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see / sea

(five frames & a story.)
no more wandering, he had said. this was a time to settle down and be patient with life, forgetting about the stories that had reached their end. after restlessly picking through mansions and cottages and beach houses on the peninsula, he finally settled on that one estate at the end of pheasant lane, because it had giant glass windows in every room from which he could see the sea. i was sorry that the house was sold, because sneaking through its orderly side yard had been my preferred way of getting to the ocean when i wasn't in the mood for the noisy public town beach. last time i went by the house, there were blue and white ADT security signs posted around the perimeter of the property, and i heard a dog bark from somewhere not too far inside.
even though his intent was to settle, no measure of will power could keep him still. late on weekend nights, when the teenage boy at the giant house across the circle stayed up downing cheap beer with his friends, they sometimes saw a silhouetted figure pacing down the beach--and long after the winking lights in the shore houses had gone out, the sound of feet on sand still accompanied the metronome of the moon-drawn waves. just a few weeks ago, i biked to the beach early early (to catch a glimpse of sunrise) and he came upon me suddenly as i walked the ocean perimeter. a little taken aback, i looked up quickly when he simply said hello and smiled a kindly smile. even though i hadn't been anticipating the presence of another human, this somehow didn't contradict that expectation.
i haven't been to the coast since that incident, and from what i hear, common gossip says he isn't seen very often. but when he is observed, it always seems to be just a quick sighting of him restlessly wandering the beach.

i won't be at all surprised if next time i pass by the house on pheasant lane, i see a for sale sign dangling on the edge of the lawn.

a friend inspired me to write short stories again. it's amazing what a little encouragement can do.