I awake, breathing hard, and the tall woven walls of the enclosure loom before me. Gigas is snoring deafeningly a few yards away, a waterfall of drool hanging from the corner of his mouth. The smell of giant sweat fills the air and I gag.
Gigas turns with a roaring yawn and cracks open a gargantuan, patient, black, animal-like eye.
“We will gather more food today,” grunts Gigas in his language. I nod and begin combing my hair absentmindedly, while I muse over the dream.
We spend all night gathering food, and I watch Gigas shake towering trees with his bare hands, scattering coconuts, bananas, and papayas. I observe his strength, his power, and his might, but still none of it really impresses me.
I have a splinter stuck in my foot but I can’t get it out. Gigas can’t help; he’ll just snatch up my leg along with the splinter. I watch him tiredly as I lie in the moss, disgusted at the way he sneezes, shooting boogers everywhere. He is not what I would call, pleasant. Gigas converses with me, recovering a topic we discuss often. There are none of my kind left in the world. He shakes his elephantine, morose head at me, apologetically.
Yet I still am convinced there are some of my people left.
Gigas stumbles back tiredly to our cave just as the sun slips out over the horizon, with me in his hand. Yawning, I take in the lazy sight of waves grazing the shore as a giraffe would lap at water, and the sound of morning birds twittering sleepily from dew-laden plants. Tall, graceful plants, occasionally a shock-pink bloom interspersed throughout the greenery; jagged aloes misty with a frosty coat; and a bunch of plump, perfectly curved bananas hiding under wide fronds of leaves––these are my favorite sights on this island we live on.
Gigas gently places me in my safety enclosure then turns to stoke the fire. Heat permeates the room as the blackened trunk of a tree crackles and glows red-white under the flames in the fireplace.
Although I am warm, full of meat, clean, and comfortable, loneliness pervades my heart. An empty longing for someone or something…that can relate to me.
And, Sunlight, be my size.
I bury my face in the colorful peacock feathers and animal furs of my sleep place, inhaling the sweetness of the skins and the tears that drip down my nasal passages.
I exhale . . . and fall asleep.
My feet touch down to mossy ground; the moss is brown and thick, but soft. The sky is white like lichen and so close, if I jump I can touch it. Footsteps sound before me, muffled by the soft warm moss, and I see someone my size but fuller, clad in strange coverings of appalling colors and dizzying patterns. Her feet are perfectly encased by black shiny hard cases of a sort of wood-like substance and she walks with a wobble. The clothing starts right below her armpits and is tight down to her bare, hairless knees, and cinnamon hair is cropped right below her ears like a uakari monkey’s. I can’t see her face no matter how hard I try, but I hear a voice scream, Cassie, baby! Her arms envelop my body and I’m surprised at how well our heights match. Her full chest is uncomfortably weird against mine and I feel disoriented. Suddenly everything is a blurry jumble of vague ideas and scenes, and my heart starts racing uncontrollably. She smiles broadly, so broadly I can hardly see past the pure brightness of her teeth, and she’s fading rapidly; I’m grasping at mere air, a ghost, a phantom . . . am I crazy? Is she disappearing, or am I? Where am I? For a split second I feel her warm embrace around me, but suddenly it is gone, and a cold wind signals to my goose bumps, and I am flying off the ground. I feel frozen to the core and alone––the high pitched squeal spears the wind, Cassie, baby!
My eyelids snap open and I’m screaming in the harsh cold darkness, my voice echoing over and over again in the cave. Gigas does not wake. I bury my face in the furs and sob. I feel like I have no meaning, no purpose, no reason to live. I sometimes feel as though Gigas owns me and I can’t be my own self.
Why do I constantly dream of other beings like me? My size, my language, able to empathize and sympathize with me? Why does my brain trick me into dreaming such cruel dreams? Simply to taunt me and make me hurt over and over again? Too many questions impale my mind with their crying for answers. I try to pretend none of it matters and I am numb to feelings.
But that is a lie. The wound is so raw, the longing so sharp; it is impossible to disregard. I break out again into tears, and let them flow like the mountain streams: cold and fast, wild and free, pulsing, unstoppable.
I cry until the moon arises.