Winter

It was winter again. The beautiful red and orange hues of fall had given away for naked brown barks and the whites of the snow. Soon the valley would be painted white, much like her mood.

Her thoughts were wearing her down as she walked through the valley with her red umbrella. It stood out against the dull winter evening, braving her on instead of embracing those dark thoughts.

As the wind rushed past her, swaying her umbrella, she thought about the positives in her life. The image of her ten year old son came to her mind.  He must have returned from school by now and waiting for her at the window, she thought. She recollected how he liked eating snow flakes and sliding down the snow. Winter was his favourite season. For her though, the dry cold and memories of the past left her gasping. Her thoughts turned sour again. She tried to shake them off as she took the last curved stretch before her home.

It was getting dark now with the sun well past the horizon; the silence in the valley dwindled only by a few lanterns. As she reached within sight of her home, she gazed upon one of the mountain peaks that was still visible. Her home had a small porch with couple of chairs overlooking part of the valley as well as the mountain peaks afar. She looked at the window, it was half open and dimly lit. As she reached near, closing her umbrella, she called out for her son but with no response. A creaking sound welcomed her home as she turned the door open, she looked around and called for him again but the silence was deafening.  She shed her belongings and took a few steps inside and towards the stairs to see if he had dozed off on the loft. He had done that before. They had a big loft with a small bed and a table that served as his personal space. A few stairs up, she stared at the empty loft, her heart was now pounding. The dry cold of the winter brought many animals to the valley and she was shaking with fear. As she turned around, she heard a few footsteps from the wooden porch outside. Her blood curdled now, she waited a second before rushing outside. The empty chairs stood witness to the dark silence. Her vision turned blurry looking at the endless stretch of darkness and the mountain peaks barely visible now.

Suddenly, she felt a hug from behind, gripping her legs. She felt the hands of her son, she touched them, turned around and hugged him tight. She cried with joy, with darkness obliterated by his presence. He smiled at her naughtily and wiped her tears. She hugged him again and realised her life had turned a new leaf, a new winter and all that mattered to her now was her son. They sat down on the porch steps looking at the snow capped mountains as snow began to pour again. He stretched his hand out to meet some snow balls. She joined him with a smile.

mountain