Can't Stay

September 24, 2010
Early morning sunlight shone around the edges of the red curtain in Rencou’s bedroom. He sat on the floor watching the light shift as the hours passed.
Thoughts flew through his head. Thoughts of how he intended to succeed in his plan. He was headed out tonight, that is, as long as his father didn’t catch him. He would go to the northern cliffs on the other end of the island of Dralqion. The cliffs are as far as possible from his family’s hometown, Falnodhe, on the west end, almost thirty-two miles away; they drop straight down nine hundred feet to the rocks and the icy waters of the Pentezoric Sea at its base.
Rencou was also reflecting on how he looks so much like his father, Cyntol, yet, he and his father couldn’t be any more different. At 6’3”, which is average for the Kynilme people of Falnodhe, Rencou is 1 ½” taller than his father, who is 21 years older than him, at 38. They even have the same jet-black hair color. The only way to tell the two apart is by their eyes. Rencou’s are an ashy gray, but his father’s are the same shade of beautiful blue as his Hinaya, his fifteen year old younger sister, and his late mother, who’d passed away in her sleep a few months back.
Cyntol would be glad to be rid of him, he knew, because it was he Cyntol blamed for his beloved wife’s death, because Rencou was the only one at home that night.
After his mother’s death, Rencou withdrew, into himself, and refused to talk to his friends anymore, the only person he did continue to talk to was his sister.
Naya, as Rencou called her, is a beautiful girl, with blonde shoulder-length hair, and again, the same eyes as her parents. Sweet and understanding, she knows Rencou better than anyone, and how devastating their mother’s death was for him.
Rencou watched the enticing patterns of shadows of the leaves in the wind, dancing around the floor, until about midday when the skies became overcast like his mood on most days. They were usually bright and sunny; it was unusual for there to be dark clouds like this.
Maybe it’s a sign, Rencou thought to himself.
Hinaya glanced in at him as she walked down the hallway, past the open door of his room. She saw him sitting in the same spot he’d been in all morning, and it worried her, something didn’t seem right about Rencou today. He seemed distant, more so than usual. She decided to check on him. “Brother, what’s on your mind?”
Rencou was startled by the sudden noise so close to him, but he didn’t show it, he doesn’t show much anymore.
“Nothing, Naya, just thinking about mom, it’s her birthday you know. Since she passed away my life has changed so drastically, and not for the better either.”
“I know it is. Of course I know, I could never forget about it. I miss her too, but you must be patient, things will get better.” Hinaya said, although, she didn’t seem too sure of it.
“How can you be so cheerful all the time?” he grimly inquired, not really expecting an answer, but he got one.
“I’m not really sure, but I believe that there is no “good luck” or “bad luck”. We create our own luck, and if you believe something will happen, it will. ‘Sides, you have to believe in something.”
Hinaya may be only 15, and at first glance, you wouldn’t know that she’s any more than just another pretty face. If you talk to her, however, you may think she’s just lying about her age, and she’s really an old lady. Everything she says is just so deep and meaningful; she’s too wise for her own good sometimes.
“You should realize that I do believe in something, I believe that you should enjoy your life, and stop worrying about me.”
“And you, my clearly blind brother, should see that I do enjoy my life, and that there will never come a day when I stop caring about you. You’re my big brother, and I’ll always care enough to worry about you.”
After a few slow minutes of neither sibling knowing what to say, Rencou heard footsteps lumbering down the hall, and a sarcastic “Oh joy” slipped out of his mouth.
What in the world are you two up to?” their father hollered at them when he entered the room. “You should be outside enjoying the weather, and do something productive rather than sit here and listen to your brother’s issues, Hinaya,” he said, disgusted.
There were only a handful of things Naya is really bothered by. Two of the ones that bother her most are the use of her full name, and when people talk badly of Rencou. Cyntol had crossed a line just now, and he knew it. But seeing Naya upset just makes Rencou sadden, which is why their father also knew that he was safe for now, because Naya tries her hardest to not yell in front of her brother.
“Fine father, we’ll go outside, even if the day’s miserable outside,” Naya stated spitefully. She glanced out the window, and somehow, the weather was once again clear.
“Are you really that dim Hinaya,” again crossing the line “it has been clear for at least an hour.”
*Another sign?* Rencou thought to himself.
“I’m going for a walk,” Naya decides, “Rencou; do you want to come with me?”
“No thanks, that’s another thing I believe in, sleep, and I didn’t get enough of it last night, so I’m gonna find a nice tree to rest under.”
The two siblings went their separate ways, Naya wandering towards town, Rencou looking for his favorite tree, a large willow, on the edge of the woods behind the house. He goes there to think a lot, and no sooner than he sat down, Rencou dozed off, unable to stay awake, knowing that he’d need his rest if he were to go through with his plan.
He awoke that night, it was already dark, and there weren’t any lights on in the house, so he figured it must be late. He snuck in through his window, which Cyntol must have opened after he and his sister went outside. Once he was inside, he packed the last of his supplies he’d need for his “journey”, most of which were the reason he’d been up all last night, trying to hunt them down.
He was ready to go.
Should I say goodbye? He thought, as he crept as silently as possible down the hall. If I stop to say goodbye, will I still have enough time to get away, will I even be able to? Will she let me go? These were the questions that occupied his thoughts, even though he already knew the answer to the first one. I have to; I can’t leave without saying goodbye to Naya. That’s when he heard muffled sobbing coming from the other side of the wall to his left, on the other side of which was Naya’s room. Then all of a sudden; silence. The noise stopped, and then he heard footsteps. She’s awake, and she heard me, now I’ve got no option but to say goodbye, he decided just as the door swung gently open.
Hinaya heard someone walking down the hall, and figured that it was her brother, who hadn’t come back yet, sneaking back in. She wiped her eyes, and started towards the door, expecting to see here her brother walking in, but instead, he was walking towards the front door, and watching her door.
He must have heard me crying.
“Where are you going? You know we’re not supposed to be out after dark, and where have you been?”
“I fell asleep under that tree, and I only just woke up recently. And I can only tell you if you promise not to tell dad,” Rencou said, knowing that Naya always keeps her word once she gives it.
She promised, in a whisper, to try to keep from waking up Cyntol, and then as further precaution, she pulled him into her room, and closed the door to muffle their voices.
“I’m leaving, and I don’t plan on coming back. I’m tired of being here. I want to go somewhere far away,” he stated, not really lying, but not telling the whole truth either, as he was going far away to the cliffs, but, it wasn’t somewhere he planned to spend much time either. From there he’d be headed somewhere else and he’d be there for… a while.
Panicking now, Naya said “you have to take m-“
“No, I can’t. I won’t. You’ve got to stay here. It’s gonna be dangerous, and besides, you have friends here, who care about you, and if you leave them, they’d freak out. You’re far better to stay here, please stay, for me?”
“But you promised, you promised you’d never leave me…” distressed now, and on the verge of tears, she said.
“Sister, I know what I promised, but unfortunately, it is impossible for me to not break it. I don’t belong here. Where I’m going, you cannot follow. I’m headed for the other side.” Rencou said.
“The other side? Of the island?”
Knowing that Naya would never let him leave if she knew the truth, Rencou just said “of course that’s what I meant, what else could I have meant?”
Rencou’s question went unanswered, either she really had no idea, or she knew exactly what was going on, and didn’t want her fears to be confirmed.
She’s shaking, the poor girl.
Rencou embraced her, a sad attempt to comfort his little sister. At the same time though, he was trying to comfort himself, knowing that this is the last time he’ll ever see his dear sister who was also his best friend, and even his therapist, she’d helped him through mom’s death, and many other of the hardships that Rencou has been given. Forever, she will remain in his heart. But it’s time for them to part. And only now did he see the magnitude of his decision, and how hard this would be, not only for her, but for himself as well.
Luckily though, I saw the last of dad earlier today.
Leaving her behind was something he’d promised not to do, and it’s going to be the hardest thing he’ll ever have to do. But he must go alone, and reach the cliffs.
It’s what best.
Having Naya to help him was the one thing that had kept him from doing what he’s doing now after their mother died of a heart-attack in her sleep a year ago. It’s no longer enough to keep him here. Slowly, he realizes that there are tears running freely down his face, and wipes them away.
“Brother, what is it? Why are you crying?”
“It’s nothing, Naya. I love you, but I’m sorry to say it is time for me to go. I must be away from here before the townspeople wake up.”
“You weren’t planning on just disappearing without telling me were you?”
“No, I couldn’t do that, I needed to see you one last time before I left, so I waited in the hall until you came, rather than just running like I could have. I knew I’d regret it if I left without explaining to you why I had to do it.”
“Don’t go, or take me with you, I’m afraid what you might do if you’re alone.”
“Fine, I won’t go. I couldn’t live with myself if I left you here alone, to worry about me, not know where I am, or even whether or not I’m okay. So I’ll stay here with you, besides, I don’t think that I’d be able to last long without you.”
“Well, if you promise, then I’ll believe you.”
“I promise, you, Naya, that I won’t leave you.”
Besides, what’s the difference if I leave now or tomorrow night? I’ve said my goodbye, and I’m already to go. All I have to do is stick around and wait twenty-four hours, and I’m out of here. Forgive me, Naya.

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apocalyptigirl said...
Sept. 30, 2010 at 8:29 pm
Well, I think this has a lot of potential and I like the characters. You could start out by making sure everything is in the same tense---you start out in past tense, then switch to the present to talk about the cliffs. Also, i don't think we need exact details about his height, etc.; you can just say he was tall. One other thing: I usually don't like excessive dialogue tags (he said + adverb) but I think you could use more here in the conversation between Rencou and Naya. It would show more emo... (more »)
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