Ngaia has come home.
“Nan first,” she says. “I’m on my way, Nan”
She has thick waves of hair, naturally parted. Her eyes are as dark as the soil that she walks on, oblivious to the million pieces that shatter underneath her every step. A forgotten smile paints itself on her freckled face, rose-pink lips stretching to each corner, forming a number of creases on either side and an indentation on the right side of her cheek. A smile that was lost for so many years. A smile that should’ve come sooner. Regret sinks in.
Before she knows it, she’s at the river. It seems to have carved its way through the greenery even more deeply than she had remembered. She offers a reflection to the towering giants that sit along its bank. They hug the earth in such a way that they can move their limbs in every direction, picking and choosing to let the sun in. It’s like a game to them. A rustling against one another that resonates all through the forest. A welcome back performance. Just for her.