Jonathan’s Return (An Adventure Novel)
(Copyright 1984, Mark D. Jones, All Rights Reserved)
Book Two, Chapter Ten, Part Four
Like watching a movie filmed in super slow motion, Jonathan was aware of every frame while falling backwards towards the floor. He watched as heads turned suddenly to see him, saw the looks in the eyes growing wider of those who had been watching him all along, and felt the sensation of speed picking up as his body raced towards the floor while clutching Sammy. This was the end, he thought, for while holding Sammy tightly to his chest, he was unable to brace himself for the impact. Cringing, he could feel the stone floor striking his head even before he reached it – and then – nothing…
He wondered if this was what it was like to die, but he hadn’t felt the impact of the stone floor, any pain or the sensation of dying – only an unchanging stillness and silence. It was like he was between worlds, not only in a physical sense, but also in a sensational sense, for he didn’t feel anything at all. Yet, Jonathan realized he was acutely aware of his thoughts, which were separate again from both the physical and sensational responses of the body. Perhaps his thoughts were carried out of his body by his soul, becoming an independent entity not restricted by either time or space. Perhaps, dying was simply a new adventure to experience, but then, there came a gradually increasing awareness of sensation.
After it took Jonathan so long to retrieve the eight potatoes and three onions from the root cellar, his mother went to investigate what could have caused the delay. She knew her son only too well, especially how distracted and absent minded he could be. Rarely did Jonathan accomplish anything right away or on time, because he seemed to always be lost in his thoughts. She wondered how he would ever finish school, because while his teachers told her he was a brilliant child, he often wasn’t able to apply himself to anything that really counted as far as school was concerned. Oh sure, he passed his classes with minimal effort on his part, but everyone agreed he could do so much better if he only applied himself. His reports often mentioned the fact that Jonathan’s daydreaming was a major distraction to not only completing his assignments, but also to the entire class, because at times it appeared to others that he was lost in another world and not able to relate to what he was being asked to do.
As she entered the cellar and saw Jonathan and Sammy sprawled on the dirt floor, she let out a scream of ‘Oh, no!” and rushed to revive him, placing her hands gently under his head and kissing his forehead in despair. Sammy rolled over and somehow managed to get his paws beneath him in order to stand, and then began licking his Master’s face to wake up. Jonathan’s foot was caught in an overturned apple crate that he appeared to have been stepping on, as a broken slat caused his foot to penetrate the crate, no doubt resulting in his fall. His mother was overwrought with emotion, while crying and pleading with her son to wake up.
Jonathan’s silver medallion of an oak tree within a sun and the sapphire pendant had tumbled out of his shirt collar, and beside his pocket lay a golden coin with the same image of the medallion cast in it. Suddenly, she saw Jonathan’s eyelids flicker and watched his eyes moving behind them, all the while pleading for him to wake up and be okay. Then, after a quick shake of his head, he reached out to wrap his arms around Sammy. Jonathan then opened his eyes and smiled, saying, ‘Hi, mom, I’m back – I missed you!”
She was overjoyed at seeing her son awake again, and realized while what he said hadn’t make any sense, it must have been attributed to his fall. “I missed you, too, Jonathan. What happened to you – are you okay? Why were you standing on the apple crate, and why is the horse collar sitting in the dirt?” After she helped her son to his feet again, she lifted the horse collar and hung it back on the floor joists above the cellar where it belonged. She didn’t notice the metal plate door in the stone wall of the cellar’s foundation though, because it wasn’t there anymore.
As Jonathan got up and steadied himself on his feet again, Mrs. Spencer picked up the golden coin from the cellar floor and handed it back to her son. “One thing, Jonathan, these things you’ve said your Grandfather had given to you – he’ll be here in the morning to visit, and we’ll ask him if they really came from him. I have my doubts, but we’ll see. I know you miss him, and the two of you seem to have a special relationship that I don’t understand, but it seems to be very important to you both, so I won’t interfere. Just realize that your father isn’t thrilled with it, so please don’t mention anything about these things or your plans around him, because he doesn’t want to know or understand. All your father knows about is work, and taking care of his responsibilities to us and the farm. You know he doesn’t have any interest in or understanding for adventures…”
“I know, Mom – oh, by the way, don’t forget the eight potatoes and three onions!”
(The End of Book Two)