Chapter Two

Purple Berry Bush

I could remember when I thought I had to wear no shoes. They didn’t wear any and I desperately wanted to fit in. It was silly of me, because I clearly looked different. Yet, it was that desire to belong. During my examination before our journey, the doctor said I would experience those feelings and I should prepare for an emotional rollercoaster. That rollercoaster turned into a complete disgust and a lot of vomiting. There wasn’t a day that went by where I didn’t see something that made me want to puke.

I pushed my way through the crowd, heading towards the outskirts of the village. It was the way to my aunt’s station. I don’t know why I call it that, it’s far from being a station. But my mind still had our spaceship mentality active. She actually had a better place than us. It was a hut. It had a natural feel and look, something I would have preferred; than their hand made homes with smeared shit on the walls. I guessed my aunt deserved it. She was better with communicating with them and would help finalize our deal. All I had to do was bring the crystal.

I moved briskly taking small sips of my bottled water, trying to mentally conserve. It was that blasted sun. In addition, I had forgotten my hat. There was no way I was going to turn back. With my eyes down, I kept my pace. No eye contact with those foreign people; especially the men. They brushed me, pushing me slightly off course, demanding that I recognize them. But no. I won’t. I continued with my head down; thinking so loudly, I swear they could hear.

“Ja, ja, yah, yah…”

What the heck are they saying? I could never figure them out. I learned some words, but not all. Just enough to trade a few things and move around in the village. Mostly it was my father who did the contacting with them. Horrid people. They smelled too. There were a few beauties though, walking around naked. Mere strings as clothes and bathing in a nearby river. So primitive.

But yet they had something sensual about them. It was the one thing that reminded me of my fiancé. I missed him so much. But he was working on his cause and I was working on mine. After today, we will have one cause, together forever. My looks was the one thing that didn’t matter here, but my habits always kicked in. These people needed to know and learn about authority. We were going to be over them and they needed to know it. They needed to know that the way I look and the way I stand out, is now authority.

The sun. The biggest evil that existed with this planet and our greatest enemy. It was going to take more than clouds, if we were going to take over this planet. We need something big to block that damn sun. I just can’t take anymore of it. It created endless shadows that seemed to lead to many paths to nowhere. Good gracious, I was finally reaching the outskirts. Lovely village, be gone. I smiled, chuckling to myself of my inner humor. Now, that there was no crowd, I glimpsed back; taking a look of what was and dreaming of what will be of that village.

There was nothing but a dirt path and a bunch of trees in the distance. Yep, dirt path and a forest of some kind.

“Father dear, can you hear me.” I needed to check my phone. I hate walking through the woods alone. There wasn’t much out there and it wasn’t dense, but… those people. You know. Them.

“Yes, I’m here.” My father responded as if he was expecting my call. Of course, he would. I always called around the woods.

“Just checking. I’m reaching the woods and you know I hate it there.” I wanted him to respond not to worry and be brave. I wasn’t a child, but I always feel like one with my father.

“There’s no one there. Just small animals. Nothing for you to worry about. Just keep your pace. Your aunt is waiting. I think she’s cooking for them, making them comfortable.”

“Really? That’s crazy. Why are we serving these people?” My aunt is kind of crazy. Serving foreign people shouldn’t be one of her agenda. She was making me exhausted thinking about her and her coziness with them. I need a break and I was sweating too.

“You forgot our mission. We need to be in their good graces.” My father insisted; he wasn’t so convinced of her insanity.

“Do they even know what that is? I mean who really cares. They don’t understand anything.” Aaah. It was a beautiful thing. I’ve reached shade. My body drenched with sweat, I crunched down against a tree staring at a berry bush. There was only a sip of water left and I had to take it. What was my father thinking? They had no culture and knew nothing of having good graces.

“Look, you want me to finish this right? I need to go. You’ll be okay.” He continued.

“Fine.” I said, taking a deep breath. There was no reason to explain about their abnormal culture to him. He knew.

He was in one of his moods again. I hung up looking at that purple beauty. I think I’ve eaten it before. Purple berries, purple berries, purple berries. I think I did, but I’m not sure. My father’s previous words echoed in my mind, don’t eat anything on the foreign land. But was I on the foreign land? Can’t be. I’ve walked some distance, but I don’t know where the line is drawn. And in fact, this entire world is foreign to me. So what difference does it make? Another thing to put on the list, lines. Lines need to be drawn to separate these damn villages and cities we were going to build. These natives live without lines and borders, crossing over and trading with whoever. They could make much more money and compete better with one another, if lines were drawn.

These berries are horrid to me. Like the people. Perky, flourishing, boastful, and… sweet smelling. They looked good enough to eat. But, father is right. I shouldn’t eat anything foreign. As good as it appears, it can be deadly. I opened my backpack to search for another bottled water. I’m sure I put one in there. Instead I pulled out my handheld mirror. My face was flushed. I was becoming a native. A purple berry with red cheeks. It was a horrible complexion that didn’t go well with my hair. My sweaty hair was pasted to my head as I pulled it apart and attempted to fluff it up. There was no time to sit and mope. I needed to get to my aunt. She was waiting.

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