Short stories · Stories

Vol 2 Arsee’s short stories 20 Let Go…

It had been a terrible year. It was like Mr.Murphy had written the laws with Suzanne in mind, everything that can go wrong, will go wrong and it had.

The German Account closed down, the folly of servicing a single client shone through like snow on a sunny day. Her firm had to file for bankruptcy, goodbye to the perks of a high flying executive. The investments that she had made did not turn out to be prudent after all. The loss was more than she could afford.

Had it not been for Peter, she could have borne it all with a patient shrug. Peter was her pillar of support, her go to guy and the man with whom she wanted to grow old. Peter obviously had other plans. The new open letter, ergo the smoking gun was the text message that lay carelessly undeleted. She caught the one he had sent to Michelle and the one Michelle sent back. Sex, she probably could have forgiven but she could not forgive him giving his heart to another. It shattered her. She walked away from him.

It was New Year’s Eve. Everyone she knew was making plans with everyone they loved and here she was, an out of work, out of savings and out of love woman. She had to get away from Edinburgh. Grandpa lived in Inverness, the only place in the world where she could over stay her welcome.

Grandpa, in his time had been the lead guitarist to a forgettable band. The band withered away but Grandpa’s spirit was undefeatable. Susanne suspected that he really was no lonely man and had girlfriends tucked away somewhere in the Scottish woodwork.

Grandpa lived by the famous Loch Ness, though he had told her the story of the monster she had never seen it. Truth be told, her life had been scarier than the Loch Ness monster. She drove in on a cold winter day and found Grandpa waiting on the porch. He enveloped Susanne in the most comforting bear hug, it made the fatigue of the long drive disappear in seconds.

Over some well curated Scotch Susanne told her Grandpa the story of her woes. Grandpa heard her patiently, he was always a good listener.

“I just can’t wait for this year to end Grandpa, anyways, just a few hours to go!” Susanne sighed. Grandpa nodded and smiled.

A few minutes later Grandpa stood up lazily, “I have a package to deliver to a friend, drive me?”

“Sure, still not drunk enough not to drive,” Susanne said lovingly as she grabbed her car keys from her purse. Grandpa picked a cardboard box from the storeroom, it did not seem too heavy. Susanne rolled the car out of the driveway and waited for Grandpa to give her directions.

It was pitched dark and Susanne could not see any house in sight. “What’s going on Grandpa? This is not like a spy movie now, is it?” Susanne teased. Grandpa smiled and gestured for her to follow.

They walked down a country path for a minute and then suddenly they were at the most beautiful spot on the lake. In the blue moonlight the lake shimmered in front of them and a wooden jetty extended into the water that boasted a single dull yellow streetlight. It looked like a picture that could sell Scotland to the most reluctant tourist.

“What we doing here Grandpa?”

Grandpa handed the cardboard box to Susanne and said, “You are delivering a package.”

Susanne looked at her Grandpa quizzically and then opened the box to find nothing in it. She was even more perplexed.

“Now Susanne, into this box, place your feeling of inadequacy.” Grandpa said with a warm grin. Susanne began to argue but Grandpa stopped her with a wave of his hand. “Just do it, my love!”

Susanne simply looked into the box and said nothing. “Now into this box place your feelings of hate and remorse.” Sussane’s eyes welled up with tears. “And while we are it also fill it with your unshed tears.” Sussane closed her eyes as the tears rolled down her face. “Also put in your failings, your misgivings, your broken dreams, you failed relationship. Everything you know and think was bad in the year.”

Sussane began to shake with sobs that she did not even know she had hidden away in her being. “Now my love, walk down the Jetty and deliver the box to the Loch Ness Monster!” Sussane couldn’t move but Grandpa placed a loving hand on her, the hand of courage.

Sussane began to walk down the Jetty her form wracking with her sadness. Grandpa could not fight his tears as he watched his girl fight the battle called life. There under the pale yellow light he could see her stand with the box for a long while before she kneeled and let it go into the lake.

Her walk back was lighter, quicker. She smiled at him through her tears and hugged him tight.

“The New Year is just a date Susie,” Grandpa whispered in her ear, “nothing will change till you don’t. To welcome the future you have to let the past go. However hard it is, the goodbye has to be said.”

– Arsee.

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