First ContactAn episode expansion of the Pilot
Written for the 2015 September Anniversary Challenge
Today, again, I am lost. It is only getting worse. Father is exasperated with me. “Completely and utterly distracted,” was his verdict after the crew meeting, and it was true. I had no defense.
Some of the others, at least, find my predicament amusing. I heard the word “lovesick” pass between Cullen and Winslow, and they are right. I am sick with love.
Did I know when I touched her that first time she would consume my life? My thoughts? My heart? Did I realize she would change me, until she is everything, and everything I am contains a trace of her?
The incubation period they call it, when a person encounters something so foreign not only does the body not recognize it, but it lets it in, lets it grow. It is a terrible analogy, one I will probably scratch out once I finish writing this page, but that was how it was. I did not know how to fight her peregrine invasion of my soul.
Before I touched her she was simply a woman barely the size of a child, beaten and cut, her blood soaking into the soil, a sacrifice to the city. She might have been frail, but as soon as I reached for her, her spirit spoke. It was a force of pure strength hidden underneath the hurt. I took her without thought of consequence as an obligation of fate, a compulsion, undeniable.
I should have known. I should have seen the signs then. When Father declared she must be watched night and day for signs of infection, I volunteered my time and chamber. Why? I said it was because I was the agent of the
inconve, complication, but looking back, that was not the only reason.
I was “infected” by her, Father would say, an infection of their world into ours. I cannot speak of her so, although I did “carry” her, (poorly, as Father pointed out,) and I still do “carry” her. Her thoughts and feelings are now mine, amazingly, as far away as she is in time and distance.
Each hour since our first meeting has confirmed her uniqueness. She trusted me with her name and her fears. She discerned my presence, even with her eyes useless beneath the bandages. She accepted that presence at times with gratitude, or sometimes with anger, but there is no denying her spirt was indomitable. The growing confidence and courage I sense from her has only furthered my esteem. This bond between us pulls me, spiraling deeper into love.
After her first encounter with my hand and then with my face, I should have run from her. I could have asked the others care for her. They offered. I could have had someone else take her home, but I had to know—would she accept me? I had to confront my pain and comfort hers. More signs of my “illness”.
I cannot banish her from me. I do not wish to. Every banal meeting with friends, every daily ritual, is made richer by the thought of her. They are opportunities to wonder, what would she think of this? What would she think of me?
I denied the evidence as long as I could for the sake of my home and sanity. What good to be struck down by such an impossible love? Yet I am “lovesick”, and she is an unsuspecting agent of invasion. What can I do, but yield to the illness, especially when I do not wish for a cure?
Should I offer her a token of my love? Every stray moment, every stray thought is a sacrifice to her. The Greeks sacrificed to The Goddess of Love, why not I? She has given me so much, her presence, her feelings, and hope, foolish hope. Even if she can never love me, I must offer her what I can.
I will give her Great Expectations. We never finished. I have read it so many times since she returned to her world. The words invoke a yearning so great, both joyous and sad, I expect to find her next to me. It will be my sacrifice, my gift, even if it a gift of parting.
should will tell Father, in case something goes wrong, but I do not need or seek his blessing. No one can bless this.
I loved her before I touched her, I see that now. Father called it an act of kindness, bringing her Below, but it was also as an act of great selfishness. I
fight succumb to a rapacious love. It wants, daily, hourly.
God help me, I was lost after that first contact, and I do not wish to be found.