|New Eden - 59
||[Apr. 17th, 2011|09:17 pm]
Janelle Walden Fans
it's official, the book is now over 300 pgs, and apparently that's too long for anyone to even wanna bother reading it...
“How’s the ankle?” was Jared’s greeting as he stepped outside just as Kyle was getting ready to cut out servings of that night’s meal.
Kyle glanced his way with a slight shrug before answering, “It only hurts when I like walk, or stand.” he grumbled as he went about his task. Jared allowed his own slight nod as he took a seat without saying much else, “Is she any better?” Kyle finally added.
“Pretty much the same. I have Ian keeping an eye on her while I get some air, and some dinner.” Jared added quietly, his eyes still cast downwards as Kyle handed him a plate.
After a few bites, Kyle felt the need to speak up again, “So, what were you talking about earlier?” he asked furtively, glancing back toward the door before turning his eyes back to await Jared’s response.
“When?” the older teen asked, though still did not look up from the meal that he ate quite slowly, despite his hunger after spending the entire day tending to Lili rather than any of his own needs.
“You said we had to talk. Soon.” he added more quietly.
Jared let out a heavy sigh before offering any further response, “That should probably wait until all three of us are together.” was the only one he offered.
Kyle just scoffed slightly, “I don’t think Ian is feeling particularly receptive right about now. Which is saying something, considering how receptive he was before.” he added with a tinge of sarcasm.
Jared paused only a moment to think on that comment before adding, “Still.”
A few more moments passed as they continued their meal and Kyle found himself speaking up again, “Is it about her?”
“Which her?” Jared asked with furrowed brow.
An awkward smile before Kyle replied, “Yeah, I guess there are two now, huh?”
“Well, like I said, there’s no real change in Lili yet, so…” Jared began, then just allowed his own worried shrug rather than any words to end the sentence.
“And the other her?”
“Not much to tell there, either. She’s a lot smaller than she should be, and it’s difficult to get a lot of food into her right now, so…” he finished that sentence the same way as well, his own stress level seeming to even wear on his communication skills as well at that point, or possibly on his desire to communicate much at all.
“I didn’t just mean physically.” Kyle dared, though lowered his volume slightly as he did.
“Pardon?” Jared asked, finally returning Kyle’s gaze after that comment.
Kyle let out another sigh as he glanced at the door once again, “I mean, do you think there’s anything….different…about her?” he finally settled on, his voice still kept to a whisper.
“Different?” was Jared’s only response as he continued to look at Kyle expectantly rather than with any other reaction to the question.
“You know, like me and you…or him?” Kyle returned, glancing off toward the woods as he finished the sentence.
Jared then looked down once more as he pondered any response he could offer, “Well, she wasn’t born on an e-ship.” another slight shrug, then more quietly, “And I’m pretty sure neither of her parents were, either.” he added as he cast a slight glance back toward the shack where, inside, Ian still kept his vigil on Lili.
Kyle then looked down only a moment as well before replying, “Well neither were either of mine, or yours, or our ghost’s.” he couldn’t help pointing out, which did cause a slightly shaky breath from Jared.
“Most of the time, that doesn’t even start ‘til puberty.” was the only additional comment Jared allowed.
“Yeah, that’s what Ian said too, but he didn’t add the qualifier.” Kyle returned in the same furtive tone.
“Most of the time.” Kyle replied pointedly, which did cause Jared to look down once more.
“So you brought this up to Ian, too?” he finally replied.
“Yeah, like I said, he wasn’t exactly receptive.” Kyle added.
Another sigh from Jared, “Probably not. Everything about this day has gotta be too much for him, or any of us, right about now. I have a feeling it would be pretty hard for him to wrap his head around the idea that she could be so different from he or Lili. If it is true though…” Jared finally allowed himself to add, though at an even lower volume, “Hopefully they deal with it better than my father did.”
Kyle was then the one who turned his eyes downwards as well before speaking again, “My parents didn’t exactly deal well, either, and they only knew about my IQ, not the other…stuff.” he settled on. Though Jared said nothing more, and instead made an attempt at solemnly continuing with his meal. After a few more moments though, Kyle couldn’t stop thinking about the events earlier that night, and had to continue, “So, you believe it could be true, though.”
Jared took another deep breath, “I didn’t say that.”
“You didn’t exactly seem like you were surprised when I mentioned it, though.” Kyle responded, watching Jared closely for any subconscious clues.
Jared cast an apprehensive look back toward the shack before moving his eyes back to find that Kyle was watching him for any denial of the claim, though Jared’s honest nature made it nearly impossible for him to lie, even if he felt that he should, “Of course, it’s possible. But I don’t really think there’s a lot we can do about that at this point, is there?”
Kyle narrowed his eyes as he watched Jared closely to see if he would give away any more of his opinion on the matter. Though the older of the two seemed determined to be quite tight-lipped on the theory, even whilst not exactly denying it.
“I assume that means Ian didn’t tell you about the wolves, or coyotes, or whatever they were.” Kyle finally dared.
“They?” Jared asked as he quickly looked up again.
“There was practically a whole pack, just watching us.” Kyle admitted.
“Watching?” Jared repeated a little hoarsely, the remains of his meal all but forgotten, “He said there was one, and it got scared off.”
“Not exactly the way it went down.” Kyle answered, though with a tinge of guilt at outing Ian’s version of the story.
“But no one was hurt?”
“They didn’t even try to attack?” Jared pressed.
“Not what they seemed to be here for, despite the blood.” Kyle added more quietly.
“And you think it has something to do with…the baby?” Jared pressed further, his voice lower still.
“Do you?” Kyle asked warily. That was when Jared stood, beginning to pace slightly once he did. After a few more moments, Kyle spoke up again, “Jared?”
“And you said that those goats,” he cast a glance at where the two were curled up together at the side of the shack, “They just followed Lili home one day, and never left?”
“Yeah…” Kyle added, as he too looked at their pseudo-pets as though just remembering that day, himself, “Lili begged me not to kill them once they followed her here. She said they helped her find food. That they wanted to help us…I thought it sounded crazy at first, but…” Kyle then shook his head again as he looked back at where Jared also seemed to be digesting the facts.
“And this was when me and Ian were gone. When Lili was pregnant?” Jared put in.
“You know that.” then Kyle allowed himself to continue, “When she insisted they wanted to help, she told me to read their minds, to prove that she was right, and…” he shook his head once more, “Then, tonight, Ian thought I was the crazy one, but that’s how I knew.”
“Knew what?” Jared questioned, turning back to Kyle once again as he did.
“Knew that the dogs wouldn’t hurt us. Knew that they just wanted to, to almost, like…”
“Like, what?” Jared pressed as Kyle’s voice trailed off.
“Like…welcome her.” Kyle managed, looking up quickly to see if Jared was looking at him like he was insane too, just as Ian had earlier that night, and just as he had originally looked at Lili on the day she brought their pets home.
Kyle watched Jared for a long moment after he gave him such a strange explanation, but rather than looking at him like he was nuts, Jared simply continued to appear to be in deep thought as he pondered the facts before them.
“I’m not sure that you going all quiet on me like this is really making me feel better than if you just told me I was crazy.” Kyle finally put in after several more long moments.
“It’s just…” Jared attempted to find further words, “It sounds like this stuff, with the animals, it sounds like it not only started before puberty with her, but, before birth, even?” Jared stated, almost to himself, then added, “Which I guess would explain…” he then caught himself mid-sentence as he looked back at Kyle’s expectant expression centered on him in the fire light.
“Explain what?” Kyle had to ask, his volume only raising slightly as he did.
Jared took a deep breath, casting another glance toward the shack before moving closer to where Kyle still sat awaiting his explanation, “I had another vision.”
“What? When?” Kyle asked anxiously.
“Months ago, and it, it was all pretty run of the mill and normal, as visions go, no big events like babies being born or ships crashing, or anything like that, at least not ‘til the end.”
“And?” Kyle pressed impatiently.
Jared took another breath as he took the seat next to Kyle, “It was all of us, here, some sunny afternoon, nothing strange about anything. It was like three years from now, and…”
“Whoa, wait, what?” Kyle interrupted more loudly.
“What?” Jared responded.
“Did you just say three years from now?” Kyle exclaimed.
That was when Jared looked down guiltily, having momentarily forgotten that Lili had been the only one who he had shared the time frame of the vision with previously, and that had been enough of a bombshell for her.
“Yeah.” Jared whispered, his eyes turned downwards again, as his mind immediately moved to the other information about their current predicament, as shared by their new companion only earlier that very day.
“So, you’re saying, that we’re all gonna still be stuck living here, stranded here, like this, living out of this shack, not finding the ship at all, for at least another three years?” Kyle breathed the words with the slightest tinge of accusation to his voice.
“And you got this vision months ago?” he asked more loudly.
“Kyle…I…” Jared attempted, though even he was unsure of what words could make things better at that precise point in time.
“So, you knew that we weren’t going to find anything out there? And you knew this, months ago?” Kyle repeated as he stood exasperatedly, “You knew this before I almost got killed out there? You knew this before Lili almost died…still could die…back here…just because you had to go out there, trying to save me, when I shouldn’t have even fucking been out there?” he asked with more volume, “We could have all been back here, not getting bitten by who the hell knows what and almost dying, and we could have been back here, with her, when she had this baby? But you just decided it wasn’t important enough to know?” he asked more loudly, his head shaking vehemently as he restated the facts.
“Kyle, you’ve gotta understand. I thought…”
“Thought what? That it was ok to just stay back here hoping nothing happened to us while we just walked aimlessly, never finding a fucking thing, cause you actually knew, this whole time, that we wouldn’t find anything! But it was still ok to leave us out there risking our lives looking for it? Cause after all, you were back here, protecting Lili, so who the fuck cares what happens to the obsolete tech guy and the bodyguard? You were with the only one you gave a shit about, already, after all. I’m only the one who lied to get you back here to be with her, cause I must not have cared enough to have wanted her to be safe. I just went out there looking for some ship that crashed who the hell even knows where, to try and save her, and the ‘bodyguard’s’ baby. After all, the two of us are expendable, aren’t we? Is that what I’m supposed to understand?”
“Kyle, it’s not like that. I thought that…”
“You know what? I don’t even wanna fuckin hear it, Jared.” Kyle stated simply and coolly before heading off toward the river, not bothering to look back again.
Jared just hung his head in regret and let out a long breath, trying to fathom what he could possibly try to say to make anything better. Then there was the fact that Lili was still in a critical state, and who knew what would really happen with the child, or any abilities she might or might not continue to develop. And those hard realities were not even including the fact that he still had to find a way to share an even more dire revelation with his companions as well.