He glimpsed her through the flocks, and had to admit, her eyes really glowed against all of that green. It was obvious she was from a similar breed. The way she moved, so free from inhibitions and the fact she was as happy alone as when she was surrounded by others. Plucking up some inebriated courage, he flew over to her and introduced himself. Her eyelashes fluttered and the rest, well, the rest was history.
She took him back to her cosy little nest, which she had built all by herself on the southern tip of the city. She liked to be close to the ocean, her secret getaway when the city took its toll, and of course her gate way to other lands, other skies. He lived more to the east, higher up in height and higher up the ladder. He cruised with a different type altogether, and yet it is more than likely that they would have passed each other at some point or other, if not today, then upon some other eve.
There was an immediate understanding, perhaps owing to their breed. A mischievous look from her was all it took to ruffle his feathers and after that first encounter she found herself flapping all over the place. Her heart was in her stomach and she felt as if she’d just flown around the world and back. She couldn’t wait to see him again. Sending out a message of flirtation, she waited for a reply. It came, after some time. Maybe it had been held up by the storm or lost in the wind, she told herself calmly. Except she didn’t feel calm. She was anxious and already planning the nest they would build together one day. She tried to slow down but it was so easy to get caught up in the whirlwind of it all. Her heart began to soar too high, too fast. Knowing that she might get knocked down at some point, she retreated a little.
And every time she did so, he would pop up and carry her along on his dangerous flight of love, or was it lust? She began to feel addicted to the adrenaline of it all. The way he would pick and choose their route, the things they would see and do, and then after a tumultuous ride of highs and lows, he’d dangle her over the edge and she really could snap at any moment, falling back down to earth with a broken heart, a broken wing or two. She knew it was risky but she had been flying solo so long and this adventure was new and exciting and who knew what would happen next? Maybe he would finally make it official and tell all his friends. She didn’t know how much longer she could handle being referred to as his ‘bird’. She didn’t want to be anyone’s ‘bird’. So, she decided to wait it out.
They glided through the seasons, both departing frequently and flying off in different directions. The summer passed in a haze of humidity and absence. With the arrival of autumn though, they became a little closer. It started to get cold out there and it’s always nicer to seek warmth from another. She had grown used to his delay in communication and started to accept it as normal, even though others were whistling all around her, reaching out to her with their wide, open arms. She darted off every time one of them approached. She wanted him, only him, in all his mysterious glory. And sometimes she really did have him. They would be hovering on the edge of something solid, something real, and as she glanced at him with those big, watery eyes, he would take off.
Back to her nest she would go, where she would overthink every single thing she had said, every move she had made. It was obvious they were not on the same path. She stuck around regardless, daring herself to get hurt. And on moonlit evenings she would look out and wonder what he was up to? Was he building their nest? Or was he flitting around, creating his own world? They were circumnavigating, it was clear. Maybe her inner compass had broken? Was it possible for her to have lost herself this much?
Having reached her limit, she asked him outright: “Will you ever be ready to build a nest together?” He didn’t respond. He stayed very still, but something inside him had flown off. The next day, he really flew, leaving her to pick up all the stray feathers, the aftermath. She needed to clear her head with sea breeze and she knew just the place for this.
As she flew home amongst the stars, the mountains jutting out below, she could feel the past year falling away. It wasn’t going to be an easy journey. There were so many places they had graced together, but she flew solo once upon a time and she sure as hell would do it again. She thought back to the night they had met. She had no idea it was on the horizon. And yet, if you asked her now, she would tell you she would do it again. Over and over again. Those adrenaline-fueled flights of fancy aren’t every day occurrences. They are pretty special. And anyway, it’s not that difficult to heal a broken wing, a broken heart. Especially when there’s a whole world out there to explore. Lucky for her, her wanderlusting wings heal pretty quickly.
Where to next? She wondered.
Image sourced from here.