My darling Clementine

My darling Clementine

Woman in woods

♪ Oh my darling
Oh my darling
Oh my darling
Clementine…

You are lost and
Gone forever,
Dreadful sorry
Clementine. ♪

Every year on her birthday, her brother would play the piano, and her parents would sing this song to her instead of the usual ‘happy birthday’. She had just turned six when it occurred to her, that her father had named after a poor clumsy girl who drowned and became fertilizer for plants, just because this old American folk ballad had been her mother’s favourite song.

They’d been singing it that night when the men in cloaks came for her brother. They’d been singing it just before the men in cloaks killed her brother. She had slept with the words on her lips ever since. She had danced sadly in her dreams to the tune of her morbid lullaby ever since. Except, her ever since was over now. She wouldn’t be dreaming again, not for a very long time. It was time to wake up forever.

“Wake up Clementine. Wake up Clementine. Wake up Clementine.”

Clementine woke up. She would never forget that waking up. An eternity could pass and she would still remember the moment she opened her eyes and saw nothing but trees all around her. She was … in the middle of a forest?

And then she heard the voice again.

“It’s time Clementine. Come on Clementine!”

The question tumbled out of her. It was a question that had to be asked. And many had asked it before her.

“Who are you?”

She whispered this. Mad reason hurriedly sickened her with the thought that she didn’t know who she was either, and she swallowed hard as she searched for what she knew must be there, within reach, just forgotten, momentarily.

Please, please, please! Just momentarily.

Only silence answered her back.

To be continued…

Day Four of Finding Everyday Inspiration: A Story in a Single Image