Occasionally, I will see something on social media that makes me want to write. It is usually something along the lines of: Tell me how we met, but lie. I love these probably a little more than I should. Today’s story is a direct result of one of those social media posts. Enjoy ‘Angels.’
She lay at the bottom of the hill, her hands folded behind her head, her feet crossed at the ankles. She looked to be staring at the sky.
I stood at the top of the hill, some fifty yards above her. I looked up to the sky. White clouds hung in a backdrop of blue like delicate cotton balls, as if pasted there by a child’s hand. They were jumbled and close together, trying to crowd out the blue.
I looked back at her. She still lay in the same spot.
“What does she see?” I asked myself, then began the slow trek down the hillside.
I leaned back, hoping not to tumble and break a bone or five or six, or maybe my skull. Occasionally my foot would slip on slick grass or stumble on loose gravel and I would slide a foot or two. At one point, I fell to my bottom and had to grab hold of a bush that had seen better days before death claimed it.
Halfway down I glanced at her. She wore white shorts and a blue blouse.
The ground beneath me began to level out the closer I got to the bottom of the hill and I no longer had to keep my arms out at the sides and my body leaning in case I fell.
Thirty feet from her and I could see her shorts were denim and her blouse was loose with a bow at one hip. She went for comfort.
Twenty feet away and the picture became clearer. She didn’t lay on the ground, but on a blue and white blanket, maybe a towel. Flip flops sat neatly on the ground beside her. A book lay faced down and open on the ground beside the flip flops. I wasn’t sure, but I thought she was smiling, but she might have been asleep.
Ten feet away and I could read the title of the book: Stolen Angels. Her toenails were painted pink. She glanced at me and smiled.
“Hi,” she said and looked back to the sky.
“Hi,” I said. “Can I sit with you for a while?”
I sat beside her, then lay on the ground. A rock gnawed into my right shoulder blade until I moved a foot or so to my right. My hands went behind my head the way she had hers but I didn’t cross my feet at my ankles. I stared at the sky, at the clouds that looked like cotton balls glued on the backdrop of blue by a child’s hand.
“What do you see?” I asked.
“Angels,” she said.