Never Giving up the Ghost

prompt

 

She stood there, looking out at the expanse of dark blue sky ahead of her. It was glittering and vast, making her feel small. It’d be easy to end it all here and now, join him on the other side. She knew she wouldn’t, she didn’t have the strength, the gumption. She didn’t know how to be with him in life, and nothing has changed in his death.

Slipping off her shoes and wrapping her index finger around their straps, she walked lightly over the creaking boards of the pier. It was always strange to her, this pier at the far end of the cemetery. Beautiful, haunting, out of place. Just like they had been.

The grass was lush and soft under her feet, tickling her bare legs as she sat down in front of the ornate, almost ostentatious headstone. His name screaming at her from the marble, reminding her of who she almost was, who she’d never be.

It was quiet here at night, that’s why she only ever visited him after dark. That, and the fact that she didn’t want to be found here, she didn’t want to be seen weeping over the grave of a man she’d let down so many times in life, a man she’d continued to let down in death.

She couldn’t even muster the strength to attend the funeral. She could never muster the strength to do anything when it came to him, something she’d almost come to terms with ages ago. As the old saying goes, though, almost only counts in horseshoes and hand grenades.

The marble was cold to the touch, her fingertips tracing the letters of his name. This was the closest she’d ever get to touching him again. When she squeezed her eyelids closed she could see him, every bit of him. She knew him by heart.

“I’m sorry I left you waiting,” she told him every time. Eyes closed, head turned up to the sky. He never answered, his voice becoming a long ago memory, blurring in her brain. “I’m sorry I didn’t love you enough.”

But she did now.

 

Sitting on the old, splintery pier, her feet dangling over the edge, the tips of her toes grazing the still, dark water, just like she had with him all those years ago, she could feel him. The soft skin of his arm around her shoulders, the stubble on his chin resting on her shoulder, scratchy, warm. She’d sit here with him, her Thursday night ritual, until she couldn’t feel him anymore. She’d imagine the water rising up, ice cold and calm, until it covered her. She wouldn’t move an inch, she’d let it take her, allow it to return her to him. Maybe this time she’d find her place in his arms.

Maybe this time she wouldn’t be afraid to stay.

 

 

Written based on two prompts from YeahWrite.