Chapter 9:

Leverage Point (Part 3)

The Curious Case of Clemsey

What a bright morning, I thought. It’s literally bright, but I am unsure if it is a positive light. “Please don’t rain on my parade,” I weakly muttered to the sky.

As far and as wide as I can, I stretched my whole being on the upper deck of my family’s merchant ship, letting myself sink into its history, fully giving off all the warmth I could possibly emit, thinking that it might create a hole that would merge me with the sea. I do not want all of these to fade. Apparently, going back to Alcione is out of the question now. Once again, the Hajione group’s journey, might be put into a halt, like it did years ago when young Clemsey fell ill, until the time when my soul took over. Years ago— a long time certainly has passed by since this reality became mine.

A few weeks prior, I suddenly passed out. My eye sight was so badly pulsating like staring at a flickering light. A tremendous headache would form whenever I try to move. Reality, imagination and shadows are swirling in my perception. Today, I managed to gain every bit of strength in me to finally get out of bed and prove my resolve. Deeply, I find myself tapping into the will of my soul, wishing for a miracle to occur. I do not want this to be the last time for me to get to experience the vastness of the world. I wonder, how many “last times” have I had so far? Had I known those moments would be so fleeting, what would I have done instead? But, a trip back to my memory lane, as much as I hate to admit, is also coming to an impending end as my soul gradually imprints itself in this reality. Over the years, a good fraction of memories from my original life have already faded. It felt like I am but mere spectator on a theater play that came to its conclusion. The curtain closes right before my eyes and all that’s left are overflowing stream of emotions. I started calling this ache in my chest, my “familiar feelings.”

The soul remembers, what the mind forgets… It was written in a certain book. I can’t recall the name now, but it was something I associated with my memory of Van Soreno.

As to when it all started fading, I could trace it back at that time I got lost in the woods of Port Lucia, a small neighboring kingdom which we consider to be our second home. It was at that moment, when Uncle Gionne’s words became my absolute guiding light.

“Why didn’t you shout for help?! Are you simply throwing everything I taught you into a garbage? Clemsey, why?!”

He was furious with rage. But when he held my hand, I felt a tear dropped into my palm. He was crying. It was so out of his character that it threw me into a disarray.

“I am sorry. I got really scared. I just thought that—“ I said, while my throat was hurting from stifling a loud cry. ”I just thought that if I shouted for help, I might have invited more danger.”

It was the truth. I got scared. Port Lucia, despite its warm and comfortable atmosphere, was unfamiliar to me at that time. I remembered, I was following my new-found friend, Miko Roisen in his search for an ancient shrine nestled deep in the woods. I have warned him for so many times about the current danger looming in Port Lucia, which I overhead from the adult’s conversation. Apparently, the kingdom has just dealt with a group of rebel forces who found their way into their territory prior to our arrival. That said, I couldn’t just leave a friend into his lonesome. Miko, for some strange reason, is a familiar presence, though I can’t seem to wrap my head around it. I lost my words when I lost Miko’s shadow amongst all other shadows, which are constantly shifting their shapes and shades. My brewing fear paralyzed me. I knew at that point, I couldn’t put my full trust into my own perception and senses. Doing so might lead to a more perilous state. I didn’t scream for help nor did I move. I waited in silence. I waited to be found.

I accumulated a good number of bruises and scratches from when I was following Miko. But, nothing hurts deeper than the despair I subjected my parents to and the weight of Uncle Gionne’s words.

“Cry as much as you want! Loathe me, get angry! But how else will you learn if I don’t say all these things to you now,” Uncle Gionne said in a shaking voice. I felt his hands trembling. “I am teaching you because I want you to be less scared of the world. I was simply trying to open your eyes. If a day would come, when you wish to change the course of your life, I want you to have the courage to stand by your choices. Clemsey, that courage, is what I’m trying to embed to you from the very start.” At that point, I wasn’t able to hold my tears any longer.

There was a trivial story from my childhood, that survived in my memory. It was a time at The Meliora Library, I was dreading the heat waiting for me outdoors, when i found my gaze on the fogging windows of the library. I got curious and casually asked Aunt Gigi the science behind it. “If it’s warm outside and the interior is cold, the outside surface may fog. Removing the temperature difference on the opposite sides of the glass will fix it,” Aunt Gigi explained. Being reminded of that, it dawned on me what I was doing wrong.

The following day, I stood in front of Uncle Gionne, calmed my breathing down and exclaimed, “let me take us home.” What I meant by home, was from the townhouse we were staying-in at Port Lucia, down to the harbour where the Hajione was waiting for us. Somehow, after a long time, it felt like, we finally managed to connect.

“Child, a lie you tell yourself over and over, will eventually turn into your truth,” his figure leaned down next to me. “If you are now doubting whether you can take both of us back to Hajione, then maybe it’s time for you to reverse your thinking.”

“I can take us home.” Actually, no, I can’t. But I will try, I thought.

The townhouse, is a walking distance away from the harbour. I was tracing every intersection and corner in my head. For days, I was identifying areas and scents and objects with Miko’s help. The scent of wood at a musical instrument store, the sound of bell ringing at a sacred shrine, the feel of cobblestones underneath my feet— a good indication of being on the right track. In the end, I was able to take us home to Hajione. “Good job Clemsey,” hearing that made me fell the warmth of coming home.

Oh, why am I remembering all of that now. I should be convincing my family not stop our voyage because of me, I pondered. I struggled to stand up from the floor of Hajione. I hold on to an ornament, pined at the left side of my vest as if trying to draw from it, my much needed strength. It was an artificial gem stone created by my parents. It was once very squishy and slimy, until they succeeded. Perhaps, I can change the course of my life as well. I stood, facing the pulsating vision of sea, with cool wind touching my face. I closed my eyes and uttered in my thought, my heart’s most fervent prayer.

I breathe deeply, then opened my eyes. My heart skipped beat.

Dear young Clemsey, please do not ever forget that at the age of 10, you saw the sea for the very first time and you realized how wide the world was. You looked at the setting sun, enveloped with clouds in colours you have never seen before. Please do not forget your mother’s face, when she approached you and saw the spark in your eyes, which she so longed to see. Please do not ever forget—

“Mother, the sea and the sky are beautiful. And so are you…” I said, looking at Mom straight in the eyes.

My vision developed. Though, it wasn’t perfect, but I can finally see… The Will of the Soul—this is what it means, to be able to tap into that.

My family cried and everyone else aboard the Hajione was left astounded. I take in deeply, all the beauty and miracle simultaneously happening right in front of me. All ghosts that used to mock me in my perception, made a gradual disappearing act and what transpired afterwards, were in full color, shape and form.

When I looked at my reflection in the water, I felt like I met myself for the first time. My eyes are in such peculiar colors—each pupil in a segmented color of gold and deep blue. Like the land meeting the sea— as what father described.

Strange as it seems, the second, my eyes connected with my mind, I heard, from the deepest recesses of my soul— something broke loose and disconnected. I have the faintest feeling that I don’t originally belong here. Seemed like, I was in a constant state of de javu. Amidst my confusion, one thing that I was pretty certain of was that I forgot a series of well-cherished memories— a library, which I called home; the young boy, whom I wanted to protect; a semblance of a family, I dearly missed; and the man who kissed me on my forehead before saying goodbye.

Maybe someday, I will stumble upon some fragments of those moments again. Maybe at one point, I will open the right door or find the missing pieces of the puzzle. Maybe by then, something will light a path that would lead me to where my “familiar feelings” are rooted at. Maybe, a day would come when I’ll be reminded of everything that I forgot in placed of receiving the gift of a vision.