ETERNITY (a short story)

The snow storm closed in on her as she furiously skidded like her pa, a old veteran and an Olympian in the sport of rowing, always did when battling the disgruntled sea.
Hail, hard as the granite stones used to pave the streets of her beloved Beirut back in Lebanon, lunged- excited by the velocity of the storm- and hit her squarely on all parts of her body as she kept skidding.
The elusive fear of death, which had rarely threatened her in her 3 year career of skiing across the Alps in preparations for the next Winter Olympics, rose to its highest peak within her: causing her mouth to utter low gasping tones enriched with the tone of fear with her eyes also darting from side to side to identify any sign of the rescue chopper which was always ready to roam the skies in search of skiers to rescue in the event of an ice storm.

Back at a well lit cabin, 15 kilometers from where the skier was battling death, were the two helicopter operators.
Sitting across each other with an ouija board in front of them and a flask containing hot chocolate which they sipped from at intervals.
Ten minutes into the game, the husband offers a sly wink at his wife of four years whose body, despite two heathly twin girls, had failed to drop into the scrapheap where overweight and flabby bodies where regular disposables.
The wife used to the unspoken matters of the heart, got up from her mat, walked on to put two more logs of wood into the hearth (fireplace) and then slithered towards the waiting man who she had nicknamed 'Prince Arthur' ever since he had metaphorically won the battle of the lances over her heart and had given her the keys to his kingdom.
The two became one again under the sheets with the lights dimmed and the skier forgotten.
Her ebb of hope faded out by the second as the nineteen-foot ice storm kept bulldozing every tree in its path while coming dangerously close to her heel.

She remembered.
A death induced reminisce that occurs to folks with one leg already in the great beyond.

She remembered Farooq and his wife, Aisha.
Two Jordanians who had opened up their home to her and sheltered her when the blood thirsty terrorists had kept chasing her through the streets of Raqqa.
She had hidden in their basement and peeped at the weeping couple as the young wannabe terrorists peppered Farooq's face with slaps while threatning to desecrate Aisha nether regions with a huge AK 47 if the duo did not produce the 'bloody Kafir' who, a small child eating cheesecake next door had told them, was hidden in their house.
The couple had stood firm and maintained ignorance until the last minute when a youngin, eager to rise up the echelon of the organization, ripped open the bodies of the couple while screaming the sacred 'Allau Akbar'.
Perhaps she would meet the couple in Al-janah, she thought as her mind thrust further back in reminisce.

She remembered the coptic Cardinal Gerald and his loyal doberman Toby.
A clergyman who had truly understood the depth of sin which weighed heavily on her and had shown her a single scripture which had lifted the burden.
She remembered always sitting in his office while he was engaged in his pastoral duties to the congregation; her hand firmly clutching a little brown rubber ball which the eyes of the doberman followed studiously.
Then she would open the backdoor to the church field and throw the ball while yelling 'fetch boy!' to the delight of the dog who would work himself into a frenzy of slobbering and tail wagging before bursting forward to catch the ball.
That day she received that cold call sprang before her memory.
Walking leisurely, hands clutched, with Ben a Harvard student she had met at a café in Paris, her phone had rang out and she quickly flashed a quick smile to two ballerinas who waved to her from their makeshift dance gym at the corner of the street.
"Padre Gerald is gone. He was blown to pieces by a Turk sucide bomber who attached the church. I am deeply sorry for your loss"
Reality had dampened after her ears had picked up the first sentence. Her brand new Samsung had slipped out of her fingers and hit the brick street while the fireworks that Ben had been pointing out to her while reminding her of the grandiose Fourth of July celebrations usually held in the States suddenly did not hold any beauty for her to behold.
The tears had flowed non-stop from her point of departure at the Bordeaux airport to her short chauffeured inside the Benz and more floodgates had been unleashed when the shovel was placed in her hands in at the cementary in Venice where the Cardinal had asked to be buried alongside his pa.

Padre Gerald had told her about heaven.
And she offered a quick thanks to her Jesus before kissing the little silver coated cross she kept in her pockets.
The ice storm finally caught up with the runner; lifting her frail body and tossing it wide like a baseball player batting the ball.
While her bones crunched and her neck snapped, she muttered a quick 'Hallelujah' before her spirit stepped into eternity.

okonta kosi