Octy woke wailing.
“Mommy! I want Mommy!”
I want her, too. She left late last night.
I had hoped she’d stay. She transferred lots of money to Pops’ account so he could build that second story we’ve always been talking about. I guess the rebels have all sorts of intergalactic currency. I was secretly hoping she wanted us to build the second story so she’d have a room for herself.
She says she’ll be back, and we’ll have plenty of others who will need that room in the meantime. She’s a warrior, and she has work to do.
But right now, I hate the rebellion. It’s taken our Xirra from us.
I went for a long, long run down along the river path. It’s the only thing I know that helps me settle my feelings.
My bare feet slapping the concrete become a meditation rhythm for me. Thoughts relax. Silence floats in. And out of the silence, words and songs. I hadn’t sung to my sister Panda since I got her letter.
Little sister! You are strong!
You are brave!
When you’re scared,
And you sing,
That’s when your bravery
Casts a ring…
Little sister! Mogoto!
When I see you
You’ll be bagoto!
meet your new brother…
O! Awesome one!
On the wind
Comes my song
With the moon
Comes my song…
Octy was in bed, sound asleep, by the time I finally got back home. I took a long shower. I put on my space suit. Sometimes, it helps my body relax and provides support, when this gravity feels too much.
I took out my math book and looked over the equations. So simple. So pure. When I think of the lists that Baxin’ivre made, I feel that he stripped life to its simplicity, not as a means of reduction, but as a means of amplification. Remove the clutter to see the essence.
Math helps my loneliness fade. My brother is sleeping. Our Xirra will return. My sister Panda will come visit. My pops is upstairs, hammering the frames that will support the walls that will form the room where guests will stay. I am someone with family to love: brothers, sisters, aunties, and more, who will come to visit, who can come to my father’s home when they want to rest and to feel loved.