There was only one goodbye left to say now. One goodbye to the one person who meant more to him than the rest of the world together.
And 'goodbye' wasn't adequate and 'see you soon' was a lie and there was really nothing to do except smile, a smirk to tell the truth, smirk like they did in the olden days, when they were leaving for a night, a see-you-tomorrow smirk with every emotion plain to see to one but invisible to all others. And the smirk and a grin in reply, a jaunty wave and a quick turn and that was it. Refusing, as always, to look back, instead preferring to look up and away, towards the trees in the distance and the birds in the sky, through the air that was suffocating, the atmosphere which was bearing its whole incredible weight down on one soul.
And there was no turning back, no 'please stay's, nothing that could console. For fate does not look kindly on all; no, she looks kindly on few, harshly on many but indifferently on the majority.
And those who she similes on, and those she glances at and then away do not know how lucky they are. That there should be no heartbreak.
But this was worse than heartache. For heartache is uncontrollable, and so inconsolable, but all he had to do was turn around and she would be there standing. He hoped she would be. But if he turned, he would lose his future, lose his past and all he had worked so hard to achieve.
But he would keep his present and he would keep his soul.
And so he turned, turned back to the one person who could save him from this all encompassing darkness which was drowning him even as the midday bells chimed on a beautiful summer's day and the lakes were at their lowest ebb.
And he turned to her and he stilled his feet, for they had betrayed him in carrying him away from her as he debated and decided; and he turned and in that moment he stilled his heart.
He stilled it not with magic, for he had none, and not by any human means. He stilled it through will power alone.
For his feet had carried him around the bend in the road, and he could no longer see the place he had left her.
But he knew, in his heart of hearts that she would not be there waiting for him. She would not have stayed and watched him go. She had known this goodbye was coming, and she, the strong one, the prepared one, would have made herself ready for this moment in a way that he never could.
And there was no going back. The way was only forwards.
And soon, but in a time no longer measurable on a watch with a second hand and a minute hand, but at a time only measurable by the beating of a dying, broken heart, the man, the one who had, not long ago, been a boy, discovered that even at their lowest ebb, the lakes were quite deep enough to make a final journey in.
He never knew if she was standing there, waiting. But his last though was of that empty space of road which should have held his darling, his beloved.
He never knew, but she did.
I was thinking about saying goodbye to my closest friend, something I hope I will never, ever have to do, and this came out of that, somehow. Not entirely sure how.
Please review this – I don't know how it would sound to anyone besides me, and I'd love to know. Reviews really do make my day.