Title: In His Jealous Sky
Category: het, angst, darkish.
Summary: Response to Challenge #5 at pbficsurvivor.
'You'll remember me when the west wind moves, among the fields of barley.
You can tell the sun in his jealous sky, when we walked in fields of gold.'
Michael and Sara and Ireland.
Table: for prisonbreak100 is HERE - prompt #09 - “months”
In His Jealous Sky
It’s been three months.
As he walks along the weary tracks of County Mayo, heading for the tiny coastal hamlet of Belderrig, he thinks of her. Michael always thinks of her.
Scofield is a minimalist and a man on a mission. He’s never been to Ireland before, but everything about his immediate environment emanates Sara, and it surprises him. He thought he would have been taking this small casket to Italy. Somewhere in the north, near Lake Como. Michael has recently discovered her father’s people originated from these environs. The Tancredis.
Ultimately, though, it is the memory of her mother that lures him.
And so to Erin, walking between plots so green, they resemble the colour he knows will gleam on her skin. Onward to the rugged coastline, approaching storm clouds so turbulent and spectacular, Michael imagines he hears the innards of their relationship echo in their thunderous chambers. Striding towards the pungent sea, he identifies her presence ghosting his body. Fresh, emotive. Unpredictable, evocative. Forever.
It’s the sense of her that invades his body and keeps him warm as he wanders towards the coast. The container he carries doesn’t weight him down at all, it merely strengthens his resolve to ensure he gets there and does everything right. He owes them that much.
Initially, the security presence surrounding the Tancredi home, was not amenable to an ex-convict entering the premises and looking for buried treasure in the form of Sara’s most concrete memories. But Michael had recently made contacts in high places, and so employed the double-edged sword of persuasion, swung by Bruce and Cooper, to gain access to her late father’s premises and her beautiful past.
What he discovers there tells of a family with strong, abiding roots, but so battered about by the sullen winds of modern time, the magnificent blossom has scattered to the dying hinterlands of alcoholism, drug dependency, death.
Michael finds he spends hours on the floor, sifting through a camphor box that belonged to Sara’s mother; the tokens of a woman’s life cut short, a mother’s love cut like the umbilical chord, a daughter’s future cut by the seemingly unforgiving hands of fate.
Ever the scholar, and more interested in this subject because of the woman he loves, Michael regales in the Tancredi memorabilia. Frank’s formal statement of his family tree, complete with skeletons and smatterings of hot, European blood. Mementoes from his days on the political trail, some of his early speeches and his dictum as a younger, more earnest man. Photos of Sara. Crayoned pictures, drawn in primary colours, with words that bring tears to his eyes - I love mommy, this is mommy and daddy, this is me kissing my dad...
Photos of Sara. As a tiny, exotic anemone waiting to be launched onto a barbaric, exposed reef, where sharks circle and octopus trawl their manipulative tentacles for innocence. If only she was better prepared to enter this pond.
Under the stacks of papers and pictures, Michael finds the keepsakes he knows will change his destination. He unearths the key to Mrs Tancredi’s history in the form of paperwork and jewelry. Her grandparent’s family portraits, their shipping passes for passage to the United States, a chunk of greying rock, a celtic cross and chain, an Irish wedding ring, a pictorial epistle to St Brendan. And letters. So many family epistles, that Michael finds ample threads of living history to take on his journey to Ireland.
He knows what calls him back to her motherland.
Michael’s almost there, now, he can feel it. He is hundreds of miles away from Chicago, thousands from the sordid stains of Panama, and he revels in the majesty of fresh air. He feels purified, although the closer he gets to Belderrig, the more astringent become the tears rupturing from his eyes.
He changes the casket to his other arm, and feels the tiny ching of the celtic cross as it echoes inside, as though replicating the grizzle of his blood cells clapping against the cavern of his heart. He might as well be carrying Sara’s heart. His own is broken apart, and he wears its fibres like an epaulet upon his sleeve.
Until he glimpses her.
The whiteness of the cottage stands like pre-set candlewax, its roof thatching a division between the most emerald green of the land and the bounty of the sea. She exudes the natural beauty of the earth, and he sees the sly sparkle of the sun tinge her longer hair, which resonates with the most Irish of hues. She’s auburn.
Michael is unprepared for her reaction to him wandering upon her land. She runs to him. She runs for him? He places her casket gently on the grass so both his arms are ready to weld her frame to his own.
To experience her? To ensure she’s no apparition.
“You came.” She sobs a statement into the base of his neck, never questioning he might not have joined her here. Michael cannot speak. He wants to, but he hasn’t the words. Something allows him quietude, and Michael feels cherished with manifestations of arms and legs and tiny kisses prickling his jaw.
Michael cannot speak. For the first time in his adult life, he wretches sobs from the depth of his soul, and leans forward to cough his sorrow upon Irish earth. As he laments on his hands and knees, something draws his attention from above and he realizes Sara is in a far better place than this living hell. He sees the divinity of the sun.
Michael sits back on his broken haunches and prays to St Brendan they may one day have another chance, in another time.
Finally beneath his jealous sky.
when the west wind moves
notes: Sting (Gordon Sumner) penned the beautiful lyrics to Fields of Gold and performed it in the early nineties. It is claimed that when he heard Eva Cassidy’s version, he wept.
Eva Cassidy died at the age of 33 from cancer. Many of her songs were released posthumously.