Words by Oliver Cocks
Alexander couldn’t help but resent that it was a splendid day.
It was a Saturday in early December. The sky was a deep, clear blue. The air was warm, but not too warm. The sun blessed all with light, because of course it did. The chirruping of birds in the background melded with the rumble of the nearby ocean and the squeals of children in a nearby playground.
Alexander sniffed, wiped away a budding tear. No, he wasn’t going to cry. Not again. He still had a little dignity.
He was sitting on the grass of a park adjacent to his local beach. The beach was separated from the park by a footpath, along which couples were strolling hand in hand, as if to spite him.
How could someone live so long within your breath, only to hurriedly flee, pinching your happiness with them? He and Dan had been together for almost two years. Two years of their early twenties fought out together. Two years of laughter, tears, bickering and love shared side by side, only for it to all end today. And, to cap it all off, the weather was magnificent.
Alexander wanted the weather to be seething, untamed. He wanted lashings of rain as thunder growled and fire slashed the sky, or heat so searing it withered grass and singed your skin, or, at a bare minimum, for it to be unpleasantly cool or warm. Anything that would give a sense to his mood. And, instead, it was agonisingly splendid.
He couldn’t fault Dan. He’d known too for some time that it was over, that they’d been running on borrowed time. But did that mean it didn’t hurt? Did that mean he wasn’t torn into incalculable pieces?
No more would Dan make fun of him for his bad jokes, no more would they gossip about others behind their backs, no more would they vainly keep an eye on the time while Dan’s housemates were out…
One tear, then another crept out of his eye.
Alexander heaved out a deep, deep sigh. Well, here he was. Just then his phone vibrated: Samantha had just heard the news, suggested he come over to her place to be cheered up. How long had he been there? His phone told him he’d been wandering aimlessly around the beach for at least an hour, ever since Dan had broken up with him nearby.
It would be good to see Samantha: just what he needed. He should get going now, he’d spent far too long wallowing, and he should probably go home first and wash his face.
Alexander got up and set off, but not before shooting one last glare at the perfect sky.