In honor of a U.K. Charity, I am submitting the following story for consideration in J.A.Mes Press newest anthology , “Rebirth”, that will be comprised of fifty stories. All profits from sales of this book will benefit a charity for stroke patients.
Title: Lili, The Baby Duck and the Butterfly
Author: D. C. Legendre
A Momma duck and her string of babies floated before me in the warm, serene water that lapped at the edges of the sand as I sat on the familiar stone ledge. A butterfly flew by, nearly landing on my hat and I thought back to that day long before, the time before I left the place I loved.
As I walked through the parking lot, I wondered what would happen the next day. Interview on the Seacoast. How could I leave this place behind? So deep in thought, I hardly noticed the black figure on the flaming motorcycle parked near the water’s edge. I walked into the park and sat on the stone ledge near the sandy beach. A mother and her little girl sat a nearby picnic table. The little girl was having the time of her life and was soon chasing after a beautiful butterfly. I couldn’t help think how the butterfly felt like a symbol of spirit and flight and that I would be heading to a new life and feeling the stab in my heart, not knowing what to do. As the butterfly escaped her grasp, she noticed me and came near me. She jabbered away about the butterfly and I smiled and spoke to her. As always, I felt sadness in my heart that I didn’t have my own little girl to share this moment with. Hidden beneath my black baseball cap, shades and with a pirate t-shirt on, who knew what her mother thought. But, Lili was drawn to me for some reason. She sat down next to me and squealed with delight as a Momma duck and her baby came floating into sight. In the distance, a beautiful catamaran sailed in the open waters.
I glanced over at the dark figure and he was staring at me. I quickly looked away and started a conversation with little Lili’s mother. After a time, she gathered their things together and they left. The stranger remained just beyond the park. He seemed so familiar. Like the one who used to drive the silver colored car with the initials on the license plate. He had nearly run me over one day as I stood to cross the street. Another time, he sat and waited for me to cross. I had thought him to be the famous rock star but knew he couldn’t be. But, confusion. I felt confused by his appearance.
I sat feeling nervous that I was alone with that lone wolf sitting and watching me. I got up and walked off over the grass toward the public buildings and away from him, never glancing back. I wondered who he was and if I would ever see him again. In my heart, I knew I would. Someday. I felt confused again by my feelings. It was as if I knew it would be a combination of fire and ice. Happiness and sadness. Loss. Dread. And end that would be unforgiving. I got into my car and drove back to my place and got ready for the next day. Another day of reckoning in my life.
I heard the rumbling of a motorcycle and it brought me out of my memories. Out of the corner of my eye, I knew who it was. That dark figure who had haunted my vision. The one who I had passed by the first time I saw him. Then, the one who had approached me the next year when I had returned to my home after nearly being eaten up by the insanity of the Seacoast. With him, I had let my heart run free and had experienced a new life – one filled with eyes open to things I had not seen before. A time of rushing winds from the back of a motorcycle and new love. It was as if I was reliving another time in my life that had never been allowed to see the light of day. The time we had together was too short but enough to fill an entire book- the laughter I experienced was that of a lifetime. But, as the butterfly had flitted about and flown away, so had he. As for me, I watched him fly away and knew another day would come when he would appear again, just as the butterfly returned again and again to its place in the sun.