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#4
Coast to Coast: Chapter Four
dreamingheart
Mar 14, 2018
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6 Mins Read
No Plagiarism!pdXyvLVBKc59fYkYsP1hposted on PENANA

She was early for her flight, her luggage crammed willy-nilly with clothes and her most personal effects.  Security raised eyebrows as her stuffed luggage traveled the conveyor, but she ignored them. So she was fleeing New York and her failed marriage:  they had to see that every day. Feigning boredom with the occasional glance her way, she waited by the window, trying her best to ignore the tom-tom beat of her heart.  Preoccupied with her predicament, the first call for her flight passed by, unheard, but the rustles and murmurs of her fellow passengers caught her attention. Holding her carry-on bag in one hand, she sprinted onto the plane, reasoning that the faster she broke this connection and fled the scene, the less it would hurt.  Biting her lip and fumbling in her bag for solace in the form of her Ipod and a bottle of flat, metallic-tasting water, she gave silent thanks for her aisle seat.copyright protection18PENANAZindNc6s4V

Watching New York City - and Evan - fade into blue horizon would be more than she could stand.  Part of her had been certain he’d come racing up the concourse, her short, terse note in hand, demanding explanations, spouting devotion.  She longed to check her phone for messages, but refused to allow herself the comfort: when you broke ties, you had to leave everything behind.  She’d buy a new phone in Seattle, one that did not hold all these numbers, or their associations. It would be as simple as the new toothbrush she needed, the new apartment, the new...everything.  All she had with her now were her cards, the better part of her wardrobe, and some jewelry. Twisting the almost-forgotten golden band on her left hand, she frowned down at it. Would he want it back?  Could she even stand to keep it? Selling it, with their names engraved, would be out of the question. For the moment, she slid it off, scowling at the pale line remaining across her tanned hand, like the memory of what had been, and into her purse.copyright protection18PENANAWt8T2DFYep

Even before the toothbrush, she decided, she’d find a place to tan that mark off her hand.  Or, she decided, settling back into her seat as the insistent beat of music drummed against her ears, and the meaningless images of a movie flickered silently past, she’d just buy a tube of self-tanner at the same hotel drugstore.  When she jumped, she jumped – a trait she was forced to admire, even as part of her asked, critically, if she had been far too hasty. Even the sight of that word, though, etched in her memory, seven letters that formed a word she had never even considered, steeled her.  If it was what he wanted, it was what was best. There, now she was free of the constant reminders that she’d broken a promise, and he was free to do whatever he wanted.copyright protection18PENANAakzqjUoLJq

It sounded good, in her mind, but why was there a cold and icy boa constricting her heart?  She was doing the right thing.copyright protection18PENANA2JJpXwC3ZH

Another tear fell out of her eye, and she swiped it viciously away.  At this rate, she’d be drenched even before the Emerald City’s famous rain greeted her!  To dissuade her seatmate from making solicitous conversation, she dug in her bag for a novel, but the story failed to interest her.  After a while, though, as the cabin lights dimmed one by one, leaving only small islands of light, her eyelids grew heavy. It had been a long day.copyright protection18PENANAYVa7PdKvbZ

The airport was hellishly lit, bright and too noisy for so early in the morning.  Grateful to have finally arrived, Wynn took a deep first breath of Seattle, tasting the ever-present moisture of rain and smelling the salt of the Puget Sound.  With her heavy bag in tow, rolling awkwardly on its inline wheels, she headed into the airport’s wide pickup area. A cluster of taxis – lime green, familiar yellow, red and white – greeted her.  She picked the closest and the driver stepped out, popping open the trunk to stow her bag”age. “Hotel, miss?” he inquired. She shrugged, turned in half a circle, and said, “The closest Marriott?  I should have made reservations, huh”?”copyright protection18PENANAVmkuNDpbo8

“It’s not exactly our tourist season,” he said, sliding behind the wheel as she perched on the bench seat, doing her best to ignore the way the permeating smell of his coffee made her stomach growl longingly.copyright protection18PENANACrSlRPRtTR

“Tourists?” she asked, politely, staring at the unfamiliar skyline.copyright protection18PENANAaRMlZCzJ7L

“First visit to Seattle?” the driver asked in return.  She nodded, and he grinned at her via the rear-view mirror.  “Well when the sun comes up, you are in for a treat. We get a lot of tourists.  The Northwest has a wild beauty that’s unique,” he boasted as he signaled a turn and drove her up under an awning bearing the familiar sign of a Courtyard Inn.  “Good 24 hour restaurant, too, miss.” She paid and thanked the man, and he presented her with her bag. Check-in was relatively painless, and she passed the kiosk that sold little necessities in favor of a bowl of hot vegetable soup.  It tasted heavenly on a stomach so empty, but what was more, it restored the heavy, soporific feeling she thought might have abandoned her on the plane. Throwing her phone into her purse, studiously ignoring the flashing light on it, she stripped herself bare and crawled into the unfamiliar bed.copyright protection18PENANAJ273xUGW65

Exhaustion was a sweet companion.  She slept dreamlessly until thin and wan morning light invaded her room, and then, disoriented, she rose and showered.  Today would be busy: she had an apartment to find, her work office to notify, furniture to buy, a car to rent...Sparing a thought for the pile of student loan bills sitting on the Lucite tray in Greenwich Village, she sighed.  What were the chances she'd find the same kind of rent-controlled deal that had let her sub-let there? Her wages were good, but she was definitely thinking too ambitiously about the furniture. And, she supposed, she should contact Evan.  He might not care particularly that her plane had not done a nosedive into the Sears Tower, but she supposed he would need her permission to go ahead with his plans. The divorce. She forced herself to say it aloud.copyright protection18PENANA5JxX5oNXSG

"I am getting divorced,"  she told the touseled woman in the mirror, her hand lifting to her reddened eyes.  Then, her chin jutting upward proudly, she fished in her purse as she threw on knit pants and a long tunic top.  Withdrawing her phone, she sighed as she entered the most familiar number, bypassing the voicemail until she'd tried to reach him.  To her surprise - she hadn't been sure he would pick up - the phone only rang once before Evan answered, his voice raw and strained with...worry.copyright protection18PENANAO3yBoxdYhl

"Wynn,"  he grated into the phone, and she could see him, his lithe body curled protectively around the tiny handset.  "Wynn, where the hell are you?"copyright protection18PENANAJ0nR4VLLRS

"I left you a note,"  she stammered, her tongue too thick for her mouth, too awkward for speech.  She ran water into a plastic cup emblazoned with a logo, sputtered as she swallowed the wrong way.copyright protection18PENANAQWCoUHNHEF

"Wynn!  I spent the night at Jon's.  But this connection is shit. Where are you, I'll come get you right now,"  he said, urgency in his voice. "We need to discuss your promotion. And I still have work on the Maianbrenner account - you remember, the condos out by Allegheny Lake?  If your law firm will give you until Christmas, we can get everything done, I think..."copyright protection18PENANAosIX37uh5M

She cut him off.  Why was he saying this now, when he'd pointedly avoided her yesterday, and she had seen his search for divorce?copyright protection18PENANACPNZGRVsCM

"It's all taken care of, Evan.  I...I'm already here."copyright protection18PENANAltJXRDEEli

She took another sip of water.  "And...I think you're right, Evan.  Divorce might be the best option for us."copyright protection18PENANAkKK3HObb5h

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