2010-08-03: A Change of Heart



Guest Starring:

Nun One and Nun Two

Date: August 3, 2010


A new heart also will I give you, and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh, and I will give you an heart of flesh. — Ezekiel 36:26

"A Change of Heart"

Malawi Mission

Ace is a gal with a purpose now and she's not waiting for Claire, Frank, T-Cube or anyone else to catch up or take the lead. She wants to get this whole apology thing done and over with before she thinks about it too much which would wind up ending with her talking herself out of it. The house is where she goes to look, her pace making the trip a lot shorter than it probably would be if she were to move at a 'normal' pace.

T-Cube is leaning against the building the nuns are currently working nearby. The vegetable garden that they've been tending hasn't been doing well as of late, perhaps because of the sweltering heat and lack of a ready supply of water. Nonetheless, they keep trying. One way or another, they'll find a way to provide these people with enough nutrients to exist on before their work in this place is done.

Helping the nuns are some of the small mission's Malawi women and children, they're carrying buckets of water to ladle out over the withering plants, hoping to give them enough moisture to survive the harsh climate. As Ace approaches, the firmer of the two nuns she'd been talking to earlier rises from her knees and turns to greet the young woman.

"Look," Ace blurbs out quickly while looking down, staring at the ground between the nun's feet and her own. "I..didn't understand what you guys were tryin' to do. I still don't think you should be kiddnappin' people but…" Coughing, she glances up quickly, shrugs and adds, "Anyhow, I'm sorry." Not the smoothest of apologies but she is trying and is sincere so hopefully that'll make things okay.

The tweaker's jaw just about hits the dirt when he witnesses Ace's apology to the nun and he runs up beside her. "What? Wait? What? Whaddya mean you're sorry?" He practically shouts at the woman before making a wild gesture at the nun, "Don't say you're sorry! They're the ones that should be sorry! Bunch of God freaks stealin' perfectly respectible people off the streets and .. and… " He pauses, at a loss for words, perhaps realizing for the first time since his arrival that his life wasn't perfect. But he was happy the way he was, wasn't he? All he wants to do is get back.

The nun's firm stare on Ace softens a bit and she nods to the woman. "Sometimes people just need a helping hand in the right direction, whether they realize it at the time or not." Turning toward T-Cube, she takes a calming breath and regards him with an expression that issues understanding and compassion. "You'll be able to go when you're well enough to make the flight, we don't want you to get sick on the plane." Sick from withdrawls isn't the issue, sick from drinking something he shouldn't or breathing in a fume that's not good for him is.

"Dude, T-Cube. Shut. UP! Get yourself clean and then go home. I'll try to hook you up with a job that doesn't require you being 'round drugs, a'ight?" Rolling her eyes, Ace shakes her head before nodding to the Sister. "Yeah. Well, still. Try to give people the benefit of the doubt and give then the choice. Ain't right forcing change upon people even if it is a good one." A shoulder's rolled in a lazy shrug before she adds, "I appreciate you tryin' to fix me but I'm not broken. I am working on betterin' my life…" Well, she is, kind of. "…and I do help people back home. I protect them. Good enough, in my opinion. Anyhow, yeah. Thanks."

"I don't presume to guess why Sister Mary and Father Patrick choose who they bring and who they don't." The sister begins, giving Ace an appraising eye as she speaks. "Everyone they bring us is welcomed, healed in mind and body, and free to return when they desire." When she squints her eyes, the crow's feet around them pucker up, making her look a little older than her already many years. She is easily twice as old as Ace is now, maybe even older. Finding Ben, her lips form into a small smile as she sees him learning to manage the wooden plow that's hooked to the two oxen walking ahead of him. "Here, they find a purpose and become stronger by helping others. There's a saying that God helps those who help themselves but I believe that God really smiles on those who help the ones who can't help themselves."

The sister angles her face to look back at Ace and the smile falls away to the firm expression that she usually wears. "It is not only the people who are brought here that are helping, the Malawi are helping them too. They are learning a new skills and a new way to exist, can you honestly tell me that you haven't learned anything since you came here?"

Ben is finally seen and Ace quirks a quick smile to the man but, when her attention returns to the nun, the smile kind of fades. "I don't know if I have or not. I really haven't had much time to think about anythin' other than how pissed I was. It'll probably sink in once I've got time to dwell on somethin' besides that. Sorry if that disappoints you, Sister. Jus' how things are." Looking away, now, she peers over a shoulder to see where Claire and Frank has gotten off to, her brow creased with thought and worry. "I probably won't be comin' back but I'll send a donation to the church for you guys from time to time."

"I can see a change in you," the second nun quips as she rises and faces Ace. The friendlier one is even older than the first by at least a decade, maybe even triple Ace's age. "You're a little more open and less violent from only a few hours earlier. Maybe you've learned to look at things from a different angle than quickly resorting to your fists." Whether it's just a casual observation on the nun's part or an actual change in Ace's demeanor is undetermined.

The first nun nods a little to the second and then the corners of her mouth twitch into a small smile. "That is true, Sister, given a way to leave, she still stopped and offered apology when she didn't have to." Toward Ace, the first nun bows her head and folds her hand together in prayer, the wooden rosary on the string of beads held firmly between her hands. "If we do not see you again, may your path be blessed."

Ace regards them both before angling her head to the right. "I guess so," she says to the first in regards to how she has changed, it being something she hasn't noticed herself. Not yet at any rate. "And…well, apologizing was the right thing to do." It was the right thing to do. She just doesn't choose to do the right thing often. When the other nun blesses her she blushes faintly and she dips her chin, a sign of respect to both Sisters. "And yours." Cracking a wry grin, she taps two fingers to a temple in a quirky little salute before turning around. Time to find Claire.

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