"What do you think?"
I thought it was amazing. Did we made silver or caught the stars from heaven? Even in the dark cabinet, it kept gleaming.
"Is this how it should be?" I wrote on the blackboard.
"You can talk to me, no need to write it down."
Hypnotized she stared at the bottle.
"I hope it won't affect the other medication. Perhaps we should separate them just to be sure."
Just like her, I felt it hard to keep my eyes off the bottle.
"Should we taste it?"
She hesitated. "I will taste it first after we bottled all of it. We better do it fast. We are not familiar with this one."
"Should we ask Rosemary?" I asked.
"We will later after we finished the bottling."
"Will this help to end the dark days?"
"We'll see. The dark days will end one day, it can take longer but they will end even without a cure."
"How do you know?"
"It's how it works, everything works. There's no beginning without an end. History, the stories I told you, and the tales you read, they prove it and how it once was. Look at us now. Look at our life, what we manage to do."
Hand in hand we stood in front of the cabinet and gaped at its luminous content.
"Shouldn't we label them?"
"I'm not sure. If you like you can do it. Your handwriting is neat but perhaps it's too early since we don't know anything about its real healing power yet."
Together we read the recipe and description again. She read the words out loud. So she did with the notes written in the sideline. Not a single word mentioned the luminous effect. Was it possible the herbs left on the table were different from what we usually used or did someone add an extra ingredient to our soup as we fell asleep? For sure the owls would have noticed an intruder but Carmen needed to be sure. Nowhere she found the smallest trace of an extra herb, spice, or ingredient different from what we used. We both agreed this was how it should be and called it 'the special effect' and decided not to call for Rosemary tonight.
It is possible she listened to us since she told me she always heard us, the whole community did, but she didn't show.
Instead, we spent the rest of the afternoon and evening reading books. Everything that should be said was said and we both were used to spend many hours a day alone and in silence. After all those years I didn't change. I needed my space and spent many hours pondering. Meditation and I turned not out to be a great match no matter what Carmen said. My bed, the blanket, was the best place to be. I studied the covers of each book placed on the bookshelf hoping to find the book containing all answers named 'Atlas'.
As soon as the darkness came I left for my room. Lately, only on rare occasions, I was able to stay awake longer. Surprisingly enough I was no longer such a night owl like my beloved Birca. It was true I preferred the darkness above the light. The stars and moon provided me with enough light and energy but for some reason, I always felt the need to go to bed early. At daytime, the shade was more attractive. If we didn't spend time in the herbs garden I left to the shades of the trees or to the patio where I talked to the owls. They were always willing to keep me company. To me, it felt as if the sunlight took away all vitality. Not the warmth but the light weakened me. Carmen never made a problem out of it but once as she returned from her travels she brought me dark glasses to protect my vision, sunglasses she called them. They made me feel better.
As the years passed by our mornings started later and with it our days. I became a fast reader, a good writer, and knew everything about our herbs, their healing powers, and how to prepare them in different ways. She still taught me but the special lessons dedicated to writing, reading, mathematics, and history were no longer needed. While living our daily life she educated me and explained what I needed to know like we all have our biorhythm even if we belong to the same species. She assured me I would find mine once I became older.
Was I a different species? I knew nothing about my parents but doubted we had anything in common. If that would be the case they had heard me, known Carmen searched for me.
'Birds of a feather flock together' was her answer when I once asked why she went through all the trouble of traveling, risking her life just to find me. Was it loneliness or for another reason we needed to be together? For sure outsiders observing us, the silent woman and the quiet, mute child, thought we didn't fit together and made a strange couple. In reality, I never been as close to anyone as her.
Each moment with her is precious to me. I miss her but it doesn't give me any mood swings. I know she will return once this all is over. If not I will be the same, the world changed but we still are who we once were. I know she hears me and so will the others. We are the birds of a feather, sisters. We might not save the world but do our best. We'll arise and make the world a better, healthier place as soon as she, the one we call mother Nature, had her rest.
Total amount of words: 2737
A part of this episode is not published.