Lizzie Koch’s Picture Choice: 2
Cupping his hands tight around his mug of tea, Will stared deep into the caramel liquid as his tired, bloodshot eyes filled up again. Suppressing the urge to sob, he inhaled deeply and finally looked up at the detective sitting opposite.
“I understand what you’re going through,” she began. But Will didn’t hear the rest. How could she understand? She looked far too young to understand anything about love, the searing pain running through his body, his heart fracturing with every passing moment of being without Wynter. Even he couldn’t get to grips with what was happening. How could she, in the confines of her cheap, black suit, her hair scraped back in pony tail? How could she even begin to understand the free spirited Wynter with hair always blowing in the wind, not caring about the tangles. Her wellies caked in mud and yet she still wore her favourite little white dress on the final day of the festival. He could see her now, flitting about like a fairy as she danced, her mellifluous laugh carrying on the wind. And there sat the detective, as stiff as the starched white blouse she wore, a button straining against the swelling of her breasts as she breathed. He watched the rise and fall, wondering how long the button would last, wondering about her creamy, soft flesh in his hands.
“I’m sorry,” he said suddenly. “It’s hard to think. My thoughts are all jumbled.”
“Take all the time you need. I asked about last night when Ryan turned up? Witnesses said there was an argument?” She didn’t take her eyes from his even though she felt uncomfortable, the way his steely blue eyes glazed over as he appeared to leer. Now they softened and he was back.
“Yes, Ryan. You don’t think he has anything to do with Wynter’s disappearance do you?”
“We’re looking into every possibility Will. Tell me what happened.
The festival had been going so well and then he turned up. Ryan. Will didn’t mind at first but then he saw little touches; Ryan’s hand pressed softly in the small of Wynter’s back, a stroke of her arm, the admiring of her lace dress. Why did he have to touch it? Why did Wynter let him? Then the sharing of the splif. It all seemed too intimate, like they were still a couple. He saw them giggling, sharing private stories and an anger began to simmer deep inside Will. He saw an arm drape across Wynter’s shoulders as she rested her head on his chest. That’s when he walked over and saw the hazy, lustful look on both their faces. The shouting began, the accusations, the bitter exchanges. Wynter stomped off, her face streaked with tears.
“And that’s the last time you saw Wynter?”
“Yes.” Will replied. “The last time I spoke to her was in anger. We both said things we shouldn’t . . . and now . . . I wish I could take it all back. I love her.”
“And what happened next?”
“I couldn’t decide whether to get high or pissed so did both and the next thing I knew, it was morning.”
He’d woken up starving, shivering and alone. Wynter’s sleeping bag was cold and looked like it hadn’t been slept in. Silence greeted Will as he crawled from the tent. No sign of Wynter. He woke their friends but she wasn’t with them. Walking through a field of cheap beer and cider cans, they searched for Wynter, others joining in.
“And then what happened?”
“There’s a dirt track on the edge of the field. We didn’t know what way to go. Then someone saw something, white, fluttering in the wind, caught on a branch. We ran towards it. I recognised it immediately.” Will stopped, catching his breath. Of course he recognised it. The torn strip of intricate lace dancing in the wind just like it had on Wynter only this time there were tiny spots of red dotted on the fabric. “I threw up, we called the police and here we are.”
“Is there anything else?”
“I can’t think of anything. I mean after Wynter fled, I wanted to punch Ryan.”
“Of course! Just got one in before I was dragged off. Bastard walked away, no doubt going after Wynter.” He saw interest pique on the detective’s face.
“Why didn’t you go after her?”
“I was too angry. I would’ve said more things I’d regret so like I said, I got wasted. If I’d gone after her instead of Ryan . . .” He left the thought hanging in the air.
“OK, thank you, you’ve been very helpful. We’ll keep you updated of any developments Will.”
Will took her hand, giving a firm shake as his eyes lingered on the button, wanting it to pop, spilling the contents that so desperately wanted freedom. He watched her walk away, a swelling in his groin. The police buzzed around like bees as Ryan was helped into a police van. Will watched the police line crawl slowly across the field. Soon, they would find Wynter. Will’s heart was empty. He missed her already. The drive home was quiet, unable to listen to the radio for the memories it brought. He looked at his grazed knuckle, satisfied a punch to Ryan explained it. Remembering Wynter as she fell to the ground after his fist smashed into her face, excited him and he drove faster.
The pain of missing Wynter disappeared as he remembered last night, his hands around her neck, her naked body under his. But at the climax, the detective filled his thoughts. He relaxed, opening his eyes, looking down at what was left of Wynter’s white dress, and the detective now his muse.
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I dream of sharing my work with the big wide world one day as a published author. Right now, I share flash fiction with a wonderful community of writers and friends. If you liked this story, then why not visit my blog at http://40somethingundomesticateddevil.blogspot.co.uk/ for more. Thank you. Love Lizzie x