[Flash Fiction] Skip to the End


North Carolina resort, Scenic Wolf. The inspiration behind this piece

Do you think you’ll miss me?”

Her lips pull back from mine, I wasn’t sure how to respond.

“I…will. I think I will at least.”

Her lips curl in derision as the moonlight bleeds into the car. I could see her breath as she began to breath heavier.

“I’m…gonna miss you Jack. I’m gonna miss you a whole bunch.”

We were still out at the ten in the evening, but I found myself catching time by the halcyon sway of her eyes in mine.

I had said those same words,

not to her,

but to you;

so many years ago.

She was younger than myself, she doesn’t understand moments in time yet.

She’s so much like I was before you came into my life.

I didn’t mean for it to happen. I rode into town a few months ago, with a couple hundred bucks in my pocket.

She was the bar owner’s daughter, the Tokyo Rose of a podunk little town on the edge of North Carolina.

I was just another guy on the run from something or another. I knew the feeling would come back for me, I’m powerless to resist the storm.

A friend had contacted me with work out west, I had no reason to stay.

Yet it didn’t stop the daze in her gaze when I told her that it was time for me to go away.

She knew it to be the case, but her mouth and eyes spoke different sentiments.

I’ve always loved eyes, simply put, they never seem to lie.

Which is why it broke my heart to see her cry. She tried so hard to hold it in.

Her naturally soft touch tensed, as she gripped onto my jacket

(I remembered when I couldn’t let go of you too).

I can hear her whimpers turn to sobs, as she buries her face to my chest

(I remembered falling to my knees and wrapping my arms around your waist).

“Please Jack…don’t go, I’ll go with you, I don’t need this stupid town. I’ll travel anywhere with you.”

I’ve always hated watching history repeat itself. It’s even worse when I’m the one turning the page.

I know what this moment will do to her,

I know how long she’ll cry,

I know she’ll take comfort in the arms of strangers, hoping to emulate a fraction of the essence that she shared with me.

She’ll be baffled when the person next to her doesn’t give her the same feeling.

Just like I was.

We’re parked in front of the bar where we worked, her room is above, less than fifty yards away. We’ve had this talk before, but tonight it became overt that the new year would take me far away from her.

I’ll skip to the end…

exhausted bodies arguing in a car.

I’ll skip the part where she screams

that I just don’t understand, or the part where I’m such a petty man.

I skip to the end because it always ends the same. One person steps into another’s life, they ignite a love, a comfort, a modicum of happiness that was unattainable in the doldrums of everyday.

And it always ends the same. Eyes full of water, and potential unrealized because of the scars we carry are too deep to consider loving again.

This time, I just happened to be the one that turned the page.

And if you’re wondering… no it doesn’t feel any better,

because I find that I feel the same, no matter where I roam.
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