Magazine, website & books written by teens since 1989

The Curator's Girl

Custom User Avatar
More by this author
She was a recurring dream for the first three seasons of her life. At the foot of winter, her wings blossomed and she tore through the membrane between illusion and actuality. Kneeling at the foot of his bed in a nightgown, hazel-eyed, brought to life by the moonlight, she pleaded in lullabies.

His voice cracked as he yelped, unbecomingly. He drew the quilts very close to his chin, his vision became stunted as he blinked with vigor, trying to erase the strange figure from his sleepy retinas. Leave, ghost, he told her. But I’m not a ghost, the dream told him. I’m a girl. An exasperated noise, he must still be dreaming. The moon slipped behind a cloud and she faded out of sight. He went back to sleep in order to wake up, and so he did, dreamlessly, until morning.

The dream sat at his breakfast table. Leave, ghost, he told her. But I’m not a ghost, the dream told him. I’m a girl. She pulled the curtains and let the sunlight touch her skin. Moon, shadow, and dawn painted all of her pores, and she looked so, so real. Her hair hung in messy tendrils and a fading scar outlined her forearm. An exasperated noise, he must be hallucinating or something. He loaded his briefcase with papers from his desk, buttoned his tweed jacket, and left the dream behind, apartment locked, lights off, thank you very much.
She chewed on the crumbs of shadow, pondering, becoming existential, biding time. The hours stretched, and dusk breathed coolly over the city, spreading a threadbare pale blue overhead, tucking the blanket at the horizons. The dream treaded carefully, the time of sleep within sight. May dream thrive in absence of dreamer?
The museum gala boiling over with life. Orchestral opuses swinging around the rafters. The portraits observed slyly from their frames, the landscapes reverberated with the sound. Dipping, swaying, turning, slipping, the guests danced, unaware of the antiquity of the day. The time of dreams approached. But. The wrinkling corners of eyes, the upturned mouths, there was too much pleasure in reality to succumb to sleep.
He was elsewhere, meandering through impressionism, watching the paintings become abstract as the shadows grew. Pretending to be poetic and deep, big-eyed and spindly like a Tim Burton drawing, he tried to appreciate his distance from the party and ignore how much he desired to see a human face. The distinction between loneliness and aloneness flickered in and out of existence there in the shadowy hall. He kept walking. The orchestra grew fainter as the footsteps grew louder.
The dream was a vision in black. The glimmering onyx of the dress, her moonlit skin, her messy tendrils and pale red scar. Silence fell. She paused and watched him, hazel-eyed, half expecting her existence to be discounted. The music blazed to life, again. His voice cracked as he said, Would you dance with me?
She took his hand and so they stepped and turned around the open hall to the hum of distant horns and strings. While he felt her silk-swaddled hipbone beneath his palm, and she felt the ridged knuckles of his trembling hand between her fingers, their closest contact formed between their eyes. They hypnotized each other, the vision and the visionary.
This was their daydream. They read two books at a time. He brought her flowers from his cousin’s garden whenever he visited. They watched films on mute and invented the characters’ voices, unless they were particularly interested in the storyline. They wrote each other love letters, he pasted clipped pictures, she included off-beat poems. She bought him a bird. He let the bird go the next day. He played her tunes, she invented lyrics, and their music turned to giggling and talking and humming into the cavern of the guitar, listening to the woodsy buzz, his calloused fingers on her knee. She loved his tweed blazer and boat shoes, he loved her knee-socks and vintage pearls. And they loved the way their hair curled when they went too long without haircuts. On the first evening of winter, the sky was nothing more than a pale blue blanket. Flurries like powdered sugar sprinkled over their shoulders, and they thought it was a good moment to kiss for the first time. It was very cold and sweet, inside and out.
The dance ended, and he rested his head on her bare shoulder. He was becoming so sleepy, and right then, she was little more than moonlight and shadow, her wintry skin cold on his cheek. The words came to his ear slowly, he processed them groggily: oh, darling, must I still be a ghost? In the hall, her voice traveled in a trembling timbre, as if transmitted through a guitar. Don’t leave me, my girl. Sleepily, groggily, drawing the quilt to his chin… She drew her gossamer wings around him, hugging carefully, quietly with her starry feathers, pulling him deeper into the shadows…



Join the Discussion


This article has 1 comment. Post your own!

DaeshaThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. said...
Aug. 8, 2012 at 7:41 am:
This story is amazing. I loved the idea, it is very original (to me, anyways) But, yes, I loved it :)
 
Reply to this comment Post a new comment
 
Site Feedback