Would you believe the insane trip that is the Cold Saga started with me just muttering while staring at a blank screen “my fingers are cold”?
Because, yeah, that’s how this all got going. Here’s the fifth one. You kind of need to read the others first, so follow the links.
1st: My Fingers Are Cold
2nd: My Feet Are Cold
3rd: Our Hearts Are Cold
4th: My Past Is Cold
Our World Is Cold
Our world is cold when we come out of the dirt. When we raise our heads above the ground. The warmth is still not upon it, the freshness still not taking hold of the last vestiges.
And we rise to it. We: me and the one next to me. I look, and I see her, and the dirt falls from her eyes, and she tilts her head.
“Why are we?” she asks.
I don’t know the answer, and yet I know it is a question not unique to us. I feel the echoes of the other askers, left in the dirt.
“I do not know,” I say, so she may hear my voice. It is the first time I hear it as well. I lay my arms on the ground and I push up to the sky.
She does the same, and between us the grunts of efforts are loud and harsh. Our voices crack from newness.
I rise first, and I reach to touch her. She is next to me at the instant of the action. She tilts her head again and looks down at her body.
I look down at myself, and I am male. And she is not. She runs a finger along the skin, around her stomach in a ring. She pushes at her hips, and I watch.
I do not know why I watch. It does not hover in my mind the answer. Away from the ground, I do not know the old world. I do not know the meaning of most things.
All I know, is the world, this new world, is cold. But it is warming.
There is a wind, on the air, on the sky, on my mind, and inside the pulsing of my body.
This wind comes far off, from a mountain, and I can see the figures that stand on it.
I wave to them, and a small hand waves to me, before three walk away, leaving the world.
A world beginning green. The plants grow, but they do not stretch forever. They hang, and tilt in the smallest way down—from the weight of something done to this place.
I turn to this other person, and I smile at her, and she hugs her own stomach, and I cannot tell why I must look at her, but I must—and I don’t ever want to stop.
“Did you see them?” I ask.
“The ones on the mountain?”
“Yes. I did. They seem so familiar. They have names.”
My mouth feels dry. I reach and touch my skin, and it feels of hair. “What is a name?”
“It’s what we have.”
She touches me now. She places a hand on my bare shoulder and she looks at me.
“Do you remember what the ground said to you?” I ask.
She shakes her head. But I do not know if she denies or confirms. I only know I am happy to see the light catch her hair.
“I think you have a name. I think I can call you it once I know what it is.”
This, this makes sense to me.
“But what will I do? What could I do to earn a name?”
She reaches forward with her other hand, and her weight is on my body. Keeping me from leaving the ground if I might soar. Above us, something flies, and the shadow of it passes, small and feathery, and quick.
I look up, but she pulls me back again with words. Her eyes are so wide they fill my mind.
“You do not earn it. You have it now. I simply cannot say it.”
“Why?” I say, and I touch her left arm, and her skin sends something down my soul. I did not know the meaning of “soul” until now. A new idea.
“Because I do not yet know it.”
“How could you come to know it?” I say, and I lean forward. She has a smell to her. It pops and sparks in my brain.
“I think I can get the answer,” she says.
And she touches the side of my face. And moves closer. And her lips, her kiss, tastes like something missing from reality.
Around us, the ground rises, and twitches, and rumbles. And from it comes an arm, a head. A pair of blinking eyes, and another, and another. All the ground floods with people.
Pairs upon pairs. When I feel the warmth reach the pitch of life itself, I see the pairs of males and females rising next to us and look at each other.
My eyes widen when I know.
“Is that our name? Do we share it?”
“Of course.” She smiles. “We are a part of it. And thus we can have its name.”
“But what of each of us. What sets us apart?”
“It is possible to have two names,” she says.
“So we can be The Risen, and something else? Something different? What might it be for me? For you?”
I kiss her again, for a soft, slow second, before looking her in the eye, and hoping she would know.
“I think we get to decide that for ourselves now,” she says.
The shadow spreads again its wings and flies over us. But its cold is not strong. It is there, but like a whisper. And with the emerging heads and the new heartbeats of warmth, it is but a nothing.
And I hear the giggle of a young, and the squawk of a bird, and I laugh. And she smiles at me. And around us, so many others take in the world.
Our world. Our world was cold. And now it is all growing warm. Being remade in the image of those with the same temperature inside themselves.