Shelter from the rain

Cold rivers of water ran down his neck, wetting his shirt.  He didn’t have an umbrella.  Just a rain coat, over the top of a Superman t-shirt she’d given him and a pair of dark denim jeans.  The wet grass reached up and licked the hem of his jeans, soaking them through to his knee, his legs goose-pimpling with every touch of fabric.  He walked the last few steps and saw her.  Waiting beneath the fig tree. He was glad she’d picked this spot.  The mass of leaves and thick knotted branches up above blocked out most of the rain that had poured down the past few days.

“Hi,” he said as he reached out, wiping drops of water from her, “I’ve missed you.”

A crow cawed from somewhere in the shelter of the fig tree.  The sound echoed amongst the other gnarled trees, that stood protectively around the edges.  Just inside the border of the moss covered rock wall.  The cracked, green and brown wall was what had first attracted her to this spot.  They had driven past one day, on their way home, and she’d made him pull in to the little driveway.  The sun had sparkled on the tops of the leaves and glowed on the well manicured lawn.  She led him down the winding path, stopping to read plaques on the chipped stone and tracing her fingers over the lettering carved into the marble nestled neatly into the earth.  She’d loved the trees the most though.

“They’ll keep me dry, when it rains.” She’d said.

A knot formed in his throat, as he stared silently at her.  He struggled to get the feeling down, his head nodding as he swallowed it away.

She’d smiled, mistaking the nod for agreement.

“If you come to visit me, it will be shady for you too.”

“I’m not going to have to visit you here.  You heard what the doctor said.”

She’d come closer, reaching her fingertips out to his hand then.  Lacing them through his and squeezing softly.

He held the hand up now.  Tiny shivers racing through his fingers.  He brushed his fingertips across the letters carved into the cold, damp stone.

“I love you.”  He said.

He looked out through the thick heavy rain drops, then lowered his head and stepped out from under the protection of the tree.  Rain soaked his hair, racing down his face and neck as he trudged back to the car.


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