I have this system for getting exactly what I want out of people, and today I’m going to use it. I’m going to use it on a woman named Elizabeth, and she has no idea. I’m waiting now on the corner of her street. I can see her front door from here. It’s red and large, like the house it adorns. I have watched this door for days now. Watched her life, her husband, her children. But now it’s time.
Just as I will it, the door opens and out they run, bobble hats bobbing atop uniform clad figures. One boy, one girl. How lovely. She follows in a long black coat and bright red scarf.
I like red, I like its rich flow.
They pass right by me, in their large black car, a child’s face pressing against the rear window. I smile. I’m tempted to begin now, but then why hurry? We have all day.
Elizabeth is waiting by the lift. We’re in her office building now and I reach her just in time to step inside the closing doors. I move to the back where I can watch her unnoticed. I smell sweet perfume and wonder if its hers. Her blonde hair is pinned up perfectly, exposing the smooth skin of her neck. Her hand goes to it now, as if sensing my eyes caressing her there. She hurries out of the lift on the fifth floor. I stay on. I know where her office is, I don’t need to follow just yet. I go to the roof instead to replenish for a while. It’s cloudy, but still I manage to reach a few rays.
It’s approaching midday when Elizabeth steps out into the street. I can see her from up here, her red scarf in a sea of black and navy blue. Involuntarily, my left foot stamps and rubs the ground. I don’t know if I can wait much longer. I turn the rising feeling in my chest into a leap. I need to learn some self control.
I land two buildings down the street and keep the momentum going, sliding down the corner of the building to the street below. I step out just as she’s passing. She looks straight at me and I see her breath catch. Her brow furrows and she shakes her head, as I fade into the background once again. Not yet, I soothe my zeal. My colours fade.
I wait by the edge of the city park as the day comes to a close. I marvel for a moment at my patience, and then she rounds the corner taking her usual route to the car. I stand to follow her.
As I hoped, the sun just sits on the horizon as she takes her first step into the park. It begins to dip as she reaches the lake. The final rays glitter against the lapping water as the sky glows pink. Elizabeth stops, her eyes fixed on the scene. Here’s my chance.
I move in close, my hand at her back not quite making contact, and I whisper her name. The hairs on her neck stand and there it is: A smile. Followed by a deep sigh and, for a moment, she shares my colours. Together we glow. I know she will now feel a roll of pleasure right at her centre, and this is when I leave my gift. I never know what this is. It might be an idea, or its peace, or self love. Perhaps courage or certainty. Whatever it is, it’s the tool to realise a dream.
She stays a little longer looking out at the lake. Goosebumps grace her skin as I slip away, my system complete. I have what I wanted. Her smile. Just this one smile.
I place it to my breast and, as I do, a new hue glows amongst the others on my wings. Ah, Sherbet Lemon!
Well what was it you thought I wanted?
Anna Rymer is an aspiring writer living on the Wirral in Merseyside. You can read more of her flash fiction on her blog The Write Time https://annarymer.co.uk/ or follow her on Twitter: @annarymerwriter. She is currently working on her debut novel, whilst also juggling the needs, desires and tantrums of her two preschool children.