English (North American)
US African American, US General American (GenAm)
Note: Transcripts are generated using speech recognition software and may contain errors.
Chapter One the glass shattered against the wall, crashing and splintering into tiny weapons that sliced across the brown and white skin on luna's face, beads of blood turned into trickles that slide down to her chin before dripping onto the floor, yells and screams followed as her mother stomped through the house, swearing and cursing the day she had given birth to a cursed child. This was a typical day in the cottage she shared with her mother. Things were good when her father was still alive. Mother was happier than no, not at all. Really happy. She hated that they had to give up their home in the grand town of Hawthorne to move to the tiny village of Green brook when luna started showing signs of the cursed skin at five years old, That was 10 years ago and her mother still hadn't taken to living a simple life of tending a fruit orchard in the country. Her mother only stopped her ranting when she noticed what she had done to her daughter's face, She snatched up a tea towel from the round wooden mahogany table and chucked it at luna, hitting her in the chest. Una fumbled at the towel, pressing it against her cheek. Go clean yourself up, her mother yelled. Her brown eyes were glassy and narrow and her light brown skin was flushed, making her appear more like a brown devil than a human being. Luna climbed the narrow wooden stairs to her bedroom. As she sat down on her white twin bed, she noticed the red stains on the once clean blue shirt and pants. She went to the white porcelain sink that stood in the corner of the tiny white room and wet the towel in her hand. Looking in the mirror, she assessed the damage to her face. Three lines of red scratched across the demarcation line between the brown and white on her face. She stared, wondering why this curse had come upon her. All Her skin was golden brown, except for the skin on the front of her face, which had turned white as if she were wearing a mask. The pigment had faded on the tip of her nose when she was five years old, creeping outward until it had covered the entire front of her face in an almost perfect oval. It affected even her eyebrows and eyelashes. Only her almond shaped eyes kept their chestnut brown hue. People in their village had always complimented on how pretty she was, but what did they know? They were cursed too. Some of them had speckles of white and some of them had spots of white, and some of them had almost turned completely white, with just a patch of brown skin here and there. The village shouldn't be called green brook, it should be called white broke. She changed into a pair of black jeans. She had warned the day before and a clean black tank top to go into the orchard with before school. That way, no one would notice if she had gotten dirty, pulling her jet black curls into a ponytail, tiny pieces of glass scratched at her fingers. She didn't care. She wanted to leave the house as soon as she could before another glass cup hit its target. Her face luna grabbed her bleached leather book bag and scurried down the stairs and out the small wooden door before her mother could say or do anything else to her. The woman had been the worst person luna had known ever since her father died. She knew her mother blamed her. She would often say if it weren't for her and her cursed skin, her father would have never forced them to move there and he would still be alive, luna thought about that day in the orchard. Often, Father had enlisted some boys from town to help him cut down to dead lemon trees to use the wood for furniture to sell. The boys were doing a great job that day, that is until she came into the orchard to help one of the boys had a crush on luna and couldn't keep his eyes off of her. So much so that when the other two boys saw the tree to the point of falling, he didn't see it, nor did he hear them shouting, her father being the hero, he was ran and pushed the boy out of the way the tree fell on him, breaking his ribs and gouging a gash on his side that spanned from his armpit to his hip bone. The town doctor did all that he could for her father, but he never recovered from his injuries. He died one month later from what the doctor called sepsis. Her mother had told her not to go to the orchard that day, but she had gone anyway. Why didn't she listen to her mother that day? Tears welled in her eyes as she meandered through the trees, smelling the sweet citrus fragrance and the warm morning breeze. Normally the walk would boost her spirits, but not today. Not when the morning had led her to think of the worst day of her life. She stopped and sat down among the fallen fruit under a bushy full orange tree and allowed the tears to flow, stinging her wounds with a salty cleansing raining to the ground, never to be thought of again. Once her tears dried up, luna decided to pick some of the bright orange fruit to eat. For later. With all the commotion her mother made, she didn't get a chance to eat breakfast, she clambered into the tree, reaching for the biggest orange she saw. She picked too heavy ones and dropped them to the ground, aiming for her open book bag, but miserably failing. There was one further up, the head of shape, like two Oranges had merged into one. She would pick that one for river, her best friend, He loved the way the strange shaped fruit looked and had convinced himself they tasted even sweeter, grabbing onto a limb above her head, she pulled herself up, putting all her weight on the thick limb beside her, she reached up and grabbed the funny shaped orange. She dropped the fruit into her book bag and began to climb down when a loud cracking sound pierced through the air, the limbs she stood on broke from the trunk, sending her tumbling through the foliage and branches to land in the dirt below, she screamed. A cloud of dust surrounded her as leaves and oranges pelted her on her head and body. She pulled herself up from the ground and brushed her dusty black clothing off. Could this day get any worse? What is that? She asked herself out loud. She kneeled with a thick, broken limb, laid and pulled out a leather bound book lodged inside of its hollow barrel. It was a thick book, with an ornate silver medallion attached to the dark brown leather. The pages on the inside or an antique weathered cream color, sort of like the ones you would see in the basement of an old church. How in the world did this get inside of the tree? She sat back down and opened the book. Inside. She found writings that looked like recipes. No, not recipes, but more like ingredients for concoctions to cure certain ailments. She flipped through the pages. There were cures for respiratory infections, one for warts, even one for how to cure a bald spot. She giggled, thinking about how her father could have used that particular concoction. Some ingredients she had heard of, like sunflower oil and cat tail seeds, but most were things that she had never heard of before. She flipped through a few more pages. A Cure for hog parks, A cure for broken bones, A cure for red eyes, Cure for curses. She lingered on the page, reading the words again, A cure for curses luna! Her mother screamed. She was in a right foul mood that morning. There was no way luna was going to answer her. She slammed the book shut and stuffed it in her bag along with the fallen oranges, and hurried off to school.