(Sometimes a writing comes to me in a flash, an image, whole and complete – and this is one of those. Stories are alive and just what they are sometimes.My first glimpse of the sand dunes in Oregon last summer and this was it. I spent the better part of the past year trying to write it differently, less than, not what it was in my head. Not so dark and not so what it wanted to be. Finally gave that up and let it be what it was. It is what it is.)
She sat on the crest of the dune and watched the sun as it raced itself to the horizon. The sunset was her favourite time of day. It was in these last few moments when the sun, blazing its most brilliant, would slip below the edge of her vision, that she was at peace. The enormity of the ocean would swallow it whole, entirely consuming its fire, leaving only a dark chill behind. The beauty of the transition from day to night was almost magical in its simplicity.
For now though, for just a few more golden shrouded minutes, the sun still shone.
She closed her eyes and felt the soft breeze that rolled off the water. It was warm on her face as it caught her hair, dancing her dark curls against her cheeks. She lifted her chin slightly to catch it a bit more, and her lips parted in a soft smile.
The air had a slight chill under the warmth though and that edge told her that time was running out. The sun was swiftly nearing the horizon line and she wanted to be gone before the sun dipped its final dive below the waves today.
She breathed in deeply, the salt in the air tangy on her tongue. Opening her eyes to drink in the last glimpses of sunlight, she was surprised to find them wet with tears. Blinking them away, she exhaled slowly.
The flash of sun reflecting against the metal that she held in her hand was so brief that it might have almost not happened at all.
She moved without hesitation, smoothly. The blade so sharp that it was done before she even began to feel the sting of its edge against her forearms.
A shiver ran through her as she leaned forward, wrapping her arms around her bent legs, hugging her knees to her chest for a moment.
She sighed and let go slowly, dropping her arms to rest beside her. The sand darkened with her blood.
The roaring of the waves below her on the beach were being drowned out by the sound of her heartbeat in her ears and she welcomed the silence she hoped would follow soon.
Her head raised slowly and the fiery sun met her gaze.
It was just starting its final fall into the waiting embrace of the ocean.
She felt herself slip quietly with it as her head fell softly forward onto her knees and her eyes closed.