(READ PART ONE, PART TWO. PART THREE, PART FOUR, PART FIVE, PART SIX, PART SEVEN, PART EIGHT, PART NINE, PART 10 AND PART 11 OF THIS STORY)
“I learned to forgive…” I softly repeat the sage words of Federico García Lorca. His spirit has started to talk to me as I ride Torda Chica the mare in the beautiful Tabernas wilderness, with Billy the Kid’s ghost asleep behind me on our horse. Along a narrow path, an ‘arroyo’ Spaniards call una rambla, our mare is slowly following the pink-tailed cat that, once again, appeared to make us veer off our initial route. The strange cat has been showing up on the different sets of our dream realm walk, falling from the sky whenever he feels we need suggestions about a different road to take. The feline is currently leading us toward the ruins of the Moorish castle of Tabernas, Almería.
In the space in-between riding / writing, I have witnessed the eerie magic of creation, once again at play in this sudden change of plan. As I was trading visual memory for virtual maps to resume the story from the precise geographic point I had left, I realized that the pink-tailed cat had reappeared at a very significant fork in the road. When I allowed the feline to change my script, I still didn’t know, on a conscious level, that we had reached the intersection between the Texas Hollywood fort Bravo road and an arroyo called la Rambla de Galera. This realization led my associative mind to establish an obvious parallel between the arroyo’s name and the literary circumstances of an important character: Ben Hur, sent to the galleys (galeras in Spanish) by none other than Lew Wallace, the man I am trying to slowly bring to Billy’s awareness, without triggering a fight or flight response. Many consider the acclaimed author / Governor of New Mexico a traitor to Billy, making him “co-responsible” for his death, together with Pat Garrett, the sheriff who pulled the trigger on that fateful day of July 14th, 1881. I want to help Billy make peace with what happened, and to forgive, such a daunting task sometimes. I also want to unravel the cat’s cradle created around characters and events of the Wild West at its Worst. At this specific fork in the writer’s Damascus Road, no one will convince me that the cat’s return at that precise spot was not divinely orchestrated.
If this ‘coincidence’ can already be hard to believe for a reader not privy to the channeling at place when one writes creatively, I will tell you this: “agárrate que vienen curvas” (literally “hold on [to your hats], sharp curves ahead”)! Will you believe me if I tell you that yet a new wonder occurred a few lines below? You will remember that in this moon-like landscape in the beautiful Almería desert, whose canyons have seen many mythical spaghetti westerns shot, Spanish writer Federico García Lorca’s spirit has emerged from the mist of times after Billy, lulled by the cicadas song, ‘conveniently’ fell asleep for my story to allow Lorca’s interference. If I were to pinpoint a spot on the map where / when Federico’s voice rose from the ether, I’d say it happened when Torda Chica the mare was reaching another fork in the road where la Rambla de Galera intersects with la Rambla Benavides, a name I was totally unaware of when Federico’s voice showed up in the story. Why is this mind-blowing? Well… The reader must know that Federico, like Billy, was shot to death. In the poet’s case, his demise was the deed of a Francoist firing squad among which, maybe unbeknownst to him, was at least one member of his extended family: a man named Antonio Benavides Benavides, a ‘twin patronym’ that gives its very name to the new arroyo that meets la Rambla de Galera. This ‘rambla junction jam’ is urging me to try to untie the Gordian knot it has created in my writing universe, to help Federico’s soul retrieve its broken shards, and for his spirit to finally fly free.
“I sure hope you don’t forget the promise you made me, when we left the ‘steamship saloon’ on our Wild West set tour,” I hear Billy’s voice in my mind. “I am eager to reach the Yellow Rose! But given your rhythm and style, it looks like my nap will last a bit longer. The only thing you seem to be able to do behind the hem of the ‘steamship saloon’ is to spin it like a roulette wheel, don’t you? Don’t worry though, I’ll be patient… We, ghosts, are good at that!” he ‘says’ in my head, his voice slowly fading away as he hums and then whistles Turkey in the Straw.
Billy’s teasing takes me back to the action of the story, and I am ready for the task at hand: helping Federico to heal his soul —and maybe mine a bit too— through our conversation in spirit.
“Of course, you are right, Federico,” I say, acknowledging the wisdom of the departed writer who honors me with his ‘vocal visit’. “I am getting better at grasping the “soul messages” begging to be deciphered every time the Universe gifts us with wisdom wrapped in emotional shocks… I’ve been trying very hard to forgive other souls too. I guess for me some are far less likeable than others. I also know that ‘what you resist, persists,’ so I’d better let go of any residual animosity I still feel towards said souls if I want to set myself free. Besides, my practice of hypnotherapy has definitely confirmed that forgiveness is key… The need to forgive shows up in almost every session I’ve interpreted or conducted so far. This is why I would love to help Billy and his timeline heal, through hypnosis, because I know that many others will benefit from his soul restoration. I am seeing all the work he has already done, from or through the ether, to make things better for others, but I think he still needs to forgive himself. I’d say that, at times, it’s the most difficult part of our soul work. I’m not saying forgiving others is easy either, depending on our perception of how they have wronged us, or how they trigger us… It is hard to let go sometimes…” After a pause I add: “When I learned more about your life story, Federico, I became angry at relatives of yours who, honestly, didn’t really deserve it…” I admit a bit embarrassed.
“Like who?” asks Federico, really interested in what I have to say about his family members.
“Like your sister Concha…” I answer in a whisper.
“Oh, you too…” he whispers in an even softer tone.
“Yes! When I replay in my mind the events of that fateful August 9th, 1936, the day the Fascists stormed your summer residence of la Huerta de San Vicente, I can’t help picturing Concha hysterical: begging, crying and whining, annoying as hell and ending up spilling the beans of your hiding place. Vaya bocachancla, such a “flip-flop mouth”, as some call those who talk too much… I know I’m exaggerating this, and I myself can often be a bocachancla too… In my case and circumstances though, I think that I am so eager to share my passions or hunches with others that sometimes I say much more than I should. Either because they’re not ready, or they don’t care like I do, or what I share is just too much for some to process. Often, I soon regret saying anything, or I am disappointed in my interactions’ outcome (or rather lack thereof). But I have to remember and accept that not everybody has to be a ‘soul sleuth nerd’ like me… The thing is, in my understanding of your life (or death…) story, Concha’s words materialized the ‘threat’ I felt in her soul’s aura. The same threat I sensed about another woman whose name started with a C as well, by the way, but that one roamed Billy’s universe.”
“What was that other ‘C’ name?” asks Federico, always open to discovering things not directly related to his world, because he knows they can become great story material.
“Celsa… If she hadn’t told Billy that the meat he brought for her to fix dinner was a useless bone, maybe he wouldn’t have gone to Pete Maxwell’s main house, and things would have been different for him…”
“But don’t you believe in destiny? Remember our Muslim forefathers’ concept of Mektoub, which literally means ‘it’s written’… I think that if Billy hadn’t gone for that meat (and if I hadn’t gone for tobacco…), we wouldn’t have this conversation right now.”
“Tobacco?” I inquire, picking up on what sounds like an interesting ‘detail’.
“Yes, but that’s not what matters now…” says Federico in a rush, willing to keep his train of thought. “Maybe your ‘C names’ got associated in your mind for you to ‘C’ something else…” suggests the word lover. Fools of his time would call him juntaletras, “letter gatherer”, in a derogatory manner. How little did they know about the alchemy of words!
As soon as the poet pronounces his letter pun, I do ‘C’ an image taking shape in my mind, where the faces of Celsa and Concha frame a letter-adding game apparently called the “Pyramid of Names”, which revolves around the letter ‘C’. The ‘C’ words gradually build the pyramid, at the bottom of which stands a first ‘C name’. The pyramid top displays a very important ‘C-word,’ the sustenance of an entire continent: CORN. In and of itself, corn has many stories to tell through its four letters.
In my vision, the curling page of the notebook where the game happened is held in place by a little sculpture I made out of cornmeal, water and salt (good old salt dough…). It represents a moccasin, which I adorned with a lock of my hair held together with a thin red thread. Maybe it’s my particular ‘art note to self,’ a reminder to always use those natural ‘antennas’ to sense other people’s pain and walk in their moccasins. The lock of hair automatically brings a new vision, now related to Federico’s childhood.
I wonder if Doña Vicenta, his mother, ever kept a lock of the poet’s hair… Nowadays they make cute transparent rings as hair lock keepsakes. I imagine Federico’s mom, one day when Federiquito was riding his wooden rocking horse, coming to him scissors in hand to clip a lock of her baby’s dark hair. She would tie it with a blue ribbon, and then keep it forever attached to one of his pictures. As I recall one of the most well-known photographs of the poet’s mother, I wonder how many viewers noticed Federico’s reflection in the mirror behind her. Does our essence stay in all the mirrors where we ever saw our reflection, all lifetimes comprised?
“Of course we shouldn’t always let Life’s ‘what ifs’ govern our actions and thoughts…” I tell Federico after processing my visions.
“Right…” acknowledges Federico. “I hear you. Directly after passing, I was angry at Concha too. But speaking of ‘flipping’ and chanclas, or any kind of shoes… Try to see the flip side of your reasoning, and walk in her shoes for a bit, in order to understand my sister too! She witnessed beatings and executions left and right, she was afraid for our dad, for her children, for our family, for our town and our country! She would lose her husband to the murderers exactly one week after that doomed August day, and then me too, her brother, not even a week later…”
I stay silent for a second and I start crying softly, both out of disappointment at myself for not having been compassionate towards Concha’s soul, but also, finally, because I start to really feel for her and her circumstances, even beyond her existence as Concha García Lorca, in the here and now of the outer world.
“I… I’m sorry,” is all I manage to say.
“It’s all right. Don’t be sorry,” says Federico. “On the contrary, be happy for what we’re doing together today, through your writing. We’re calling upon the past to heal all ill-feelings left unspoken. It’s good, it’s very good, and not only for us…”
“Yes, I know,” I say, drying my tears and clearing my throat to continue sharing my thoughts with this beautiful soul who honors me with his presence today. “It’s exactly why I want to take Billy’s ghost to the ‘heart fort’ we’ll build for him at the Yellow Rose, on movie set #3.” After a pause I add: “You know Federico, as I remember details of my life in your world, even though I’m of course extremely honored to be ‘telepathically chatting’ with you, it does not really surprise me, numerologically speaking.”
“What do you mean?”
“Right now Billy and I are headed to the ruins of the Tabernas castle. In the waking world, I’ve noticed that its GPS coordinates start with 37…”
“What are GPS coordinates?” Federico asks with excitement in his voice, eager to learn a thing or two from the XXIst century.
“I guess you guys don’t need them to go wherever you please in the blink of a ghost’s eye. ‘GPS’ stands for ‘Global Positioning System.’ Through this technology, we give a ‘unique geographical identity’ to every spot on earth, through a number sequence that combines its latitude and longitude.”
“I have a lot to catch up on,” says Federico. “In my times we’d just use good old paper maps!”
“I love paper maps too,” I smile. “It shocks me, actually, how dependent people have become on technology. Now many are unable to use those ‘vintage’ maps at all. Among the youth in the US, you would be appalled to see how many can’t even read a clock! Anyway… Granada’s coordinates, like those of the Tabernas castle we’re headed to, also start with 37, since Tabernas and Granada are on the same latitude. But there’s more: in that beloved town of ours, I lived for some time at the foot of the Alhambra, en la Carrera del Darro, número 37...”
“It sounds like this is a recurring number for you,” Federico acknowledges.
“You have no idea how often it shows up,” I confirm. “That #37, number of my former apartment by the river, was next to el Bañuelo, the Moorish Baths, almost in front of the broken bridge over the Darro River.”
“That broken bridge always fascinated me…” whispers Federico.
“Once in my Dreamtime Cats stories, I invited a beautiful character to magically rebuild that bridge. I renamed it ‘the Freedom Bridge’ instead of el Puente del Qadi, the Bridge of the Judge. But apparently the bridge needs more work in my symbolic world, since it showed up broken again.”
“Because you are still judgmental?” Federico suggests.
“Ouch, maybe… Although I judge myself as often as I judge others…” I say in a somehow defensive way, anticipating what might come.
“So how did the bridge break again in your world?” the poet kindly asks, sparing me to dig deeper in the ‘who-judges-whom’ part of my story.
“I was having a regression therapy with my hypnotist teacher, Ángel Aniorte. We were healing parts of my soul journey, whose wounds had manifested physically, through pain in my left knee. Ángel was submitting me to one of the techniques he taught us: you ask the person to give a shape and structure to what hurts, before energetically removing it from the body. My knee pain took the exact shape of the broken bridge on the Darro River,” I explain as I rub my left knee, leaning on Torda Chica’s saddle.
“Knees are joints,” says Federico, “so maybe that pain represents where you think you failed joining things, or people…” he suggests.
“It’s exactly that!” I exclaim. “Many, many times, I have tried to become that bridge between people, cultures, worlds, creeds, languages… you name it. And when I sensed that I failed, I guess I accumulated the weight of that frustrating feeling there, in my left knee. The left side also symbolically represents the past and our feminine aspect, regardless of gender. So my subconscious, during the session, was showing me what still ached in my soul, when I was not able to unite worlds…”
“…Or people,” Federico insists.
“…Or people, yes,” I concede. “So the next step in the regression therapy is for the person to replace the ‘bad’ shape, object or concept into what is perceived as its total opposite. The opposite of the broken bridge was really beautiful. My deceased writer friend Rudy Anaya, who is often mentioned in my stories, appeared in the vision to bring me healing…”
“What did he bring??” asks an excited Federico, totally hooked.
“A blank, open book…”
“But of course, but of course!!! Brilliant! We, writers, KNOW the real magic of words, and we are convinced that writing brings healing. This is sacred work…”
“Yup, bringing that open book was Rudy’s sacred ceremony, a writer’s version of the Lakota passing of the čhaŋnúŋpa, the medicine pipe…” I say, suddenly remembering the references Rudy often made to White Buffalo Calf Woman both in life and in his writings. I’m thinking that, after all, the sacred pipe is also a bridge between the smoker and the Great Mystery…
“I’d love to meet Rudy!” exclaims Federico, waking me up from my Wakan Reverie.
“I’m sure you will,” I answer. “You two now inhabit the spirit world; you can do whatever you want, unlike us down here in our constraining flesh costume! Also, I do believe that writers ARE brujos. I wrote a whole chapter about this, in my aborted dissertation…”
“You didn’t follow through with your academic work?” asks Lorca, in a tone I would not have expected. Rather than sounding like he regretted my decision, it feels like he approves the shift.
“No, more important things came up. While still at it, I was already HAPPILY drifting away from what ‘was expected’ by Academia, which Rudy praised me for, by the way. I remember creating one of my numerous ‘collages’ to represent what I saw as the embodiment of the wizardry works brewing in the writer’s den… Not exactly an ‘orthodox’ way to study literature as far as scholars are concerned, but I didn’t care a bit, for I was being true to my deepest feeling. I think writers are constantly in touch with the beyond when they write. And now the beyond has no more secret for you, or Rudy, because you two crossed over.”
“Don’t think that up here we, spirits, always have it as simple as wiggling a writer’s wand though,” says Federico.
“A writer’s wand…” I repeat, allowing my mind to take me back to another time in my writing universe. “I like that. They don’t always have to be pens, right? In my case, a special wand took the shape of a rose stolen from Alice in Wonderland’s gardens. After writing My Letter to the Heavens for Rudy, Billy imposed himself in my words, silently inviting me to open a ‘parenthesis’ in this Story of the People’s Tree. My four-chapter ‘parenthesis’ was introduced by a powerful archetype, which Rudy used as well in his shamanic detective stories: the Raven, ‘archnemesis’ of his solar hero, Sonny. In reality, the age-long enmity was more than anything else a fight with Sonny’s shadow self. I guess it’s why that long ‘detour’ I called The Raven’s Gift started with Rudy’s own symbolic shadow work, when his two young selves, the rural little boy and the urban little boy, started a rose duel. When I grabbed the ‘rose-wand’, it made me ‘tear down the fourth wall in reverse’. I mean that the gesture took me through the rearview mirror of the black car I drove, named after a ‘misspelled’ spYder. In that mirror, turned picture frame, was where the fight occurred…” I recall.
“So Billy too imposed himself in your story?” Federico asks, half chuckling, half serious.
“Yup, you guys are extremely good at that!” I answer, laughing too. “I’ve been writing this ghost saga for a long time now, and el Bañuelo was where my characters started their journey through the proverbial fourth wall, which in this case was a waterfall under the broken bridge, behind which I was hiding. They needed to share the writer’s den with me, forcing me to become a character in my own story.”
Federico laughs softly and says: “I recognize that my ghost folks, especially if we were writers when alive, can be pretty stubborn and bossy!”
“Thanks for acknowledging it!” I tease.
“I was fascinated with that concept of the fourth wall you’ve just mentioned,” Federico shares. “I think it was first put into words by Diderot. In one of my classes at Columbia University in New York City, our professor explained how Shakespeare liked to play with this strategy in his dramas. I was not the best at English (hey, do you notice the wonders of the Spirit world, where languages cease to be barriers!?!), but I sure understood every detail of THAT lesson. As a creator myself, I think that’s why I loved los títeres de cachiporras so much. There’s nothing more gratifying than the high-pitched screams of an excited young audience when one of the billy-club puppets directly interacts with the children.”
“Billy-club puppets, huh…”I think out loud. “Interesting translation of títeres de cachiporra... We’d love to name you President of our very select Billy-club,” I smile, talking on behalf of ‘my’ Billy, still asleep behind me on our faithful Torda Chica. “However, if I may, I think we should stop arming those puppets with clubs, to replace their weapons with rose wands.”
“Great idea,” admits Federico. “I’m sure Isabelita, my little sister, and her dear friend Laurita would have loved your suggestion! They adored the puppet show but disliked the excessive violence in it,” Federico remembers in a nostalgic tone.
“What a beautiful Regalo de Reyes you prepared for them,” I whisper. “I don’t think it was for the Three Kings’ Day, but my dad once built a beautiful puppet theater for me. I absolutely adored it. A few years ago my parents gave it to goddaughter #2 of my godmother. The young girl’s name is Alice,” I say, strangely overwhelmed by an emotion wrapped in many layers of rose petals of old, brittle soul whispers slumbering in preserved time capsules. “Would you also eat el Roscón de Reyes, to see who would find the bean and win the King figurine?” I quickly inquire, clearing my throat to avoid bursting into tears for no apparent reason.
“Not that year, no. In our eyes, all the audience children were kings and queens, and my little sister preferred healthier treats. She would devour oranges freshly picked from the tree,” he remembers with fondness. “Ay, mi Isabelita… She was like the daughter I knew I’d never have,” he sighs, also repressing a sob.
“I remember your sweet poem for her…” I say, reciting Federico’s Spanish verses for Isabel.
“Why did you use French to talk about the lullaby?” I ask after quoting him.
“Why not?” he answers in a brisk tone. “We shouldn’t have talked about fruit…”
“Why not?” I ask, in what starts to sound like a ping-pong match…
“In spirit, we can get to really miss the earthly sensations we left behind. I’d give up my Billy-club Presidency in a heartbeat for an orange juice! No offence, lady…”
“No offence taken” I smile.
“I guess it’s partly why we come back to Earth, over and over again, haha!”
“Bet him Mike’s horses…”
“Is this how I should have worded my resignation from the billy-club puppet’s Presidency? Now I remember the expression in English: ‘my kingdom for a horse’. Who is Mike though???” Federico asks me.
“’Bet him Mike’s horses’ is the silly pun Rudy came up with in his story of a limbo walk titled Randy López Goes Home. In that novel, at the entrance of a canyon, the hero passes a gateway where a stuffed two-headed buffalo calf startles him. The creature feels like the Native-American equivalent of Cerberus, the multi-headed hound that guards the gates of the Underworld. Maybe Randy is some sort of Heracles, or the Chicano, masculine version of Persephone. Rudy loved to mention her here and there in his stories. In this novel, the main character, Randy, attempts to reach his beloved Sophia, waiting for him… on the other side of the river, so he has to build a BRIDGE!”
“Ha! I start to see why bridges are important in Rudy’s creative world…” Federico says.
“Indeed…” I acquiesce. “In the story, since Randy passed the test and controlled his fear of the two-headed animal, he will be granted a m…mare for his limbo journey,” I say, slightly struck by the weird similarities between Rudy’s stories and mine, as Billy and I are riding a ‘borrowed’ mare too. “Then Randy soon runs into an old man who ponders his impending death, talking about metempsychosis in a scatological, horse-lover way. The chapter is titled The Old Cowboy Explains ‘Bet-Him-Mike’s Horses,’ or Becoming Bear Scat. Hence my recalling of the expression.”
“That’s a funny title!” Federico giggles.
“Maybe, but I think ‘bear scat’ is somewhat more elegant than ‘bullshit’, and something tells me that now, Rudy is the one living in ‘Agua Bendita’ with a replica of the Appy horse of his own story. Maybe he too tries to explain reincarnation to those who cross the veil between worlds… I know he’s taking good care of Spirit… Rudy first let me discover his limbo story in the unpublished manuscript, and then he gave it to me again in its book format. I loved his dedicatoria, in which he honored me calling me Serafina, the angelic name of his Pueblo Scheherazade. In that other book, the main character’s stories enchant a ‘fictitious’ Governor…
I am convinced that, if I succeed in my healing work, Billy will get to love the ‘Governor avatar’ after all…” As I pronounce those words related to my healing work, I make a mental note: ‘you must find a way to bring Annie from the Venetian mask store here in Tabernas, to help in Billy’s healing chapter. She was so eager to fulfil the mysterious healing mission you assigned her when she entered the story…’
Then I continue explaining: “In response to Rudy’s autographed wish, ten years after his dedication note, I pledged, in pink letters next to his handwritten words, to go on ‘teaching stories’ with the help of all our muertitos, the deceased… I guess he came from the beyond, to visit me in my hypnosis session with that blank book, to remind me of my storyteller’s oath.”
“An important oath,” Federico answers. “We do have a lot of responsibility as writers… I’m glad he came to visit with that blank book, full of promises, to replace the sad, broken bridge.”
“Me too,” I smile. “Tell me, Federico, when you walked down la Carrera del Darro, would you also see eyes in what’s left of the broken bridge? I swear that when I looked at it long enough, I’d start seeing a sad face in the gaps of its old stones.”
“Maybe you saw that sad face because the stones were asking you to revisit their past, when the bridge was still in use…” the poet suggests.
“Maybe yes, just like those other eyes in the Jewish quarter… I’m so glad I followed their magnetism and didn’t look back,” I say as I remember how, once upon a time, I let shared visions decide over my destiny.
“Living across the bridge must have helped in your process. However all this still doesn’t explain how our conversation was meant to be… numerologically,” Federico complains.
“Sorry, I sure can get carried away! Well, the number of that house where I lived, 37, has been haunting me for years. Every time it appears, I know I’m on track, about to get a ‘soul treat.’ And… believe it or not, YOUR birth and death dates both sum up 37…”
“How so???” asks Federico, who sounds really intrigued.
“If you add up all the figures of each date to reduce it to a two-digit number, you reach 37, for both of them: June (6) 5th 1898 and August (8) 19th 1936… Pure mathemaGics” I add, still in awe at what I consider a powerful sign that this encounter was meant to be.
“Fascinating… So, if I follow through with that ‘math-neuver’, 37 sums up 10, correct?”
“Correct, Federico,” I smile. “You could also call it a Nath-neuver,” I joke, hinting at my name.
“ROSA!!!” he exclaims.
“It’s Nathalie though…” I timidly protest, correcting the poet’s confusion, a bit disappointed that he still does not know my name. However, truth be told, I also feel that I’m really becoming Rosa, the main protagonist of the last book Rudy Anaya devoted to Billy.
“I know your name, silly…”Federico reassures me. “You should be more devoted to, and confident about, the rose-wands of your own creation. Plus don’t you know that ‘rose’ is the nickname for number 10 in the Spanish Lottery? You are my Miraculous Rose, who will counteract the Lottery meaning of 37 with your math-, I mean, NATH-e-maGics!”
“Oh, well I’m honored then,” I beam. “But why counteract? What is the Lottery nickname for number 37?”
“La daga,” the poet answers. “The knife, or sword, which embodies treason to me… Treason is what I felt several times in my relatively short life, coming from friends and lovers. Then I felt the ultimate treason, together with terror, on the dawn of my death, on that day, maybe a ‘37’, when they fired at us in Víznar. I would swear I recognized the voice of ‘sort of’ a cousin of mine in the firing squad… ”
“It’s awful…” I answer in compassion. “I have actually read that, together with a terrible detail. It was in a book titled El caso Lorca, a case study of what must have happened to you, where the author meticulously reenacts the events before, during and after your murder. The writer suggests that Juan Luis Trescastro Medina —who allegedly bragged about how he personally fired two bullets ‘in your ass for being a faggot’— put on a macabre show at the Jandilla Bar. In the book, Juan Luis is said to have held in his hand the bullet fired at you, which he dropped in the glass of alcohol he had in front of him, to then proceed… drinking it.”
“Eeew…” is all Federico can say.
“I know… And according to the man who really pulled the trigger, Trescastro’s friend, the bullet was supposedly dislodged… from your lower spine when your body was still warm. Oh Federico, I’m so sorry about the graphic aspect of all this,” I apologize, wondering if I really should deal with those gruesome particulars.
“It’s ok,” Federico says. “I believe I need to hear this, in order to complete the puzzle of my death, because something is missing in my recollection, and I feel that this missing detail fits the mirror shard I lost somewhere, preventing my soul to be whole. Maybe that shard found its way to your rearview mirror, where the two child selves of Rudy fought with the rose wand? Will you, ‘Mi Rosa’, help me cross to the other side of pain? Will you wield the wand for me?”
“I will, Federico… and for Billy too. Through the Magic Rose Wand, I will remove all thorns and apply petal balm to your souls…”
TO BE CONTINUED (here)
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