|Epiphany (standard:drama, 1274 words)|
|Author: E J Reeve||Added: Feb 12 2003||Views/Reads: 1947/1138||Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)|
|Beware of what you wish for...|
The car effortlessly slips between the sheets of rain that have been falling for days now, a constant grey film emerging from the ashen January sky. Warm and disconnected, Kate stares at the monochrome streets as they gleam blackly oiled against the drab facades shutting up shop for the evening. Everything seems colourless and bleak to her as if she is travelling through an old worn movie. The passers-by speeding up comically, as the car swishes past them, their lines distorted through the haze. She sinks further down into the seat, her nerves fluttering, grateful for the cushioning warmth from the heater protecting her from the hanging chill outside in the settling dusk. The streetlights begin to flicker into life smearing fluorescence across the bleary windscreen, the bright coloured smudges pooling in close-up. She flexes her feet and glances sideways at the driver. He smiles tightly knowing she has been looking. "Bloody rain, so bloody depressing eh?" Managing a weak smile, Kate senses a twitch of embarrassment in her stomach. He's trying to inject some life into the car as the tense silence between them has amplified over the last ten miles, but it doesn't work. Tendrils of apprehension are flourishing in her stomach, they've crept up inside her, strangling her voice ever since last week. The image of his face hovering over a delicate wineglass, shadowed in candlelight, and the crushed velvet box sitting accusingly on the linen tablecloth repeats in her memory. She bats the image away and concentrates on the windscreen wipers' steady movement. "You're quiet" a matter of fact statement, his tone flat and his eyes focused on the road. Staring at her hands pale in the gloom, and then at his capable hands resting on the wheel, she nods her head mutely. Her mind is fretting over the impending conversation at the end of the journey. They've left behind the city centre now and are driving up out of the valley. Gone are the dreary buildings and the forlorn remnants of Christmas hanging forgotten in the corners of the shop windows, instead silent heavy trees flank the road, rising up from sodden undergrowth, the branches looming towards the windows. It's dark outside now, the beam of the headlights picking up copious green gloss and two pitching channels of mist. It's sinister out there, Kate shudders involuntarily. "We'll talk when we get home" A flat monotone through the stale heat, his voice barely audible over the soft hissing rain. She knows he'll bully an answer out of her tonight. A surrender to an endless cycle of laundry, weariness and resentment, the inevitability of her life, mapped out before her, etched with the silvery lines of motherhood suffocates her. "Can I open a window?" "No" Kate shoves herself further back in the bucket seat knowing the futility of arguing with this absolute response, and peers from the window. The rain was different up here amongst the trees, thick, soft and soporific, coating the windscreen. I'd love to dance in this rain, she thought, I'd love to look at the stars and feel the rain rinsing my body with it's cold freshness, clarifying me, drenching my bones and washing this frustration I feel. She imagines telling him this, the car stopping, the ultimatums forgotten whilst he takes her hand and joins her in a dance of reckless liberation, the rain soaking them as they laugh into one another's eyes. A realisation that impulsiveness isn't in his nature wrenches in her stomach and the butterflies creep back. She had told him once she wanted to travel, to smell and touch some history. He had laughed looking over the top of the morning newspaper, his eyes sparkling with amusement and shaking his head imperceptibly. 'You'd get lost' he told her with exasperation in his voice. She peers at his white collar opalescent in the night, rising and falling against his papery throat. Still in his suit, she thought, his middle-management suit pressed and ironed with his shiny cheap shoes. Click here to read the rest of this story (75 more lines)
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