Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Dvorak Classic: Chapter Seventeen

Dvorak Classic
Chapter 17 (or, "Carissa's Mother Speaks To God")

Yesterday’s Episode: Carissa didn’t get any answers, but Mac did.

     The sun peeked into the room as Carissa finally opened her eyes. The first thing she saw was the ceiling, and then the monitor beside her, and then the sight of her mother sitting on a bedside chair.
    She stirred, and then her mother raised her head. The fact that she didn’t immediately hug Carissa and start crying told Carissa that her diagnosis was good. It wasn’t surprising that she woke up here -- she had actually woken up in the emergency room, unsure as to how she got there until Mac had explained that it was him. Then she had passed out again in that same emergency room, which meant that it also didn’t surprise her now that she was hooked up to a machine.
    The only thing that really surprised her was that nothing surprised her. The scene was about as normal as a scene could be...well, for being in a hospital, of course.
    “You okay?” Carissa’s mama asked with a smile.
    Carissa nodded. “What happened?” She had a good idea of what had happened, but she wanted to hear this reality’s take on it.
    “Well, there was a fire in your school,” Carissa’s mama said. “And you hit your head and passed out. There was this white boy who got you out of the school. He said he knew who you were. They took care of the fire quickly, and it was contained to the first floor.”
    Carissa nodded, remembering that her mom must not know who Mac was even after the incident with Peter in her apartment. If reality could just stay still for once, then maybe she could think straight and everybody else could start seeing the same things again. But there had been that blonde haired girl in the cafeteria. Rue. And Mac had spoken to her. Had he said more after Carissa had passed out?
    She hoped he had. Knowing Mac, he would probably tell her everything. She hoped. This was Mac she was thinking about, the same kid who had ran from that police officer for no reason. What was the deal with that, anyway? She still hadn’t gotten a concrete answer.
    She rubbed her eyes. “Did anything else happen?”
    “No. They just brought you here. You had a minor concussion, and they’re going to keep you here for a couple of days to make sure you’re fine. But they treated everything.” Carissa’s mom was calm...too calm, in her own opinion. Normally, in a situation like this, Carissa would have to fight for her breath as her mama squeezed her and made sure she wasn’t out of her sight again. But there was none of that.
    “Mama,” Carissa said, “are you sure that you’re okay? You’re taking this entire situation way too well.”
    Her mother smiled. “I had a dream last night where the Lord appeared to me,” she said. “And the Virgin Mary was there as well, right next to Him. I cowered on the ground and said I wasn’t worthy to see Him, but He spoke to me and said that as long as I followed Him, everything would be all right. When I heard about your accident today, at the school, I remembered that dream and realized that the Lord was preparing me for this very moment. So I have been praying this entire time, and the Lord has given me peace.”
    Carissa tried not to roll her eyes. Her mother was always like this, talking about God and how great He was. It wasn’t that she didn’t believe in Him, it was just that she had always been around other students who had believed differently than her. She wanted to figure out what she believed for herself, and she hadn’t had a chance to do that yet. Quite honestly, she hadn’t cared up until this entire reality thing had started.
    She paused for a moment. “Mama, where is that white boy?”
    “Oh, I made him sit out in the lobby with Isabel. She’s here, too, and she’s fine. Would you like for me to go get them?”
    Oh, if Mac had to deal with Isabel and her list by himself, then Carissa needed to relieve him. “Yes please, Mama.”
    Isabel came into the room first and did exactly what Carissa thought her mother would have done -- wrapped her arms around Carissa and started bawling hysterically. Carissa had to roll her eyes. “Seriously, Isabel?”
    “Don’t say that! I was so worried about you!”
    “Sure she was,” an exasperated Mac said as he entered the room. He sat in the chair Carissa’s mother had sat in before.
    “I’m going to go call Solana,” Carissa’s mother said, referring to her boss.
    Carissa nodded. “Okay. You do that.”
    The minute the door closed behind Carissa’s mother, both Mac and Isabel crowded closer to Carissa. “So you really learned how to stop the world?” Isabel asked.
    Carissa nodded. “Mac, did that blonde girl tell you anything important when we were in the cafeteria? I don’t really remember that well.”
    “You wouldn’t.” Mac sighed. “She talked about the things that the old lady had said, that reality is doing some weird things and you are the only one who can fix it. And since you are the only one who can, then you have been given the temporary power to alter reality as well. She also said again that you need to fix it by a certain day, or else everything will be in jeopardy.”
    “I know, I know. Wish I knew when that day was, though. But let me fill you both in on something.” And then she told Mac and Isabel about her mother’s dream.
    Isabel’s face was in shock. “Your mama spoke to God?” she said.
    “Well, not really speaking to God. More like God spoke to her in a dream. And she listened and it made her relax. Here’s the thing -- I can’t say for sure, but maybe I was supposed to hear about that dream.” She paused. “I think maybe God has more to do with this thing than we originally thought.”
    “What do you mean?” Isabel asked, but there was a look of knowing on Mac’s face.
    “The Gutenberg Bible,” he said with a smile. “Not that I had forgotten about it, but we’ve had more important things on our plate as of recent.”
    “I agree,” Carissa said, “but that book has to be important somehow.”
    “Of course it’s important. Otherwise, I wouldn’t have sent you to find it.”
    All three turned toward the old lady, who had appeared in the room out of nowhere, still in her old clothes that hadn’t been washed, now holding another red apple in her hands. She gave the apple to Mac. “You’re doing well, but proceed with caution. Especially you. You’ve been given warning.” It was the first time Carissa had seen Mac be addressed directly by the old lady.
    Then, she turned to Carissa. “I will not give you any more second chances,” she told her. “From now on, you must make your own second chances. These worlds will not be kind to either one of us. And if you don’t do something, it will all change, and it will not be fixed.” She produced another apple out of her pocket. “Shall we initiate the survival tactics?”
    And then she was gone again, and Carissa wanted to scream. She wasn’t getting any answers, but she thought she might know where she could find some. “Mac,” she said, “I’m stuck here for a couple of days. Take Isabel with you, and find that Bible. Skip school, break as many traffic laws as you want, I don’t care as long as the two of you are safe. Just find that book.”
    Mac nodded. “I may even call Peter on this.”
    Carissa’s eyes widened. “Oh no you don’t. You’re not including anybody else in this Scooby gang.”
    “I might not have a choice. He came up to me earlier and asked how we got out. He knows we didn’t get out by the roof, like everybody else thinks. So I think it may be time to fill him in.”
    Carissa sighed. “Jinkies. Fine.”

    Sarah completed the jump and headed back to Saint Arbucks, where she hoped that somebody would be waiting -- and they were.
    “Thank goodness,” she said as she high fived Rue and received her drink. “I was about to go crazy there for a minute.”
    “It’s not easy being an interdimensional agent,” Rue said as she sipped her own tea.
    “It’s not easy being green, either, but nobody told the Lex line that.” Sarah sipped her frapp and downed a quarter of it in an instant. “Still no clues about Dvorak’s whereabouts?”
    “Nope. Any updates on your side? I know you just got back.”
    “Well, Taggart got her to the hospital okay. You have a lot of trust in that boy. I suppose it comes from being assigned to him.”
    Rue smiled. “I’m loyal.”
    “And you’re loyal to me, too, which does both of us a world of good. Anyway, Taggart is gonna get another kid to help him find the Gutenberg. The Doyle guy -- he’s Raz’s kid. Once we get that Bible into their hands, we’ll be able to decode for ourselves where Dvorak is at and send Carissa there. I’m still not sure about that other girl with Lopez, though. She seems like kind of an airhead. Rue, do you have any idea who is assigned to her?”
    Rue had to think for a moment. “I think...oh! Last I heard Ariana was covering her...but that can’t be right.”
    “Yeah, you’re wrong. Let’s not talk about Ariana.” Sarah made a face. “Do me a favor and check on that when you can. No huge rush. Just try to get it done by tomorrow.”
    “Will do. Is there anything else you need help with?”
    Sarah sipped her frapp again, then looked back at the ring on her finger. “Just make sure they actually do this and help us find Dvorak, before both of these worlds end up in the same limbo Mick’s in right now. From the way things are going, we might actually be able to pull this one off.”

No comments:

Post a Comment