She liberally applied the paint to the brush and dabbed the canvas at the right spots. It gave the flower she was working on texture and depth. It almost felt like the vivid shade she had seen in her dreams. But there still wasn’t any amount or type of paint that could fully capture the texture of her dreams. She placed the shades on her brush in the sky now and dotted the horizon. The music playing in the background only made her hum slightly to herself following the rhythm and cadence. She always painted to classic rock. There was something primal about the way it moved and the way it was played that connected her with her dreamscapes almost seamlessly. She imagined that bands like Led Zeppelin and Deep Purple conducted their music in that same place. That was why it drew her there so completely.
Most people discounted dreams as merely unrealized desires, hopes and ambitions. Small confessions from a person’s subconscious mind to their conscious. These are the explanations given to them by the practitioners of psychology. These ideals and thoughts have helped countless people deal with their neurosis and fears. For that reason, Fiona didn’t necessarily disagree with these thoughts. She just thought it was rather limited.
Fiona Canters grew up differently than the rest of the free world within the United States of America. When 5 year old Fiona first told her mother about one of her extraordinary dreams her mother had smiled pleased and asked her daughter to tell her what they meant. Confused Fiona had not answered. The very next day she had been privy to the conversations the women in her family had away from husbands, boyfriends, sons and fathers.
“Fiona dreamed last night.” Her mother had told her mother in law excitedly.
“Does she know what it means?” her aunt had asked anxiously.
Her mother proudly shook her head and then recounted the dream for the listening gaggle. With gasps of delight and praises to the Almighty they had all regarded Fiona differently.
The Canters were a French Creole line originally that intermixed with a line that had roots in Native America, Africa and Ireland. Now they were a rainbow people where the shade of relatives spanned the realm of possibility.
Fiona’s mother was Salvadorian, her skin the color of burnished copper, her hair fell blue black tightly curled and silky across her shoulders. Her light brown eyes always alight with seemingly forbidden knowledge. A Canters man, her father was tan skinned by nature, dark eyed and hard to place into a particular ethnic set. From that Fiona had emerged a shade lighter than mahogany, eyes an almost eerie shade of dark grey making them look lit from within as the iris closest to the pupil was a paler grey than the midnight that it changed into as it floated to the rims.
“Witch eyes.” Her grandmother had said that night as the women talked and she took the child’s measure for the first time.
Fiona had starred up innocently into the clear hazel eyes of the paler woman and felt that nagging suspicion of being in the presence of something that was more than it seemed. Of course as a child she had no true idea of what it was. Just this sudden unmistakable unshakable awareness as she peered up at the woman waiting for her to change form right before her eyes.
She had always been fearful of her father’s pale, hazel eyed mother. The woman had eyes that saw too much. They saw everything and communicated with the souls of others without their knowledge. These were things she had heard whispered growing up among the others.
The others were the ones of her family that had been born without that extra thing that most of the women had. It was a generation skipping instance. Every once in a while a woman in their line was born without that extra sense of the world, without the vision to see into others through dreams, premonitions and senses that were a family birthright.
They were raised in a different way than those with sight. Still loved and shown the same affections and care, but kept away from the ones who bared stunning signs and levels of awareness. It was a courtesy to both sides. The children would grow to understand and appreciate each other before they interacted. Understanding their differences and not treating each other badly over them.
Before the conception of every child, the women of the family dreamed, during the pregnancy the women dreamed. They dreamed of the child they would bare, knowing before modern technology whether a boy or a girl would be born. When the mother conceived her entire existence was enrapt in the being she carried. And through their personal dreamscape they would understand the nature of that child. How it should be raised and what it should be led to do.
Even those born without the special gifts procured to the blood line were dreamt of. Regardless of whether it had been given sight or not, it would one day raise a child that most likely would be given sight. And they needed to be raised in a fashion to be able to deal with their child’s gifts. That was why all dreams and premonitions centered around the child.
Fiona was the exception. Fiona’s mother Alejandra calls that time in her life ‘el negro’. The dark. For the first time in her life she knew what it was to live as most people do. She had only common sense, instincts and logic to guide her way through life. All of her dreams during Fiona’s conception and birth had been shielded from her. All premonition and sensory insight dulled to just instances of déjà vu. Her mother in law said it was because the child she carried was blank. Meaning there was nothing to see.
For the longest time they thought Fiona was going to be stillborn. Her mother’s gift hiding what was to come to save her enduring the pain more than once. Because of the circumstances of Fiona’s conception and birth she was raised with the children that the family knew possessed none of the gifts.
“At times mi amor, I can see what I must do with you and then I do it and like that its gone.” Her mother would sometimes whisper at her temple as she put her to bed at night.
It wasn’t until much later at the age of 10 as Fiona started to have actual premonition episodes did she understand what her dreams as a young child meant. Slowly over the years the pieces had started to put themselves together and it implied things about her that was unnatural even for her family.