“It’s endlessly fascinating, isn’t it?” The noise of the city nearly drowned out her words as she turned up her collar against the wind, reaching for his outstretched hand. “What is?” he asked, linking his fingers with hers. Her eyes followed the people crossing the road, latching onto passing cars every now and then, bottom lip caught between her teeth. “I just can’t help wondering about all of these people.” “About all of them?” Laughter laced his voice. It died when he saw the serious look on her face. “All of them,” she confirmed solemnly, nodding, “every single one. Have you ever thought about how many different stories they have to tell? Look at that man over there-” she pulled her hand free to point at a man carrying a bouquet of flowers further down the street, “what if he just bought flowers for the love of his life, ready to surprise her? What if he takes them to his sick mother to cheer her up? Maybe he was having a bad day and bought them for himself? There are billions of people and they all have a favourite colour and a favourite song they sing along to in the shower. They all have a person that makes their heart beat faster and some of them wake up to an empty bed and wish they wouldn’t. Some of them have their life figured out at the age of sixteen, and others are in their forties and regret all the things they didn’t do when they were young. They worry and they argue and they love and they cry themselves to sleep. They’re all so separate, yet all so connected.” She paused, looking at him with her big round eyes. “They all have their stories to tell. I sometimes wonder how many stories I’m part of. What impressions I left behind on someone else’s life. If they even remember meeting me.” He tucked a strand of hair behind her ear as she smiled and rested his forehead against hers. “I don’t know about any of these other faceless people,” he said, “but I know about me. I have many stories to tell, but the ones with you in it are my favourite. You have not only left impressions on my life - you made my story ours.”
- stories / n.j.
photo: Arnd Dewald