It seems this is tragedy week in Elements of Genre Writing on Facebook. Yeah, I know, I am slow on the uptake, but it wasn’t really mentioned until today. We had another picture for today’s prompt. Another prompt had a song and video for the prompt but it was a tag game for the whole group to work with. I may give it a try another week. For now, I am getting accustomed to people there.
There was nothing left to say. She didn’t want him any longer and that was abundantly clear. Seeing her anger flashing in her eyes like a forest fire out of control only added emphasis to the shrill words and the sudden slam of the door in his face. Behind the thick oak, he could hear her sobs and the slam of another door somewhere inside the house.
Shawn heaved a heavy sigh, turned around, then headed to his beat up old truck. Sitting on the passenger’s seat was a small, slender, box; a gift for the woman who shattered his heart without giving him a chance to explain. The bracelet inside may never get to feel the soft flesh of her wrist or the charms dance along her sleeves. He couldn’t bear to keep it, so he slipped it into the mailbox with the hope that she would find it before the postman made his rounds that afternoon.
Rather than head back to his quiet apartment, he decided to keep on driving. Far passed the city limits he went until his tank ran empty. The battered and broken fence of the old quarry lay just down the slope from him, hidden behind overgrown vines and trees. Everyone knew it was there and many have trespassed for the privacy the barren rock walls gave on full moon nights.
The keys were left behind on the driver’s seat and the gas can placed by them to let whoever found it know, it needed fuel and it was abandoned. Shawn didn’t want it. He didn’t want the ache in his heart. The angry words thrown at him ran races through his mind giving him little peace. If only she would have let him speak.
Rumor took his girl away from him and misinformation cemented the idea he cheated into her heart and mind. Sarah would have none of it. She believed everything her friends told her and believed the pictures they showed her on their phones.
If only… if only… It all ran through his head trying to sweep away those angry words and give him peace. Peace would not be his friend. It eluded him as easily as the shadows in the night. With his truck down, he had only his two feet and the dirt road ahead of him with the trees reaching toward each other from both sides.
With hands in his pockets and his head bowed, he walked, following the old road. The animals watching reflected his mood and stayed quiet out of deference for his emotional loss. They watched and moved on, leaving him to his circling thoughts and softly mumbled words.
A week later, Sarah found herself driving down the same road. The old truck was still there, untouched by human hands. No signs of Shawn were there. Seeing how empty and alone that truck was, she shivered and gasped as if something cold ran up her spine to tickle the base of her skull. Her fingers traced the little charms of her bracelet while she looked for any sign of him.
Only the quiet of the woods greeted her and the sense that she was no longer welcome filled the air. Unsure of what it was, Sara turned her car around and left. Nothing was waiting for her down the road, only more loneliness and the idea that the past cannot be changed. If only she knew what her words had done to the lonely man. Only the woods know and they won’t give up their secret.