Mid-Week Flash Challenge – Week 70

Prompt: https://purplequeennl.blogspot.com/2018/08/mid-week-flash-challenge-week-70.html

Untitled, 312 words

We walked without speaking, my mind lost in the wet slithery sound of leaves under my sneakers. Slide, slide, slide-splash, slide, slide-splash. She’d been by my side enough days to remember when I shuffled my feet deliberately and not because my hips didn’t work quite right anymore. I don’t know if she heard the sound the same way as I did, a sonic blanket wrapping me in October, or if she just tuned me out and dwelled on her own thoughts in the twilight. Probably the latter.

The city wasn’t cold yet, but we weren’t far from the days where the grey stone and concrete would suck the heat out of anyone nearby. I pushed my hands against the soft fleece in the pouch of my hoodie, thinking to myself that in some ways there wasn’t anything different between me at seventy-three and me at eighteen, dressed the same way, walking the same way. Well, nothing different except scars, an ever-increasing list of ailments and “conditions,” a marriage that was rebuilt out of the ashes of some tempestuous fires, and grandchildren not too far from heading off to college themselves.

Twilight was fading into night as we neared home. The apartment we’d talked about retiring in so many years ago wasn’t luxurious, but it afforded us the comforts of a life spent fighting battles within and without – more that I’d wanted to fight, more than I’d wanted her to have to deal with. It’d be quiet tonight, Wednesdays were our night to read, either by the fire or the fan, and I’d wonder as I always did in the quiet if she was happy, if she regretted her choices. I reached out to take her hand as we crossed the last street and approached our building. The questions were always there, but so was she, and that would – as always – be enough.

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One Response to “Mid-Week Flash Challenge – Week 70”

  1. Nice piece. Thank you for joining – good to see you here.

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