Forever as Nothing
By Catherine Winfree
The boy looked around the marketplace. A child couldn't name it. People were shouting, running, knocking on fading doors, and holding up a wrinkled, overused picture. But he could feel it.
"Have you seen this woman?" they would desperately question. Often a threat would slip through the lips of the interrogator.
Havoc. That's what he felt, an unsettling urgency.
Hell. That's what he saw, a frenzying calamity.
It seems only right for the child to notice her. Children seem to notice all the wrong things. He looked across the plaza. She was silent, invisible, nothing. A wide straw hat covered her face as she gazed at the ground, leaning against the stone wall, appearing as if she was built there.
People were shouting.
There was a difference in this shouting today than in the others. For one, it was not the merchants trying to buy off their goods; it was the police trying to find the criminal. Secondly, the boy could feel it.
The sky was soft and dull.
Cloudless, cold, and pail.
Like a white sheet stretched over to hide the face of the dead.
The woman felt a penetrating stare; instincts told her. She lifted her chin. The boy saw tan skin, but it was not dark like his. She started walking.
She made her way to the boy. Bodies subdued in human commotion around her, but not one touched her.
And the shouting. He knew they shouted for her.
A small smirk remained pasted to her face like the way she appeared pasted to the wall, forever invisible.
She stood over the boy. He saw up into the dark cave of shadow surrounding her face. His mouth dropped. She had blue eyes. No one has blue eyes.
No one alive anyways.
The boy did not know the reasoning for this, why the pail demons had to die. Blue eyes mean one thing: Defiance. But the boy did not know this.
She bent down to him. He starred wide eyed into the pail faced woman. Her eyes did not look safe, but stealthy. Full of secrets. She raised a finger silently to her lips, and winked. A secret seemed to spill with the movement.
She walked away the same way she had come. The boy felt something cold and hard in his gripping fist. He looked into his dark skinned hand. In it, laid a coin. He looked up to find the woman, to thank her. She was gone. He searched the wall.
Nothing. She was gone.
They won't find her, he decided.
She will be hidden.
Forever as nothing, except to a child.