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For Joyce

By J T Pearson

copyright 2013 Joseph Pearson

Smashwords edition

A humming bird kept her company, dropping and lifting, darting from side to side, moving from plant to plant, as if for her entertainment only. Then it seemed to get bored with her as everyone in her small town seemed to and it floated away. She turned and watched it fly before stopping and hovering near the weathervane fastened on the corner of the fence that ran the perimeter of her house. It floated down and settled on a post to watch her for a change. A storm had threatened to approach earlier, recklessly hurling lightning bolts in the distance, but it had apparently wandered another direction leaving her to her chores. The crickets out in the field just past the dirt road that ran in front of her father’s property seemed like they were getting louder and louder. She had never heard the crickets so loud and then suddenly there was a voice behind her.

“So, do you actually have green thumbs too?”

She spun around back toward the road, startled and a little breathless.

“I didn’t see you walk up,” she said after looking at the road and seeing no car, but then she would’ve heard a car drive up.

“No, you didn’t. You were preoccupied with your garden.”

He looked extremely fit, prominent veins coiling his bulging forearms that were revealed because the long sleeves of his dress shirt had been folded up neatly several times. His clothes were stylish but unusual, the cut of his pants different than she’d seen, his cobalt shirt had a slight sheen to it and the material that it was made of looked unfamiliar. Even his brown shoes that shined like polished mahogany were of a style that she hadn’t ever encountered, not even in her mother’s fashion magazines that she snuck peeks at whenever she wasn’t home, like today. By the look of his attire she imagined that this man had seen a lot of the world, his dress influenced by many cities, countries, cultures. He certainly didn’t seem like the men around her small town, the type of men to toil in the elements, hard labor, an outdoor job in the fields or on a farm, or like one of the men that she’d met that worked with the trains, so his deep tan suggested that he had the leisure time to maintain it, vacations basking in the sun, a privileged life most likely. His eyes were very dark, so dark she couldn’t make out the separation of the pupil and the rest of the eye, deep black pools. His hair was well cropped and dark like his eyes, a hair style that suggested an important station in life, perhaps a doctor or a politician. Her theories continued to play leapfrog as she did her best to unravel the mystery before her. Although she was still young she was extremely observant and excellent at recounting details, a lover of stories, of good books. She generally figured out the end of a good mystery novel before even reaching the middle of the book. She was precocious, starved for more of the world, eager to try new things, to meet new people, impatient and hungry to find her place in society, insatiable for knowledge and experience, already restless at the age of fourteen, even though she thought she could’ve passed for much older, as tall and slender as she was.

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