a new dimension, a new planet, aliens, Book Excerpts, constellation of Libra, Fantasy, Fiction, human condition, human experience, learning, Leia, Life on Leia, passage, pink planet, sebnem e.sanders, space travel, The Child of Heaven, The Passage, the universe, transportation
I posted the below excerpt on a prompt #neardeathexperiences , in a writers group on Facebook because the prompt reminded me of this excerpt from The Child of Heaven, my first completed manuscript. I may or may not publish it, soon. I need your opinion. Would you like to hear what happens before and after this excerpt? Tell me, please. I value your opinion. Thank you. 😍😍
(PS. only about 500 words. Like you, I don’t like very long posts, in small print.)
Leila opened her eyes to a rosy haze. Stretched out beneath a bizarre blush of dawn, she could hear the echo of gentle waves coming from nearby. Her hands touched the smooth surface that felt like fine sand. She blinked several times and looked in the direction of the rhythmic hum. A vast beach bordering a sea seemed to expand infinitely. The turquoise-coloured sea met with the cerise sky far on the horizon. She sat up and looked behind her. She could make out the soft curves of rose-tinted hills encompassing the beach in the distance. As her eyes adjusted to the surroundings, she became aware that everything within her sight was dipped in a different shade of pink.
“Ton sur ton pink,” she mumbled.
Leila rose unsteadily and felt dizzy. Trying to regain her balance, she walked a few steps. She stopped and looked around again. Not a single living creature seemed to be in sight; not a single tree, the odd bird or even an insect.
‘Where am I?’ she thought, uneasily. ‘Am I dead and is this heaven?’
Leila walked towards the sea and dipped her hand in the water. It felt cool. She tasted her wet finger. It was salty. The waves rolled over her feet as she walked along the edge. It felt good. A bright ball of crimson light in the sky sent its rays to the sea, forming sparkling, spiral beams on the water. Everything seemed peaceful and comforting, yet she felt strange and lonely. She knew she was in a different place. In spite of the great calm surrounding her, uneasiness took over her soul. Leila stepped out of the sea and sat on the pink sand. While trying to debate her circumstances, she could feel the surge of panic rising in her chest.
She saw a figure approaching her from the direction of the hills and awaited in uncertainty. As the figure moved closer, she could make out the stature of a very tall, slim man, clad in a tight-fitting black outfit. The bald headed man with piercing turquoise eyes, stood grandly by Leila and said, “Hi, Leila, I’m Alem, and I am here to welcome you to Leia.”
“Leia, where is Leia? How did I get here? “
“Leia is a planet in the constellation of Libra, rather far from planet Earth. It is also called the pink planet because we have a crimson sun.”
“You mean you abducted me here from planet Earth?”
“No, Leila, we did not abduct you. You came here on your own free will. “
“How far is it from Earth?”
“In human terms, it’s more than twenty light-years away, but we don’t measure distances in those terms. Your measurements for distance and time are of no significance to us. We have different abilities to transport ourselves in space.”
“I’m not sure I totally believe you! Why would I want to go through such an ordeal?”
“You are probably much dazed and tired, but you will remember soon. We will try to make you as comfortable as possible. Let me take you to our guest quarters where you can rest and recover from your trip. “
The Child of Heaven ©2012 ©Sebnem E. Sanders
Part II Life on Leia
city life, countryside, despair, distraction, endurance, excursion, Flash Fiction, genetic memory, history, hobby, hope, human condition, instinct, nature, photography, remains, secret gate, structures, survival, time, toxic atmosphere
I switched off the morning news. While the TV screen darkened, I yearned to escape the gloom and the toxic atmosphere of the city. A photographic excursion into the countryside would do me good.
Picking up my camera bag, I left the flat and made my way to the garage. After a couple of stops at charming spots, I drove past a sleepy old town and slowed down when a detached sandstone house came into view. Through its open gates, a tilted For Sale sign caught my eye. Thinking this could be an interesting subject, I parked the car and entered the grounds.
The weathered signboard hinted it had been there for a while. The house looked decrepit and forlorn, its windows boarded and the paint on the front door chipped and cracked. Unkempt and overgrown, the garden conjured a strange melancholy. Taking a few shots, I walked around the building. Broken branches and decaying leaves from tall trees echoed the same neglect. Ready to leave, something behind the shrubs, along the back wall caught my attention. A pair of pale green doors which at first glance resembled a trompe l’oeil.
Something about the stately gate told me a story. It stood intact and supported by tall tapered pillars. The half-moon pebble mosaic steps that led to it boasted of history. Its ornate, solid iron body whispered tales from the past. Yet, the walls on its either side had partially crumbled, and peeking through the gaps, I saw nothing, but an expanse of wilderness beyond.
At the bottom of the steps, a pond had formed, housing an array of horsetail reed, water lilies, and sweet flag. Natural or landscaped, I couldn’t tell. It looked authentic and picturesque, in sheer contrast to the condition of the rest of the estate. Maybe the heavy rains of the last few weeks had brought it back to life.
At some point, the door that led to nowhere must have stood proud to protect a house and the people beyond it, allowing only friends and family inside. If so, what had happened to it, or its connection to the stone cottage remained a mystery. Confrontation, natural disasters, and family sagas came to mind. Nature had built a façade over the remains, if there were any, and camouflaged it to look like an extension of the massive open fields.
I tried to pull the door open. It didn’t budge. Most likely its hinges had been bonded by the threads of time. So I climbed over the wall and stepped into the meadow woven with a carpet of spring flowers. Keeping my eyes on the ground, I set out to find remains of life on the soft knolls. I picked up an old pipe, a metal button, a penny, and the broken arm of a wooden doll. They looked old. Would they be considered as clues to who had once lived here? Not really, I told myself. Such items could be found anywhere. The sun about to set, I became weary of wandering in the fields.
Slowly, I walked back, pondering on the remains that had endured time. Like the iron gates, intact and still present. Similar to my genetic memory, the will to live and hope, despite the dystopia the entire world is going through.
I debated whether to return to the sleepy town to inquire about the house and the gate. I dismissed the idea. Instinct had already told me the story about the property and myself. Why I endure, how I distract myself with photography, why the structures remain standing, like sentinels, steadfast in their duty, despite the odds.
Photo credit: Google images