Shadows lay softly across the ground, begging quietly for warmer sun. Winter had been too long, plants left brown and dead, unsure of when their days could officially be considered “spring.” Gillian lay quietly among them, absorbing what little light she could get before the clouds from the north once again blanketed the sky. She wanted to stay here, silent, until a new day arrived. It had all been too much. Left alone with her thoughts, she couldn’t help but wonder where she’d be if everything had happened differently.
It wasn’t an overly refreshing sight. The water was dark and murky while the trees stood dead against the cold gray sky. Still, it was obvious that this was where they were supposed to meet. Secluded and all but abandoned, no one would come across them here and witness as they exchanged their hand-offs. He waited, a shadow against the afternoon with hands shoved deep into the pockets of his jeans. Pacing, he tightened and loosed his limbs in an effort to reduce the cold. How much longer was he going to have to wait? Nerves were slowly kicking in.
Why did everything she touch break? It was almost as if she loved it all too much. Perhaps she wasn’t supposed to care about the things she could hold in her hands so much as she did the experiences. Perhaps life was just trying to teach her a lesson. Still, as she gently ran her fingers over the foundation of the stable, it was hard to not take it personally. Effort had gone into her attainments including long hours and late nights. Wasn’t this supposed to be her experience, her escape? Had she just taken too long to realize it?
They waved in soft spoken glory against the overcast dawn. Two tidy rows of red, write, and blue trailing to the end of the walkway. They were easy to pass by without paying much notice, simply blending into the backdrop, raised atop nondescript white poles. Still they continued to fly, not at all bothered by rain and sleet, knowing that the time would come that they would not only be noticed, but needed. They were a beacon of hope. They were a sobering reminder that freedom often came at a cost, for freedom was never free.
She couldn’t really recall the last time she’d received flowers. It had all seemed so cliché in past relationships, anyway. She’d get them because of a fight or a special occasion. Yet here they were, completely unannounced and simply because she’d been on his mind. Burying her nose into the stems and breathing deeply, she felt a smile spreading slowly across her lips. There was something to be said about a man that could surprise her- and these were definitely unexpected. Reaching for her phone, she began to dial his number. If he wasn’t going to play hard to get, why should she?