Do you dream of me in the next life?
“Joseph! J-J-Joseph! No, no, no, no, no! This can’t be happening! Somebody! Anybody! Help me please!!!”
But no one answered. No one was around to answer or hear of the world’s mistake, and so the world tried to wash its hands of what transpired as it rains. The attacker ran off into the woods. After making sure it was safe, Kalah ran to Joseph’s side. Tears went down her face as she tried to understand what happened. Why did Joseph get stabbed? Who was that person that stabbed Joseph and why was Joseph targeted of all people? Kalah did not have all the answers or the time to answer them. What mattered most of all, she thought, was to ensure Joseph’s survival.
“I have to call an ambulance! Stay with me, Joseph!”
Kalah pulled out her cell phone from her backpack and dialed the number. It didn’t work, because there was no signal on her phone. It must be the weather that is preventing Kalah from sending out calls, which means she must resort to a final option to save his life…use magic. Kalah kept a secret that only a few people in the world knew about. Not even Joseph knew about this secret. Kalah was a witch, and she was part of a secret society of witches called the Ethereal Circle.
Kalah placed a hand on Joseph’s back. Her hands suddenly glowed with a gentle warm light. She looked upon his visage and tenderly, she brushed aside his bangs. He always had a nice smile. After a couple minutes, she held and squeezed Joseph’s hand while she continued to work. The minutes ticked by and her brow furrowed. Something was wrong. He should’ve healed by now! Unless the knife was magic! Kalah yelled out in frustration. She prodded her mind for something, anything that she could use for him, but no matter how far she probed, nothing came to mind. Frustrated tears fell down her cheeks and she clenched her jaw as she tried harder, “I can’t lose you now. Not after what you did for me.”
When Joseph and Kalah were just children, Kalah was bullied a lot by a kid and his gang that lived in their neighborhood. They liked to beat other kids up, though they went after Kalah the most. She eventually gained the courage to tell her parents, and for some time it worked. Until one day, they came back while she was playing with the neighborhood kids outside.
“Hey shrimp! You snitched on me!” he said while his gang closed in. “Now, you are going to pay the price.”
The neighborhood kids ran away in fear. Kalah couldn’t move at all. The bully pushed her to the ground and then the other members of his gang proceeded to kick Kalah. The bully smiled and watched with pleasure at the sight of his helpless victim. At that moment, Joseph came by to play with the neighborhood kids and witnessed the situation. At first, he turned back in the direction of his home until he decided to continue walking towards Kalah.
“Hey, hey, hey! This doesn’t concern you! Turn back if you know what’s good for you.”
Joseph stopped in his tracks and the bully turned his attention to Kalah. He then ran at full speed and slugged the bully in the face.
“Unfortunately for you, this is my concern. I can’t just walk away when someone is being treated so cruelly like this!”
After a moment of recovery, the bully got up with the help of his gang.
“You…you’ll pay for this! Let’s get out of here.”
After they had left, Joseph walked up to Kalah. “Are you ok? Do you think you could stand?”
Kalah managed to sit up, but she couldn’t help but cry in front of Joseph.
“I…I think I need some help, please.”
Joseph grabbed her hand and pulled her up, then he supported Kalah against him as they walked.
“Do those bullies pick on you all the time?”
“Yeah…they have hit me like that before, but this time…it was much worse.”
Joseph looked at Kalah and her tearful face for a moment.
“I can’t believe honestly there are people like that in this world. People should help one another, not hurt each other.”
“But…didn’t you hurt him? Doesn’t that make you no different than him?”
Joseph thought for a moment on this question. “No. I’m not the same as him, because I hurt him to protect you, not because I enjoy it like he does. A hero acts because he knows people are scared just like the hero. The hero knows that he is in as much danger as the victim in that situation…but he knows it’s all worth the risk since it’s the right thing to do.”
At that moment, Kalah stopped crying. She stopped crying because that was the first time, she thought, that she ever truly felt the goodness of humanity. After Kalah stopped crying, she asked what his name is and then he asked for her name. The rest as they say is history.
Kalah snapped back to reality when Joseph gasped out loud, coughing. Surprisingly, an idea came to her. There was one thing she could try. She had never tried it before, not even in practice, but she had read about it! The words and prayer were still fresh in her memory. She could try reincarnation. She had been trained in the magical area of the cycle of life and death, enough to perhaps give it a try. Kalah was willing to do what it takes. The problem was, he would be stuck in the Dream World until either of them found a way out.
“Well, here goes nothing.”
Kalah casts her magic onto him as his body disappears in purple smoke.