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Blackbird Fly (Part Four)

Dreaming of Angelita

By Rick Henry ChristopherPublished 2 months ago Updated 2 months ago 7 min read

If you haven’t read the previous parts to this ongoing story here are the following links:

Part One:

Part Two:

Part Three:

The Proposal

It was a beautiful Southern California day in November 1981. The sun was shining bright, and the birds were singing in the sky. Green and orange leaves scattered across the ground as Jack, on bended knee, held Angelita's dainty hands and looked into her sparkling eyes. "Angelita Cortes," his voice shaking with emotion, "I love you more than anything in this world, and I want to spend the rest of my life with you. Will you do me the honor of becoming my wife?"

5:52 a.m.

The moment was perfect, the air filled with romanticism, and Angelita was beautiful. Suddenly, the sky broke open with lightning and pounding thunder. Angelita's eyes became bloodshot and throbbing with rage. She cried out, "Xochitl, Xochitl!" Jack became agitated and began mumbling his words. He tried to escape, but there was no way out. "It's a dream," he said in his mind, "It's a dream, and you can wake up out of it." Jack woke up tangled in his bed sheets at 5:52 am.

The Date

He crawled out of bed and stretched from side to side. He did 20 pushups and 20 jumping jacks, then jumped into the shower and got dressed then left to pick Angelita up for their mid-morning date.

Once they arrived at their destination, Jack felt a sense of wonderment. They were surrounded by the beautiful Santa Ana mountains, sparkling water streams, well-established trees, animated shrubs, and colorful flowers all around. There was a sense of serenity and tranquility that enveloped Jack, transporting him to his peaceful place.

Notice His Wings

"What's neat about the white-crowned sparrow is its striking head pattern. Adults have black and white stripes on their heads while their offspring have brown and tan stripes," Jack pointed out to Angelita as they watched the birds at Tucker Wildlife Sanctuary in Silverado, California.

"They are so beautiful," Angelita commented in a confident, strong manner.

"Notice his wings," Jack continued to say, "His wings are rounded with short feathers. Those are called elliptical wings, which are good for short bursts of high speed. They allow fast take-offs and tight maneuvering."

Angelita was impressed as Jack spoke in a scholarly manner. With each word, she leaned in closer to him. When he finished, she was cozily wrapped in his arms.

"You are so knowledgeable about birds, Jack. I'm really impressed," she said looking him deep in the eyes.

"I guess you can say I have an inside track," he said in his deadpan comical style.

"You are so comforting to me, Jack. I feel good when I'm with you."

"Ah mi princesa," Jack said in an Americanized Spanish accent and kissed her on the tip of her nose.

She snuggled up close to Jack and whispered in his ear, "I love you."

Jack pulled her close and gently said, "I love you too, my little Angel. I honestly love you."

This was the perfect date. They continued watching the birds, holding hands, and feeling a bond with nature and with each other.

They sat on one of the benches and enjoyed the atmosphere as they held hands, making silly goo-goo love eyes at each other.

The Slap

A man and a lady who looked to be in their late twenties walked by on the dirt trail. When Angelita saw them, she instantly froze until they walked by. She abruptly pulled her hands away from Jack.

Jack was confused, "What? What?"

Angelita slapped Jack in the face, stood up, and began walking away.

"Wait, wait, Angelita, what did I do?"

"You know what you did! You know what you did!" she said in an angry, psychotic voice.

Jack stood there in shock with his arms spread out, asking, "What?"

"You know what you did! You know what you did to Xochitl." She burst into tears and ran back toward the administration office.

The Tour Guide

When I caught up, she was already in the office speaking with one of the tour guides.

"Angelita, come on, let's go home."

She ignored Jack and kept her back to him.

"It's best that you leave her alone," said the tour guide. "I'm getting an Uber for her."

Jack left the office in disbelief.

He walked toward his car and stood there for a moment, thinking about the situation.

"What's wrong with her?" he shouted out. "We were having such a good time. Why did she have to spoil it?"

He went and kicked the side of his car with a good amount of force, hurting his toes on his right foot.

Birdy, Birdy in the Sky… Why’d You Do that in My Eye?

Jack took a breath and looked up to the sky. It was a beautiful sunny day. The sky was a piercing blue, and not a cloud in sight.

He walked back down the trail and sat on the bench, which he and Angelita had occupied only 20 minutes earlier.

The scenery was breathtaking and calming to Jack.

"Should I break up with her or should I go with the flow and support her?" He absolutely did not know what to do.

Jack leaned back with his eyes closed to relieve the stress on the back of his neck.

As he sat there relaxed, he felt something moist and dewy hit his forehead. The sensation startled him, but he knew that it was a bird dropping that hit him.

Jack looked up to the sky and saw a most handsome red-winged blackbird sailing across the sky with grace and skillful speed.

Jack felt at one with the bird. As if the bird lived within him.

Then in a split second, everything around him silenced and froze except the bird.

From the sky, Jack felt the bird's eyes on him like a radar. It was sharp and intense but with a pleasurable sense of comfort and home. Jack was fascinated by the emotions he was feeling in the moment.

In between the bird's melodious chirping, he spoke to Jack, "Come fly with me, Jack."

Jack knew he was kin with this bird. He could feel the bond pulling him toward the sky. Jack stood up on the bench and extended his vertebrae. He could feel the cracking up and down his spine.

In a flash of bewildered awareness, Jack was looking down from the sky at the bench on which he was sitting.

Jack focused forward enroute, seeing his friend the red-winged blackbird gliding next to him.

It was the wildest freeing experience Jack had ever felt. A sense of heightened ecstasy took over him as he began singing his simple and beautiful bird song:

Fly with me

Enjoy the sky with me

Fly with me

See all that you can see

Fly with me

Ok-a-lee, ok-a-lee, ok-a-lee


Post Flight Confusion

What seemed like several hours later, Jack woke up on the side of the 55 Freeway close to where it meets the 5.

His shirt was torn and dirty. He got up feeling dazed and very tired.

"How did I get here?" he wondered as he jumped off the freeway onto the bike trail below.

On his cellphone, he saw three text messages from his mom:

Message #1: "Jack, it's three in the morning. Where are you? Angelita's mother is worried."

Message #2: "This is not funny, Jack. Where are you and Angelita?"

Message #3: (Timestamped 10:45 am) "You and Angelita have been gone almost 26 hours. What's going on? If I don't hear from you in the next 30 minutes, I'm getting the police department involved."

At 11:05 am, Jack called his mom, and she answered on the first ring.

"Where are you, Jack?"

"I'm in Santa Ana. But I don't know how I got here. I'm really groggy, and my body is quivering."

"Were you drinking last night?"

"No, mom, no!" Jack answered.

"Is Angelita okay?"

"As far as I know, she is. We had a fight yesterday morning at Tucker's Sanctuary, and she took an Uber home."

"There's something wrong with that, Jack. Angelita never made it home last night. Her mother is very worried."

"Oh wow. This is serious. I'm going back to the sanctuary and talk to the guy who got the Uber ride for her. I'm pretty sure my car is still there also."

"I'm calling the sheriff. There's something wrong here."

~~~ Come back for part five to find out what happened!!! ~~~

Short StoryYoung AdultSeriesMysteryLovefamilyAdventure

About the Creator

Rick Henry Christopher

Writing is a distraction for me. It takes me to places unknown that fulfill my need for intellectual stimulus, emotional release, and a soothing of the breaks and bruises of the day.

Reader insights


Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

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    Creative use of language & vocab

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    Well-structured & engaging content

  3. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

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Comments (13)

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  • Gina C.about a month ago

    Oh my, I love how you began this part with the proposal! Jack and Angelita are so sweet. I hope Angelita is ok! Can't wait to read the next part!

  • JBaz2 months ago

    Rick , you hit such a winner with this series. Yes this one was good, ( although ya kinda pissed me off, LOL) Where are You going with this...? I hope Vocal recognizes this series.

  • Can’t wait to find out what happens. Angelita better be okay lol

  • Babs Iverson2 months ago

    What a cliffhanger!!! Left a heart!!!

  • Oh no, I hope Angelita is okay. Damn that guy must have done something shady. And whoa how did Jack end up there. So weird. Can't wait for part 5!

  • Loryne Andawey2 months ago

    Hey! Hey! HEEEYYYY!!! What's happening to my boy Jack?! What happened to Angelita? Nice to see the bird and magical flight circling back but don't leave me hanging for too long!

  • Shane Dobbie2 months ago

    I need to go back and catch up with these

  • Jenni Lonmon2 months ago

    Excellent!!!! You got me at The Proposal.

  • Tiffany Gordon 2 months ago

    Great storytelling as usual. This installment was fast paced and full of twists and turns. I really enjoyed it. I am invested in this couple and am anxious to see how the story turns out. I'm curious to find out who Xochital is and if true love can prevail. I'm rooting 4 these two. Nice work! I can't wait 4 the next one! :)

  • Chapter 4 & I still want more! But now I have to wonder if Angelita is the only one with problems. I have to admit, though, I'm with Jack in never knowing what she means when a woman tells me, "You know what you did!" I'm still trying to figure out one from 4th or 5th grade. And I'm 63! Editorial Note: The one line paragraph, "Jack left the in disbelief." Either something is missing for which you intended the definite article or it doesn't belong.

  • Mariann Carroll2 months ago

    Wow, that was good from start to finish, horror story ready to happen.

  • Very mysterious indeed with a great cliffhanger. I like how this part circles back to themes in Part 1, like with aviation. Side note: I love red-wing blackbirds!

  • Always something Good to read 📖 ❤️😉

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