~the following is part of “Prompted Prose,” a series of posts from the prompts I’m working with during my Spring 2016 online writing course
You walked right past him the first time. Just another sun-tanned, shirtless man, on the beach, broad chest, golden skin, a rose tattoo on his bicep. You were there for a walk in your special seaside haven, and there was another half mile to go.
But as the afternoon faded, and the sun began to fall, you backtracked toward your car. He was still there in the sand, turning to look right at you, smiling, no hesitation. You were curious, but self-conscious, looking everywhere else: the red-hued cliffs, the open sky, the outstretched, rippled sea.
“Beautiful,” you gestured to the surroundings, as he continued to gaze upon you.
He nodded, smiling into your eyes. “Beautiful,” he said.
You kept walking, leaving him behind. You were moving towards the settling sun, getting closer to your car, when a voice inside your head asked,
What’s the hurry? Why not stay and watch the sunset?
So you stopped to circle with the shells, sneaking looks over your shoulder at the arms with the rose tattoo.
You each have your own version of this story. The one about that ‘beautiful’ day when you both met. Watching him from afar at sunset, you got butterflies in your stomach, so fluttery, you lost your breath, laughing out loud at yourself. He saw the air go pink all around you, and quietly asked God to make you his. And these things happened all before you knew each other’s names.
Eventually, he did walk right to the rocky outcrop where you stood. He made it seem so simple. “Hello.”
You talked easily together until the light fell and a rain shower came. He began to jog toward a nearby Kaimani tree for shelter. You stayed behind, unsure.
Ducking beneath the tree, he turned back to you, beaming. Raindrops splashed across his cheeks. Everything about him said ‘of course,’ as he called “C’mon!”