River Bank

Originally published on November 9th, 2012 by Dimitri Bouniol. #FNADNST

The girl walked along the river bank.

She was trying to find that handsome person she met just two days earlier.

You see, for those two days, she could do nothing but think of him.

Although she had feelings for other guys before, each was unrequited, so when she found such a person that smiled back when she said she wanted to see them again, she was truly, happy.

It was the very first time in her life that she felt another human felt the same way about her.

So for two days, while she worked in the fields, she thought nothing but of this person.

The reason she was on that river bank to begin with was because she had done something horrible the previous month.

Because of her carelessness, she had burned down her family's small home, and felt truly horrible about it.

One moment of not paying attention was all it took for a strong gust of wind to blow the kitchen fire onto nearby cloth, and because the girl had dozed off into her own fantasy, she didn't realize in time to save the whole thing from burning down.

Thankfully, no one was home sleeping at the time, and the girl came to in time to run out of harm's way.

The only thing that made her feel worse though was that no one blamed her for the accident.

So the only thing the girl could do was work hard at the neighboring fields to gather funds to help rebuild their home.

And it was during that time that the girl took a break, and sat along the riverbank.

At first, all she was doing was thinking, but gradually she just watched the gentle flow of the water sparkle in the sunlight in front of her.

In fact, the watcher sparkled a bit too brightly, so the girl covered her eyes with her arm.

And before she knew it, a young man about her age was standing besides her, also watching the river.

Slightly under surprise, she greeted him only to end up gazing at him instead.

There was just something, something extraordinary about him, that she couldn't quite understand herself.

He looked pretty normal, but her was so tranquil standing there.

As if he was one with nature, something that was meant to always be there — that was the feeling she felt.

So she stared, she observed, and as she did so, he smiled back.

Now this wasn't some ordinary smile, but one that seemed to come from him heart, almost as if he was the happiest being in the world.

Almost as if he had felt so alone for so long, that the mere fact that he was being observed made him happy.

So he stretched out a hand, and with it helped the girl up.

Upon grasping it, her heart started pounding, and her face became flustered.

But she managed to hold her balance, and as the young man gently pulled at her hand, she followed him as though she were naturally being blown by the wind.

The sights she saw that day could only be described as dreamlike, full of beautiful colors she had never seen before, nor could she explain.

And as her heart raced, she truly felt pure happiness the whole time she was with him.

The didn't speak, or rather she tried, but all he would do was smile back.

And after the day quickly passed and the sun started to set, she told him that she wanted to see him again, to which he showed a truly wonderful smile.

Because of that meeting, she was so anxious to see him once again.

So on this early morning, she ran over to the river bank, and found a truly beautiful scenery there that had not been there before.

It was very similar to the one she had seen when he was with him, but he was absent.

Waiting the whole day made no difference, as he did not come, but seeing the endless fields of flowers curiously growing at the usually boring river bank, she knew that he was responsible.

After a few more days of work, she returned to the river bank, hoping to meet him once again.

And instead of flowers, the bank was filled with butterflies of all sizes, fluttering around peacefully.

But she couldn't find him.

After another few days of work, she returned only to find the most beautiful clouds she had ever seen, floating in the sky above her.

Even though she didn't find him, she didn't think badly of him, since it was because of her desire to see him that she was able to see these wondrous sights.

However, once she had walked back home, she noticed that the clouds had returned to the boring color of white.

When she told her parents about the miraculous views she was, they joked and told her it was a demon's trickery that she had fallen pray to.

But having never seen a demon before, she just laughed it off.

And from that moment on, she continued to visit the river bank every few days, and blessed her eyes with the sights it provided her.

She continued to think of him though, and always wanted to meet him.

But as she grew older, she went simply to ease her heart from life's worries.

Eventually, she met someone else, someone from the village who loved her very much.

And together they started a family.

And little by little, she forgot about the young man at the river bank, but continued to visit it, and continued to be blessed by a spectacle each time.

However, as she grew older, so did her husband.

And he started to grow very sick, so she visited the river bank less and less.

Until she stopped going altogether.

She tended to her husband every day, but eventually there was nothing more she could do for him.

Their children had both gone off to start their own lives in other villages, so she was the only one to watch him die.

Overrun with sorrow, she didn't know what to do anymore.

One morning though, her feet led her back to the river bank.

This time she wasn't expecting to see anything at all, she was just wandering around with empty thoughts flowing through her mind.

And eventually, her old legs became tired from the journey, so she took a seat in the grass at the edge of the water, and watched the sun reflect off the calm surface.

As she stared, her mind blank with sorrow, the refection from the sun became brighter and brighter.

Before she knew it, a young man had been sitting side by side to her.

In disbelief, she stared back.

She thought she had completely forgotten about him, but her memories vividly remembered him.

They vividly remembered his every detail, and he didn't change one bit since that day, so very long ago.

While she had grown frail from old age, there he was besides her.

And she understood why he once felt so natural there.

He was truly a part of nature.

And she also understood that he had always been there, each and every time she came, in the form of beautiful sights one couldn't find anywhere else no matter how hard they looked.

The sorrow in her heart vanished in an instant.

As she sat there, she felt more and more relaxed.

Slowly, she leaned her head on his warm shoulder.

With that relief she felt, she slowly closed her eyes, with no regrets for the wonderful life they had shared together.


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