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Back...For more...again. Several hundreds of thousands of people rushed across sandy beaches, sending up a foamy spray in their wake as they raced towards oblivion. In the midst of the crowd stood a young boy, wiry dark hair strung around his face. He stood stock still as the world crashed down around him. He was dressed in green shorts and a white tee, both just a bit to baggy for his small frame. His feet sunk into the sand as more and more people rushed by, paying no attention to the young boy in the too big clothes. Soon enough, he stood alone on the beach.

"What do you think of it?"
" It doesn't make any sense."
"Yeah I know, what do you think of it."
Lance looked again at the photograph of the boy, trying to see what Sarah was so obviously excited about. To him, it looked like a boy on a shoreline somewhere, holding a pair of broken sunglasses. Behind him was what looked like roman pillars, the big white kind with the little grooves, stood in various states of disrepair.
"How did you do it?"
"Do what"
"The pillars, those things look heavy"
"I got my dad to bring them down in his trailer. What do you think of it?"
This was, for all intents and purposes, their relationship. Five years ago Sarah's grandmother died after being diagnosed with lung cancer. She was 65 and she wasn't a smoker. Even though Sarah was very close to her grandmother, she was very reserved about the entire ordeal and showed little to no signs of traditional mourning. Instead, she dug up her grandmother cemetery plot, and took a picture of the ashes. The fact that Lance knew this gave witness to the important role he played in Sarah's life.
"Is that your brother"
"Yeah"
"He looks skinny"
"What do you think of it?"
Lance sighed inwardly and tried to think of something to say. He thought, that he had to be at work in half an hour. He thought that he had to finish an essay. He thought that his mother and father were in a loveless relationship that generated passive aggressive negativity that made him feel like becoming a revolutionary in an African village. He thought that it was a picture, and though it was interesting and slightly mysterious, it was... a picture.
Then the picture turned, and Sarah was looking at it again. She was smiling, but not in an obvious way. Not a picture smile, not an acceptance smile or a winning smile. It was a happy smile. The silence stretched unaltered, as Sarah became observed in her work, and Lance understood, like he always would. Right on cue, he slowly reached out and took the frame from Sarah's hands. Carefully, he set it down on the bookshelf next to the couch. The boy on the beach stood alone, next to him a lily sat on a pile of dirt, and further along the bookshelf a girl in a yellow dress held up a window pane and stared out at the world.
Lance turned back to Sarah, looked into her eyes and said, without exaggeration,

"I love it."





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