...and then there was an awakening from the sleep. Little girl in a white nightgown awoke screaming in her bed, tears streaming down her cheeks. She sat up in bed and, rubbing her eyes with her fist, took several deep breaths. The street was silent, only occasionally broken by the rustle of leaves in the crowns of a tree growing under the window. Not a single ray of light penetrated the room - the windows were curtained with heavy curtains of thick velvet. Gradually, the girl's eyes got used to the darkness, and she was able to distinguish the outlines of the closet in which her numerous outfits were stored, the table at which she painted and did her homework, as well as the chair she liked to sit on with her legs crossed.
Tearing her eyes away from the interior, baby girl sobbed and pulled her knees up to her chest. Wrapping her arms around them, she froze, listening to her feelings. All the thoughts that were born in her head somehow came down to the same topic, namely to the nightmare. Still not fully awake, she continued to feel the heaviness that he left on her soul. The little one had no doubts that she saw Him in her dream, before her eyes continued to stand His image, brought to life by this dream. She could almost see the sparkle in His brown eyes, watched His tousled hair flutter in the wind... In the feebleness dropping her head on knees, girlie barely audibly whispered His name.
But then she heard a knock on the bedroom door. At first she did not attach any importance to this, but when it repeated itself, lass jumped to her feet and headed for the door, straightening her long hair as she went. Opening the door, she stepped aside to let her mother in, who was wearing a light blue velvet bathrobe.
The woman looked tired. Entering her daughter's bedroom, she stopped by the bed and turned to little girl, who, looking straight ahead, continued to stand silently at the door. Finally, the silence of the bedroom was broken by the voice of the mother:
- I heard you scream, - there was concern in her voice.
The girl looked away from the carpet lying on the floor of the bedroom and looked up at her mother with her dark, shining eyes. She saw that her daughter's whole body was tense- It was clear, that the girl did not expect this night visit and she did not like the presence of her mother in her bedroom. The mother carefully looked at her daughter's face and only now noticed that the baby's eyes were red from tears.
- Were you crying? - in a worried tone, the mother asked her.
Daughter did not answer her, continuing to look at her attentively and expectantly, shifting slightly from foot to foot. Then the mother turned to her daughter again:
- What are you afraid of? I'm right next to you. Tell me, I'll completely understand...
It seemed that up to this moment the mother’s words had not reached the consciousness of the girl, and only after this phrase did she begin to understand little by little what exactly she wanted from her. The girl relaxed a little and closed her eyes. After two seconds, she sighed and opened them.
- I think ajussi Jo is unhappy, - she said softly. - I even heard him moan...
After these words, a small tear rolled down her cheek. Wiping it with her palm, the girl brushed a strand of black hair out of her face.
- Dearie, - mother began, - don't you cry...
- I'm not crying, - her daughter objected with a decisive note in her voice.
The girl's face became serious. Angrily stamping his little foot, she walked over to the bed and resolutely sat down on its edge. The mother moved mechanically to make room for daughter. Dangling her bare feet to the floor, the girl looked up at her.
- Mommy, why do you keep lying to me? - and, without waiting for an answer, explained. - About ajussi Jo?
Instead of answering, the mother grabbed the baby by the shoulders and pulled him to her. The girl obediently clung to her, hiding her face in the folds of maternal bathrobe. For a while, both were silent, then, after a couple of minutes, the mother released her daughter from her arms.
- When will you understand, - woman said confused, - that he died?
Wiping her hands on clothes, she made her way to the exit. Daughter continued to sit on the bed, looking after her with some displeasure. Mother, stepping over the threshold, finally turned her head to her.
- Remember, ajussi Jo is just doesn't exist in this world, and that's it, - she said instructively.
- Well, mom... - the girl answered with obvious resentment.
- Go to bed already, dearie, - woman realized that it was pointless to argue on this subject.
The girl lay down on her back and pulled the blanket over her. The mother watched her daughter settle into bed, and when she finally turned her face to the wall, the woman sighed softly and left the room, closing the door behind her. As her footsteps faded into the corridor, baby girl slowly lifted her head from the pillow and listened. After making sure that there was complete silence in the house, she threw off the blanket and lowered her legs to the floor.
Getting out of bed, she lowered her eyes - her long chemise went down almost to her ankles, why her soft pink feet stood out so much against the background of white clothes and a fluffy carpet, covering the bedroom floor. She looked a little more closely and noticed a small red bump on her left foot - apparently a mosquito bit her while sleeping. But now the girl was worried about completely different things.
Slowly moving her bare feet across the soft carpet, she went to the window and, lifting the thick velvet curtains, looked at the shutters. They were tightly closed on the latch - that was the precautionary of the parents, who feared that in the countryside at night all sorts of bad people, which do not feed bread, but let them get into someone else’s house through the window.
The funny thing is that when their family lived in an apartment building in New York, where the girl's parents calmly left the windows open at night. Such a sudden change in their behavior could not help but make their daughter laugh, and even now, on this night, she could not help but laugh, trying, however, not to wake them up.
Coping with a momentary bout of gaiety, the girl pulled herself together and reached for the latch. Before pushing her away, she glanced back over - is anyone watching her, but there was no one in the bedroom except herself. It was understandable - if someone entered the room, the girl would hear the creak of the door and footsteps behind her. She turned her head to the window and pushed the bolt aside. Trying to make as little noise as possible, baby girl grabbed the window handle and pulled it towards her.
The window opened with a slight creak, and the girl involuntarily drew her head into her shoulders. The wind immediately rushed into her bedroom, which brought with it an indescribable smell of night air. The girl opened the other half of the window and climbed onto the windowsill. Sitting on him, she folded her hands on her stomach and stretched her legs forward. The cold forced her to shrink, which gave her whole posture a touching and defenseless expression.
At the window, lass felt completely safe, and she immediately surrendered to the power of the night wind, which gently stirred her long dark hair. The bright light of the full moon, which stood high in the sky, fell on her small, pale face. The sight of this night luminary filled her soul with such inexpressible happiness that lightness reigned in soul, and she soon forgot that her actions could attract the attention of her mother.
Despite the fact that the bright light of the moon blinded her eyes and deprived her of the ability to distinguish silhouettes in the dark, the girl still felt that the night world around her was full of mystery and magic. Please, do not think that she saw some ridiculous "fabulous" creatures and gray-bearded wizards with "magic wands" on the street.
In the understanding of this girl, magic was expressed not in these nonsense, but in a breathtaking feeling of complete comfort and euphoria, when all adversity disappears and in their place comes the realization of how much you love the whole world, which, however, did not prevent her from remembering the actions of some people, unpleasant for her, but this was not her fault, for such is human nature - love for all mankind always goes hand in hand with intolerance of individual personalities!
In this case, it was the parents of the girl - she could never forgive them for their lie, which was, that if believe their words, then her friend ajussi Jo went to another world. There was no way the child could check whether this was really so, but she had no reason to believe the word of her mother and father, who, since the day Jo disappeared, began to answer her every question regarding his person with the same "Jo's dead".
Sometimes the father, who worked as a pharmaceutist at the center, explained to his daughter that Jo's death was the result of the formation of some kind of metastases in his organism, but explanations of this kind only instilled in the girl the confidence that her parents were just trying to mess with her mind. Now, sitting alone on the windowsill, the girl could think about it calmly, without fear of the intervention of her parents, who, with their reproaches, did not allow her to concentrate on the thoughts that had been crowding in her head all this time. What actually happened to her adult friend and mentor?
The night gave the lass peace and a sense of appeasement. She stopped feeling the cold breeze that ruffled her hair and chilled her back, and even ceased to hearing any sounds - of all five of her senses, only her eyesight allowed her to somehow navigate in space. But at the same time, the baby did not experience any discomfort or anxiety, because time stood still for her and before her mind, as if on a fast rewind, ran through the memories of past events that the girl experienced with ajussi Jo - one could even say that they were all devoted only to his tender image.
The girl was outstanded at how this man did not fit with the contemporary world of both of them, and at times it seemed to her that the very fact of Jo's existence was a curious deviation from the norms of pedagogy and education. She thought so, based on his own words - "The Mother sways the dominion of The Heart, The Father that’of The Intellect, but if The Сhild has no Fatherly Support, then its Heart will prevail over its Intellect and he will be moved only by Emotional Impulses, without any Logical Principles". Baby did not understand a single word of what he meant by this, but knowledge of one fact from his biography could well serve as a simple explanation for his behavior...