing that scared Blaine.
The big park was quiet today. It was a favorite place of Nara's. Where she went to sort out her thoughts and find her solace. It was the place that Blaine often trailed her to, like a predator not quite hungry enough to move on his prey. He never realized that Nara knew. She could feel his presence, like when the sky gets dark just before a storm. You know it's there, it just hasn't shown itself
As she made the hike up the hill, like she'd done at least a hundred times before, she felt the familiar twinge in her gut and the heaviness fill the air around her. She paused to pull the water bottle out of her pack, using a rock for a chair. The air got heavier with each gulp, and the trees began to close in, as if to trap her in some kind of cage.
Tempting as it was to do double time, Nara stuck with the usual pace. It was hard to conceal the anxiousness caused at the break, but she didn't want to arouse suspicion. The prey isn't supposed to know when it's being hunted.
Upon reaching the top, Nara took the bible out and opened it to no particular page. She never picked the chapter and verse. They picked her.
She ran her fingers up and down the old leather spine, just like her grandmother used to do.
One day you'll settle this, she used to tell Nara, making no bones about how she felt about Blaine.
Grandma could always see things that other people couldn't.
Suddenly Nara snapped the book shut. She felt the solace again instead of the overwhelming urge to run. To question what she'd been told to do.
Blaine had finally caught up. So close now she could smell him.
"I've been waiting for you," she said, some small pebbles crumbling under her heels and bouncing down the steep ravine.
There was no reply, but that was to be expected from a coward.
"If you want me, you're going to have to come and get me," she continued.
Still there was no reply except for the odd chirp of a bird or click of a bug.
"You've got one last chance to right this," Nara warned, turning to feel the pebbles crumbling under her toes now.
The birds stopped chirping and the bugs stopped clicking. They always know things too.
Nara raised her arms to the wind and fell away, just as the point of the blade was to her back.
Blaine was swift in his charge and skilled with his knife, but he was unyielding to a fault.
As he laid lifeless on the rough boulders by the narrow stream at the end of the drop off, Nara was shaking the dust off from the enormous gust that had set her down on the dirt path.
She stared across the way at her brother's broken body for a long time, knowing his soul was even more broken. The sun was setting and there wouldn't be enough light to find her way back soon, but something wouldn't let Nara move on. She shivered into the night, the exaustion finally forcing her to sleep in the little niche by the path.
In the morning, she awoke warm in her bed, the "angel" smiling over her this time.
"Your grandma says hello," he said.
And with a wink he disappeared, but somehow Nara knew she hadn't seen the last of him.
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