Friday, 14 January 2011

Chapter 14 'Honour Thyself'

I shook my head giving him my 'are you crazy? I don't want to die' look.
"Oh you are like the rest of the people, the tourists, they ride slowly, yes slowly" he lowered his head and sighed clearly disappointed.
It was all the insult I needed before my ego vehemently protested his remarks. I took hold of the reigns. If Ali was eager to break the tour guide mould and actually ride with someone properly, I was going to make his day. I nervously gulped down a mouthful of dry dusty air, held onto the reigns tightly and gave Wardah a gentle nudge with the heel of my sandal, she started to walk again. Ali moved behind me allowing me to lead. The pressure was on, there was no turning back. I dug my heels in firmer and pushed her on, she picked up the pace and began to trot. My body bounced up and down uncontrollably and I immediately regretted my prideful decision to rise to his challenge. I wasn't ready. Ali sensed my anxiety and steered Nesma to the left hand side of me 'are you OK? we can stop if you want'.
I shook my head, No I had to do this it was now or never. I took a deep breath and began to relax into the familiar sit-up sit-down rhythm that came naturally to an experienced rider. I kicked her again and she responded with a faster pace. I was beginning to remember and I moved in unison with her. An excited energy began to rise each time I ordered her to trot on. We were moving in sync, I wanted to go faster and so did she, I kicked her harder and she broke into a canter. The force momentarily threw my body back and I grabbed hold of the front of the saddle with one hand and the reigns with the other. Pulling myself forward, I clung to her body with my thighs, lowered my head and told her to ride faster. She double kicked her hind legs stomping her hooves in agreement and with a three beat gait propelled us forward into a new existence consisting of only Naomi and Wardah. We left Ali behind, a cloud of dust the only indication that we had once been there. We tore through the Egyptian desert, the hot wind stung my eyes, my heart was in my mouth and I could hear nothing but the sound of her hooves pound the floor mercilessly. I felt an electric hum from the base of my spine pitch through my body. She had taken charge, this was her home, her manor and I was her humbled guest. I knew my only option was to hold onto her with all of my strength, give in to her frighteningly powerful greatness and let her take me wherever she wanted to go. The fear of being thrown again possessed my thoughts, I took another deep breath and an exhilarating liberating rush quickly paralysed them, I relinquished control. I knew I was safe. Stripped of any pretence Wardah wanted me to know myself as a rider again, this was her gift to me. It was working and with each deep breath a primitive subconscious took over where I existed in a space of no past, no future, no family, no friends, no memories, no nothing, just me, the real true me. Naomi Jacobs.

Thursday, 13 January 2011

Excerpt from Chapter 3- Enchanté

I took a step closer to him, the golden light behind me illuminated his soft brown liquid centre eyes, his ecru complexion reminded me of a sweet milky latte that once drunk could warm the heart of even the most frozen cynic. He gave me another understanding smile and the snowball of fear, which had grown bigger with each passing hour, immediately melted away. It wasn't the uniform, he could have been wearing a bin bag, it didn't matter. I instantly felt like I had known this man for years and more importantly that I could trust him. 'Do you speak English?' I enquired. I didn't wait for an answer and through tears started to tell him what had happened that night. Not being able to understand me he held his hands up and shook his head 'I speak little English'.
The flood gates opened, I started to sob, he took a step closer to me, we were in each other's space, close enough to feel his warmth I took a deep breath inhaling his presence, a faint mix of tobacco and a sweet musky scent made me want to bury my face into his neck. I exhaled and stared intently into his eyes. Was he feeling this?
'Calm, calm, tranquille' his hands dropped to the side, his brow furrowed and he brought a gloved finger to his lip staring intently at me while trying to figure something out. I took another breath, lip quivering, I allowed his tender command to instruct my tears to stop, they obeyed. A wave of calm washed over me, I mentally dubbed him my Angel.
'One moment please' he said in perfectly formed French, I nodded and watched as he went and fetched another police officer. Moments later, they both approached me, he pointed to his colleague and indicated I speak to him. In broken French and English I told his friend what had happened. He interpreted to the Angel and his expression grew more and more worried. This wasn't good. They both looked at each other and spoke for a while in French, from their faces I began to suspect that there was nothing they could do for me. The colleague confirmed this and my response was to leave my shore of safety and spiral into another wave of fear and panic. I nodded accepting my fate, took one last look at the Angel, he was instantly apologetic and took a step back. I felt doomed. If the French police couldn't help me no body could. it was all over, I envisioned a life destined to walk the streets of Paris, destitute and homeless, with no money, no bag and no phone. The Angel somehow received my telepathic messages of distress as he didn't walk away with his colleague. He stood looking at me pensive, bringing his finger to his lip again, he nodded his head. 'You stay here, for ten minutes, stay here and I will come for you'

Wednesday, 12 January 2011

Excerpt from Chapter 24-The Beginning

My life became a maelstrom of misunderstandings and desperate discoveries of a future I had not envisioned all those years ago. My thoughts oscillated between fears of brain tumours and and tears of longing for the simple life of school. My loved ones omitted the tragic parts of deaths and disappearances, easing me into the narratives of those no longer. Why had life as I'd known it no longer existed? In agreement with my Doctor they insisted I didn't read newspapers, watch television or force myself to remember anything from the past seventeen years. My adolescent self-preserving stubbornness rebelled. I wanted to see how the world had turned out. I was mortified, digital television projected cartoonish images from a flat screen television, a varicoloured wonder to the pale and boring analogue my eyes were used to. Reality TV was a complete enigma, it seemed to churn out this fatuous vat of desperate and unhappy people enslaved to the fantasy that fame would bring their often meaningless lives some semblance of purpose. Men Women and Children lost in a life of lusting after the lens searching for celebrity and recognition. My Sister painstakingly took the time to explain 911 and 7/7, the war on terror and the worlds scramble for diminishing oil reserves. As the reality of the ever increasing technological, biological and psychological threat to the planet dawned on me, I had to stop her before I threw up my possibly genetically modified dinner. I had fallen asleep dreaming of a world full of endless opportunities and Utopian peace and had woken up in a dark Blade Runner-esque nightmare, where someone was always watching you.