Fiery Angels - Excerpt

Jo’s cottage under the fig tree is the only place where I can find refuge and solace. 

No one else comes here now.  The hubbub and bedlam of the main house are not audible and this is a place where I can relax.  I’ve tried to make sense of what happened.  I look at Jo’s things and read her diary, trying to see the truth of that day in my mind, trying to make the numbness go away so I can live again.

In one hand I hold the collection of notebooks that was Jo’s diary.  On the wall is the last sketch she was working on.  Looking from one to the other only adds to my confusion.  I have read the diaries and studied Jo’s many sketches numerous times over the weeks since her disappearance.  But there’s no sense in any of it.  I now treasure those pictures and chide myself on my blindness. Why did I not know of her talent sooner?  Why did I not take the time to interpret the pictures, the feelings she had, the pain she must have been feeling?  I may have been able to reach her. 

Now it is too late.  I close my eyes and see Jo’s peaceful face as a host of fiery beings carry her aloft, upward on wings of fire to God only knows where.  Or why.  Or how.

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© 2015 by Phoebe Wilby.