Flash Fiction: Golden Leaf

Flash fiction is genre characterized by having  a compressed story of 1000 words approx.

Golden Leaf

It was raining. As it had been almost every day this summer. I could hear the soft melody of the rain tapping against the window and the wind singing its song through the cracks on the wooden door. Slowly and balanced, like a mermaid in the ocean echoing in my mind. Outside a quiet wet afternoon unfolded in the forest. The cup of tea simmering on the table, and that book I never finished writing. A mix of anxiety and apprehension making my chest heavy with unknown grief.

This weather always made me think of him. Like a broken record embedded in your brain. It doesn’t matter for far I go, he is always there.
I meet Sam during a wet summer day. I had been hiking and got carried away collecting fallen leaves and twigs on the forest floor. It was then when I saw him with his perfect smile, and glimmering green eyes.
Hi! he said. Startling me. The forest was quiet, I didn’t hear any steps.
Oh, hi there! You scared me. I said.
Sorry, I didn’t mean to scare you. My name is Sam. He said tilting his head to the left in the same manner dogs do when they approach you. Gentle and tender. Exploring you with each step. Are you collecting leaves?
Yes, I am. Makes me feel connected with nature. I only take fallen ones thought. I found myself giving him explanations as if he had questioned my intentions. My name is Anna by the way.
Hi Anna. He said smiling at me.
Have you seen this one? he opened his hand and the tiniest little golden leaf was sitting on his palm. So shiny, yet to earthy and inviting.
Oh, wow! may I? I walked closer to him, and slowly touched his palm with one finger. caressing his skin before touching the golden leaf. I felt at such ease with him, as if I’ve known him for decades.

My heart racing, my cheeks blushed with anticipation. His deep green eyes looking at me. Make a wish! he whispered just before I touched the leaf. The earth started moving, and everything was swirling around me. The forest transforming. Day into night, rain into snow and before I knew it I was standing over a golden floor holding Sam’s hand. I looked at him confused.
Only those with a pure heart are welcomed into the Kingdom of the Golden dreams. What? what is he talking about? I don’t believe in magic and I am certain I was standing right next to the Lake, back in Texas just a few seconds ago. Did I fall? did I bang my head against a rock?
-what? I manage to say, letting go of his hand and focusing on the hundreds of golden leaves covering the floor.
-You belong here. You always have. Why do you think you keep searching for the peace of the forest when things get too hard to handle? Why do you think your favorite colors are gold and green? his voice so peaceful, his eyes so humble.
-where is here exactly? I asked as a soft snow fell on my face, kissing my skin.
-Come! he said, extending his arm to me. Let me show you!

We walked through the forest with twinkling lights shining from the trees. The vegetation was lush and damped but the air was cool and crisp. It had stopped snowing but small accumulations of snow lay on the sides of the path covering the golden leaves. Bluebells sprout from the forest floor, and the moon looked down at us. We reached meadow filled with yellow flowers and a cool salty breeze.

Sam looked at me.
Every year, for one day only I get to bring you here with me. He said looking deep into my eyes, awakening a fire in my heart. You won’t remember tomorrow. You can never remember me. Many years ago it was here where I promised my love to you. I couldn’t keep you in the kingdom, it was too dangerous. War times didn’t allow me to keep you safe. You are the daughter of our king.
-I remember. I whispered, tears running down my cheeks.
-But you will forget again. he said smiling with sad eyes. But its ok, I will always come back for you.
He kissed me, and I feel the whole world collapsing on me. I remembered him, the golden forest, my father, the war. I remembered the promise and the cold return. He placed the small golden leaf on my neck attached to a gold string.

-The war is almost over, next time you will stay and reign with me.

I woke up. I woke up crying on my bed. I reached out for my cell phone to see the time. 11:11pm. I didn’t remember falling asleep. I had sam’s memory somewhat fresh in my head, I could still taste his lips. I reached out to my neck and there it was my golden leaf.
I didn’t want to forget, I could not forget but as soon as I tried to say his name I realized I had forgotten already.
Sam. I wrote on a piece of paper. I opened my half read book and placed his name there, only to realize there 10 more papers with his name on it.

Jihane Rodriguez, 2015.