AlvernoINK Spring / Fall 2017 - Page 58

was the one in 97’.

It was on that day the very first heart-less body of what would become an internationally watched case surfaced. Tucked in the busy streets of the colonia San Juan de Dios, the body of an unrecognizable man laid with his ashen face admiring the sky, critters enveloped in his hollow chest tearing and eating the insides festively. To this day, Sol hears the whispers of people eagerly sharing I wonder what happened to him’s, can see the fear that struck others, and can smell the stench of this young man whenever she walks into the district of San Juan de Dios. Have you ever smelled a dead body? First, your oxygen is perforated by the rancidness and foulness of the decomposing corpse. As you step closer, the body appears to have been dipped in a wicked bath of sulfur, a revolting scent of sickly-sweet cheap perfume swimming underneath your nose and stinging your eyes. You carry the scent all the way home with you, no matter how hard you wash, rinse, and repeat it won’t go away. Your stomach will sway for days. Like a burning candle, you’re left waiting for the smell to self-extinguish.

But even that pales in comparison to what it truly smells like. It’s a phenomenon you must be present for, the mind tends to lose bits and pieces through translation. Sol’s uncommon fate has interrupted her most simple acts of living. She no longer dreams, but has nightmares. Her hunger is replaced by a nauseating ache every year in March, lasting until mid-September (September 16th precisely, the day her aunts were arrested.). Once when she was on the train, she rode all the way to el D.F., landing on the front steps of a home she’d never lived in. Her memories weren’t always hers. And sometimes—though rare—her senses heightened and she could cause the world to shift or clouds to cry. Doña Julia always said she was special. That her feelings could become reality because Sol’s Mother, Gabriella, had endured great pain, love, and suffering. While she was pregnant with Sol and even before, when Sol was a thought of nothing that belonged to no one.

Sol can’t remember his name. The very first man her aunts murdered. He was also a no one. She remembers everyone after that, the letters tattooed at the base of her mind with a thick, crisp font. Names that would never fade away, names that murmured in the lull of the night. She sees them. Reaching towards her, stretching their limbs and bones to pull apart her skin and see the many secrets that lie there. She struggles to stop thinking and lets her body fall back onto the wash-stained sheets of her bed, the bed she rarely sleeps in, the springs croaking with a familiar hello. The buckle of her boots clink together as she kicks them off, her mind swooning with a light hum, thoughts melting like a cube of cane sugar in a cup of cafe de olla. She doesn’t know if she can go to them, she hasn’t visited in so long. But right now, that doesn’t matter. Right now, she lets her body steady her breaths and listens for Doña Julia who sings her to sleep.

~

The Zaparrita sisters were the devil’s greatest treasure.

As night broke and Guadalajara came to life with lights, Sol Garcia wrestled with her dreams in her sheets. It was the heat. Boiling off the surface of her skin onto the mattress beneath her. Thrashing, she tried to wake up and escape. But everything was black. A thick, growl gurgled in the valleys of her mind, sending snakes of fear down her spine. Her eyelids remained shut. Wake up, Sol, WAKE UP. The pressure on her chest buried her muffled screams, as a sad melody roped around her throat. She could hear the low rumble of a snarl pull in her stomach, grasping above her and straight down to hell. She bolted up, arms reaching out for her dead Mothers touch.

sangre nativa