… and in a woman it’s ten times worse.”
Where did I come up with that? It’s not likely something I made up, and so I googled it… came up with nothing. I suspect then it’s something I really heard, something someone said to me while I was doing this research. Something of the island women’s wisdom, a risk I was taking doing this research. Just get on with it, I told myself then and I tell myself now. These images have become almost commonplace but back then they still had the power to shock me, to move me to action – with a woman’s curiosity…)
No one has seen Arthur since the crisis, but those people Vida spoke with, even Claudia is said to believe that Arthur has gone up into the hills with Theodore. Some suppose Art might have been captured with Theodore. He was seriously wounded; that much is known. He was shot through the leg up there at the fort, so he couldn’t run. But he did run.
Of course, he must have been taken. Vida imagines Arthur being dragged in between two husky marines, dragged into a big white room with his legs dangling limp, head bowed so that at first when he opens his eyes he sees his feet, although he doesn’t recognize them as his own, they seem so far away and all feeling is gone. She imagines that he is virtually poured into the room, without words but again the sound of a body hitting the floor. He moans and licks the blood dripping from his nose, sees red on the back of his hand after he touches it to his chin. He examines his naked chest beneath the ripped fabric of his shirt. The wound next to his nipple has already started to fester. He doesn’t try to move. Move, Art. Be okay. She imagines his blood pooling on the grey floor, wants to cradle his head in her lap. Hey, Art, hey, bleed here. She can only imagine cradling Arthur’s head; there is nothing else she has to offer.