Good day my friends on the soggy earth. Summer rain and storms battle in the air and the Hall watches on. The storms continue inside with the return of the prodigal Sophia, outraged at the mess around the house and the tragic vision of her frail father, Old William. Grey and thin, William sits looking like he is ready and willing to give up on the world. Windows have been wrenched open to let in the balmy breezes and the fridge; before containing milk and a small open can of spam, has been stocked with fresh vegetables, meats and cheese. Delicious smells emanate from the kitchen as do the angry voices of the siblings. I have noticed siblingship can be a difficult affair, each born the opposite of the other, unable to see through each other’s eyes. Sophia seems choked by guilt; living at a great distance, unable to offer the everyday assistance her father needs and Charles by his own self-pity; feeling stuck with the ailing William, desperate to leave the Hall but still unable to pack his bags. Different lives make different people.
Tonight, with the storm raging around them, they fight. Emily and I love to move things around the house, just a foot or two, enough to confuse and frustrate. Today we moved Charles’ glasses under his desk. He now believes Sophia, in her cleaning binge has misplaced them and many of the hidden anxieties have flowed forth. A storm blew outside and inside.
They love each other really…
Emily and I must confess to a major crime. This dawn, we both knew we had to help someone; she was in danger of upsetting her fate and it was our job to stop it. It was our fault it was going to happen, really and as the sun rose, Emily and I both had the very same thought… SOPHIA.
She was upset that morning. Hating seeing her father looking as if he was knocking on the door to Heaven and arguing constantly with her brother (over what we had done) she decided to take the dogs out for a windblown walk in her favourite fields, a ten minute car drive away. Sighing as she walked out of the dripping Hall, she jumped into her Dad’s car, complete with furry beasts and sped off at quite a speed.
Emily and I sat in the back; Emily’s mouth open in a silent scream at the velocity. Great fun speeding along the glistening roads, the dogs panting misting up the back windows. Then the walk through the muddy fields; the wind whipping through clothes and hair, the rain softly dampening the skin. I’m sure Sophia was crying but it was hard to tell. And then home…fast.
We approached a tight bend; the car only just clinging to the road, the spray flying and it happened…The back wheel burst sending us towards a wall of undulating greenness. This wasn’t good for Sophia and we knew instantly what we had to do. When the car hit the wood it flew, as did Sophia, seat beltless, knocking her head on the ceiling. We help protect her body as the car spun around her and thumped to the ground on its roof, shattering the windows and crunching shut all the doors forever. Sophia had blacked out during the spin and woke to find herself sitting on the roof, looking at the wood through the smashed windscreen. The car had flipped in the air and crashed onto its back, sliding slowly down the road until it lost momentum and wobbled to a halt. The dogs were fine, having flown for the first time and they scampered to her, licking and barking. We felt quite pleased with ourselves, knowing Sophia’s skull would have been well and truly cracked without our help. She had no idea we were there, the only clue being that the silver rings on her fingers had twisted. This bemused her almost as much as the fact she had no injuries at all. The locals who came running were amazed too, expecting blood and bones.
“Job well done!” laughed Emily as we returned to the Hall, now surrounded by black clouds and screaking ravens. I don’t think Sophia was happy though…
That big cat doesn’t like the thunder. It sits in the middle of its enclosure, howling. Last night Charles had to bring her in as the neighbours had had about enough. When lightening lit the land there she was, muscular and mad, calling to the gods of the storm. Quite an impressive and beautiful sight but possibly a little fearsome for the old couple on the other side of the wall.
The mice cluster together, going out in small groups to peer through the cracks to check on the weather. They scurry and fidget, cowering when the bright light illuminates their hiding places.
Sophia, calm and composed after her accident, watches from her window as the dark bilious clouds roll over the Hall. Unlike the animals, she is smiling; enjoying the power of the beast that is Nature. I think the enormity of earth’s power can strip away human pain, fear or anger. If earth walkers allow themselves to be absorbed in it, if they could look outward and beyond themselves, they would witness a lot more miracles than they realise.