15 - Furious

15 - Furious

A Chapter by Tertia

Chapter 15

The blinding light got right in her eyes. It was white light and it was everywhere, it blurred out the shadows and lit dark corners. Everything was white, everything glowed. How did people not get headaches she thought. They wear tacky plastic sunglasses that’s how she answered with her other self, the one that plays devil’s advocate. She squinted, looking away.

Their house in Sailporth was white with slatted wood around the base and large dark slate tiles on its sharply pitched roof, making it look like a square boat. It was near the sea on a fork in the paths that led there, it was peaceful and beautiful and a world away from her parent’s home and her room at Uni. There was a nice bakery which pumped out the smell of fresh bread and coffee every day and there was a beach bar similar to the one they had both worked in.

Max had coaxed, cajoled and coerced her, he had prompted, persuaded and perused her, he had bamboozled, bargained and bribed her. He had been patient too, waiting for her to end a relationship and being there to help her pick up the pieces, a shoulder to cry on. She respected him for that and gradually he grew in her affections. He hadn’t let up until he had got what he wanted and that was her of course. He made sure he was there when she was at her weakest, when she finally cracked.

‘Move in with me, to the house,’ he had said.

‘What?’

‘The one I’m buying in Sailporth,’

‘With you?’

‘Yes with me,’

‘That wont last,’ she had said.

‘We can try it,’ he said. He looked elated. His face hurt from smiling so hard and long. ‘You can have your own room if you like, I mean we don’t have to sleep together,’

‘I’ll get bored, have an affair, run off,’ she said, her words like cruel stabbing knives. Thank god for that, he was so underwhelming.

‘I’ll keep you happy. I know you,’

‘After six months I’ll be entitled to half the house, if we split,’

‘You would I know, yes,’ he said. ‘But that time would be worth it to me,’

‘You’re a sad, sick puppy dog, Max,’

‘I know,’ he said, smiling. Summer turned to Autumn and she had moved in, taking the small third bedroom at first. They had friends around for barbecues and sat in the courtyard garden looking at the sea. It was all right to begin with until the novelty wore off. In the week there was nothing to do, but sit in the garden, smoke, stare at the stars and dream. She sat under the branch of a cherry tree and listened to the birds that had returned after the place had stopped being a building site. There was nobody about, it got dark early, she felt trapped. Max would sit her for a while and then go in and watch his TV shows.

That was it, another night in watching gameshows, news bulletins and drinking tea, there was too much banality to take Celia thought screwing up her hands into fists. She was bored, lonely and starting to feeling depressed, not to mention frustrated. Later it would be quick, dissatisfying love-making and then hours of restless sleep. She couldn’t stand it any longer. She was furious.

‘I’m going to stay at my Nan’s for a few nights,’ she blurted

‘Why?’ Max asked, not taking his eyes from the screen.

‘Because she’s ill and bloody well needs me,’ she said, extending the truth; her Nan was always ill and always kept the back bedroom made up for her in case she wanted to stay.

Max had got the big job in Sailporth as head barman of the hotel along the coastal path. Sailporth was a freshly built dead-end town and he decided to move there to save the commute from town, ten miles away where annoyingly she had just got a job. At the weekends he’d always say they would go into town and see friends, but they rarely did.

Celia felt her life slipping away in slow boredom, she was trapped in this remote village and knew no one. At twenty-six she was still young, in good shape and had kept herself fit. Looking in the mirror things weren’t what they used to be though, the lines were there, her hair was duller, her eyes didn’t shine like they used to. She stroked her skin and widened her eyes. There was fat from eating well. She lasted just over a year with him and was amazed she had.

::::

After a few months it was like he had never left, as though his time away never happened, he was back at home and settled in. But he couldn’t stop remembering how her tears of sorrow had silently fallen that night, on Film Night.

‘What’s the matter?’ he’d said

‘Nothing,’

‘Come here,’ he’d whispered, putting an arm around her, she rested her head on him and as the film rolled on he felt her tears. He knew then and did now that nature with her gentle sway was taking her course and it was putting them together, as one.

There was a solace in her and in contrast an excitement too. Could he dare go so far as to think that he could understand life, the meaning of it, when he was with her because everything made sense then? And if not did he feel that she had a way of blocking out the world and it’s hardships and gave him shelter from its endless storm. He couldn’t think of a better place he wanted to be. She laughed at him as he unwrapped her like a mystery as though she was a street of endless corners with a surprise around each. But that was then and this was now and here he was stood in a dark field in Scotland being showered by ice and rain and not really feeling it.

The messages he got from her outside the group ones were rare, but carried big news whereas his to her were merely conversational. Lucas recalled them in order ‘I have got a proper job in Taunton’ she had said a year after Uni. ‘I have my own car now’ eighteen months on. ‘Renting a flat’ two years on. ‘I am getting married’ three years on. Her getting married? it seemed so wrong. He was invited to the wedding, but couldn’t bring himself to go, to see her so happy and so taken away from him. The next thing he was expecting was a message saying she was pregnant, but that didn’t come. All of a sudden four years had passed and he had got nowhere whereas she had moved on and was living a life. He’d sent her a wedding gift and a card with a note inside in the hope that he could reach her emotionally, but no reply came.

But then later in that year a message came that he wasn’t expecting ‘My marriage is a sham - Getting divorced’. That was after nearly five years and by that time his life ‘had’ actually moved on. He was able to get away from the farm as he’d got a job in Glasgow working in a museum. Also he had met Barbara who he really liked and was getting his own place. Everything had happened at once. He could think of no other way to do it so he rung Celia. ‘Hello, it’s me,’ he said straight.

‘I know it’s you, I can see your name…’

‘After five years is that all you say to me?’

‘Yeah, ha ha,’

‘What’s going on then?’

‘I told you didn’t I,’

‘Got married, got divorced,’ she shouted down the phone. He smiled forgetting that couldn’t be seen.

‘I wanted to make sure you are alright, that’s all,’

‘I’m alright,’ she said sorrowfully. ‘He was an idiot,’

‘As long as you are OK,’

‘I could come and see you, Lucas. Get on the train,’

‘You’ve got incredibly bad timing, Daggs’ he said. It had taken him all this time to find someone, he didn’t want things messed up.

‘Oh. Oh, I see,’

‘There’s someone, yes,’

‘Ah, well I hope she treats you well, Lukie, I hope she makes you happy,’ her voice was up and bright. She didn’t sound like someone defeated, even in her defeat, the brush off she was triumphant. There wasn’t any thing such thing as telepathy, but he could predict what she was thinking and it was ‘I will wait,’

‘Thank you,’ he felt split.

‘Bye, Lucas,’ she said putting the phone down softly. Remember the pact we made echoed through his mind

::::

‘This is a small piece of heaven,’ Barbara said looking at the fairy lights adorning the outhouse, there was fresh hay and blankets inside and the sheep had been sectioned off so they couldn’t get in. It smelled OK.

‘Small, but fine, for a shepherd, his woman and his wine,’ Lucas said leaning against the stone doorway. The words tumbled out of his mouth like he was playing the game of love, not like it was real love. There were the beginning of lines on his rosy face, his pace had slowed a little.

The pale blue of the evening sky stretched out to the west until it faded into the white and pink of the sunset. ‘You have a way with words when you want to. Not that you usually say much at all,’

‘Red sky at night, shepherd’s delight,’ he said quickly looking up at pinkest of the clouds that stood high and still. It specked with raindrops and he turned inside, looking up at a small grey patch of cloud directly above them. ‘Are you coming in or staying where you are?’

‘Red sky in the morning, shepherdess is yawning,’ Barbara said quietly laughing.





© 2021 Tertia


Author's Note

Tertia
In the next chapter Celia has a dream

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In this chapter time is compressed so that we might see in an overview what has happened in the lives of Verrs and Daggs. In fact, five years have passed. During that time, Verrs has managed to finally begin a new relationship with a woman named Barbara, in which he has become comfortable. Daggs, on the other hand, has had a relationship with the drab but persistent barman Max, who stubbornly pursued her until she moved in with him. The novelty of that bonding wore off quickly and she split to preserve her sanity. One day she gives Verrs a call, and though nothing major occurs, we see that a small fire has been rekindled within the man. I'd say Barbara's days are numbered, as Verrs has begun to hear an inner voice calling him home.

Posted 2 Months Ago


a powerful chapter,loved it

Posted 2 Months Ago


There are good stories and there is good writing. This is a rare combination of both. Great transitions. Wonderful use of word play. I look forward to checking out more of your stuff.

Posted 2 Months Ago


It was a nice sombre read... A patch of loneliness and dissapointment was there, in relation, in expectations! You portryed the inner conflicts diligently... Great work... Keep going

Posted 2 Months Ago


Tertia

2 Months Ago

Why is it sombre? I hadn’t intended that 😊
Dreamer Sima

2 Months Ago

The protagonist 's internal conflict pertaining her relationships made me think this way:)

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Added on July 8, 2021
Last Updated on July 13, 2021
Tags: furious, timing, fury, ferocity, losing touch, distance, away, thoughts, regrets


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Tertia
Tertia

United Kingdom



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A Chapter by Tertia