“Miranda…!” There was no answering voice. The awful silence closed in and Edith began, quite loudly now, to scream. If her terrified cries had been heard by anyone but a wallaby squatting in a clump of blacken a few feet away, the picnic at Hanging Rock might yet have been just another picnic on a summer’s day. Nobody did hear them.
She was invisible.
No matter how loudly she screamed or how much noise she made, nothing could drown out the dreamy romanticism of the Hanging Rock and its haunting shadow looming chillingly around her. The ecstatic calls of the luring voices that chanted in a language unfamiliar to the child Edith suffocated her, drawing the very essence of life from her body. Edith went bolting down the cliff, where the moment’s pass events were no longer whispered about; leaving Miranda on the surface of the monolith continuing to lead in the climbing of the rock. Graceful Miranda, like a Botticelli angel, who carried an air of mystery that became another’s drug- they were addicted and she was their drug. So mysterious, yet so graceful, Miranda was floating up the path of the Hanging Rock, a path that was blinded to all others except herself. It was as though she was heading home and the pinnacle was her destiny. She took every step without hesitation while slowly letting her shoes and stocking slip from her delicate fingers, stripping off all the things that held her back in the world. All the things that held her from her freedom, from her destiny, a destiny that she indeed knew about- as she ascended into a place beyond the natural human world to a timeless place, to a place where time merely existed, a place where corsets and stockings were no more, a place where angels could spread their wings and fly without a care in the world; a dream – ‘what we see and what we seem are but a dream, a dream within a dream’.
The spirits who had their image imprinted into the face of the Hanging Rock were calling back their heavenly angel Miranda; Miranda who has sent to Earth to show little Sarah Waybourne tender loving care. It was through Miranda’s soft angelic voice and Saint like qualities that Sarah became so fond of. Just two nights before in their room where Miranda was sitting by the dressing table in her white evening gown, brushing her hair while Sarah starred hypnotisingly at Miranda’s reflection in the mirror when Miranda whispered: “Sarah, you must learn to love someone else for I won’t be here much longer.”
However, Sarah seemed preoccupied and acted as if she hadn’t heard the sentence, even when it was clear that a tear drop was forming in the corner of her eye and threatening to spill. But deep down young Sarah knew that Miranda indeed was never going to come back.
The spirits were slowly luring Miranda back home. It was their own fault that Marion, Irma and Miss McCraw decided to follow Miranda- all were floating in a dream like ecstatic way. It was Marion that wondered moments before why a surprising number of human beings are without purpose, though it is probable that they are performing some function unknown to themselves. Ironically, it was Marion who was performing something unknown to herself. She too, was ascending to a place of freedom, where everyone’s existence had a purpose- where everyone was not just simple puppets on the stage playing in the theatrical production titled ‘Life’. Miss McCraw, the school’s mathematics teacher, also carried around an air of ambiguity. With her mind filled