The Destiny

Her Destiny



She’s caught in the never-land from here to there, driving through nothing on a two lane road between. She has driven this road more times than she can count, from the lush-green pines of her condo on Lake Tahoe, to the glitz and glamour ofLas Vegas. On a whim, one of the few she experienced, she bought a place off theLas Vegasstrip, offering a panoramic view and false happiness. She often stared out her 32nd floor apartment, hoping for a reason to live. This never happened. She drove in a bleak, black cloud, her only mission simply to get from one place to another. Flying south down highway 95, her speedometer broke 90 mph. Her life was empty. Stripped of her recent love, and lost to her family, she cared little. It just didn’t matter, nothing did. The barren landscape echoed her barren life. The Yucca plants became a vision sweeping by like sticks in a farmhouse fence. Puffy clouds floated across an azure sky, but she didn’t notice. The yipping of her pup finally brought her back. He looked up pleading from the seat beside her.

     “So what’s up? You want some water?”

     He cried swinging his long, red-cocker ears across his face. His tail, a wag of perpetual motion, was a bright spot in her otherwise dreary existence. She reached down and patted his furry head. The only love in her lonely life sat beside her.

     “All right. We’ll stop in a while.” She looked up as a sign flew past. Stop at Area 51, ten miles ahead, it said.  She seemed to remember clean picnic tables and large shade trees at the turnoff, making the decision easy. This might be a good place to rest.

     Minutes passed like seconds. She flew to an abrupt turn into the parking lot shaded by another large sign pointing the way to view Area 51, just up the dirt road a few miles. Oh, what the hell, she thought, continuing on her journey to nowhere. Gone were the trees, and pretty metal picnic tables, as she blasted past. Dust flew skyward coating her clean car in a brown film to match her mood. Something was pulling her onward.  Thoughts drifted through her mind, why should I continue?  But the pull to nowhere increased.      

    After 20 minutes and five long miles, nothing appeared. Dirt caked her windshield; gravel flew from the tires into the sand fields beyond. Looking through the haze, she saw nothing.  Maybe the flying debris restricted her vision of the area. Dismissing the thought, she continued on, destiny called. Twenty more minutes passed in a dirt-filled-vapor enshrouding her car. A ball of brown-sand rolling down a desolate road that no one noticed.

    The pup whined beside her, fear tinged his voice. “Yip.” Monty looked up for reassurance.

     Maybe she had gone too far, and maybe she was lost in 106 degree weather in a floating desert of dust. A red-light flashed from the dashboard warning her of engine problems. Shocked, she thought, I had the car serviced last week. Anxiety rose in her chest as the car engine failed and she rolled to an unwanted stop. Turning the ignition key off and then on, pressing the gas pedal, she tried to start the car but the engine remained silent.

     Monty whimpered.

     “Let’s get you some water while I try to figure this out,” she told the pup beside her, grabbing his bowl from the floor and filling it with fresh water from an almost empty bottle. He drank deeply as if his life depended upon this last indulgence.

     She scanned the car for more water chastising herself for being so lax, only two more bottles. Faux thirst came in waves which she ignored. The pup listened intently as she spoke, “I think we’ve driven about ten miles. We can walk back down the road when it’s cooler.  In the meantime, let’s see if anything’s around.” Monty jumped in agreement.

     She grabbed the door, flung it open, and coughed as the fine dust entered her lungs. Monty followed her out the car. Sand, gravel, and a few cacti eked a living from the wind stripped landscape. She turned looking at the shear desolation. A black dot on the edge of her vision caught her attention. Perhaps a mirage, she squinted to see if it was real. A vague outline of a trailer sat in the open, alone, enshrouded in green. Dread crept in; a tinge of panic bordered her thoughts. She pushed them back, she needed help. Monty was already on his way, tail wagging, he turned back towards her.

     “Yip,” he said.

     She wanted to believe she was safe, following behind her trusting dog, her lifeline to reality, and her only friend. Mixed emotions crossed her face, fear replaced by confidence, replaced by joy.

     “Wait up!” she yelled at Monty as he quickly traversed the rocky landscape growing closer to the trailer. He stopped frequently to beg her to hurry. She followed him blindly as the mirage became real.

       The trailer was old beyond measure, covered in multi-colors resembling graffiti. Purple circled deep pink surrounded by a scowl of blood-colored maroon spelling out passion, belief and change. Green surrounded the home, a well maintained lawn; flowers of yellow-gold, crimson-red, and brilliant-blue sprang forth in a manicured garden. Breathtaking beauty stopped her descent while the pup charged on, laying on the soft cushioned green.

     Alarm rose within her from this strange place surrounded by hell. She called Monty to her but he ignored her request, stretching out, enjoying the living growth.

     A man appeared from behind the trailer. He floated towards her. The air lifted him with little effort. He was bent at the middle. White sprung from his head and a ragged beard like no other grew from his chin. A vague wreath of gold encircled his head shimmering at times, while invisible at others. He wore a white sheath of cotton flowing in the soft breeze, carrying him along slowly as if propelled by wings. Monty sprang up, tail wagging, love flowing from his body. The man gestured to him, as he smiled a toothless, warm grin. The pup flopped happily back to the ground before his god, as the man continued towards her.

     She was lost in his eyes of pooled green, as he stared down at her from above. He smiled projecting depths beyond eternity.

     “I’m so glad you came to visit,” his voice echoed expectations.

     Her speech quivered with each word, “My car broke down. Can you help me?”

     “Why yes,” he answered with certainty.  Smiling at the pup, he imparted soothing thoughts beyond hearing. Monty obeyed immediately walking over to his hand, licking it with fervor. The man gestured again; Monty happily lay once more on the lush-green carpet.

     “You must have lots of water to grow such beauty.” She tried to connect logic with the dead world surrounding her.

     Confusion crossed his face. “Water?” he repeated.    

    Questions clouded her eyes. “Don’t flowers and grass need water to survive?”

     “Why yes, a spring exists here, a mystery of nature.  Come sit by the trailer and enjoy these surroundings for this moment on earth.” The words were delivered softly. He projected yearning to move on and impatience to impart an unknown vision.

     She thought what a strange comment. She blindly followed her host, drawn to a chair under a window carved in this strange mobile home. Her dismay rested under a shroud of false comfort, as she sat in a rickety white plastic chair. The sweet scent of the brightly colored flowers mixed with the mocking sounds of the twittering birds lulled her into faux hope. Life might be worth living after all.

     Hours passed like minutes. The sun lowered itself; dusk was coming. Nothing moved: not her, not the pup, and not the old man. 

     Sitting in front of these strange symbols, she tore free from the bond tying her here, pulling sharply out of her reverie. She stood before the old man; he reached out to touch her. She accepted his touch knowing this was her destiny. Thoughts slapped her mind hard; horrific visions of buildings falling, oceans heaving, Armageddon fast approaching, sparked from his fingers into hers.  She jumped away but the shock filled her. The warm blanket of comfort was gone, burned up in the coming tragedy. Urgency to leave gripped her as she pulled from his grasp, dark was coming, after all. Staring into his eyes she knew that he held the secret. He knew the future of what was to be. What cruel Gods created him and now her, to carry this burden?  

     “How do I stop it?” she asked, confused, filled with trepidation, and new found fear.

     “You can’t. For now, it’s only thought. No one would believe you, and no one can stop the future,” he said, seeking understanding in her eyes. He made no attempt to lift the knowledge from her body, and no attempt to release her from the burden.

     “Then what should I do?” she cried.

     “Accept the future for you can’t change it. Live each day by its self. Seize your moment.”

     A revelation, a life altering experience opened the door to her mind. Joy, peace, and understanding flooded in immersing her body, washing away any doubt. She had made a decision.    

    As she viewed this strange man, sitting in this colorful island, in an empty desert of brown, visions of hell and heaven played across her mind.  With the certainty of Armageddon coming, she moved toward the edge of the garden, committed to live one day at a time and each moment within. She must be going. Her life called. A joyous smile crossed her face; there was no time to waste.

     “Let’s go,” she said to Monty.

     He sat gazing at the old white-haired man. The pup wanted to stay in this green heaven shaded by his God. A golden butterfly landed on Monty’s nose, fluttering off as the man raised his delicate-white hand, releasing Monty from the bond. Reluctantly the pup stood, following her from the oasis and into the desert.

     “Your car should start now,” the heat waves carried his voice, their last conversation.

      Roaring down the gravel road in a ball of fine-brown dirt, she turned sharply left on highway 95. The pup sat beside her, sleeping softly, comforted by the cars movement. His chest heaved in and out, snores came from his nose. He was content, but she wasn’t. The vision faded from her mind but the man’s words lived brightly and for the first time in years, excitement and passion filled her every move. I’ve missed so much, but not anymore, she thought. This is my day and my moment to live.

For More Fiction Like This buy my Secrets of Life and Death: A Collection of Short Stories About Change


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