Copyright © 2011 Jessica Jones
The brunette curls of Lucy Hips hung slightly off the bed as
her head rested on the edge, her grey sock covered feet tapping against the
“What song is that?”
Lucy raised her head slightly and
fixed her lover with an appraising stare.
“What song is what?”
“The one you seem oh so keen on
“Oh,” she went back to relaxing
and pondering the meaning of life as she had been before, “I don’t know – it’s
nothing really. I’m just tapping.”
A light shrug, “suit yourself.”
A pause, then she felt his
fingertips on her ankle. She closed her eyes as they travelled up her shin,
over her bare knee, and then they paused as he decided whether to go over or
under her grey pleated skirt – no longer a school girl Lucy seemed to cling to
her innocent youth, a time before things always had to mean so damn much.
Under was the decision; but Lucy
sat up and took hold of his wandering hand. He looked her in the eye for a
moment, almost daring her to put his hand back – to let it roam further. Her
grip loosened and then casually let go completely as she swung her legs round
and off the bed. He fought the urge to sigh at the fleeting opportunity.
She leant forward and removed her
socks; he curiously gazed at the cotton shirt on her back – the thin white
material doing little to hide her frayed bra and fragile spine. He was still
having trouble deciding whether Lucy was what he really wanted. A future with
her seemed complicated and frustrating – as enchanting as she was patience seemed
She stood up and turned around to
face him. As her skirt hit the floor and as the tingles of infatuation and
desire danced through his body he decided that, in fact, he didn’t need to
decide just yet.
A modern day love story, that’s what they were writing. Not
on paper with pens; nor on computers with pixels – but with themselves. Written
with every word they uttered to one another as the rose sunrise illuminated
their bedroom; every touch of their lips, every brush of their skin was another
moment to be recorded in their minds and saved to be savoured for a rainy day.
Lucy saw something poetic in their kind of ordinary love
affair. There was no drama that got them together, or broke them apart – no distance
to separate them, no unwanted love interest to get in between them – they were
just an ordinary couple happily wasting summer days hand in hand. Perhaps, she
often thought, it was the simplicity of their relationship that was so romantic
and grand. After all wasn’t it the small things that made life worth living?
Yet still she couldn’t ignore the ache she felt sometimes when
she looked at him. She couldn’t seem to shrug off that empty feeling sometimes
when they kissed, and all she found was an empty silence where the fireworks used
to bang and crash. She wondered if he ever felt the same. But then he would
hold her tight at night or entwine his fingers in the rings of her hair and she
knew the answer – no, he didn’t.
The clock ticked on the wall and Lucy felt as though it was
mocking her. Well, mocking her lover as he rolled off her and lay on his back. Rolling
on her side she watched his hairless chest rise and fall; shallow breaths as
his body gradually returned to relaxing. She wanted to trace pictures and words
on his bare skin but then the feeling passed and all she wanted to do was go to
It seemed, however, he wanted to talk. He turned his head to
face her, not saying anything at first – his bright green eyes looking deep
into her – then he shifted so he was positioned the same as her, propped on one
“Lucy, what would you say about doing something big? You
know - something extraordinary?”
“Like what exactly?”
“I don’t know; I’m just bored of my life as it is right now.”
He dropped his gaze, unable to look her in the eye.
She gave a sad smile,
“Bored of me?”
“I wouldn’t put it like that. I love you Lucy, you know I do
– I just feel like there’s more out there. More that I’m missing out on.”
She moved onto her back and rested her hands on her stomach,
feeling her body move gently with her breathing. Trying and failing to think of
an appropriate response she instead let her mind drift and she began to think
of the possibilities of this ominous “more” he wanted. Was it marriage,
children? Is this what he was asking of her? She didn’t have much experience in
these sorts of matters but she was sure there was meant to be some form of ring
and such involved.
Out of the corner of her eye she saw him seem to give up
then felt the springs shift beneath her as he climbed out of bed. She knew he’d
be upset with her. It happened a lot these days. Lucy felt as though there was
something she should say, some magical sentence that would make him happy – but
she knew that right now even I love you
wouldn’t cut it.
She let him leave the room and didn’t say a word.
The day it happened there was no rain, no wind, and no great
storm like they both felt there should have been. As much as life isn’t
scheduled according to the weather they couldn’t help but feel it ought to be.
In books it always seemed to happen that way, but the sun wasn’t having any of
it and decided to shine- all despite the fact their hearts were breaking.
Heartache, loneliness and sadness – nothing more and nothing
less occurred in them that day. Lucy and her lost lover talked and reminisced;
their bodies sharing one last lingering moment together in the bed they had
both slept in for years. They remembered all those ordinary days they had spent
talking, laughing, and crying. They divided their belongings the best they
could – leaving Lucy’s flat simply Lucy’s flat once more.
He was gone, and that seemed to be that. Lucy cleaned and
re-arranged; making the empty spaces seem less bare and noticeable. She made a
list of things she would need to buy; heart giving a slight creak as it became clear
things wouldn’t be the same – buying to feed one instead of two.
He’d always told her she was special, that she was “something”
but right now she felt like nothing; no one and utterly nobody. “You’re nobody
till someone loves you”, isn’t that the way it goes? Maybe she had to reinvent
herself – create a new Lucy Hips. Could she afford to right now? Did she even
have the strength for soul searching anymore?
Standing in front of her wardrobe full of childish clothes
and immature fashion choices she decided it was about time to grow up. It was
scary, she knew that but it was also necessary. So she started a new list, as
midnight passed into morning and a new era in her life began, and she wrote
down the things the new Lucy would need; the new clothes, the new furniture,
new sheets and decorations.
With grey skirts and grey socks Lucy realised that this was
all her life could be – grey. Not in a bad way; not in a dull kind of grey
skied way. Simply in a way that nothing would ever be black, nor would it ever
be white. She would make it whatever she wanted. It would be tough and it would
be complicated but, in the end, it would be gloriously hers.
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