The pain in my body dissipates along with everything that ever weighed me down. I feel light, airy, as though I could float away on the breeze of a butterfly’s fluttering wings.
I listen to the silence, waiting for a single sound to shatter it. My heartbeat, if I even have one, is lost somewhere in the hole.
Time ticks away on a mute clock. The first hint of a sob echoes around me from far away. It surrounds me, bouncing back and forth and all around until I can no longer tell which direction it came from.
I wait for a second one before moving, trying to find the ground.
I can’t tell if I’m falling or standing. I don’t know if my eyes are open or closed or if they actually exist anymore. The only thing I can rely upon are my ears and even they do not seem to function properly.
By the time the third sob comes, I have figured out how to move– in the wrong direction. Flailing my arms and leg around like a child in water, I turn myself around and start moving toward the sound.
“Sylvia!” my voice forces its way out of my mouth as though it is trying to remind me of its existence.
“Sylvia!” I scream again, waiting for a response. My invisible arms keep pushing me forward through the eternal darkness.
The response comes from directly ahead of me, crawling towards my numb body. It sounds like a cross between “Ethan” and a sob. It sends a chill down my spine, reviving my paralyzed limbs. I feel them like a silhouette, moving however my brain commands.
Back and forth we go, like a macabre waltz in a lightless ballroom. I call her name and she responds. The closer I get, the more I can make out her voice, lower than usual but hers nonetheless. It sounds similar to mine but an octave higher and with a slight lisp she inherited from our mother.
My perception of distance had never been the best. She used to joke that I was supposed to have been born nearsighted and she should have been the one with perfect vision.
Oh how I wish I could see her smiling eyes from behind those thick-framed glasses she’d always complained made her face too round.
“Ethan?” her voice is right next to me, no more than a few inches from my face. I swear I can almost feel her breath against my cheek.
“Sylvia?” I turn towards her, reaching out into the darkness. My hand brushes against something cold.
I recoil, an automatic reflex.
“Ethan!” The icy hand I’d held at the hospital finds mine then climbs upward to my shoulder until it wraps around the back of my neck and she pulls me to her.
Her chin comes to rest on my shoulder as she starts sobbing again, hugging me tighter and tighter until I can hardly breathe.
But I don’t care.
Tears stream down my face as my hands find her back, fingers gripping the rough fabric of her shirt.
For the first time in three months I feel whole again. My twin is at my side– my other half is finally with me.