There was a warm, intimate breeze blowing through an open shutter window. I woke up naked, covered in pebbles of sweat, lying on Egyptian cotton sheets, and hearing some unfamiliar bird sounds. Birds that one hears only in an exotic location and in a specific latitude and longitude.
There was an Etruscan cross hanging on the white sculptured wall across from the bed. A single long stem red rose lay on the nearby table next to an envelope. The room had the feel of a monastery except for the rose.
How did I get here? I rubbed my wet forehead. I recall walking out of a local coffee shop in Detroit and a black Mercedes Benz sedan stopped in front of me. The rear door of the four-door sedan swung open. A woman in a stylish black business suit and high heels stepped out of the car, and requested me to get in.
Please, join me. You really don’t have a choice.
What do you mean?
You had a number of perceived choices in life years ago that you didn’t take. And then six months ago you made a singular, remarkable, prayer like plea that I took note of.
The meaning of what she said was lost on me. Who was she? She held an odd-looking document in her hands. A document with a blood red blotch mark or stamping on it. What did all of this mean? Sighing I followed her instructions, and she slid into the back seat after me.
We have a journey ahead of us. Try to remember your desperate plea. It was your intent and will that has brought both of us to the awareness and truth you wanted so very much that you would risk everything for it.
My eyebrows apparently rose. I was bewildered. What was my plea?
She smiled, leaned over and kissed me on the cheek. Soon, she said, you will recall.
My eyes surveyed the room. I remember boarding a comparatively small twin-engine jet plane. There was the woman, a pilot and co-pilot. And another stranger sitting behind me. There was an unidentifiable fragrance swirling my head. Not sure what happened next except here I am. But where?
I looked around the room. There was the envelope on a table. I got up walked over to the table. My name was on the envelope along with the words, “look inside.”
I opened it and retrieved the paper. It read:
I knew of your impassioned longing years ago and then the remarkable pleading six months ago. My sincere apologies for the delay. Have had much on my plate, so to speak. Your being here is my reply. Ask yourself, who is thy patron saint…what does the Etruscan cross and the red rose symbolize for you?
I looked over at the cross on the wall and a long stem rose lying on the table.
I continued reading:
You are a reflection in the receding mirrors of a provocative, deeper longing, yet still look, squinting as it seems as if there’s someone else in the mirror besides yourself. Who would that be?
I shook my head as if to add clarity to the surrounding blurriness of my state of affairs. I began to tremble.
My pants were draped over a nearby chair. I put my pants on, walked to a double door to the outside and opened them. I stepped out on to a veranda, bare feet and bare chested. The dwelling, in which I found myself, was of all-white stone with steps leading up the veranda to where I stood from a driveway below. There was a two-door black sedan parked in it.
The dwelling was on a hillside that sloped down to the blue expanse of a sea.
I thought I heard someone approach from behind.
Are you truly ready to wake up, and accept the answer to your plea, the feminine voice whispered in my ear, her naked body covered in a white tunic and pressed up against my back. She held me tight and said it was all good.
I felt a kiss and pinching sensation on the back of my neck, and then a release. I placed my hand on the back of my neck expecting a drop of blood. Nothing. Just a wetness. I turned. I saw the backside of a tall, raven-haired woman walking away from me.
I’ll make us a morning meal I heard her say. She then turned. I noticed something in her hand. What was it? She looked at me with almond shaped, intense, and yet seductive black eyes, smiled, and added – then we will begin our longer journey together.