This story is the sequel to the flash I posted two weeks ago, titled Thirty Weeks. I’ll hope you’ll enjoy your second encounter with Victor, Fabian and the sea.
Exactly sixty-six years had passed, give or take a few hours. The sun was merely a reminder on the horizon rather than setting and the pathway into the sea was gone of course. Victor thought back to the moment the sea claimed it, as if the salty water needed something in return for giving up Fabian to the man who loved him enough to build it.
Fabian had explained it all after their passionate and heated reunion. “That’s where I’m from, Victor, my people live in the sea. When we’re twenty-five we’re given a year to experience life on land. If we’re lucky enough to find someone who truly loves us we may re-join them. But only after they prove their love is strong and only for as long as that love lasts.”
It had taken Victor some time to get his head around it all. Fabian’s departure had nearly torn him apart and the return of the man he loved seemed too good to be true, and yet, here he was, next to Victor on the beach, as satisfied as Victor was.
“What happens if the love doesn’t last?” Victor had been afraid to ask the question but the need to know had been stronger.
“Why, do you doubt your feelings for me?” Fabian had sounded both amused and worried.
“No, but the rest of my life is a long time.” If Victor knew one thing about love it was that it required honesty.
“If you ever stop loving me I will have one hour to make it back to the sea before my lungs will stop working and I’ll die the same way a fish does when it’s left on land.”
Fabian had been very matter of fact about his possible fate. Victor on the other hand had been scared out of his wits, the responsibility felt too large and yet he couldn’t imagine going back to living without Fabian.
For three years Victor had refused to leave the coast. He needed to be sure that Fabian would be safe if Victor’s heart would ever betray them. They’d travelled after that, secure in the knowledge that their love grew stronger rather than diminished with time.
Now they were back. Victor knew his days, no scratch that, his hours were numbered. The last few days had been a struggle, and Victor had been afraid he wouldn’t live long enough to get Fabian to within one hour from the sea, but he had. Victor lay on the beach in Fabian’s arms. Breathing was difficult and his eyes were heavy when suddenly the sea lit up, reflecting the night sky on the water.
“See that my love that’s my world, welcoming us back.”
Victor smiled. “You, they’re welcoming you back. I’ve reached the end of the road. Just....”
“Just what? Anything for you my love.”
“Take me with you when you return. Bury me where you will be.” Victor closed his eyes and surrendered. His life had been long and filled with love. He hated leaving Fabian, but if it had to happen, this was how it should be.
Victor was barely conscious when Fabian lifted him up and walked into the sea. He felt the warm embrace of the water and briefly wondered whether dying underwater would be easier than dying on land. Then the water covered his head and he stopped thinking.
“Open your eyes my love.”
Victor blinked and looked up at what looked like the night sky except that it moved.
“I’ve shared your life for sixty-six years. Now you get to share mine until the end of time.”
More stories inspired by the same picture can be found in the Monday Flash FicsGroup on Facebook. That’s also where we’ll announce the image for next week’s flashes.