Fuscia flowers trailed over and down the ornate, iron archway, cocooning her in a rosy tunnel. Sunbeams streaked through the spaces between the petals, casting faint shadows across the cobbled path. Interspersing this pink wave of colour were hints of purples, lilacs, jades and emeralds and she felt content here. Some petals had fallen to the floor as the season had begun to change but it was a warm day and everything felt summery.
Ahead, just around the bend, was a wooden bench, cracked by time and the changing seasons. Deep grooves ran along it but didn’t detract from the smooth curves of the arms leading down to the sturdy iron legs that had held it down for so many years. Collecting up one of the fallen flowers, she wandered towards this favourite perch.
Him. He consumed her thoughts. He had waltzed in that day, a cool, nonchalant air emanating from him. His glossy hair and bright smile had turned her head and when he spoke to her, chose her of all the girls there that day, she beamed and flushed and couldn’t believe her luck. Now, she was thinking of him again, running her hands through her hair. The last two months had whizzed by in a whirl of smiles and kisses and shared moments.
She was so taken by her thoughts that she didn’t really notice the woman taking a seat at the end of the bench. And only when this woman pushed a photograph along the bench towards her: a smiling lady, the lips of a man pressed against her cheek, a dot of a boy playing at their feet; only when she heard this woman’s stifled sob, did she look up.
“Stay away from my husband,” the voice trembled. Another sob. A pause. The sound of footsteps trailing away.
The clouds rolled over, blocking the sunlight streaks which had cascaded through and the gentle breeze blew stronger. Fuscia petals, somehow darker than before, dropped from the trees above her, mimicking the tears that rolled down her flushed cheek.
She left the bench. She left the cobbled path. She left the rosy tunnel.