Sunday, April 8, 2012

Kimmydonn Week 98: Spirit Retreat


Picture 1

Picture 2

Kimmydonn's Choice: Picture 1

Spirit Retreat

Like so many people who live their entire life under the scrutiny of the public eye, Lisa Campbell was desperate for some privacy. Usually, thanks to changing her surname for Hollywood, she could stay at her parents’ house with little attention.

She could until now, that is. If she ever found out which rabid fan in her hometown had outted her, Lisa would find them and drag them with her for a month. After being constantly watched, guarded, worked, and tracked, maybe they’d show a little remorse.

Lisa pulled the sunglasses from her pocket and slid them onto her nose.

“Those really clash with the whole Native American motif you have going there,” Ford told her.

“I don’t care,” she said, leaning slightly so her face took advantage of the big man’s shadow. “I’m sure my spirit guide won’t care either.”

Ford snorted. “Yeah, spirit guide. I’m going to sit in the car with the AC. Join me when you’re ready.”

“After my quest,” she said with a smile, turning away and then laying back in the dry grass. Rather than bend, many blades snapped under her, scratching at her arms and legs. She ignored them. She was alone. Blissfully, completely, in the middle of nowhere, alone. There wasn’t a cloud to mar the sky as she let the sun bake into her. Soon, she’d doze and maybe some small creature would wake her with his chittering, leading her further through nothing to an answer to her constant question. “Am I doing what I should?”

Her fans, her agent, even her parents answered yes, but Lisa always questioned. She felt she should be doing more. She donated large portions of her copious pay. She performed in indie films to bring needed attention to darker issues or simply talented writers and directors. She knew these helped keep the balance, but always she wondered if she was living an unreal existence.

Real people didn’t have bodyguards at their side day and night. Real people bought their own groceries and cooked their own food. Real people worked for a living.

That was being too harsh on herself. Her days were long. Although she might not work continuously through the day, she was at director and crew’s beck and call for many hours at a time. Some of the work was strenuous. It wasn’t like being a single mother or working in a factory, though. No amount of allowance could make her profession seem anything but luxurious.

Her skin turned pink and hot and still she lay there. Was she becoming soft? Was she letting her lifestyle dictate her personality? Was she becoming a starlet? One of those simpering women that expected everything done for her and done perfectly?

A shadow fell slowly over her. She thought it was from her mock teepee that she had set up beside her, the sun moving across the horizon. It couldn’t be that late yet, though. She’d be a lobster if she sat in the sun that long.

Slowly, blinking heavily against the sun even behind her glasses, she saw a familiar shape. He looked a little different lounging, a position he rarely took without a comfortable chair and locked door. It was Ford, though, his round belly rising and falling in slow even breaths, a smile easy on his lips. He wore shades, too, so she didn’t know if he was squinting as much as she was. He reclined on one elbow, looking lazily down at her.

“Think I’m safe?” she asked.

“I think I could see someone coming an hour before he got here,” Ford joked, looking around. “I’m more worried about a rogue antelope or coyote than a person.”

“A coyote. That should be my spirit guide. Lone, mangy, feral. Just like me.”

“You aren’t mangy,” Ford argued, reaching out to touch my hair.

Lisa snapped her teeth at him. “I am feral.”

He chuckled. “I’ve seen you attack a steak. I’m not going to argue that point.”

“What about alone?” Lisa asked, a hint of sorrow in her voice. She felt she was never alone, just very lonely.

“Well, I seem to be here,” he pointed out.

Lisa thought about that. Ford wasn’t like the nameless throng of people surging around her. He wasn’t like the fans that dogged her steps. He wasn’t like the colleagues and crews that demanded her effort, her attention.

“You do,” she said at last. “So you must be my spirit guide.”

Ford chuckled. “Yeah, right.” After a moment he added, “So I am. On your feet padawan.”

Lisa snorted. “Padawan.”

“Yes, follow me,” he said, leading her toward the car. “I shall show you how to hunt the mighty double cheese.”

Lisa laughed again. “I hear and follow, guide!”