There she sat restless upon the surf bounding roughly by. Once a fine ship. An Indiaman. A once fine hulk, now with sinews de-masted and sails de-breasted by a foul wind off Madagascar. A squall by not some not underwhelming sense of mistaken reckoning. The fore deck in shambles and her hull breached. The three sat high up upon the amphitheater of piled stones that now served as her quay. Barely a spit of sand that her master had found by the grace of God before wind and sea and coral rock could have any further way with her. God and the Devil only, who could now tell if her stout oaken keel had succumbed to having its back broken grinding across same? The trio now shivering with impotent rage and trepidation at the slim prospects that the curse of unexpected bad weather had left them that now lay ahead.
A search of another craft far inland deposed a curious collection of ten disassociated items. Some as mundane as a raggedy doll and an old corroded brass plate watch and fob. The most disturbing find being a living thing whose shape held to no known convention strictly identifiable as a recognized species on this earth. A milky colored greenish cast to what appeared to be an uneasy combination of mushroom and asparagus. Something that lay there the similarity of lungs heaving lost in the conundrum of what for it might have been serving as same. Where it had come from was suggested by the broken frame of something disk-like and fractured. Silver metal of a sort that suggested no terrestrial equivalent. The occupant of same offering the most disturbing element of their immediate collection laying at the end of items so much more common to their sensibilities.
The lounge room of the apartment across the hall was full as he stood before the open closet doors in the bedroom. They seemed oblivious of his presence as he stared into the limbo of his own disconcerted thoughts. To his shock and surprise she stood beside him. Barbara. Her entrance as much a mystery as the fact of the appearance of her person. Only for an moment and then she left. Leaving her discontent to mingle with his disappointment to leave an inky film about the room of regret. Now he felt that eyes were prying at him studying his demeanor at her loss. Though unbearable to his sea of raging emotions within he kept up the fiction of remaining inert and unmoved. The sorrow filling him up so rapidly that it felt in a short span of time that it would overcome his neck and burst forth through every portal above. Still he carried on perusing the emptiness of the cubicle before him as if looking for his coat.
The top of the stairs just outside the apartment revealed that this location had been more appropriately a public venue held within what might have been architecturally intended as a hotel or meeting center. He collapsed down into sitting crouched upon the upper steps. Refraining from a swirling sense of spiritual vertigo that sought to whisper to him that he might consider hopping quickly into final flight over the railing just behind him. A just solution in so many ways to cure the guilt and stupidity of his former deeds. Why was he such an empty useless vessel of vacuous circumstantial emotions that like some rare vintage was never really shared? Why had he not shared his heart with her so long ago past when she had given him the opportunity? Was he such a perennial spoilt child that he could not help but further embarrassing the both of them by carrying on for days after in pressing a quest that had clearly demonstrated no intention on following up upon?
He swayed back and forth as the feelings seemed to build to suggest that he had indeed been in love with her. Even if he had not been in love with her enough to through all caution to the wind! The railing behind him waited with the promise of its flying lessons leading quickly to a final view and true oblivion. The presence of another interloper unexpectedly casting a shadow over him from behind. A man! A man dressed in suit and tie appropriate of some formal description of public trust spoke out gently to him as if he might need assistance. The official station suggested by his voice and his manner stopping all thoughts of unbearable loss and that ready antidote of immediate self-destruction. He put on a mask of complacence all the while knowing that his current performance was instrumental to his keeping his freedom. After a few moments interchange he felt that he had rounded the bend in some way. And the man walked off leaving what was for him a chilling promise of an imminent return. Gone for the moment this house genie had set his heart to beating at a furious pace. Escape was all he could think of as he tripped down the stairs as casually as his legs would allow.
To his horror he realized that he had not found his coat back int he closet of the suite now far above. Dare he return he thought to himself, the intercession of that official stranger would most assuredly preclude its use. He had no wish to become an inmate of some hospital! If indeed this is what this space that he had lost mental sight of had truly been all along from the start? He padded back down the main hallway imagining the cold Winter wind outside and what he would do without any appropriate covering containing wallet, cards, money and keys. The trail back led to a fork where the inference of an escalator peeked out to the one side and a low stair suggested further to the left. The notion that only the risk of returning the way he had just came into whatever was now waiting for him might be the only solution. How he hated this society for so easily casting him as a murderer in mentally alleging that he was so ready to frivolously take his own life. Who were these people that demanded entry to his thoughts and felt empowered to redirect the intentions of his should when he felt that he had reach that point that he had had enough? How terrible after all was this empty pursuit of finding that lost trail of one’s long lost fleeting love.