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This snippet is from Emmily, Unbound, an SFR story.
Emmily had an opportunity to turn the aliens over to authorities, and
to be free of them. Of course, she didn't, and now General is sure she
is as trustworthy as he hoped her to be. This is a week later and
they're on the back porch together. They're talking about the stars twinkling beyond atmosphere.
Last week ended with this: I wonder when we moved past the elephant in the room, the big, spacesuit-wearing, interstellar-traveling pachyderm. Like kindred spirits, we coexist. We've come to accept the status quo without needing to define it or even say it out loud. They are from out there, in the stars, sky people, and I am tethered to solid ground, bound to the Earth.
When he turns his head to look at the sky through gaps in the tree canopy, pale light illuminates his eyes; their blue depths have never seemed deeper. He says, “In a different way. It is… an acquired appreciation, perhaps. They do not twinkle out there like they do when viewed from here on your porch.”
“I always liked it, the view, from here. Mom and dad loved it. Jason was never taken with it.”
There’s nothing cagey when he asks, “Jason?”
“Jason, my ex-husband. We were married for almost twenty years.”
He leans his head to the side, processing that new tidbit of information, I suspect.
That's the snippet. The scene continues from there:
After a lengthy stretch of quiet, his voice—full of curiosity—pierces the still night. “Why are you no longer married to him?”
That is a humdinger of a question. How do I answer? I could rattle off a slew of hateful reasons peppered with enough cuss words to make General blush. Or I could sit here and relish in the brand-new realization that the heartache's no longer raw; my future doesn’t feel hopeless—as if no one will ever love me again.
I’ve moved past a plethora of things: the doubt, pain, regret and self-pity, the half-witted belief that Jason is the most wonderful man ever born, and he was mine. The ridiculous and false belief—with all its soul-scorching pain—that I’d never, ever find someone else worthy of my love, my selfless devotion, and even worse, a twisted kind of worship.
I’ve left those things behind.
That's it for this week. Next week, we get her answer to the General, and his reply to her. Thanks for visiting! :-)