Clouds of white bloom in Charlie's
coffee, the colors blending: dark to light; light to dark. Outside,
snow begins to fall. Fat flakes land upon the grass and dissolve
immediately: white to clear.
There's a knock at the door of the
cabin. He remains still, expecting no one. He hasn't seen a human
being since he went to town three weeks ago.
The knock again, more insistent. He
sips his coffee and waits for the person to go away.
The doorknob turns. The door swings
open. A woman stands there, wearing a down jacket and a striped
scarf. She unwinds the scarf from her face.
"I've been looking for you for
"Here I am."
"I see." She sits and
gestures. "Can I have some coffee? I'm freezing."
He slides his mug across the table and
she laughs. "No clean cups?"
"One of everything. My new motto."
"Sounds a bit lonely."
"It's easier that way."
She wraps her long fingers around the
mug. Her nails are red. "Why did you leave, Charlie? You were
one of the best teachers we had."
"The principal was messing with
the test results."
"Oh, don't be so self-righteous.
Come back. The students miss you."
"I can't make a difference in an
"Your logic is weak."
"The world is not indifferent. Not
all the time."
"I think you've lost your nerve."
She pushes the mug towards him.
"Could be." He tries not to
notice the soft curl to her hair; avoids looking at the swell of her
stomach and the band around her finger. He stares out the window.
"I can see I'm wasting my time."
She stands and pushes in her chair. She wraps the scarf around her
neck and heads out the door without another word.
He watches her leave, heading down the
mountain, her figure slowly fading before melting away entirely.
I love you, he tells her
afterimage. And he goes to pour another cup of coffee.
Kelly Garriott Waite on Google+
Labels: fiction Trifecta Writing Challenge