Lush trees surround me, green and verdant, as I walk out to the lake for a swim. I’ve been doing this for years now, swimming up to the buoys and back, twenty laps every morning.
When I’m on my last lap I notice the usual small boat not far from the buoy and behind it a rowboat. The larger boat appears deserted and I feel my self begin to sweat despite the warm water.
I decide to swim closer to the large boat but then the shock of a sudden explosion on the sinking ship has me diving underwater, swimming quickly to avoid the debree. Coming up onto the water’s surface only a tip of the vessel shows as its final resting place becomes the bottom of the lake.
The following morning I come to swim and there are police and rescue volunteers sweeping the water. This ship was a home for a grizzled man and his wife Stephanie. Somehow she survived the ship’s explosion untouched while her husband died.
Stephanie meets me later at home. I’ve been looking after her for years, protecting her from an abusive husband. We smile and she kisses my lips, “Jack, I can’t believe it worked; I’m free.”
It was difficult living on the farm, being cutt-off from other people when there was a blinding snow storm for days. Marion felt the numbing loneliness deeply and her husband James only amplified her sense of isolation.
They were still a relatively young couple but James made her feel as if she were old, dull, and boring. He barely acknowledged Marion except when he wanted food. He hadn’t actually conversed with Marion for what felt like years.
She observed as James lived alone in his head, always ignoring her attempts to talk. As the harsh winds and snow isolated them in the farmhouse, James isolated Marion in their marriage.
When the blizzard ended, Marion had had enough. She peered at James one last time and left. She drove to the nearest city and caught a flight home.