‘Danger gleams like sunshine to a brave man’s eyes.’


Red as blood was Kali’s hair, confined tight with ribbon, and left floundering like fire by flair. Her complexion was as rosy on chalk, but her face glowed bright and faultless, in her own perfection. She blinked, and like Alvero once said, ‘one could not conceive how so much mildness, and ingenuousness, could be united with the lively vivacity that flashed from her eyes.’ Kali Byrde was the most beautiful creature I had ever seen.

A great haze filled the day, and there was a saunter to Kali’s step, almost a skip, as she tapped the pave in her pretty pink weave. The afternoon proved already to be a scorcher, and there’d be no eventuality of rain late in the eve. Dark shades shielded Kali from the sun’s beat, but emerald eyes said she was happy, and happily, despite the weather she soldiered into the heat.

An avenue or two later she came upon a field, and a man who waited for her there. Smiles exchanged, and Kali joined her friend on the park bench. “So,” asked she, “What to do to-day?” as she removed her sunglasses.

Her friend and neighbour, whom she loved, was Lucius Pirithous, a young man she had known since the two were both children. Lucius was lank though stately and spruce, with his winningest smile, and his handsome face, but with forlorn grey eyes for Kali alone, he thought to be as happy as she, was never to be.  

“Loo-see…” Kali said dreamily, whilst snapping her fingers to capture Lucius’ attention, who seemed to be lost in her features. “Wake up, Lucy.”

Lucius regained his composure, and looked alert and ready for instruction.

“You with me, buddy?”

“Yes, of course. What were you saying?”

“I asked, what shall we do today? Keep in mind it’s deathly hot out,” warned Kali, as she leaned over the stone bench, nearly sitting on the tabletop.

“Sweltering.” agreed Lucius. “Well, we could just sit in the shade, and waste away.”

“I like your thinking, and ordinarily, I would say yes, but… I’m feeling very energetic right now.”

“I can see that,” Lucius chuckled, “You’re very bubbly.”

Springing from her seat, Kali leapt onto the cool grass, with her arms flailing wild, and began spinning in concentric circles. “And you’re very stationary! Come now Lucius, I want to cart-wheel, or dance, or do something!”

Kali insisted again, “Come on, daydreamer!” and Lucius groaned as he rose to his feet. Very self-conscious, he edged avant Kali, and she grabbed his arm very loosely, guiding him toward an imaginary dance platform. She continued turning, while encouraging the young man to join her footloose free-wheeling.

Although he felt silly, he acquiesced to her demands, and enjoyed himself despite the stigmatism of the public display. How jovially the duo behaved, how sprightly they swayed and tread. Neither one knew how to dance, yet neither one trod on the other’s feet. There was a harmony to the way the two stepped, accord, a unison in the motion.

He looked deeply into the young woman’s eyes reflecting back at him. They were as elegant as two jade pearls, and as energetic as inferno. As he danced, and held her near, he felt akin to Icarus, how he would burn himself if he flew too close. Though he had no idea, the sun, Kali, could feel the same. They were, both of them, fools. Fools in love.

Unfortunately for them, not a moment future could forward pass into their appease, when along came intervening, twixt their lips, a wanton breeze. And as though coming to his senses, Lucius cleared his throat, and released his beloved, “I... I’m sorry if… I got too close,” Lucius lied, looking down as if he were inferior.

Kali blushed, “It’s fine.”

“Actually, I think I have to go. There’s something I need to do.” He was hating himself as each mouthful came out, and half-wanted to hit himself.

“Of course,” replied Kali, trying to mask her disappointment, “It’s fine. I had something I needed to do as well,” though her guile sounded far more antonymous.  

Lucius backed up slowly, thinking about his words, and feeling especially foolish for saying them, and not kissing her instead. Anyone could have said his next better than he, so what face he saved, was none nearly at all. To preserve his honour, he stated farewell, “I’ll see you tomorrow.”

Kali nodded with a false smile, “Right,” though she felt as ridiculous as Lucius. She turned her head when the sky growled, though not a gloom pervade or scowled.

The End

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