The Black Currant Girl

It was early morning. By morning, one may automatically presume that it was early already, but the morning in which she walked was exceptionally so. It’s winter, and the air is fresh like water drank after a spearmint mint, a blast of robust coldness. This air pricked at her tan skin, nipping at her button nose as she snuggled further into the collar of her leather coat. The wind toyed at the raven whisps which hung from her military cap like a cat plays with yarn. She walked along.

She puttered, adjusting the bag on her back every once in a while. She still opted for the sidewalks and still looked both ways even though she knew that there was no one out at this hour. But although she knew this, she checked the doors and peered into the windows of the local cafes, hoping that one would be open early to serve her.

She found none and so she turned, walking back the way she came.

There was a garden in front of a large public building, with small, now barren trees, and shrubs. It lacked the color usually found in the spring, leaving it empty. Since the building lie of a hill, the garden was elevated by brick walling. The wanderer stepped up onto the lowest side of the wall, balancing her way around the perimeter, making her way to the tallest. She stood at the edge, looking over the rest of the town.

The sun yawned as it’s light began to shroud the small town in light. It started with the cathedral, sunbeams making the old bells shine like little morning stars.

It was that time in which fall came to winter, the time in which leaves should have fallen. The youthful wind scooped up the remnant warm, fiery colors which were stubborn weeks before and now passive. They caught the morning gleam, twirling with the playful wind. She stepped with them, maintaining perfect balance on the garden wall as she danced. The energetic air currents brushed her cheeks in a jolly manner as the stoic leaves guided her in gentle steps.

The radiance of the sun now hit the windows above the local businesses, shining through curtains to wish owners a cheery Saturday morning.

The trees bowed, and the morning wanderer curtsied. Mid-morning air joined her waltz, leading her around the garden wall. One, two, step. One, two, step. The sunlight hit her face now and she basked in its warmth. One, two, step. One, two, step. She moved, lead by the sun, corrected by the wind. The roamer tested her balance of the edge, performing a plie, then a chaÎné. One after another, chaÎné, chaÎné, step. ChaÎné, chaÎné, step. She was never much of a dancer, but she had seen enough dancers to pretend she was one. The wanderer moved even closer to the perimeter of the wall, lifting a foot, then placing it back down. The wind pulled her and so she continued to move about the wall. She smiled.

A car passed by. It passed by with that hum that cars make, that noise made by kicked up pebbles. Kkkerrrrfff. The morning wanderer snapped her head toward the car. Paying no mind to the leading sun, forgetting the impatient wind. Another car went by. Vrmmm. For a second, she worried. She was not supposed to be here. She had loitering charges to worry about. She felt the need to put her cloak of anonymity back on. She had to–

She then slipped off of the garden wall. In that split second, she heeded no warning from the sweet wind nor did she follow the guidance of the sun and so she slipped. She hit the ground with a soft thud, military cap toppling off, a mop of raven strands spilling out. Another car drove. Mvmmmrrr.

She slowly picked her head up, leaning on her elbows as she looked up. She saw the lowest side of the wall, just two feet off the ground as usual. She smiled again, rose, and gazing towards the sun, giving a chuckle and a small nod. Looking left, she saw the cafe, owner opening the door. She started over, collecting her cap and adjusting the bag on her back.

The roamer greeted the cafe owner by name, ordering a coffee and a black currant pastry, the usual. She sat down at a table for two, even though she always thought that sitting at a table for two alone was pathetic. She opened the bag on her back as she let the cafe’s heating system warm her winter-kissed cheeks. A notebook was placed on the table and on the first line in chicken scratch cursive she wrote,

“It was early morning…”




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