Short Story #28

How are you today? Done all your Christmas shopping if it applies? Enjoying a well-deserved rest? I have spent the entire day trying to design a daily planner for myself which I intent to get bound. The normal ones don’t work for me and I end up leaving them half blank, so I’ve decided to make my own, but things go out of alignment when you insert one column or a pretty picture. It’s a late night again – or early morning getting some writing done. Hope you’re keeping safe and healthy and not indulging in all the rich food at once. Have a magical day of love and laughter. Remember to speak your truth – the worst they can say is no… but they could say yes.

The Things Fear Can Do
I willed my legs to go faster. Dodging people and almost knocking a man’s coffee all over him, I ran as fast as I could. My lungs were on fire, my muscles cried, but my fight or flight response focused my adrenaline on flight. I could not think clearly, I just knew I had to run.
My breathing was rapid, and my nose was burning. With my mind denied energy and anything but critical blood supply I couldn’t question my actions, just continue. I had made the initial choice and with that action my heart and body took over. I think my heart was in charge from the beginning, I was trying to show that it didn’t rule me, but who was I kidding.
“Wait!” I managed to shout and then doubled over with my hands on my knees taking in a deep lungful of air to slow my galloping chest. I was no Hussain Bolt, but I think I’d made it.
When I looked up, the entire boarding queue was looking at me and people walking between other gates had stopped to stare. I scanned the crowd, but he wasn’t there. The dark-haired guy near the front with the grey jacket scowled at me.
“Sorry,” I said now that I knew it wasn’t him. He must have already boarded. Head hung down I turned to go back to wait for my plane. The Universe had a lesson for me – you can’t expect unlimited opportunities if you choose to do nothing with them. Fear isn’t a good enough excuse.
“Hey, crazy legs.”
I looked up into big shiny chocolate eyes below a curtain of glossy dark hair. My breath caught in my throat and tears began to run down my face.
“Hey, hey!” he said, taking me against his solid chest. “I saw you dashing across here just now like you had a pack of wild dogs chasing you. What happened?”
“I… I thought I’d missed you,” I sniffled, pulling away so I could wipe my face and look at him.
“Missed me? But you saw me five minutes ago. You know when we said goodbye after spending three hours catching up the last six years since high school? You’re supposed to be getting on a plane to holiday in Mauritius and I WAS supposed to be going back home to London.”
“You WERE supposed to?” I asked stepping back so that I could look up at him without straining my neck. He let go of my shoulders, but loosely held onto my fingertips.
“Yes. I’ve never been to Mauritius before and I’m between jobs at the moment, and you shouldn’t have to go on your own, unless you really want to. So I was changing my ticket,” he added.
“Really. Why were you looking for me again?”
“Why are you coming on holiday with me?” the fear in me redirected.
“I asked first.”
“Oh for heaven’s sake, because you love each other and always have.”
We both whipped our heads around to see who had said that.
“James, what are you doing here?” he asked his older brother.
“What do you normally do at airports? And now you’re just going to ignore what I said and go on asking everybody else about each other for another six years,” James said.
“What do you mean?” I asked.
“You guys forget how small our hometown is. Everybody talks, and you guys ask how the other is, but don’t bother to ask each other. When was the last time you spoke? News flash Kelly. Zach loves you and has since primary school. And Zach, Kelly has been practicing signing our surname for just as long. Somebody had to tell you two idiots. Let me know when and where the wedding is. They’re going to give me the key to the city for sorting THIS out. Bye got to go or I’m going to miss my flight. See you soon,” James wiggled his fingers at us as he walked away.
My cheeks were glowing as I turned to meet Zach’s gaze. We both laughed and as the sound faded so did the world around us as our lips met for the first time. It was better than all my dreams and imaginings. I knew they were where they belonged.

by Debbie Gravett © 2020.12.22

Image by StockSnap from Pixabay

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