Perturbation Theory

I miss the sea, water

Alli was paddling back, from kayaking out to the Peak, a rock that stood up in the water, rising at least twenty feet. Every time she came out to Ran’s house on the waterfront, she spent the morning heading out to the pinnacle and rowing around it, before heading back to shore.

The morning was hazy. White clouds hung low in the sky. The crest of the Peak, had been covered in fog.

One oar stroke at a time, Alli made her way forward, through the choppy waves of the low tide. She was cruising. The beach was in sight. Trees here and there, and the scrubland of the dunes.

Ran’s house came into view. Ran was sitting on the beach waiting for her. She had a fire going and was grilling breakfast sausages. Just like when I met her, Alli thought.

She tied up the boat at the dock out front. Strolling down the beachfront in her sandals, she waved to Ran, who waved back. In the house, she changed into a T-shirt and shorts that weren’t damp with sweat and put on a new sweatshirt. Outside, she made her way to Ran, who was plating the sausages.

“How was it out there?” Ran asked, as Alli got closer.

“Peaceful,” Alli said, sitting down on the sand.

“How was your parents’ house?” Ran asked, handing her a plate.

“Uneventful,” Alli answered, “We just watched ‘Jeopardy,’ mostly.”

“That’s good,” Ran said. She gave Alli a fork.

They ate the food, watching the sun climb through the low-hanging mist.

“How was your time with Kaan?” Alli asked. She opened a thermos of coffee Ran had brought.

“Oh, you know, just watched the fight,” Ran shrugged.

Ran unrolled a colorful, striped blanket, and they lay down in the dune grass, after eating their food, staring up at the brightening sky.

Ran put her arm around Alli’s shoulders, “Do you like being with me?”

Alli glanced at her and put her arm around Ran’s stomach, “Of course I do.”

She ran her hand over Alli’s soft hair, the medium fade, “Do you think people can reincarnate while still alive?”

Alli blinked, “What do you mean?”

“Do you miss Nealy?” Ran looked at her.

Alli looked up, directly into her eyes, “Ran, Nealy is gone.”

She put her head on Ran’s shoulder. They lay there, like that, with Ran stroking Alli’s hair, as the sun rose in the sky.

with envious eyes

Image credit here