In an instant, I was transported away. I knew Mia had been left behind, but there was nothing I could do. The Entity had bonded to me, and swept me away from the chaos before I even knew what it was doing.
I wondered what would happen to her, but there was no way I could reach her now. Our communication channel was still open, but I wondered how long that would last.
“Don’t leave me! Come back! You have to come back!” I could hear her frantic voice on the other side.
“Mia, it’s… Too late. It saved me, but there wasn’t enough time to help you, I guess. I’m sorry. I’m so sorry.” My voice quivered, but I knew there was nothing more to be done. She was on her own.
“… You’re with that… Thing? Don’t trust it. Come back to me, please! Don’t trust it. Please!” She sounded horrified, close to panic.
“There’s nothing I can do. I’m gone and I can’t go back. I don’t even know where I am. I’m sorry. I can’t help you.” It sounded cruel, but I had been the one chosen. I didn’t ask to be saved. It had just happened. It wasn’t my fault she was alone, and I had escaped.
“You don’t understand… You’re still here. With me. Your body is still here. Don’t trust it. Please.” Suddenly our connection severed.
A cold chill swept over me. What was this place? Was I even safe? Was she right not to trust the Entity?
The ghettos of Kampala have a sense of permanence, though the seasons and inhabitants shift. The beggar child one day becoming a man, as his child would become a father himself. As the father rocks back and forth, watching his son, he feels the swaying of time. Though his memories of this place stretch back, he hopes his son is destined for a place beyond all this. His own memories are tainted with regret now.
Miranda. Will even this memory fade away, as so many others had?
He stops rocking, grounding himself. Here. Now.
The stop motion animation of rain falling outside transforms the dusty streets, washing them clean. Washing him clean.