From out of the blue

From out of the blue, the number 12 bus arrived. It took a break, right alongside the pavement where Heather was day-dreaming.

There was no sign to suggest it was a stop, only a lonely weathered old bench where she sat. Concealed as she leant back, was a long forgotten memorial metal tag. An engraved dedication for a lost husband and father, out of sight, hidden from view.

Heather had been taking a stroll today, meandering among in the Summer haze, trying to clear her mind. She had chosen to rest here now, to cool down, break from the unrelenting heat. Sitting in the delicate shade of a huge Sophora Japonica, branches suspended its flowers weightlessly above her, like some angelic dandelion clock. At this edge of the park, the young woman was in a world of her own. Slowly she breathed in, breathed out, in…out…, both eyes closed as sweet scents were humming around her. Beneath her lush protector, under its canopy of fresh linen white petals, she felt calm.

Still Heather was undisturbed by the proximity of the bus.

Before this moment her only noticeable company were the pair of swans, silently doggy-paddling in the lake behind the tree. The brightness of the afternoon licked at the water’s skin, turning it into an immense mirror – dazzling, nearly blinding, anyone who dared to look. Filled with life above and below the surface, it was magically transforming images of double beauty.

Now smelling the fuel from the vehicle, she opened her drowsy eyes, with great effort. It was then she remembered – there were roadworks nearby. This was usually a quiet, often sublime, part of the village. Which made seeing any vehicle feel, even more peculiar. It must have been the driver’s temporary route.

She never knew this was a stop.

As the doors of the bus swooshed open, Heather now fully aroused from her pre-occupied state of mind. She interrogated her watch for the time. It was one o’clock already, her idly spent morning had crept past her on tip-toe, wearing the velvet slippers of her oblivious relaxation.

Realising how long it had been since breakfast, her stomach seemed to clench as it rumbled. In that moment she committed. Grabbing a worn blush canvas bag and cow-girl hat, she boarded. Stepping inside, flashing the driver her travel-pass, and a weary smile, she was glad to be out of the sun.

Her daisy-topped flip-flops took Heather two rows from the back. The soft leather beneath gently dipped, as she sat and set down her belongings. It was only going to be about fifteen minutes before the bus reached the town. That fact felt completely unimportant as she stared blankly at the unread book that sat on her lap. The faces on the front cover seemed to be looking back at her, inexplicably expectant…Something is going to appear soon, look out for it…

Catching herself in this detached gaze, Heather shook herself back into reality. As she packed the book away into her bag, it was then. It was then she looked up. Across on the other side of the bus, further down, was a young man.

It was all at once obvious, they were the only people on the bus, apart from the driver.

Who was this dark-haired stranger, she pondered. He was not familiar, though she could only see the back of his head. Barely audible, over the sounds of the engine and motion of the vehicle, she heard music. It was a walk-man, he was discreetly listening to a CD.

This was it, thought Heather. This was what she was meant to be on the ‘look out’ for. This chance now alive and buzzing with presence, but what now? She shyly smiled, a hidden smile, to herself, lost in the depths of indecision. If she spoke to him, what would she say and how would it be between them…

Then the bus stopped, jolting her once more back to the real world. The young man had noticed this attention. Turning to face her, he smiled openly and with an honest sweetness.

She had a choice to make and only moments in which to decide. Should Heather grab the fruit of possible love, or run away full of fading ripeness…

From out of the blue


Reading, United Kingdom

  • Artist
  • Artwork Comments 4

Artist's Description

This story, was inspired by/a result of one of the other writing exercises I came across in the groups. Choosing six things, started with the words “from out of the blue”

My six choices were -
Action = listening to music
Person = dark haired stranger
Item = unread book
Texture = soft leather
Emotion = indecision
Sound = humming.

All comments welcome. Send bubble-mail if you’d prefer.

Artwork Comments

  • Tam  Locke
  • wannabewriter81
  • ian osborne
  • wannabewriter81
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

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