Excerpt from Gaia’s Hands Rewrite

There is something about her, Josh wrote, letting words flow onto the page. Lush and bountiful. Cool and deep, like a forest. Like the plants she tends. He remembered the lecture he had crept into, feeling again like a stalker, even though it was open to the public. He had no reason to be there except to see her, but he remembered her speaking about permaculture guilds, plants living in mutual relationships. Jeanne and the plants …

His vision blurred. He saw a green mound where the room had been, lit by a brilliant shaft of pure sunlight. Fruit trees and vines surrounded the hill and climbed up it, glowing in the light. And under the tallest trees, two intertwined apples bearing impossibly large fruit, Jeanne stood offering one of each apple.

Jeanne, he didn’t fail to notice, was naked.

The vision dissipated as quickly as it had come. Josh found himself again in the busy room, surrounded by the murmur of voices, the people in sweaters and snowboots, winter coats hanging off chairs. 
 I’m still not used to seeing things, Josh thought. I’m not sure I’ll ever be.  He steeled himself for the repercussions of his vision, because he never saw visions without consequences. He knew the migraine would come in a few hours, but the vision dared him to press on.

The dreadlocked waitress set down his order — a red-eye — the better to try to forestall the migraine. “I don’t know your name,” she addressed him. “I’m Zoe.”

“Josh Young. I teach at the college. Instructor in English.” He surreptitiously shut his notebook to obscure the subject of the evening’s musings. 

“This is your regular order, right?” Zoe appeared to be doing some mental arithmetic in her head, Josh noticed.

“Yes. I’ll be a regular here. It’s a good place to write.” He felt himself saying the words despite his more fearful self wanting to run out and never see Jeanne Beaumont again. He thought he could feel his fate seal with those words. 

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