The Silent River

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic
Okidoki, this is Mystory's challenge. If you don't know her challenge, you give her a number between 1 and 10 and that's how many words she gives you to put in your poem or short story. My words were:
1. necklace
2. soaring
3. refugee
4. water
5. contemplation
6. redemption
The words will be underlined.
Ok, so while I was gone in Yellowstone I wrote this story. Obviously, I wanted to kind of use the nature, so I wrote it taking place in Yellowstone. *sigh* and I absolutely HATE to admit it, but my older sister helped me with a bit of it. She helped me use a couple of the words, and form a few of my sentences better. I found out something truly ODD doing this. Telling someone what to write down on paper instead of doing it myself, changes how I write in a way. ANYWAYS, I also wanted to mention that when I say in the story "dreadfully cold yellowstone water" I'm really not joking. Ha Ha their water is so COLD you can't even keep your hands under it for less than a second.
Another important factor: the girls name is pronounced EL-SEE.
But yeah, so here's the story. It's romance, because I love romance, but a kind of different kind, slower version (I suppose?) But enjoy please! And thanks for the WONDERFUL words Mystory;)

Submitted: June 27, 2008

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Submitted: June 27, 2008

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The raindrops looked like glittering diamonds as they fell from the sky and then shattered to the ground like glass. A few crows cawed in the distance and a couple of squirrels were chattering near a tree. A few cars passed on the road but after, there was an everlasting silence. Elisi sat under the awning, staring out into the sullen forest. She fingered her mother’s necklace. It was a locket, and inside was a picture of her mother taken before the accident. Her mom, who's name was Lauren, had died tragically. On their annual visit to Yellowstone National Park, she was hiking and feel into the river, soon being taken over by the dreadfully cold Yellowstone water. After that, Elisi hadn't wanted to go back with what was left of her family: her two siblings and her father. But her father said it was a tradition their mother had made, and they should respect it.

She let the necklace fall back onto her chest, the cold metal making her numb. She heard from behind her the unzipping of a tent and then footsteps echoed on the dirt coming towards her. Her father opened the awning and stepped inside, his hair damp from the rain. His brown eyes melted like chocolate at the warmth he soon felt, and sat beside her on the bench.

"Hey there kiddo, nice day today huh?" His sarcastic tone livened up her day a bit, knowing that he was doing ok. Ever since her mother’s death, he hadn't quite been himself. It was reassuring to hear his happy tone/ He noticed her fingers once again rise to the locket.

"You miss her too huh?"

"Yeah." She nodded sadly. She turned to look at her father's face and saw his lips turn into a frown.

"I know it's hard, but coming here every year will make us stronger."

She smiled gently and then stood up on her feet. "I'm going to go on a small walk in the forest. I will be back before anyone else wakes up." She began her decent down the narrow pathway into the forest. It was dark than she thought it would be, and was immediately annoyed she hadn't thought of bringing a flashlight. It then dawned on her that she didn't even know what time it was.

She soon found herself wandering off the path. It soon became light enough to decipher the picturesque scene around her. It was incredibly beautiful, the trees swaying gently in the wind and the new born flowers sparkled with the raindrops. It was like soaring through her own unknown world. After a few minutes of enjoying the spectacular beauty, she looked around and realized she was now lost. Elisi began to panic. the fear in her head making her tremble. She began to walk faster now, determined to make it out. But unconsciously she stumbled upon a river, but she never would have known it was there had she not gotten lost. Sighing in defeat she sat down on a log at the edge and put her face in her hands.

"I'm so stupid," she muttered to herself. The rain continued to shower down around her but she found it relaxing. The silent river before her was like a sanctuary for a lost refugee. Still lost in her little world, she didn't hear the footsteps approaching her from behind. Then she felt the log wobble beneath her and her head snapped up.

Elisi began to analyze the features of the boy beside her. He had short shaggy brown hair that clung to his forehead, and strong hazel eyes. They were nothing compared to her gentle blue ones. He wore a faded gray t-shirt and a leather jacket. His pants were torn in multiple places as were his black converse shoes. She felt herself grown hot, and immediately wanted the cool touch of the water against her skin. He seemed to be lost in contemplation as his eyes bore deep into the silent river.

Finally he looked up at her waiting countenance and gave the most heartfelt smile that nearly knocked her off her feet. She didn't have enough time to collect herself in time for her smile to spread across her face before his faded.

"Have you ever stumbled upon here before?" he asked.

"Not really, no," she blurted out suddenly.

He seemed startled at the quickness of her response, but the surprise soon faded from his face and he answered.

"I have been here a lot since my family and I came down. I just happened to stumble upon it, so I figured if my family ever came looking for me they wouldn't be able to find me."

"Why don't you want to be with your family?" Elisi asked. "Usually on family vacations, that's the whole point."

"Yeah," he replied, " I'd answer that question but then I'd be wondering what you were doing down here."

Elisi felt herself go red again in embarrassment and had to look away. "I need to get away every now and again," she said softly. "After-", she hesitated, then looked at him with a confused expression. "Wait, what's your name anyways?"

He rested his elbows on his knees and leaned forward to run his fingers through the water.

"I could tell you, but it wouldn't matter anyways seeing as you'll probably never see me again."

Elisi raised her eyebrows in protest. "Yes, that's true but I'm seeing you right now."

He gave her another smile, so big that his eyes became squinty. "Daniel. What's yours?"

"I'm Elisi," she replied, happy that he had answered.

He straightened up and looked at her curiously. "Doesn't that mean 'Star Dancer'?"

She nodded slowly. His eyes began to twinkle as if he knew something she didn't.

"What?" she asked running her fingers through her layered black hair.

"I can see why your parents named you that."

"What is that supposed to mean?" she asked offended.

His eyes suddenly grew wide, afraid that he had said something wrong. "What I meant was that I can see the stars dancing in the depths of your eyes."

She felt a grin spread across her face. "That's really nice of you to say, but I don't know if I can believe you."

Daniel looked away, staring back into the river. "I understand. After all, you just met me. Trust has to be earned."

She shrugged to herself, tightening her coat around her. Without realizing it, her fingers were brought back to the locket around her neck. Out of the corner of her eye, she could see his steady gaze upon her. "What?" she questioned a little too defensively.

"Nothing," he murmured. "I was just admiring your beautiful necklace. Can I see it?"

"No!" she quickly spat. "You might damage it."

He gave a quick laugh that sped up her heartbeat. "Are you serious? How could I possibly damage something as alluring as that?"

Elisi thought about it for another moment, and then mistakenly spoke harshly. "Please, like I would ever let somebody like you touch my necklace." She watched his lively expression fall apart. "Wait- I didn't mean it like that. Like you said, trust has to be earned and I only just met you. This locket is very important to me." She saw the hurt disappear from his face, but there was still a bit of pain left in his eyes.

He answered slower this time. "I didn't know it was of so much importance to you."

"I'm really sorry, I shouldn't have been so mean. You can touch it, you look like one of those people who would be gentle with these types of objects."

He smiled, brushing his now soaking hair to the side. She sighed in relief as she gained her self redemption for what she had done. Elisi felt Daniel slide closer to her, his hand reaching for the chain around her neck. He wrapped two fingers around it, and then slid them down her neck to where it rested against her chest. She shivered at his touch, and hoped it was just from the cold. His fingers traced the outline of the heart shaped locket and reached with his other hand to open it.

Elisi jerked back instinctively before giving in. Daniel paused before lifting his fingers the rest of the way, afraid she might protest. But like he had promised, he was gentle opening it. She saw his eyes run across the face of the woman inside.

"Is that your mother?" he asked caringly. He could feel her head move up and down in a nod.

"She died here. I won't go into specifics but she drowned here in Yellowstone."

Daniel's hazel eyes began to sadden. "I'm so sorry," he whispered. "No wonder you need to get away every once and a while." He shut the locket and let it drop back onto her chest. Unexpectedly, he remained close to her. "My story isn't as bad as yours. My parents are getting a divorce and I'm always so embarrassed from the stares I get when people walk by as they bicker."

"It must be terribly hard to go through that. Do you ever find relief?"

"Actually, the first relief I've felt is being down here with you."

Elisi rested her chin on her hand, wanting to get closer than they already were. "That's nice to hear. Usually I'm the one nobody wants to be around."

"I guess I'm the first," he said with a small smile.

Elisi once again ran her fingers through her now wet and knotted hair, knowing she should get back to camp. Daniel seemed to read her mind.

"We should probably get going now. I'm sure you have somebody waiting back at your campsite."

"Not really, I'd rather be here with you. You're easy to talk to."

He didn't try smiling through his unhappiness of her going, so instead he just stood. "It was nice meeting you, I hope to see you again before you leave." He reached out his hand for her to take, and she did, letting him help her get onto her feet. Daniel gently pulled her forward, and kissed her softly on the cheek. She was overflowing with contentment. He gave her one last smile before letting go of her now warm hand, and strode off into the forest. Elisi tried to contain her joy as she made her way back to where she suddenly knew camp was, hoping as he did that they would meet again before she left.

 


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