Before I begin this short story, I wanted to let everyone know that I am starting a 30 Day Restart Prompt Challenge created by and alongside my writing buddy Jean over at her blog Miz Writer Lady. She will be posting her writings on these prompts as well, so please check them out! At the end of each post or story, I will include the prompt words that inspired it.
Without further ado, enjoy!
“The Girl With the Honey Colored Hair”
I have only one memory of the crash. One vibrantly hued, hauntingly vague memory that, when recalled, evokes a heart palpitating longing of both desire and loss. The girl with the honey colored hair. What I know of that morning, all besides that memory, was recounted to me later. The bounce my stubbornly un-helmeted head took off the hard-packed pathway so cleanly wiped away the rest.
It was a crisp, early Spring morning. The time of Spring where nature can’t quite decide if it wishes to officially shift from Winter. I was riding my bike through the expansive city park several blocks from my home. This was my usual off-day routine, when the weather cooperated. At sunrise, if my drowsy eyes cooperated. It was the perfect time of day to ride the well-groomed dirt paths of the park—any later and there’d be no room through the clog of joggers.
I’d made it early enough that day. Not another soul to be seen. My pace usually steady but leisurely, had brought me to the thick oak wooded section in the back half of the park. Here, the old and gnarly trees, well maintained but allowed to overgrow like a canopy over the path, created a sense of solitude I craved as my escape from the daily bustle. None of the city noise of impatient cars or people, just the chirps of the birds, the cool breeze through the leaves, and the hypnotizing grind of my tires in the dirt. That is my ideal bike in the park type of day, anyway. The day I imagine it was before I fell.
Laying upon my leather couch, head propped up by lumpy pillows, cold, damp ice pack pressed firmly to my head, my dear friend shared the story of what had happened as best he could surmise. She’d found me lying prone to the side of the path, my legs entangled in the awkwardly twisted frame of my bike. The girl with the honey colored hair. Feeling anxious at the unmoving stranger askew on the path, she’d stopped to offer help. My friend says she’d checked that I was alive, managed to get my attention, and helped to untangle and roll me over.
The wreck, she’d said to him, was caused by a broken glass bottle that was likely tossed selfishly there to smash by some wayward misfits in the wee hours of the previous night. Being absorbed in the natural calm, I’d likely not noticed the glass before it shredded my front tire, causing a statistically rare blowout that quickly twisted the tube around my front end. This then caused the wheel to abruptly stop and give Sir Isaac full control of where I went next.
Thus, we reach my only memory of the crash. Laying on my back, looking up through hazy eyes at what I could only describe as an angel looking down at me. Her facial features still unclear save for the smiling, warm brown eyes and comforting grin. Her voice like a melody in my dusty ears, assuring me I was alright and to relax while she called for assistance from my phone contacts. But it was the striking, honey colored hair that hung down in a ponytail to the side of her long, graceful neck. It glowed brilliantly in the single ray of sunlight that magically pierced the tree canopy to illuminate her angelically from behind. That honey colored hair, that girl who’d shown me kindness and care, gracing my life for but a moment, a moment that will never come again.
It is one week since the crash that left my mind fuzzy, save for the memory of that girl. No one knows who she was, and no one has seen her since. I long to encounter her again, to thank her for her kindness. To coherently meet the true beauty behind that honey colored hair. I’ve spent every morning in that stretch of the park, riding and watching, assuming she must jog or ride the pathways as well on occasion. But I’ve yet to see her.
However, my pining for what likely will not be should end. I kick off with my now repaired bike, forlornly planning to complete my ride and face the day. Yet… what is that I see through the trees at the rounding corner ahead? A ray of light through the leaves… a flash of the color honey? Could it be…?
The Prompts: Bike, Glass Bottle, Honey
For the full list of prompts and to join in on the 30 Day Restart Challenge, visit the prompt page here!
Thanks for reading!