Thunderbolts and Lightning

She was home. And she wondered why she had been brought back.

The sheets blew forward in a sudden blast of air, rattling the clothespins and setting Leota’s nerves on edge. But that strange wind was hardly the least of it. She wasn’t at all prepared for what came next.

Leota was lost in thought. It hadn’t been an easy day at school. Her boyfriend Hank had broken up with her because he wanted to try dating the head cheerleader, who was nothing more than a bag of bones and a head of air. But, she had showed a tiny bit of attention to Hank, and now he thought she was interested in him. “Guys got such hard-ons over scrawny cheerleaders”, she sighed to herself. She couldn’t help but be a bit disappointed. She thought Hank cared more about depth.

Her cell phone chimed and vibrated deep within her apron pocket, signaling an incoming text. She went to grab it with one hand, while the other held the sheet on the clothesline. The winds picked up even more, and two rogue lightning bolts flew out of nowhere, picking her up and slamming her to the ground.

She landed on her back in a giant puddle of mud a few yards from where she had been standing. The impact left her gasping for breath. The heat of her body mixed with the water from the puddle caused a hiss as steam lifted. Her Silky Terrier, Hermes, yelped and jumped at the sky like he was reprimanding an unseen entity.

Leota was conscious, but she couldn’t move. She could hear the porch screen door slam as her momma ran toward, screaming her name. Leota tried to respond, but her body didn’t cooperate.

She felt heavy suddenly, a weight crushing her deeper into the puddle. A horrible searing pain deep within her. And then, nothing. Darkness.

Leota awoke to a blipping noise and fluorescent lights. The distinct medicinal odor, though, is what gave her the most indication that she was in a hospital. She blinked a couple of times, trying to get used to the light.

There was no way to figure how long she had been lying in this sterile hospital room, hooked up to tubes and machines. She knew she was parched and could use a sip of water. She moved her fingers along the sheet to the nurse call button and tried to muster the strength to push it. After a couple tries, she succeed and a nasaly voice over the room’s intercom let her know that a nurse was on the way.

“Well, well. You’ve come back to join us,” the nurse said cheerfully, walking into the room. “Welcome, welcome.” The nurse busied herself in the room, drawing the industrial curtains to let the natural light spill in.

“How long…” Leota found it hard to talk. The nurse looked at her and smiled. “You’ve been our guest for two days. The doc will be here shortly; I’ll let him answer your questions. I’ll bet you are dying for a sip of water and a brush and mirror to tidy up.”

After giving Leota a mirror and brush, the nurse left the room, presumably to head to the nurses’ station, where pitchers of crushed ice and water were produced.

Leota held up the mirror and slowly brought the brush up to her hair. She froze, shocked by what she saw. Her once black hair was now a golden blonde, and her brown eyes blinked back at her a sea green. Who was this person who stared back at her? For some strange reason though, the shock of the sight was over before it began. She felt comforted and had no idea why.

After the nurse came and went, leaving Leota sitting upright and confused, yet hydrated, she took inventory. Aside from different hair and eye color, all her limbs were intact. Her six senses seemed present and accounted for. She was, from what she could tell, totally one lucky and newly hot chick.

As she was flipping through the lack of decent TV channels the hospital had to pathetically offer, she heard the sound of a clearing voice and a man walked into the room.

“Hello, young lady. I’m Dr. Dio.” he walked toward her, hand extended. “How are you feeling? You look lovely.” He stared at her with an expression that she had never seen on anyone’s face. It made her nervous. “Just as I remember you.” He said softly, just barely under his breath.

“What did you just say?”

He ignored her and continued, “Do you remember anything, dear? Prior to our little accident?” Dr. Dios grey eyebrow rose in question.

“OUR accident?” Leota was becoming worried, because Dr. Dios was obviously a little crazy. “You mean, before I got hit by two giant bolts of lightning that came out of nowhere? Because yeah, I was hanging laundry for my mom with dark hair and dark eyes.”

“Before that, dear.” He sat on the edge of her bed and patted her hand, looking deeply into her eyes. “Hundreds of years before that. And I’m so sorry about the way I awakened you.”

She couldn’t stop herself, she stared back into his eyes, mesmerized. So white. So incredibly endless, like the sky. She got lost in them. Something shook her body as it coursed through her, rattling her to the very core. It’s like a fire was awakened and suddenly, she remembered.

“Zeus. Hello.” Leota said as she embraced him. It made sense now, her blonde hair and green eyes, she was becoming herself again after years of sleep.

“Pandora, my love. It’s so nice to see you. We have lots of work to do. You’ll need to come with me.”

He took her hand, and the next thing she knew she the hospital was gone, and they were under the clouds of Mt. Olympus. A place she hadn’t seen in so many years. A place she had, without realizing, been longing for.

She was home. And she wondered why Zeus had brought her back.

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This story was first published on my blog, Rock and Drool, back in 2010:

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