I stood at the water's edge and took a deep breath. The salty air filled my lungs in a way that felt transformative.
As if the water itself could clean and sanitise my soul.
The repetitive motion of the waves was soothing. It felt steady and reliant. With the chaos that had suddenly entered my world, I found comfort in knowing that I could still rely on nature. To know, no matter the darkness crawling beneath my skin, the sun would still rise in the morning.
Watching the sea rock back and forth, I felt cradled by the motion, I took another deep breath and steadied myself in it.
The sky was still above me and the ground below. I stood somewhere in between.
The wind whipped my hair onto my face forcing my eyes to close. I shuddered involuntarily as a memory flashed to the forefront of my mind.
He was pacing. Back and forth. A cigarette in between his fingers as he smoothed his hair back. His eyes on me.
“She is crazy. I can’t believe she would just show up like that. I’m so sorry.”
I sat on the couch, still in shock. I looked at my fingernails and tried to focus on keeping my hands from shaking. Attempting to compile and organise my thoughts seemed futile, all of my rehearsed speech was completely forgotten.
“I don’t understand. I thought you had broken up.” I winced at the sound of my voice. Small, weak. Meeting here in person was a mistake. I should have stuck to text. I could control it all with written words. One worded answers and long awaited replies.
I could make him sweat. That’s what I wanted.
I wanted to appear powerful and enraged. I wanted him to cower at my feet.
“We have!” he cried, his voice slightly higher now. “Of course we have. Like I said, she is crazy. She just can’t move on.”
He stopped pacing and studied me carefully. “You believe me right?”
I said nothing.
He threw his cigarette aside and crouched down reaching for my hands, clasped tightly in my lap. His eyes pleaded with me. His fingers digging in a little too tightly. Then he looked down at the floor, forehead creased, his eyebrows knitted in shame.
He looked so sorry. So desperate.
I was angry that his guard seemed to drop. His expression looked guilty. Like maybe there was a truth to what she had said.