Souls journey, p.6
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       Soul's Journey, p.6

           Joanne Johnson
 
were in a state of stress.

  “Woman, I do not know what you are talking about, but move your feet,” he replied. He was too far behind to have been able to push me. I immediately started to doubt that it had really happened. Then again, it could have been the strain of the whole situation in general that caused me to feel things that were not really there. I tried to scurry the rest of the way across, with as much control as I could muster, and without falling. It is amazing what your body can do when you need it to perform under great pressure.

  Reaching the edge, I experienced a rush of excitement and joy. The stress of the crossing was more intense than I realized. I felt a huge sense of accomplishment that only comes from pushing yourself beyond your normal boundaries. I started out on the path and tripped on a root that was sticking out of the ground. Before I realized it, I was lying flat on my face in the grass. I looked up to see Derrick standing over me shaking his head.

  “Do you walk much? Follow the path and I will catch up in a few minutes.”

  All I could do was lie there with my bruised ego and look up at him.

  “Nod your head if you understand,” he replied sharply. I picked myself up off the ground, muttering under my breath and nodded my head. I was brushing the dirt and grass off my clothes when I finally walked forward on the path he directed. I will never have to worry about feeling too good when he is around, because he tends to have a way of kicking me in the teeth when I am having a triumphant moment. The whole experience felt like a weird dream, since I’m sure I should have been more terrified about being caught. On some level, I guess I thought I could reason my way out of the situation altogether.

  I continued on the path, when I heard a loud crash. It sounded like a tree falling in the ravine. Panic hit me; what if he was killed, how would I find my way back to my car and out of this mess. The fear of being alone in the wilderness finally took over and I turned to head back to the ravine. Of course, the moment I saw Derrick running through the trees, I knew from the look on his face I had made another mistake.

  “Can you not follow directions?”

  “Yes”, I said, “I was just worried that something had happened to you. I thought that maybe you had fallen down the ravine, but I can see my concern was a total waste of time, so excuse me for caring.” I told myself my real fear was not for him; my fear was to be stuck out in the wilderness alone.

  He gave me a funny look and said, “We need to hurry, it will be dark soon. I have an idea where we can make camp for the night, so we will have to cover ground quickly.”

  I was finding this man extremely aggravating; he always had to have the last word, and it usually was not very nice. I had not felt like I was this much of a pain in someone’s ass since I was twelve, when I went to stay with my seventeen-year-old cousin who wanted to party but instead had to baby-sit me.

  The Cabin

  I cannot remember ever having so many emotions in my body at one time. One minute I was worried, and the next I was angry with this daft man. I wanted to smack him hard in the back of the head. I was totally and completely frustrated.

  With a loud sigh, I decided to pick up the pace so as not to get any more negative comments thrown my way. I smiled to myself as I looked at the ground and saw lots of sticks and roots. I thought it would be quite enjoyable if he would trip and fall down, crushing his massive ego, and hard assed exterior. I almost did a little prance as I walked. It is interesting to see what the right motivation can do for the soul.

  It was almost dark when we reached what looked like a small cabin in the middle of nowhere. I stopped to stare at it. The door was falling off its hinges, and the spider webs were the only thing holding it together. The roof was slightly hanging on, and the windows had no glass in them.

  After a few moments, I asked, “Please tell me this isn’t where we’re staying tonight. This place is a rank, smelly dump.”

  “You’re welcome to sleep outside in the rain,” he said almost sarcastically.

  Laughing I said, “Rain? What rain? There is not a cloud in the sky.”

  He said, “Wait about half an hour, I can smell it in the air. You’ll see!”

  I took a long breath, but I smelled nothing. I lifted my head to face him. I was about to tell him exactly what I thought of him, in a very unladylike manner, when I noticed a flash of lighting over his shoulder. I silently wished to myself that maybe it was a lone flash of lightning that wouldn’t develop into a storm. I wanted him to be wrong. Just as I convinced myself that this was the case, I noticed another flash of lightning to my left followed by a loud crash of thunder. Drat! Even Mother Nature is against me today. I felt like if it weren’t for bad luck, I wouldn’t have any luck at all.

  Looking back at Derrick, I noticed that he seemed to be very pleased with himself. If I were to understand the look correctly, I would say he was gloating. Here I was, stuck in the middle of nowhere, with a man that had the sex appeal of a Chippendale dancer; at least he did when his mouth wasn’t annoying the hell out of me.

  “I need you to go and collect some firewood,” he said. “You’ll probably find more behind the cabin in the trees.”

  I was standing in the doorway peering in when I said, “There’s a lot of wood by the fireplace already, I’m sure that will be enough for one night.”

  “It takes more wood than you realize to last all night, so unless you want to freeze your ass get some more please,” he replied.

  I turned away and sucked up the fact that he had just bossed me. I was tired and I didn’t want to argue with him. It was just easier to perform the task. I headed out the door and started around the back, when I smelled smoke coming from the chimney. He was quick; I had to give him that. Grabbing an armful of wood, I headed back just as the rain started to fall. I walked through the doorway thinking I was done, when he handed me a bucket and said, “I need water for coffee. You will find a stream behind the building.”

  “How did you start the fire so quickly?” I asked not expecting him to answer. “I already know where the stream is by the way, I almost fell into it looking for wood.”

  “I used to be a boy scout,” he said. “If you continue to stand there and talk, we will never be able to eat. I, for one, am starving and looking forward to a simple meal.”

  With a heavy sigh, I headed out the door for water. I went back to the stream again, washed out the bucket a few times, and put my hands in the stream to wash them clean. The water felt cool and refreshing on my skin so I quickly washed my face as well. When I was finished, I filled up the bucket with clean water and headed back toward the cabin. As I made my way into the cabin, the wonderful aroma of food greeted me. I walked in. He grabbed the water and pointed to the fire.

  “Please sit, dinner will be ready in a second.”

  I looked around the cabin and could clearly see that no one had used this cabin for a long time. The wooden floor was dirty and full of cracks; the cupboards had fallen off the rusted hinges, and the front door would not even close properly. Just sitting on the dirty floor, I felt I should go wash again before I ate. I wasn’t surprised when I smelled the fresh scent of rain and heard the patter of raindrops on the roof. I sat in front of the fire and enjoyed a dinner of brown beans, coffee, and beef jerky.

  “Where did you get all this food?” I asked.

  He was very quiet about how he came across it. It did not matter for I enjoyed the meal greatly. I looked over at the cupboard and saw some rusted old cans, so I assumed he opened a few, and now we were having a feast fit for a king.

  He finally answered after a long moment of silence, “Does it really matter where the food came from as long as you are full? I have never met anyone who asks as many questions as you do. You could give my ears a break while we eat,” he replied smiling.

  “No, but I was curious”, I replied annoyed. “Do you always have to speak to me with sarcasm in your voice? I asked you a simple question, and I would appreciate an answer that doesn’t reek of sarcasm. This isn’t my
idea of a fun time and you’re not great company. I’m starting to think that I might do better on my own after all.”

  I stood up and headed for the door. Just a few feet away from the opening, he spun me around and pushed my back against the wall. I looked into his eyes that were full of amusement. I could feel the connection as his eyes met mine, and I looked away shocked at the intensity. He slid his hands down my shoulder lingering a little too long on each wrist. I could smell his minty breath as I kept my eyes focused on the hands that were holding my wrists. He cleared his throat and moved his hands from my wrists to place them on the wall on each side of my head. At that moment, I wished I had an insight into what he was thinking or feeling. I found my inner spunk and tried to push him out of my personal space. I shoved him hard, but gave up when his body did not even budge.

  He smiled at me, “Are you too bloody stubborn and pigheaded to see that I am trying to help you?”

  “Help me,” I sputtered back sarcastically. I smelled the scent of wood and spice in the air. “I feel that my life has taken a terrible turn for the worst since you came into it. I would rather be rid of you than have to bear the torture of your arrogant company for even one second longer.”

  “I’m sorry that the accommodations aren’t to your highness’s expectations. If I had known, I would have made reservations someplace nicer,” he replied sarcastically.

  “That isn’t what I mean. You’re the one I’m having issues with, not the cabin,” I said infuriated.

  “Tell me then what I can do for you to make myself more accommodating,” he retorted.

  As his voice became louder, his body was moving closer to mine. I felt like I was sandwiched between him and the wall. I felt the hard muscles in his body, and his smell was very sexually intoxicating. I could feel my body reacting in a manner that surprised me. My mind began to imagine what his clothes hid. It must have been too long since my last sexual encounter because my body was behaving strangely. I had to fight my feelings as I closed my eyes and leaned my head against the wall. If he only knew the affect he had on my body, he could use it against me. I would be like putty in his hands. My sexual emotions and feelings needed to be buried… now. After a few tense seconds of struggling to regain control, I opened my eyes ready to deal with him. He was not going to win.

  “If holding me against my will makes you feel like a real man, then knock yourself out.” I was fighting the musky scent of him, and getting more pissed off by the second. “Furthermore, you need to start treating me as an equal, because I will not take any more abuse from you, sir!” His eyes seemed to smile, as did his mouth.

  He removed his hands and said, “Does that mean you will not fight me on anything else? I will treat you as an equal if you stop acting like a child.”

  “A child? You’re behaving like a dictator!”

  He was only a few feet away but his smell was distracting. I maneuvered my body farther away from his scent. I needed to be focused and I was finding it difficult to do with him so close. If I was going to make a point, it had to be now.

  “I’ll agree not to give you a hard time if you can hold your snarky, self-righteous tongue.”

  He looked amused then said, “Okay, I agree, but will you follow directions without questioning me?”

  “Okay.”

  He held out his hand to shake mine, looked me straight in the eye and said, “Do we have a gentlemen’s agreement then, Jordan?”

  I held out my hand, “Yes I agree, but I will only listen to you if it does not go against my own judgment, or morals.”

  He smiled, “Then we have an agreement”, he said as he grabbed my hand and shook it caressing my

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