"Before." by Liz Keedy - Winner - Phoenix Photo&Fiction
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Published June 30, 2018

Before.

by Liz Keedy

She leaves the room. Her smiling eyes remind you of beach holidays with
your wife before . . .  A sigh, heavy with regret, whistles through your
nostrils.

. . . she left your embrace before you told her that she was your everything.
You forget to inhale until instinct kicks in.

A twinge in your temple becomes a throb and you rub it with swollen fingers.
The memory of beach holidays fragments. Eyes squeeze tight to grasp hold,
but the fragments dissipate and impart a feeling that floats adrift in a sea of
electrical impulses. The feeling is joy, but it won’t connect to anything.

Your mind and your life no longer synchronise.

Confused, you glance at the table beside you: Reading glasses, plate of
Hobnobs, mug of tea - someone must have brought the tea and biscuits;
folded piece of paper; and a photograph of you, middle-aged, standing
between a beautiful blonde and a younger woman who resembles the
beautiful blonde. Turquoise, frothy waves ribbon golden sand in the
background.

The beach? A memory almost returns.

Your trembling hands grab the paper and unfold it, clumsily. Jerky,
disjointed handwriting reads: Remember. She is your daughter, Sarah.

Your brain’s electrical impulses radiate from centre to edge, drawing your
eyebrows closer.

Daughter?

Neurons cluster, light up and connect. Your gaze returns to the photo.
Familiarity of the beautiful blonde, younger woman, and beach cause
neurons to light a path to your memory, like a runway at night-time, and . . .

. . . you remember: The young woman with smiling eyes who brought the
tea reminds you of beach holidays with your wife. The woman is your
daughter, Sarah.

You sigh, filled with regret, but joy too. You are not completely alone, you
still have your daughter.


Biography
Liz Keedy: I live in West Yorkshire, England, and enjoy spending time every
day to practise the craft of writing. I love to write fiction and have a blog
where I post spiritual insights, short stories and poems, I hope one day to
publish a novel. My life is mystical and full of super-natural experiences
which I sometimes use as a basis for my written musings.

Winner: The Monthly Flash Fiction Contest #7

Before.

by Liz Keedy
(West Yorkshire, England)
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