NakedGirl: The Story of Dareen
by donnylaja

Part 19

Dareen fell asleep, and dreamed once again about brown mountains rising up above her.  Then had a horrible dream of Lourdes, reduced to a thong bikini, screaming and running barefoot down a dirty sidewalk just ahead of a gang of rapists.  She woke up.  It was dark and quiet outside, probably after midnight.  It was uncomfortable to do this naked but she sat up on the chair in her desk in the dark bedroom, knees up to her chin, breasts crushed against her thighs, and contemplated what stars could be seen over the city lights, past the fire escape.

She remembered running stupidly through that thunderstorm back in June, trying to find a phone, and that crazy scientist with the bullet-shaped rocket who wanted her to change her wet clothes right in front of him.  Being lifted into the air by lightning, or something, which burned her clothes off.  Discovering her super powers.  Only Elly knew.  And now, Billy Gibbs.

She thought of her brother Sanny in the Army, now stationed in Iraq, thank goodness in a safe place, inside one of the big American bases.  It was just as well his Arabic was so neglected so as to be unusable (their parents didn't use it much at home) and she, being the only scholarly one, was the only one to actually keep it up.  If he knew Arabic well, they might put him out among the people where he could get shot at.  Her other army brother, Mikky, was pretty well established giving flying lessons to cadets at West Point, so at least he probably wouldn't be sent out to Iraq too.

She thought of the recent vandalism on mosques, the time when everyone at her mosque thought they were being attacked, the Cobb News Network talking about "turd world nations", that horrible blond lady saying Muslims smell bad and must be converted to Christianity, the comments Elly had heard on the street.  And thought about the cousins of the people at her own mosque, who had been working as busboys at the restaurant on top of the World Trade Center, such a great honor for them yet it had become their fiery grave.  There was so much hate and violence in the world; she just wanted it to end.

She got out her sajjada, and said a prayer, still naked though clothed by the darkness in the room.  Please Allah, let there be peace.  Then she thought of Billy's request that she volunteer her services to her country.  And how it seemed inescapable, she just couldn't keep her powers to herself when help was so badly needed.  So many innocent, helpless people.  But how could she help all of them?  Even as a super-hero, she was just one person.

Tired from her thoughts, wondering maybe that her brooding was pointless and maybe she should lighten up a little, she got up and, her eyes now used to the dark, went to the closet and slipped on that burka.  She felt it tight over her breasts and smiled, remembering Elly laughing at it.  Then, realizing she had doused her super powers by putting it on, she tossed it off and went back to her bed to await regeneration.  She thought of Jamal and his unrequited affection for her, his silly invention ideas, exercise machine power, the ice hat. And then she was asleep.

She woke up and it was almost dawn, but she had a very uneasy feeling.  It was almost like the familiar feeling that she was needed somewhere, though not quite.  But she was getting very strong feelings emanating from downtown.  No, no, not now.  Please, Allah...  So far all her work had been done under cover of darkness.  And this morning she had to go to work.

In the pellucid dawn light she quickly checked outside, then opened the window, hopped onto the fire escape rail, her toes curling around it, then stretched her arms out and with a quick flexing of her knees, silently darted upward.  Feeling the cool morning air on her face and nipples, she banked left and up as high as she could given the increasingly strong sense the place where she was needed was near the ground.  She glided high over midtown, looked down on the first of the morning traffic, cars and people walking sluggishly as if wishing they had stayed in bed an hour longer.

Then she felt the sun rise, felt the first rays on her butt, and figured she had to hide somewhere fast.  She hopped down onto the top of the Joly Tower, a safe thirty-five stories above the street, and hid behind the cornice, looking down and waiting.

The Joly Tower was a narrow, semicircular building, only a few years old, built during the 1996 Olympics, distinctive because it was striated reinforced metal from top to bottom, looking like a big tool of some kind.  The naked supergirl knelt behind the two-foot-high cornice, feeling the tarred pebbles digging into her knees, painful but tolerable to one with super powers, then squatted up on her toes, looking back at the service door, hoping no one would come up and see her.

She looked down at the street again.  It was getting close to eight o'clock and the plaza below was starting to fill up with people scurrying along holding their briefcases and their cups of coffee.  Cars and taxis were now filling the streets.  She hoped this was all a false alarm, wondering if she could fly away without being seen, or whether she was stuck here all day until it got dark again.  Or maybe...

At first she felt the rumble through her toes, then the whole building shook and there was a loud boom like an explosion far below.  Dareen's face took on a frightened expression at the same time that people on the street covered their heads and ran.  Now the distant sound of screaming far below and Dareen felt the building begin to pitch forward.  No, no!

She stood up and felt the building begin to teeter to the right, toward a lower line of buildings across the street.  She jumped into mid-air and out over the street to get a better look below.  Rubble and smoke around the bottom, the smoke starting to waft upward, all noise blocked out by horrible loud tinning of bending metal sheared past its elastic limit.  There was only one thing to do.  Could she?  Did she have the strength?

As she flew down the rapidly narrowing space over the street she knew and felt that Allah had given her the power, the power to save the lives of the people of her city.  She was only dimly aware of the shock and screams of the people in both buildings as the Joly Tower toppled toward its neighbors.  Down twenty stories, then she put her body horizontal and pushed with all her might, feeling the cool straining metal, the vibrations of the shearing below coming up through her hands.  The tower slowed its sideways fall.  Just in time.  She felt her bare toes brush against the lower building and knew that it would not be able to withstand the sideways stress.  Then the tower lurched to the left.  She followed it and looked down.  The boulevard below was wide enough, fortunately...

To the people on the street, looking up as they ran away, it seemed like the tower was coming down on them, though unnaturally slowly, like time was standing still.  They didn't see the little brown figure stuck to its side, still less could they tell that the figure was guiding the direction of the fall.  Inside the building, end of life prayers were said, people hopped onto the walls as their world turned onto its side, dodging the piling on of sliding desks and copying machines.

Slowly the building lay down on its side, or moved as if that was what it was going to do.  Fortunately because of its unusual construction it did not come apart from the stress.  Then it dawned on the people that it was being guided.  And now as the building, two blocks long, slowly descended, they saw something which made them think this was a dream, a dream sprung somewhere from deep in the pit of the id where fear mixed with desire -- a naked woman, brown of skin and large of breast, with lustrous purple hair both above and below, holding the building up as it descended, until finally it was a few feet over the street, held up by the naked woman whose strong bare feet pressed against the asphalt of Caroline Avenue which began to buckle and crease under the weight so narrowly centered.

She looked uncertain as people approached up to a safe distance, both in front of her and behind, lining the sidewalks, staying away from under the narrow building.  Hours seemed to pass though it was only moments, as they beheld her magnificent strong nudity in the morning light from all angles, breasts riding high on her chest as her arms stayed up to hold the hundred tons or so above her, her muscles straining a little but not really all that much, her tummy concave, legs placed a little apart to brace the bare feet.  Behind, people saw the strong bare back, the narrow waist, the tight buttocks, the muscles of the calves.

There were people with cameras and of course she could do nothing as they approached and snapped.  The local Cobb News people poured from their office across the street and now there was a videocam.  Microphones were thrust forward.

"What is your name?  Where did you come from?" were the questions thrown at her.

It was the first thing on the news, of course.  The camera frantically being turned on and a quick view of the photographer's sneakers and then the upview of the building coming down, horrible memories of 9/11 but now the slowness in descending, an immense object being carefully controlled, and the blessed thankful relief that things were in benevolent hands as it slowly and safely approached the ground as if it was a tired building that was taking a rest.

And the close-up of the naked woman, nipples and crotch digitally fuzzified, under the horizontal tower as it slowly and softly went lower, lower, then gently the naked woman's feet rested on the pavement and all was safe.  Her nude body took up the full screen as people could be seen gathering around.  And now the close-up of her amazed, shy, newly famous face, a gentle brown pretty Arab-American face with big brown eyes.

In the living room of a modest tract house in Dunwoody, Hemet and Fatima Alkaras, who had been wondering why their daughter hadn't called in a few days, looked at the screen in open-mouthed astonishment.

On a little black and white TV in the kitchen, the nearly naked Lourdes, who had been sitting gloomily and uneasily with her parents and munching fried bananas and watching the Noticias, tuned out the rapid Spanish of the announcer as the face appeared on screen.  She gulped down too much and began coughing.

In an apartment over Charlie's, Billy Gibbs, slouching on a sofa with his girlfriend, stopped sipping from his long-necked Coors and playing idly with his girlfriend's dreadlocks, and said, "Jeee -- sus!"

Dareen's naked form and now a close-up of her adorable face took up Jamal's TV screen.  He sat back in the chair in his bedroom, looking at the TV sideways, no longer concerned with the internet surfing in front of him.  His mouth was open.  He couldn't breathe.  Strangely he felt his eyes getting wet.

Elly, listening with her co-workers clustered around the radio in her office, sat back apart from the others and muttered, "Oh... my... God..."

At Cobb News headquarters in New York, interns were running everywhere, executives were butting in on each other's cell phones, ideas were thrashed around, the film clip was showing over and over on the screens on each desk, on the screens up on the wall.  The place was going bonkers.

And now Imam Tahir, sitting down in front of the television in his quiet little house with the Grand Imam for a little rest after that fine meal his wife had cooked.  They placed their coffees on the table in front of them, the Grand Imam of course with slow dignity and a sense of presence like with everything he did.  Tahir thought he had made some headway with him tonight.  He seemed willing to withhold judgment for now on Dareen and the other women at his mosque.  He had said, "Great changes must come slowly," which was a concession that eventually the change would come.

Tahir turned on the remote control and the first thing they heard was, "And now a news bulletin from Action News."  The shot of the tipping Joly Tower, and the naked woman guiding it down to rest.  The eyes and mouths of the two men opened wider and wider as they watched.  Even Tahir's wife came out of the kitchen to look.

And now the closeup of Dareen Alkaras's face filling the screen.  Tahir emitted a strange choking sound.  "What is your name? Where are you from?" an off-camera voice called out.

She said the most natural thing that came to her.  "All glory to Allah... I am glad to do Allah's will."  And then the camera panned back to her bare butt (fuzzified) as she turned, carefully and awkwardly set the building down onto the street, and jumped up.  The camera tilted up and caught only a blur as she flew away.