Phallon watched the fish swim in the pond his Grandpa had installed in his backyard. He enjoyed visiting his Grandpa each Saturday. Grandpa had put the pond in because young Phallon loved the fish so much as a toddler; ‘fishes’ had been his first word.
Now he sat with Grandpa who asked him about school and of course the girls in his school. Uncomfortable, Phallon wished Grandpa didn’t ask him about that.
Grandpa simply laughed,”Phallon, I’m only teasing you. It’s good you have friends who are girls and that there are girls you like. This Jennifer, have you asked her out?”
Phallon’s face turned red, “Yeah we’ve gone to a movie together and bowling. I want her to be my girlfriend but her parents say she’s too young to have a boyfriend.”
Grandpa nodded a smile on his face, “You’ll find the right one when you’re older. When I saw your Grandma the first time, my heart lept out of my chest. I wonder if I will ever meet that right girl of yours and see you marry her?”
Phallon felt uncomfortable again, “Why wouldn’t you be there Grandpa? You’re only eighty-one?”
Grandpa patted Phallon’s hand then squeezed it, “You know, my boy, I’ve been sick a long time. It’s a battle I’ve mostly conquered, but my strength is waning these days.When you get married someday, think of your old Grandpa, okay?” Phallon nodded feeling a lump in his throat.
Two-years later Grandpa succumbed. Phallon was sixteen and felt raw inside. He returned to the fish pond in Grandpa’s back yard. He noticed the fishes were floating and the reality of life made tears wet his cheeks. In the mess of the last two weeks including Grandpa’s funeral, no one had remembered to feed the fish.
(I truly meant for this to be Flash Fiction, but the story just developed. Sorry about the way – over word count.)
Grandma June huffed at Natalie, her granddaughter visiting her at home.”You’re not getting any younger, you’re thirty-eight. You can’t barely have babies anymore!”
Natalie rolled her eyes at Grandma June,”Gran, I’m an elementary school teacher. I like going home and not having to worry about kids.”
June sighed,”It was that man, you were supposed to marry. He’s a thief and stole your heart; I’m right aren’t I?”
Natalie ignored June’s question. She hated when her Grandma or anyone, talked about Christopher. She’d never admit he was her one.
He hadbeen since she was in grade ten and Christopher an attractive senior in high school. It was when he had first asked Natalie out. They’d broken-up, having had incompatible lives with Christopher away at university soon after.
Then, seven-years-ago, they’d ran into each other and started talking and dating again. Natalie had convinced herself this was finally it. Sadly, a few weeks before the wedding, Christopher had disappeared; the memories were agony for her.
Two-week’s later, Grandma June called Natalie up to invite her to a wine and cheese night she was hosting for her neighbours. She had tried to decline but June was adamant Natalie attend.
She arrived at her Grandma June’s surprisingly lively wine party, in jeans and a white t-shirt. She had barely bothered to apply makeup as Natalie had come from the gym and was worn out.
“Oh you came,” Grandma June said excitedly, approaching Natalie as she let herself inside. She hugged June and kissed her cheek, as June poured Natalie a large glass of red wine and filled her plate with bread and cheese. She winked at Natalie and left her alone in a small sitting room to rest before joining the other guests.
“Natalie?” A deep voice said. She turned on the sofa towards the sitting room door. Christopher’s voice shocked her, she had almost doused herself in red wine. His familiar timber filled Natalie with great pain. She peered up at him feeling raw, as if he’d only left her yesterday without explanation.
Tears began dripping down Natalie’s cheeks; she was crying and couldn’t stop herself. Christopher immediately sat down on the sofa beside Natalie and pulled her close; he wiped her tears away with his thumb. She tried to jerk out of his arms, but he wouldn’t let her move.
“I’m not letting you go, ever again,” Christopher swore.”I can’t explain much about why I had to leave you, only that I didn’t have a choice.”
Natalie shoved him hard, “You have nothing more to say, nothing at all?”
Christopher was noticeably upset, “I told you I worked as an IT consultant. But I could never tell you or anyone who I worked for until recently. I worked for Special Forces in the army and I was called out to a job. It’s the only thing I can’t about. The job lasted years, and I wasn’t allowed to contact anyone. We saved countless lives, but it was awful what I did to you and being without you. I’m sorry.”
Natalie rubbed her swollen eyes, “You’re a liar Christopher. You could’ve mentioned something, anything. What do you want now? To stay for a while and then leave?To rip me apart again?”
Christopher buried his face in his hand, before gazing up at her: “I’m out now Natalie. I swear to you I work for regular businesses now, nothing to do with Special Forces or the army. I’ve no more secrets other than experiences of war and blood. I came back here for you, I even moved into a house on your Grandma June’s street. I hoped somehow, you and I could be together again. I love you.”
Natalie made a sound of frustration. Emotions of both anger and feeling relieved assaulted her. Despite her anger at Christopher, Natalie knew inside, there would never be another man for her but him.
To Christopher’ surprise, Natalie moved to sit in Christopher’s lap and be closer to him, to breathe in how delicious he smelt.
“Marry me now and we can do whatever celebration our families want later. I’m still mad at you Christopher but you’re it for me. I’ve always loved you and always will. If you can be with me and never leave me like that again, I can forgive you.”
Christopher nodded at Natalie, saying: “I promise.” He held Natalie tightly and kissed her lips hungrily.
Suddenly, there was a loud knock on the sitting room door and Grandma June walked in, a smile on her face. June’s boyfriend Nigel was with her and so was the local United Church minister.
Natalie looked at Christopher, “Did you do all this?”
Christopher shook his head, squeezing Natalie tight and kissing her cheek. He pulled out a beautiful sapphire and diamond ring set from his pocket. He slid the engagement ring on Natalie’s finger, and Grandma June handed Natalie a ring which had been her Grandfather’s wedding ring.
June smiled at Natalie and Christopher, a gleam in her clever blue-eyes. All was at it should be, she thought as her and Nigel witnessed her granddaughter’s wedding ceremony.
1. I buy flowers for the women in my life (flowers they would like) such as my Mom, friend, or Godmother every now and then so they feel appreciated and because some of them don’t receive flowers from their husbands often.
2. I buy sweet treats for some of people in my life such as my brothers, Dad, Mom, and friends. Favourites are Gluten Free Macaroon cookies from Cookies by George or Gluten Free cupcakes of any flavour for my Dad. Everyone else enjoys Purdy’s Mint Melties, Hedge Hogs, Sweet Georgia Browns, Plane Milk Chocolate, or Coconut Cream Chocolate bars. Cupcakes, mainly chocolate ones work too.
3. I send notes in the mail to my Grandmas who I can’t see as often as I wish. I wrote my Grandma Reeder a poem and mailed it to her and I try to remember my Grandmas on their Birthday’s and at Christmas time, with a card and a treat when we visit.
4. I spoil my bestfriends with birthday presents such as giftcards to stores they would enjoy, makeup they would like, or a mixture of items that are about their tastes. I try to visit my friends as best as I can but it’s always nice to be remembered on your birthday. Wine works great, a nice redwine does the trick!
5. I bake treats sometimes like chocolate fudge brownies, rhubarb cake, chocolate turtle squares, chocolate chip cookies, and apple sauce branmuffins for my family to enjoy.
6. I do extra cleaning at home or I try to remember to do a job the way my parents like the job to be done.
7. Once in a while, I take a family member, friend, or favourite date out for dinner and pay for it, whatever they like to eat including drinks and dessert. I trust these people so I know they won’t go overboard.
8. I talk with friends family often and I listen well and let them say whatever they need to say. If they’re looking for input, I give thoughtful input. I’m also complimentary when I talk to people, trying to find good and nice aspects about them. It’s much easier to getalong with people when they don’t see you as a threat or competition. This being said, I’m honest if they truly want my opinion or they are hurtful to me; I’m no doormat.
9. I pray for everyone I can remember at night. Everyone needs prayer and I don’t always remember those I need to remember, but I attempt to get everyone in my prayer. I pray for those people who make my life miserable too because at times the best way to deal with them is to pray for them.
10. I share my faith in Christ and God in my writing, and I try to show my faith in my actions and voice. By no means am I perfect, and I miss many chances to witness but I try and the HolySpirit guides me. If you have something that is utterly lifechanging and giveshope you want to share it.
1. Well into my twenties, I would celebrate the end of the week, stress from work, and or school, by going out and drinking and dancing; especially, after midterms or finals. These days, I feel a two-day hangover is not worth it. When I was younger it only took a morning to bounce back, but two or three glasses of wine with the ladies is divine, with the occasional night out to dance.
2. I will get dessert when I go out for supper. Something that is chocolate cake with Carmel sauce and ice cream if the dessert menu is sufficient. I usually never order dessert otherwise.
3. I go out and do something with a friend(s) whether that be dancing, supper, drinks, movies, coffee, yoga, brunch, or walking. It’s fantastic to be with your favourite people and share your good news in a greatconversation.
4. I shop or plan to shop for a new outfit or cute shoes if I’m able.
5. If I’m only giving myself a smallreward, I will go buy myself a package of Three Lindt chocolate balls or an ice cream sandwich. I suppose I’m too motivated by food.
6. I go on vacation, celebrating each year and all it’s trials and good times too. Doesn’t have to be anywhere big, only a week in a fresh city with new things to do and see.