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MESSAGE IN A BOTTLE

Copyright Saggio Amante 2004

All rights reserved

Marina stared out the cottage window, gazing down at the windswept beach where her lover walked, hands in pockets, head bent. The midday sun blazed overhead, blanketing the small blonde woman and the ocean and the beach with its pulsating rays. Waves beat against the sand, their rhythmic sounds background music for the crying of the gulls overhead.

She saw Lizette stop as though brought up short by some unexpected obstacle, She watched the tiny figure bend, then fall to her knees, scooping the sand in large handfuls and throwing it behind her. She held her breath as her lover pulled something from the sand; she saw her shoulders begin to shake and knew that she was sobbing. The small woman raised an object into the air, and Marina felt her heart catch as she saw sunlight glance off the cobalt blue of the glass bottle in her lover's hands.

'At last you've found it,' Marina thought, her mind racing back in time to that horrible, black day, ten years before. She stared with love at the small figure still kneeling in the sand, then ran out the cottage door and raced to her lover's side. Pulling the small blonde up into her arms, kissing the top of her golden curls, Marina whispered, "It's all right, Lizette. It's all right."

Images swirled in Marina's mind. 'Ten years. It took ten years.' Etched in her mind was the picture of another windswept day long ago when Lizette and she had said cruel words to each other, a day when she watched Lizette run to the ocean and hurl a cobalt blue bottle into its angry waves, a day of tears and recrimination, a day that stayed within the misty memories of them both.

Marina's mind replayed that evening long ago in vivid detail. She could still see Lizette lying on their bed, sobbing, rivulets of tears streaking her beautiful face. Marina remembered the ache in her own chest as she left Lizette and began to run down the beach, trying to run off her anger and the pain of their argument. Running, running until she couldn't run any more ... thinking that she could not feel any deeper pain and then she saw it - the blue bottle - as it washed up on the shore with its devil words inside. She stooped, picked it up, and pulled the crumpled paper from its bowels.

I hate you!

With all that's in me

Your words, lies

Scarring my soul

I can forgive you

Anything but this

Betrayal!

I cast our love

Into the ocean waves

As you have have

Cast it into the fiery

Depths of hell

I hate you!

Marina remembered the feeling, like a knife twisting in her already bruised heart, as she opened the bottle on that night long ago and read the searing words sealed inside. Ten years later she could still feel the sting of her own tears burning hot on her cheeks as she turned the paper over to write her own words and seal them back inside that cobalt blue sarcophagus.

I love you!

With all that's in me

My words, true.

There is no betrayal

I have always loved

Only you

I rescue our love

From the ocean waves

The calm water of my love

Will quench your fury

And rescue our love from

Those fiery depths of hell

You are my soul

I bury these words for

You to find when the

Universe is ready

I love you!

That evening, long ago, Marina dug deeply in the sand until her fingertips bled from the effort. She kissed the cobalt blue bottle and buried it deep. "I love you, Lizette," she screamed into the cosmos. "I will always love you."

Ten years, come and gone. They had weathered the storm; their love was stronger than the lies of a false friend. And now the cobalt blue bottle was once more there between them.

"You don't understand," Lizette wept. Pulling the cork from the bottle, she handed Marina the paper containing the hateful words she had written so long ago.

"But I do understand," Marina said softly, placing a soft kiss on her lover's lips. She turned the paper over and handed it back to Lizette. "I love you," she whispered. "I have always loved you. I always will."

Through her tears, Lizette read the words Marina had written so long ago, words of love erasing words of hate, words that had been sealed in a cobalt blue bottle waiting for the universe to be ready.

THE END

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