Story #9

A man fell past the window. Then another. Then another.

I was one of those men. The second man to be precise.

It quite startled the floor of office workers that we fell past. First one, then another, then another. All three of us falling past your window at 11:24 on a Tuesday morning.

As I was falling past I caught your eye. Your mouth gently agape, in shock from the first man. Your hand paused in tucking a stray lock of brown hair behind your right ear. You were not quite in shock, there was not enough time. Your senses had detected something untoward but it was not yet in your faculties to be shocked, at least not in any such conscious way.

Our eyes locked briefly. Yours blue and mine a light brown. I wished that I had been written in as a better role in this play of our lives. Man Falling Past Window #2 didn’t even have a speaking line, just a brief on-stage presence. A startling one admittedly, but not a main role, merely a catalyst for the main character to undergo some change. Perhaps you will remember me in the dramatic finale to act 3.

No, I wished I was written in as the lead in a great play by the second greatest writer in some golden age. We would have met, eyes meeting across the room, much like now. We would have got to know each other, dated and finally married at a small church in your parents seaside town. We would have had children, two, both boys. We would have live happily, retired by the sea and died within weeks of each other, one of us from a broken heart.

Instead, I have been cast as Man Falling Past Window #2. I tried to remember my life before I was falling, but everything was indistinct. Maybe I had no other life, maybe this is the only existence I know, falling through my life with great speed. An existence measured in meters.

A man feel past my window today. Well, three men to be precise.

My eyes locked with the second man and in that brief instant I realised that I loved him. Not the spectacular love of anguished teenage poetry, but the quiet, simple love of couple long married. A love that doesn’t have to be expressed or even communicated. It just exists, almost as a corporeal thing.

With this love came sadness. Regret. I was mourning for a man I loved but did not know, while our eyes were still locked.

He slipped past the lower sill and and I knew I would never see him again. I rose from my chair and made my way to the roof. A single moving thing in the reeling stillness of our office at 11:24 on a Tuesday morning.

The wind plucked at my skirt as I moved towards the edge. It was cold, goosebumps forming on my skin.

I threw myself off. 

A woman fell past the window today.

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