Stay…?

He’d lost her. After everything they’d done together. All the places they’d been and people they’d met. All the food they’d eaten and music they’d heard. He’d let her go. And he watched her plane leaving, and he remembered why he should have asked her to stay.

Remembered one late night in a small hotel in the middle of nowhere. Her yellow dress and yellow eyes. The power had gone out… her hair shone gold in the candlelight. He remembered the curve of her back, the parting of her lips. The way she leaned close to the candle to blow it out. How her hands found his in the dark.

Remembered a morning not long before that, in a field full of lavender. Lavender was her favourite flower. Her favourite scent. She wore it in a perfume, sometimes. Her favourite colour was orange, but the lavender suited her more. She said it reminded her of the way a morning feels when it’s been raining all night.

He remembered holding her hand while she laughed in the ocean, the spray sprinkling droplets over her freckles. Holding her hand while she cried, her makeup streaming down to cover her freckles.

He remembered the first time he’d spoken to her. Her voice was high, her laugh was jingling. She’d been wearing a dress… green. And orange sandals, and her toes were painted the same blue as her fingernails. But she’d bitten those down.

He remembered now, every smile and every laugh and every fight. How she’d always go to bed angry and come lie with him sometime before morning, to let him know that it was okay. How she’d only watch her favourite movie when she was sad, or hurt. How she loved him, and how she told him that every time he left the room, as if it might be the last chance she’d have to say those words.

He remembered her saying once that if she could build a time machine, she’d turn the clock back all the way to the day they first met, so she could live it all again. He hadn’t responded.

But…

If he could build a time machine, he’d give anything to turn the clock back five minutes, so he could ask her to stay.

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