She heard her name. She wasn’t imagining things, yet there was nobody in sight. The wind pushed her hair back and leaves swept by, but she remained the only person standing next to her house. A weeping willow tree stood off to her left about fifty feet behind her. Its limbs swept the ground as the wind continued to blow. The grass, now with two weeks worth of growth, also waved their tips in response.
The wind died with a sudden finality as though being directed by a conductor. Something was off and she knew it. Still no voice called out her name like before. She sucked in a deep breath and blew it out. “Hello?” asked Ashley. Nothing. Dead silence. After waiting for another minute or so, she said, “Ok, I’m done. I’m going in the house to take a nap because I must be tired. Yes, that’s it. I’m tired.” She wrapped her arms around herself and walked toward the front of the house.
She heard someone that time. No doubt about it. Spinning on her heal she yelled, “What! I know you’re there. Where are you and who are you? Tim?”
“Ashley, hard….to…..help with……me…..talk…..you.” The image of her husband Tim flickered in and out as did his words.
He was in trouble just she figured. He had gone on a fishing trip by himself to get away. It was a man thing he had said. He wanted to be one with nature. She had her reservations about the whole thing, but he had insisted. She moved forward toward the image of her husband who was still flickering.
“Tim, what’s going on? How are you able to communicate with me like this?”
She ran into the house, grabbed her purse and keys, and left for her husband’s favorite fishing spot; the Sartis River. As she turned the key in the ignition, the pink translucent stone she and her husband found on their mountain hike swung from her key ring. They had found two of them along the bank of a creek running parallel to the hiking trail they were on. She kept one and had it mounted so she could put it on her key ring. He kept the other, although, what he did with it she didn’t know. They both enjoyed searching for fossil stones, so they had stopped to look for some and instead found these. It sparkled in the sun as it swung now from the ignition.
(TO BE CONTINUED)