Saturday, January 24, 2015

Flash! Friday The Boy With The Hazel Eyes + Undercurrents

by Michael Seese

Once again, I gave Flash! Friday something old, something new. This week, we had to include a beach, and this photo:

So first came "The Boy With The Hazel Eyes."

Agata never forgot the boy with the hazel eyes. He introduced himself with a cannonball that splashed water in her face. She knew then it would some day be love. That summer at her family's cottage on Lake Scharm├╝tzel was the true beginning of her life.

Saying goodbye tasted like poison.

He wrote every week. When he'd send a photograph, she soared. But once Hitler's serpent tongue stated seducing the country, his letters became less frequent. Too soon, they stopped altogether.

Then the monsters with machine guns came to their door. Their new home embraced them with a ring of razor wire.

Still, she never forgot the boy with the hazel eyes. Memories of the splash of water, the hidden kisses, were all that kept her alive. Agata held out hope she would see him again.

Two weeks after her father died, Agata's prayer was answered. Immediately, she wished Fate had ignored her.

Gone were the crisp brown shirt and black shorts from the photos. In their place clung the uniform of death. He didn't see her, or he pretended not to. For this small favor, she was grateful.

When the war ended, she walked out the gates alone.

And she never could forget the boy with the hazel eyes.

Then I dusted off one I wrote for a Janet Reid contest last November, though I had to double it. (Like that's ever a problem for me.)

And here is "Undercurrents."

Most family traditions grow from joy. Some, though, are born of pain.

This beach will forever remain embedded in my very fabric. To this day, I can close my eyes, and relive it all. Building sandcastles with my brothers. Chasing seagulls. My father’s white nose. Sometimes, seeing dolphins dancing above the waves. And eating ice cream ALL DAY LONG!

So many good memories.

And one horrible memory, of hearing my mother’s screams when she looked out into the ocean and saw that Bill and Max were gone.

From that day, we lived beneath a cloud that never rained upon us, yet always threatened to.

Our family returned to the beach every year. We’d stay in the same hotel. And my mother would sit in the same spot, just staring at the blue emptiness. Though it was never said, I always believed my parents held out hope they would see them again.

Why don’t they? I wondered.

I did.

I tried to tell my parents. But they never believed me.

"Maybe when they’re in heaven," Max would say.

Even after my parents passed away, I would return to the beach. I’d sit there for hours, watching the waves. And I'd try to understand why my brothers no longer spoke to me.

Let me know what you think.

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