Spy and I are a little sad to see this tale end, for this is the final chapter. It has been a great experience, and many thanks to my most loyal readers, shukuchi and Crystal113, and to greygoalie for putting me on your favorite authors list on the strength of this one story. Do not despair, for I already have plans for a sequel, and possibly other stories about Silent Spirit to come after that. There were other people that Spirit was very dear to, and they would also like me to help them publish works about her later life.
"Angeles" and the X-men universe still do not belong to me
My first sense to return was my sense of touch. I felt a smooth sheet above me, softness below me, and I sensed cool fingers around my hand. Then I could dimly hear a voice, repeating the same two words over and over, very quietly. "Come back. Come back. Come back." The crisp scent of frost fluttered around my face. A trickle of my telepathy dribbled into my brain, telling me that someone nearby...was worried about me. I opened my eyes to see who it was.
He started and jumped off the chair he had been sitting on, sticking his hands behind his back. "Why did you go without telling me?" Jim blurted out.
"What..." I began, sitting up. I looked around me, seeing that we were in the infirmary. Spirit was lying on the bed next to mine. "How long have we been gone?"
"Two weeks," Jim said. "You jerk! I've been waiting for you to wake up. It was like you guys were in a coma."
"Oh. Sorry that I didn't say goodbye, it's just that I couldn't sleep, and Spirit had a nightmare, and she wanted to put an end to it all ASAP." I was trying to hide my surprise. Sure, I knew that Jim would've missed us, but I'd had no idea that he would stay by my side and wait for me. What surprised me even more was that this made me happy. A strange feeling rose from my stomach to my throat.
When I saw Spirit adjust her sunglasses, I immediately opened up my telepathy. Her first thought was, Spy, I knew you could do it! She got out of the bed and smiled at Jim, doing a double thumbs up. When I told her that we'd been gone two weeks, she just nodded. Jim gave her a hi-five and helped me up. As if in response to some intangible signal, she turned around, spinning Jim along with her. I also turned.
Professor Xavier had come in the door and was wheeling towards us. The bandages that had formerly swathed his face were gone, and he looked the same as ever before, wearing his kind smile. The other teachers followed him, every one of them looking healthy, cheerful, and well rested. Spirit and I found ourselves hugged, kissed, and shaken by the hand by various members of the faculty. Logan even ruffled Spirit's hair, and said a kind word to me for the first time since the Dancing Incident. Everyone congratulated us and praised us. "How did you get better?" I asked, amazed.
"The accounts all seem to match," replied Professor Xavier. "We all fell asleep in spite of ourselves, and when we awoke we were healed."
Storm smiled. "None of us remembered our last dream, but all is now well. Thanks to you two."
I thought to Spirit, Actually, I spent the whole time being immature and annoying. They should give their thanks to you, Spirit.
She shook her head. We did it together.
X-Ray walked in, having just returned from a coffee break, and pronounced us free to go back to ordinary school life. Kurt insisted, though, that I tell the story. I sat back down on the bed it with my mind, also broadcasting Spirit's thoughts to them. Most of our audience chose a perch on a nearby chair while they 'listened'. Jim, however, sat down next to me. They reacted properly throughout. At the end, the Professor asked the two of us mentally, Do you wish for us to tell the rest of the school?"
My first thought was, Okay, but Spirit's answer was, No.
Why not? I asked her.
To start with, a lot of them would have a tough time believing us. I also don't want them to think of us as these supernatural beings that saved all their lives. I just don't want to be whispered about, saying 'Those are the girls that destroyed Stryker's ghost.' We would be less human, in their eyes. Less of friends, more of magical saviors." She shook her head. I'm sorry, Spy, if this disappoints you. But I'm the kind of person that prefers my good deeds to be anonymous.
After thinking it over for a while, I gave in. Initially I suggested that we come up with a fake, but plausible, reason for our withdrawals. Both Kurt and Spirit, however, insisted that we shouldn't lie. The Professor ended up telling the rest of the students a partial truth about the teachers being struck by a strange 'illness' and the two of us also catching it, but we eventually overcame it and were cured. Considering how many strange things happen in our lives, most of the teens were satisfied with the explanation. A few, particularly Rogue, wanted specifics, but the teachers just told them that it had been unpleasant and they didn't want to talk about it.
Spirit and I went back to our usual lives. At first it seemed that everything was the same as it had been before, but then I began to notice a change in my best friend. She became less open than before. If I asked her something, she would tell me, but she no longer volunteered information. Also, she seemed to sleep much less than before the haunting. When I was half-asleep, she would still be reading in the dark. When I woke up, she would already be dressed. Yet she never seemed sleepy during the day. I discovered that now she would be more talkative, metaphorically speaking, when it was dark outside. Silent Spirit thoroughly became a creature of the night. It seemed to suit her mutations, all of which, though not at all evil, were associated with darkness. This change did not affect my feelings for her; in fact I was closer to her than in the previous months. But I began to recognize that, more so than with the rest of us, there was something in her that was not quite human. She had something that reminded me of snow in moonlight, of peaceful graves strewn with lilies, of dancing whirlwinds of crimson leaves in autumn, and of the wild gentleness of quiet seashore. Oh dear, I'm getting way too poetic. But I miss her so.
One night, a Saturday night not long after my fourteenth birthday, I woke up and she wasn't there. I felt around for her with my mind, but she was not in the building. Casting my clairvoyance around, I learned that she was in the woods surrounding the mansion. I'm not sure exactly why I went out to join her. I just wanted to talk to her, even though it was past midnight. Putting on a pair of sneakers and sweatshirt against the chilly November air, I snuck out of the Institute with my flashlight.
She was in the tree house; a small rickety thing built a year ago. It wasn't much more than a platform with three walls and one missing wall so you could dangle your legs off the side. That particular tree was easy to climb. After her broken arm hand mended, Spirit could clamber like a cat. Even without the flashlight, her silver hair was easily visible. Why are you up here? I asked her as I pulled myself up to the tree house.
Thinking and listening, she answered, scratching her gray fur. She was only wearing flannel pajamas and a pair of moccasins. Could you please turn off the flashlight?
I did so. Aren't you cold? I asked. Even with the sweatshirt I felt pretty cool.
Fur has its perks, she thought. Do you know what I'm listening to?
Somebody talking to you?
My friend shook her head and gave a smile of utter contentment, hugging her knees. I found out that angels really do sing. Her chest moved in a sigh, and she shut her eyes. I no longer complain that I can't hear music. This music is even better. Opening them, she added regretfully, I wish I could hear your normal voice, though.
Mmmm... I agreed. Yesterday I found out that Jim has started to like me a little more. His emotions show that he views me as a friend, and thinks of me as one, but he would like to try seeing if we could manage a stronger relationship than that...He just doesn't know how I would react.
Why don't you tell him and spare him the agony?
I shook my head. I'm not quite sure how I feel about him myself. I want to work that out first. You know, Spirit, life seems too complicated sometimes. I'm glad you're here to help me out.
She hugged me. Spy, I want you to call me Myra. Only my family and last best friend have ever called me that. I love you more than all the other people here, and am closest to you out of everyone alive. Call me Myra from now on.
I'm being silly, I thought as a tear welled up in one eye. I wiped it away. You're the first person to hug me since my powers manifested.
Myra laughed silently, from pure happiness. I predict that I won't be the last.
I feel so bad for you, though, Myra, since on top of ordinary mutant problems, you must miss hearing and talking to us all. You can only do it indirectly. It must be lonely.
Spy, spy, when will you figure out that I'm never alone?
Then I had one of my rare visions of the future. For a moment I saw mutants joining in harmony with songs that my friend would write. I saw a room full of people laughing and cheering when a man read an amendment giving mutants equal protection under the law. I saw victory marches of people of all ages and some with wild, monstrous appearances. And I heard a gunshot and screams, and saw people crying as a casket was lowered into the ground.
I rubbed my eyes and decided that I really needed to go to bed, since I thought that I was half-asleep and starting to have weird dreams.
In later years I realized that this had truly been a vision, for everything I had seen did come to pass. Myra became a major leader of the Mutant Freedom Movement, though under a different name and in disguise. By peaceful means we managed to gain our rights, and mutants across America celebrated our victory. However, this enraged some anti-mutant factions, a member of which murdered my dearest friend. My last sight of Myra was of her peaceful face but cold and bloody body, lying dead on the street.
But when I think of her and try to picture Myra Sing, I do not see a lifeless corpse. Instead, I see a young girl, with dark eyes and moonlit hair, who gazed with rapt eyes into the great beyond, who heard music attuned to a the voices of infinity, and who lives.
Angels, answer me: Are you near if rain should fall?
Am I to believe you will rise to calm a storm?
For so great a treasure words will never do
Surely, if this is, promises are mine to give you, mine to give...
Here, all too soon the day!
Wish the moon to fall and alter our tomorrow
I should know heaven has her way – each one given memories to own
Angels, all could be, should you move both earth and sea
Angels, I could feel all those dark clouds disappearing...
Even as I breathe, comes an angel to their keep
Surely, if this is, promises are mine to give you, mine to give...