☦Rosa dreams of fifthism.☦
When Rosa went to sleep she had an odd dream. In it she was reminded of her childhood, times when she would talk with her grandfather and he would tell her of his own childhood. A time before the stroke locked his memories away. His voice would groan with use, but the veil of nostalgia in that tenor had made her feel as if she was putting rose tinted glasses to a childhood she never felt.
From this feeling of a childhood - about stories about childhoods - she saw a starfish in the stars. It spread out against the universe, translucent, like a slick of oil against the vast emptiness. Its many tendrils and arms branched off from the main body and diverged from themselves again and again, cradling galaxies with all the tenderness of a lover and all the possessiveness of a parent.
The starfish suckled the universe, allowing it to grow in its many arms. Or perhaps the universe siphoned off of the starfish; Rosa couldn’t remember. Over a moment of millennia, she watched the entity begin to deflate. It reminded her of the huge die-offs happening in her state of California; the scientists called it Starfish Wasting Syndrome or something like that. Rumor had it that the cause was radioactive waste… But that wasn’t important to the dream, or so…
The many limbs in the cosmic ocean began to writhe as if they had grown their own minds. Some clung tightly, breaking off infinitely into the galaxies within their grasps. Others twisted and pulled out and away from the main body, floating into an unknown beyond the universe.
Focus then shifted to one of the tendrils that had itself locked with the long arm - the milky way. Its many branches began to break off from itself like a rotting tree and the focus followed these breaks. It passed solar systems and to planets she found familiar. One particular piece, small and hardly noticeable in its translucence, began to fall into a blue planet she found familiar as her home.
This small piece broke up as it entered the atmosphere, dispersing into the winds to be deposited in the water and soil. The dreamscape was tinged with grief and a longing to return to what once was…
It was then that Rosa awoke to the alarm of her phone.
She recounted this later to her bandmembers at a bonfire on the beach. Her motley crew of friends were silent as she spoke, out of respect or confusion she couldn’t tell. When her story about the story told to her finished, it was the lead singer of the band that spoke first.
“…Maybe it wasn’t a starfish, Rosa.” Morgan’s statement was inquisitive, as if entertaining the thought. He offered a wry smile and craned up from his log towards the van upon watching Brook ravage the bag of Jet Puff.
Clyde was adjusting his guitar as usual, his mop of chestnut hair obscuring his facial expression. He was the only one what really knew how to play instruments and between the gentle strumming and the crackling of the fire there was only silence.
It was their drummer, Brook, that broke the awkwardness as she devoured the remaining marshmallows. “Neat dream. What’d you think it means?” She spoke through the food across her teeth, muffling her candor but lubricating the atmosphere enough for further conversation.
Rosa was about to speak before she was interrupted by Umiko, a kind fellow who wasn’t too bright and didn’t speak English very well. She wasn’t even sure what he was here for on this trip, as he had all the musical talent of a scallop. “Is meaning beautiful!” He boomed, patting her on the shoulder. “Like Rosa!”
“Thanks, Umiko. No, really, I think this is like a prophecy or something, you know? I was using that new cleaning quartz I bought at the Home of Energy down the block, maybe it unlocked some unknown power in me or something!”
Clyde snorted at Rosa’s excitement. “Yeah, that’s what you said last week about empathy or something. Called yourself like, an unawakened indigo child or something?” His grin was well-natured, but his words were skeptical.
It was when Rosa’s shining knight in armor returned to interject, handing the pack of mashmallow to Brook. “Well, I believe Rosa.” Morgan spoke, turning to his unusually bright green eyes toward her. She fixed her bangs almost reflexively. “Maybe she does have some untapped ability within her. Maybe we all do, but we’ve forgotten how to remember it. What we’ve forgotten.” He spoke with a certainty that silenced the other band members, even Clyde’s gentle strumming.
They set up their practice schedule that night. Under the stars, with the fish. Clyde had managed to pull a few strings so they could show at a place not quite so shabby, and Brook had suggested a great idea for an after-tour party. Morgan was quick in agreeing to meet with the fans there.
Morgan ended the meeting pouring water over the fire, being the only one that was capable of getting up to do so. Clyde and Rosa had a spontaneous drinking contest that ended in about two beers, Umiko was carrying them home, and Brook claimed an inability to move after eating a month’s worth of marshmallow. He swept over the scene before him. A laugh crawled into the back of his throat, having realized for him that he hadn’t felt with family like this in a long time.