IN TOO DEEP, WEP CHALLENGE, FEBRUARY 2018, Until Death Do Us Part by Pat Garcia

In too deep

 


Gianluigi arms embraced the window sill. His head bent looking down at the empty street.

 The quietness didn’t alarm him. The two street lamps that shone in darkness comforted. The shadowed forms that mirrored them reminded him of the difference between life and death, between high and low, between deep and trivial. Soon he and his three team members would venture out into the vast unknown, not knowing the end until it was over.

 The street lamps flickered. The shadows too. Life is like a flickering lamp. Its depth unexplored until you face the ultimate sacrifice. Emotions too deep rose within him. Her fragrance, like a wisp, slivered up his nose causing his mind to wander away from its Moorish thoughts. As if he were looking through a slide projector, pictures of her flashed before his eyes, bringing back the pleasant memories of their last night together. His Gretta, the woman who stirred up his desire to return or her melancholy of loss if he didn’t.

 A breeze from an open door entered the room. Not moving, Gianluigi didn’t look to see who had opened it. He knew who it was and waited for the question that was always asked. It had become their good luck charm. Just knowing that he had done it, had somehow become a placebo for his team and gave them the assurance to walk out into the deep, darkness where they played for the highest of stakes, their lives.

 “Have you called Gretta?” Gabino asked, making himself known.

 “No.”

 “Are you going to call her?”

 Gianluigi turned and moved away from the window. He regarded his dear friend and partner.

 “I don’t know yet,” he answered. “I know she’s not asleep. She never sleeps when I’m away on duty. She catnaps,” and he grunted before he continued, “It’s her way of battling the fear of losing me.”

 “What are our chances, GL? Gabino asked, calling him by his pet name.

 A sliver of laughter escaped Gianluigi’s mouth before he said, “As always poor to middle. The big guns will lift us out, dead or alive, if we get hit.”

 “Like last time,” Gabino said. “It took them forever to get in. Another quarter of an hour and we would have been gone.”

 “I know,” said Gianluigi. “I wasn’t ready to depart.”

 “Are you ever ready, GL?” Gabino asked as he looked at Gianluigi. Gabino took his special handkerchief out of his pocket and blotted his forehead as he waited for Gianluigi to answer.

 Gianluigi gazed at the sweat drops threatening to run down Gabino’s forehead. The more he wiped, the faster they appeared.

 “No, never ready but assured that I’m doing the right thing. Living my life to protect others.” He walked to his bed and pulled out the case that held his rifle from under the bed. “Where are Paolo and Carlos?”

 “They’re coming,” Gabino said. “They’ve just finished talking to their wives.”

 “Good. Have you talked to Tessa?”

 “I did that before I came to you,” Gabino said, laughing.

 “Alright. Give me five minutes, and we meet at the door, suited up to take our hostage.”

 “So, you’re going to call her.”

 “Yes. She’s a part of me, and I want her to know that.”

 When Gianluigi took out his mobile, Gabino left his room.

 

                                   ***

 

Gretta sat in his chair. Twice, she had closed her eyes to catnap. Both times, she had failed. Her sleep, elusive, was neither here nor there since her marriage to the thirty-nine-year-old agent, Gianluigi Battisto, whom she had promised to love till death parts them. Since she had given that promise, she seldom slept when he was away.

 Her mobile rang once. “When do you leave out?” she asked anxious to hear his voice. His call meant that they were mentally connected to each other.  For her, that was a good omen, and sitting in his chair, she lifted her face upward and said a silent prayer.  Her life had changed. The introspective and reserved man who had very little to say had demanded her heart, and she had given it to him.  

 “As soon as I hang up.  I take it you’re in my office,” he said, not really asking. She seldom varied her routine when he wasn’t around. She spent the majority of her time in his office. She ate and slept there instead of around the large oval table in the dining room of their seven-room condo.

 “As always,” Gretta said, feistily. He laughed, and she relished the sound of his laughter. It was alive. He was alive. For now. She suppressed the desire to scream, don’t leave me alone, and she closed her eyelids to stop the impending tears. Silence hovered between them.

 “Where do you want to celebrate your birthday, my sweet invincible Gretta?“

 “I’ll wait until you get back and then we’ll talk about it. After all, who celebrates birthdays when they’ll be fifty-five?” And she choked the sob that tried to escape her throat. “You’re the one that’s invincible, my sweet.”

 “I love you, Gretta,” he said.  “It’s time to go,” and he hung up.

 She held the mobile in her hand. He hadn’t given her time to say, I love you too. The tears that she’d held back fell, and she laid her head against his comfy chair and cried herself into a crazy nap where bullets whiz by her head and men screamed while women cried.

                                                                                     ***

Her mobile rang. She thought it was in her dream until she felt the vibration in her hand. The face of her mobile said, Gianluigi Battisto.

 “Gianluigi?” she whispered, stunned.

 She heard the laughter in his voice. “Who else would be calling you at the break of day?”

 “You’re safe.”

 “I’m hungry,” he said. “What time is breakfast?”

 “Is everyone well?” she asked, holding her breath as she waited for his answer.

 “We’re bruised and tired, but we’re all well.”

 “Thank God,” she murmured. “Come home, I’m waiting.”

 

 

 

 


WEP- Submission - December 2017, An Eternal Beginning By Pat Garcia

AABeginnings (1)

An Eternal Beginning

 

Liza loved peanut butter, especially when mixed with blueberry jam.  She ate tubs of it.

 

She sat back from her kitchen table and propped her legs high on the chair next to her, while she gazed out at the graveled stone path surrounded by grass through her colossal kitchen window.  The bottom of her feet itched, and she folded her legs over one another so that she could scratch the bottom of one foot against the other.

 

The small round bowl of peanut butter and blueberry jam she concocted lay in her lap, and she gathered enough to spread on one of the bagels that were lying on her bread and butter plate before her. 

 

"I love peanut butter-jammy mix on bagels," she said, talking to herself as she gazed out of her window.

 

 

Having turned sixty in August, she had lived alone most of her life except for the time she and Celso were together.  Marriage to him had winked at her at the age of fifty-five, but she’d ignored the wink.  His chosen career had increased her heartbeats every time he went underground on one of his team’s secret missions. It brought her sleepless nights and rings around her eyes in the mornings. His age had also provoked fearful thoughts of him one day leaving her. Falling into a deep hole, she would be a basket case no longer able to put herself back together again.

 

The headlights of a car shone through her huge kitchen window, and she turned to her left to look at the clock hanging over the refrigerator.

She frowned. It was ten-thirty in the evening and one of the darkest winter nights in Southern Italy. No one visited her after nine o’clock.  She got up and walked out of her kitchen and into her hallway where her weapon cabinet stood and pulled the key out of the drawer beneath it and opened the door.  She took out Lucy, her rifle, and insured herself that it was loaded. As an ExPat African-American, she lived excluded in her village, and she had applied for a license to possess a weapon in her home when she moved there. She smiled as a memory of Celso surfaced. He had taught her how to protect herself.  He insisted upon it because of his job. He told her she had become his woman, and everyone knew it, including the criminals that he hunted down in the dark world where he worked.

 

The car stopped, and Liza’s heart picked up its beat.  She asked herself who would dare visit her after nine, as she returned to the kitchen with her trusted friend Lucy in her hand. In the afternoon, one of her neighbors had stopped by and warned her of a stranger in their little old Italian village who walked into the café bar showing a picture of her and asking questions. He said he didn’t give his name and walked out after he was told where she lived. She wondered if Celso’s clientele was trying to track her down.

 

With the rifle in her hand, she waited for the knock, ready to fire, if whoever it was meant ill toward her.

 

The knock came, not with a hardness that sounded like someone trying to knock down her door. Nor did it sound like a fragile knock coming from a woman’s hand. It was a strong, confident knock.

 

“Who are you?” Liza called out. Her rifle pointed toward the door.

 

 

"It’s me, Liza. Open the door."

 

Like a short burst of rain from a cloud, Liza burst into laughter.

 

 "Celso?” She hastened to the door to open it.  “How did you find me?" Standing before him with her hand on the doorknob and the rifle in the other.

 

"If you don't mind, Tresore Mio, I'd appreciate you putting that thing aside," he said, pointing at her rifle with a smile plastered on his face.

 

"Of course. Come on in." And she stepped aside so he could pass by.

 

She walked to the hallway to put her rifle back in her weapon cabinet with Celso following behind her.

 

"My neighbor said someone was asking about me in the café bar, but I never thought it could be you, Celso."  She said as she placed the rifle back in its proper place and locked the door.  She turned and looked up into Celso’s watery eyes. What’s wrong?” she asked.

 

“Come here,” he said, opening his arms. “Let me hug you.”

 

Hurriedly, she rushed into his opened arms. “It’s been so long, Celso.”

 

“Too long. I shouldn’t have let your fear separate us, but I was too immature to understand, then. Your rejection made me want to hurt you,” he said, and then he planted butterfly kisses on Liza’s cheeks before capturing her mouth in a tender kiss. “We have unfinished business to take care of," he said, breaking the kiss.

 

"It’s not unfinished,” Liza said, shaking her head.  “You got your answer, five years ago."

 

"An answer born out of your fear, Liza."

 

"So, you can read my mind?"

 

"Never could, but I felt you were lying to me, and I let you go because I didn't possess the maturity to fight you and your fear. When you told me to leave, I obeyed like a whipped dog and left."

 

"Then, why are you here now?"

 

"Because I'm no longer a whipped dog.”

 

Liza regarded Celso. His sea green eyes mirrored sadness that matched her feeling of loss. The long zigzagged zipper scar running down his cheekbone he hadn't had, and he was much thinner than when they were together. 

 

 

"When did you get the scar?" She asked.

 

"Nine months ago.”  

 

 She let out a deep sigh and shut her eyes as she tried to stop her tears from overflowing.

 

"Don't cry,” Celso said, reaching out to touch her cheekbone.  “This hideous scar brought me out of the lethargy that's hung over my life the last five years."

 

"Celso, I am a recluse.  Outside of our hormones pulling us toward each other, what else do we have in common?"

 

"For one, I love your reclusiveness, Liza.  And your age and nothing else has ever bothered me. You know that. I need you in my life, permanently.  Besides, our love for music, reading, and walking has to count for something and that hormone attraction that you mentioned counts for us instead of against us."

 

"But…"

 

“Shh…Don’t say no, Liza. Life is incalculable. Let’s not waste time not loving each other.  No one walking on this earth knows when they're going to die. Let’s wake up to a new tomorrow for the both of us."

 

"You haven't lost your touch of persuasion, Celso."

 

"Last time, it worked against me."

 

"Last time, I wanted to end it.  I was afraid." And Liza laid her head against his chest. Recognizing that she had been given a chance to cross the same crossroad again in a different place and time, she knew what she would do if Celso asked her again.

 

“Let’s come together for the eternal beginning of us, Liza,” Celso said, softly.

 

Liza lifted her head and raised herself upward to kiss the zigzagged scar running down his cheek. “To our eternal beginning,” she mumbled against his scar, with thankfulness toward Providence.  

 

                                                                                                                *** 

 

 

Tomorrow is the Third Advent Sunday and after it,  we will start approaching the Fourth Advent Sunday.  I would like to say thank you to all who have supported me this year by reading my Flash Fiction on the WEP. You have played a great role in my stepping up to the plate every time WEP rolled around, and it is important to me that you know this. In a world where love and appreciation is growing colder every day, I feel  it is essential that we express our thanks to people who are genuine regarding us and also give us the impetus to keep moving as we fulfil our destiny. You all have been a part of the fuel that has helped me keep moving forward, one foot after the other.

Have a Merry Christmas and crossover safely into 2018. It's going to be a great year.

Shalom aleichem,

Pat Garcia August 13 2016

Pat Garcia 

 

 

 

 

 

 


WEP - OCTOBER 2017 CHALLENGE, A Dark Night Of The Soul - By Pat Garcia

October Badge

 

 

The trail seemed endless. Voices whispered in the pitch-black night. Stumbling over potholes, she couldn’t see, she missed one and fell into it. It swallowed her legs, and she kicked to break away from whatever it was that was trying to pull her down into what seemed like a bottomless pit.

Around her, the grunginess from the foul odor of worms squished together formed a halo around the hole. Decay had set in. Macerated to an unrecognizable substance, she cringed and tried to avoid touching the liquid mash. The hollow whisperers in the wind, witnesses to her misery, tortured, with familiar whining voices, “nearer, come nearer.”

No, she thought, as she tried to unwrap the swaddling vines that bound her legs preventing her escape. She twisted and kicked to try to free her legs that were not free.

No longer the master of her own plight, she breathed deeply, fighting against what was next to come, struggling to find herself in the dark soupy night where stars were not seen and thin vapors, cold and wet, dampened her face.

Hell, she thought. This must be hell, and she screamed out.

“No, not me. Not this way, never” she shouted, and with the remaining strength in her arms, she pushed down around the edges of the pothole, and the vines released her legs.

Crawling out, Tirzah forgot about the squishy worm liquid that she was afraid to touch.  She sought the light. Free, she ran, not looking back, not giving ear to the horrible whisperers that were trying to get her  to turn back.

She felt something warm touch her shoulders.

“Hey, it’s me,” John said as she screamed.  “It’s okay. No one going to hurt you.” And he took her in his arms.

Tremors ran through her body. She checked her hands.  Her teeth clenched together tightly. Looking out of their bedroom window, lightening blitzed across the sky.

“When did you get home?” she asked and buried her face against his chest.

“A few minutes ago. I heard you scream as I walked in and rushed upstairs to check on you. Did you have that same nightmare again?”

“Yes,” she said. “The horror of my narrow escape doesn’t seem to let loose. I can never thank you enough.”

“Tirzah, don’t try to thank me. Your becoming my wife was thank you enough.”

“Will I ever forget the torture and the pain I saw as a woman prisoner in that beastly guerilla war camp?”

“Forget, I don’t think so,” John said and let out a deep sigh, knowing that she had been lucky.  His squadron arrived in time to save her from the pointless rapes and beatings that killed the souls and bodies of the women held in captivity at the camp where she’d been freed.  “But your experience in that hell pit has made you sensitive to women who suffer the horrors that you were spared.”

“It was my dark night of the soul, John.  A night, I can barely live with,” And her tears started to flow. “I was counting the hours waiting for my turn to come,” Tirzah muttered against his chest.  “But my dark night ended suddenly when the tiny light of hope showed up right on time.”

                                                                         ***

 

Shalom aleichem,

Photo on 01.08.17 at 11.13 #2

Pat Garcia


WEP Submission - AUGUST 2017 CHALLENGE, REUNIONS, A Poem, by Pat Garcia

 

August Badge
Class Reunion aug 15 2017
Reunions,

A manifestation that time doesn’t stand still,

Ever revealing the plots of our lives that connect

And the plot holes that never did.

Exposing dreams that didn’t stand the test of our faith,

Revealing our folly for foolish thinking,

Which led to dumb occurrences we now regret.

Reunions reunite us and keep us moving on.

 

Are you still the dreamer you once were?

How did the world greet you?

What did you do?

Where have you been?

Questions asked by so many soulful hearts that have missed it all.

Years where dreams have lain in slumber,

Like the embers of dead ashes that have lost their flame.

 

Reunions,

The sound of mighty rushing wind,

Ushered in by hope and expectation,

Shaped by years of experience,

Tamed by patience,

Extolled by the bell of victory,

When determination rings out its win.

The same bell tolls as a bell of sorrow,

As it eulogises its tribute to a life expired. 

 

Are you still the dreamer you once were?

How did the world greet you?

What did you do?

Where have you been?

Questions asked by so many soulful hearts that missed it all.

Years where dreams laid in slumber

Like the embers of dead ashes that lost their flame.

 

Reunions,

An old friend, no longer friendly,

An old arch enemy now a comrade,

A teacher who stood the age of time still there,

A building filled with the ghost cries,

Heartaches

Pleasures,

And disappointments.

A pang of sadness for those who have heard the bugle call,

Whose lives are now recorded;

The final judgment made.

 

Are you still a dreamer?

How does the world greet you?

What do you do?

Where have you been?

Questions asked by so many soulful hearts that miss it all.

Their dreams lay in slumber

Like the embers of dead ashes that have lost their flame.

--- 

 

 

Shalom aleichem,

Photo on 01.08.17 at 11.13Pat Garcia


Many Thanks! The Bridge of Hope Is Runner-Up in the WEP JUNE 2017 BRIDGES CHALLENGE

Badge_Red6_Pat
I am associated with a group of writers who participate in the WEP CHALLENGES  that are simply magnificent. Most of them are published authors with many books that have been published, and one or two, like myself, are striving to get the first contract.

Writing is hard work. We spend days and sometimes nights working on three or four sentences, and sometimes even one sentence, trying to express ourselves and how our perception of the events and situations influence our lives––our worlds and our beliefs.

Writing demands courage because it tests who you are on the inside. It consumes and forces you to kick yourself upward when you are down. You find yourself writing even through the hard times.

I found out at 6:30 this evening per email that my flash fiction The Bridge of Hope placed as runner-up in the WEP BRIDGES 2017 CHALLENGE.

In recognition of this honor, I would like to thank Denise Covey and Yolanda Renée, who are the sponsors for WRITE-EDIT- PUBLISH WEP CHALLENGES and their team members Nilanjana Bose, and Olga Godim who work along beside them to make this challenge happen every two months.  Their giving of their time, talent, and expertise to promote writers on a platform that is indeed outstanding is mind-blowing.

I would also like to recognize all the writers who participated. I have had the privilege of reading at least one or two books from many of these writers, and I can say these writers are par excellence. Knowing them reassures me as I trek through this lonely desert on the way to publication. I know that I am not alone. They have trekked through this same desert, and they made it through, and so will I.

Shalom aleichem,

Pat Garcia 2 August 13 2016

Pat Garcia


The Bridge of Hope by Pat Garcia

June Badge

 WC: 919

Around her, disturbing sounds floated into her ears. Hammering against her head, beating against her heart, intorsions whined at the prevarications of her life over the past three and a half years. Hurts, disappointments, and scars gouged into her soul, buried beneath the bridge of callousness he’d built.

Yet, she had let him. Sinking into the never ever world of her fantasy, she had hidden herself as he lay stone for stone, by day and night, crushing her love. It took him three and a half years to erect this huge monster between them. Like the building of the Chesapeake Bay-Bridge Tunnel, today he had lain the last stones.

 “We’re not suited to be parents,” he said, haughtily,

 “Why not? What about me?” She asked, hoping to loosen a tiny stone of compassion.

 He didn’t answer. He walked to their bathroom to shower, leaving her lying on their bed. She turned on her side and watched him. His back toward her, she wondered why she had married him in the first place.  Three and half years, she thought for him to build the bridge of callousness she tasted in her mouth, the rejection she felt in her heart, and the repudiation of herself that gnawed at her conscience.  She placed her right palm on her small bulge.  It didn’t matter that she was twenty weeks. The fact was, she was not able to hide it anymore. Girdles and corsets, wide dresses and baggy pants couldn’t swallow up her weight gain or her bulging breasts. He didn’t find it funny that she looked like a hippopotamus. He found it revolting and told her so.

 She got up from the bed and walked out to the edge of their second story balcony, and she gazed down into the deep. The clear water in the pool below reflected the blue floor at the bottom of the pool. She blinked; it had turned a murky, dark, red.  She shook her head, trying the shake away the surreal picture of blood that hyponagogically appeared for a nanosecond.

 Shaking her head, she wondered why she had not seen him as he truly was. That he was demanding she got rid of the nuisance that would destroy her life with him didn’t disturb him.  

 “What’s twenty weeks in comparison to a lifetime with me?” He asked passing by the door that led out to the balcony on the way to his wardrobe.

 She had said nothing. He took it for granted she would do as he requested. After all, he needed her to devote herself to looking pretty, not pregnant. She had to charm, not look like a bloated whale.

 She stood there leaning against the rail, looking down into the deep. This was her chance, her only chance.  His footsteps sounded behind her. So, close, yet so far away from each other. The bridge he’d built between them was too difficult for her to cross over.  Could she tell him that?

 “What are you thinking about?” he demanded as he put on his tie.

 She turned to look at him but didn’t answer. To tell him about all the birthdays he would miss; to mention the first tooth, the first steps, the first signs of laughter, he wouldn’t understand, so she said nothing.

 He went back into the bedroom, and she continued to lean against the rail of the balcony.

 “Come, you can ride with me to the clinic,” he said.

 “No, I’ll go alone,” she said regarding him, dressed up in his tailor-made suit and his rattlesnake shoes.

 “I can cancel my appointment and stay with you until it’s over, but then I need to be in my office for three o’clock appointment. It’s with the senator.” He said smiling.

 “No, it’s not necessary. I’ll go alone,” she repeated.

 “That’s my girl. You’ll thank me for this later.”

 She said nothing.

 “I have to go,” he said, not even giving her a hug. He felt no sorrow, no regret. “I expect you to have it taken care of by the time I return. If you need a nurse, afterward, hire one for a day or two.”

 She watched him walk to the door.  He stopped when he reached it and turned and looked at her once more.

 “Either it or me,” he said. “The uncomely bulge in the front of you has to go.”

Then, he left.

 She leaned her head to her left side and thought about the large shoulders she would miss.

He would never understand. The bridge she allowed him to build was too narrow for two people to walk across. He had built it wide enough for her to walk to him, but he couldn’t walk to her; the damage to her soul was on his blindside.

Sickened by his demands, she turned and gazed down the path watching him walked toward his chauffeur.  He didn’t turn to look back; that didn’t surprise her. He never did. He assumed she would carry out his orders.

Tears ran down her face as she walked back into the bedroom to shower and dress. She took her passport and three wrapped bundles of five hundred dollars out of the safe.

He was still commuting to his office when her taxi came.  Walking out the door, she whispered goodbye as she turned away from the bridge of callousness she wouldn’t cross over.  She laid her first stone to the bridge of hope, reclaiming herself and the life of the unborn within her.

--- 

Shalom aleichem,

Pat Garcia 2 August 13 2016

Pat Garcia


WEP Submission, April 19, 2017, The If of Peace and Love by Pat Garcia

 

 

A PEACE AND LOVE

 

 

 

 

 

Silkworms April 18 2017

 The If of Peace and Love by Pat Garcia

 

If silkworms could grow peacefully,

Silk would fill the whole earth.

 

If the larvae of butterflies could choose,

Then, they would hatch on green leaves,

And grow in their brilliance.

 

Whatever happened to the vision of hope?

The gift of faith,

The coadunation found in peace and love,

The ideology of humans understanding humans,

The sacredness of respect.

 

The silkworms can’t spread,

Humans need silk scarves,

Silkworms multiply in glass houses for production.

 

Larvae grow into caterpillars,

But are trampled under feet

By people who walk, run, and drive

Ignorant of nature’s beauty.

 

Whatever happened to the vision of hope?

The gift of faith,

The coadunation found in peace and love,

The ideology of humans understanding humans,

The sacredness of respect.

 

I know, said the silkworms

Enclosed within their prison gates,

While another bunch of larvae mashes beneath hurried feet,

Or squishes under rubber tires.

 

The vision of hope is long obliterated,

Said the silkworms.

 

No, said the butterflies,

It is the loss of faith,

 Annihilated.

 

No, said the silkworms,

The ideology of understanding has turned into variables shades of gray.

 

Yes, said the butterflies, we agree.

The coadunation found in peace and love cocooned in faith,

Is no longer the sum total of the sacredness of respect.

 

 

 

Shalom aleichem,

Pat Garcia August 13 2016

Pat Garcia

 

 


The Box in the Loft by Pat Garcia

February BadgeWC: 827

 

 

The loft wasn't supposed to be a storage room for Giovanni’s things. It just evolved into one. Each anniversary, she would pack away his summer things, and they celebrated one more year of them, together, one loving one, them, loving them. He would laugh at her.

“All things are temporal, Kathleen Katy-bear,” he’d say, combining her birth name with the pet name he’d given her. “What we have is priceless. The things you’re stowing away can never compensate for the memories in our hearts.”

Then, he would take her into his arms. “Come sleep with me,” he’d say, taking her mind off the task she was doing. He would stress the present moments as he pounded into her body.   Her screams of delight and his groans of pleasure, as he released his semen, had him falling on top of her after their climax, whispering words between breaths, as he pecked her ears, her neck, and her cheeks, planting tiny kisses in the aftermath. “This is significant, Katy-bear,” he’d say. “Nothing is more important than this. My lips on your lips. The warmth of our mouths as we explore each other, me pressing you close to my body letting you feel the heat you’ve generated in me. Only that counts, Katy-bear."

 Kathleen sat holding his jacket in her arms. Three years had passed, but his aroma was still present like yesterday.

Tears covered her face as she unpacked. She was on the last box before the Salvation Army came to pick up his clothing. She gave them a call after he appeared to her in a dream. He’d admonished her for dishonouring their love by not remembering the sweet golden moments.

The smiles when they were both thinking about the same things, the hugs when she accidentally asked a question that pointed out an error in the planning of his next mission, or the late-night walks where she gathered stones and put them in her pockets, and he would remind her those stones were like him. Each time that he returned she collected the broken pieces of his soul and put them back together again.  In the evenings, he would take her in his arms and hug her tightly, and say, "Let's go upstairs, I need you."  And upstairs, they went and made passionate love with the full realisation each time could be their very last.

 

 It happened. They both knew the time had come. Yet, Giovanni’s death came too soon. He was too young.

 What do I do now? Even though I was older, you understood me. What do I do now, Giovanni?

 "I hate you, Giovanni!”  Kathleen cried out. “You and your honour for your country. Why did you have to go on that particular mission? Why couldn’t you let someone else volunteer? No one misses you as much as I do," she screamed.  

Her tears flowed heavily; mucus ran out her nose, and her hands trembled as she pulled the things out of the last box and threw them on the mountain before her.

She picked up the jacket she mistakenly threw back into the box.

  I'll keep this jacket. It smells of you.

She put her left arm into the left sleeve. Something solid in the left pocket of the jacket touched her hip bone. Reaching into the pocket, she pulled out a flat, jagged key.

  NaNu, what do you open? 

With the key in her hand, her gaze went to the box, and that’s when she saw the dark mahogany chest. She lifted the chest out of the box sat down on the floor; her back to the mountain of clothing.

Where did you come from? Why would Giovanni buy a chest?

 Her hands trembled; the key shook as she put it into the lock.

 She hoped the key wouldn’t fit. All her beautiful bubbles of their seven-year relationship could suddenly burst into thin air.

 

 Laughter filled the loft.

 Giovanni, are you here?

“Don't be afraid Katy-bear. Turn the key!”

Her heart beats became irregular; her chest ached.

People will think I’m insane if I tell them I heard Giovanni’s voice.

Her eyes grew large when she raised the chest top. Within were seven mid-size diaries, and she took out the first one.

 Leaning against her mountain, she opened the journal and began to read the first page. She burst out in laughter. “You sneak!” She yelled out joyfully for the first time in three years. Her tears forgotten, she began to read aloud.

“Words for you, Katy-bear. Invisible conversations I’ve had with you on each mission. Each diary records my present moments when you weren’t there. I love you, Katy-bear. Always have, always will. Love is eternal.”

 The anguished and inner turmoil she’d suffered, eased. The pain in her chest disappeared.

Yes, love is eternal.

Sitting by the box in her loft, her back against the mountain of Giovanni’s clothes, Kathleen read as she slipped over into eternity to be with her Giovanni.

                    ---

Shalom aleichem,

Pat Garcia August 13 2016

Pat Garcia


Guest Blogging at the WEP Website on the Importance of Critical Reading

Hello Everyone,

I am guest blogging over at the WEP website on Critical Reading. Please drop by and read my article on The Importance of Critical Reading. The link is,

http://writeeditpublishnow.blogspot.de/2017/01/wep-guest-post-importance-of-critical.html

Also, the next WEP is coming up in February for all of you who are interested in participating. I recommend it highly. It is Flash Fiction at its best.

I will be returning with my Work In Progress,  Just At Dawn, and short snippets about what is happening between Phoebe and Daniel on Friday.

Have a great day and be safe.

Shalom aleichem,

Pat Garcia August 13 2016
Pat Garcia


The Woman and Her Dream, Winner of the 2016 WEP December Utopian Dreams Challenge, Sponsored by Write-Edit-Publish

Badge_GirlCastle5_PatGarcia
First-moment experiences are never forgotten.  They are the golden nuggets of success, which keeps you moving forward in whatever you have chosen to accomplish.  That is one of the reasons why it is so important to record them in your heart in your treasure trove of memories.

 

Today, I have received a first-moment experience. I have been informed my entry, The Woman and Her Dream, is the winner of the 2016 WEP December Utopian Dreams Challenge.  This challenge is my first win.  I have participated in many writing challenges over the years, but this is my first win, and I am elated and thankful.

 

Many heartfelt thanks to Denise Covey and Yolanda Reneè.  You have made my day.

 

Shalom aleichem,

Pat Garcia August 13 2016

Pat Garcia