The only thing that bothered her was the harsh stopper in her throat; the grating swell that wasn’t tears or hate but meant she couldn’t speak. Her voice was dust in the gravel.
There was a lot she wanted to say. The man following her pretended he couldn’t tell. His eyes searched her face as if looking for the features. It would have unnerved her if they weren’t already in his hands. As it was she stopped the road when he stepped closer, waiting for the slick touch on her skin.
Her head got patted fondly. Somewhere far away a tail wagged. Understanding flickered, lightning bright, for a moment somewhere to the left.
If only she could reach that moment. If only she could speak. The road grew swollen, humped itself like it was sickening for something. The two tiny figures stumbled, holding away from each other religiously. Then the lightning cracked again, thunder in their ears, so close and loud that she screamed out in joy-mingled pain.
The world fell apart as her voice rang out and she was found.