Blue jean baby, L.A. lady, seamstress for the band
Pretty eyed, pirate smile, you'll marry a music man
Ballerina, you must have seen her dancing in the sand
And now she's in me, always with me, tiny dancer in my hand
Jesus freaks out in the street
Handing tickets out for god
Turning back she just laughs
The boulevard is not that bad
Tiny ballerina, Elton John (although it's preferred the Tori Amos' cover.)
Wings and Dreams.
What did I like about dancing?
The fact that I could be someone else and at the same time being me. It's the most strange feeling in the world, being-you-yet-not-being-you, and for a long time I thought that it was just me the one that felt like that, until GB told me that he had felt exactly the same when he acted.
In something akin to possession, I became someone else and I danced Giselle's love and her treason, being Francoise inside me, my heart breaking for her. For a while I was Manon, or Odett…
I miss that capacity, being able be someone else, being able to enjoy an honest, although tragic, love. Being cyborg it's difficult trying to pretend to be a human. It's hard even for GB, and he can physically change. With my sensors now I'm always painfully aware of the situation, and even if I danced again I'd be expecting Ivan to call us. I couldn't distract myself like that, in case something would approach us.
I can't let go of this world. Not anymore.
Sometimes I feel as if someone had torn my wings off.
Joe told me once that my wings weren't torn, it was just that, for now, there wasn't room enough to open them. He promised me that one day there would be enough time and space, and that then I'd be able to fly again. He smiled then, as if it was a promise, and the sun shone in his eyes. I wanted to believe him.
I still do. I wish I could have his optimism, his faith…
That's what Joe brought back to us, with his coming to our 'family' of sorts. We al got back our faith. Jet, Albert and myself, being the oldest, were already tired. Everything we had lived and seen; the fact that our world, the one that we knew was destroyed and replaced by a strange world in which our cyborg parts matched but not our hearts and minds was a very hard blow.
Jet wished for his previous freedom. Albert missed his wife. And I longed for my brother, and my dreams.
It's strange, maybe, that Ivan has always kept the idea that everything will be better one day. You would think that he would be the most pessimistic one of us, but, besides Joe, he is the one that makes us believe that it is possible to defeat Black Ghost, it just a gigantic windmill.
Sometimes, when the desire to dance overwhelms me, I blame Black Ghost of everything. I blame on him GB's hidden sadness, Jet's bitterness, Albert's wife's death, the self imposed exile Geronimo does, the ancestral fighting in Punma's lands, the eternal childish state of Ivan, the hunger for normality of Chang, Joe's orphan ship… my own shattered dreams.
There are always the 'ifs'. 'If Black Ghost didn't exist.' 'If Black Ghost wasn't here.'
The bitter truth is that if Black Ghost hadn't kidnapped us and made us into cyborgs, we wouldn't know each other. Ivan would be dead. Probably also Jet. I'd probably be an old lady over eighty years, wrinkled and dry. Punma would have died in the guerrillas of his land; Albert would have died with his wife. Geronimo would be alone, far away from his land, Chang wouldn't have his own restaurant, GB would be either dead by cirrhosis or an OD, or he would be in the streets, without nothing but fantasies to keep on living… and Joe would probably be in jail, or maybe, just maybe, he would still be a sweet boy, helping the priest that raised him.
Professor Gilmore said so, one day. It was a warm, calm afternoon; we hadn't heard about Black Ghost or something that would destroy our beloved days of calm which where our spirits rest for days. Jet was trying to teach Joe, Gb, Punma and Geronimo how to play baseball, Chang announced that night's menu and Albert watched the boys playing with that look in his eyes that we've come to learn means he's thinking of his wife. I had a sleeping Ivan in my arms, and then professor Gilmore said, with a tender sigh, that if he had to be grateful of anything to Black Ghost was the fact of being able to meet us.
I don't like thinking I owe anything to Black Ghost… but I do. Knowing them, my overprotective big brothers and adoptive father, having my very unique family. They make life so much richer. If I am worthy of anything it is because of them, not because I am the better, most sophisticated radar that has existed. Yes, even if GB says I'd be better with more modern cloths, or with Jet and Albert joking about Joe…
I did say that we were a very strange family.
Sometimes I like to think about what would I do if I was able to change the past. Would I do it? I just had to miss a step, or fake that I had twisted my ankle, and Natalie, or someone else, would have won the competition. Just the tiniest mistake, and I wouldn't have been chosen by Black Ghost. I would have been a normal girl, besides my brother. Maybe I would have married, have kids… a common and wonderfully simple life.
And yet, when I think of that, I don't have that bittersweet joy that I should. That envy-wanting-desire that I should. I don't think that I would have been miserable in that life… but the actual me does feels like that. How could I ever be happy without my friends? How could life be called life without them?
If I had the power to make that change, to warn my past myself… would I do it? Would I change anything?
I'm never able to answer. Sometimes, when I think that I wouldn't, there's a new fight, a new combat that makes me bit my tongue. And when I'm tired of everything, when I'm almost about to shout to something or someone to please, please make this war to stop, one of the boys say or do something that makes me erase those thoughts. It could be a flower, a laugh, a gesture. Even the tiniest detail makes me think that maybe it was all worthy.
I'm not alone if I have them. And my dreams haven't died. They're just on hold.
I like to think that one day it will be al right to unleash them and let them fly again. And maybe then I'll be able to have that other life, but besides my new family.
And then I won't have the need to pretend that I'm someone else, not even when I dance.