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The feel of the sand between my toes gave me the feeling of home. I was relaxed and posed as you walked towards me. I was comfortable when you sat down next to me. I was okay when the silence lasted all night.
I was ecstatic when you held my hand in yours. I was overjoyed when you pressed your lips to mine.
We sat. We didn’t speak; we knew that if either of us spoke the trance would be broken and all would be lost; the bubble of peace around us would pop.
We listened. We listened to the waves crashing onto the sandy shore, the gentle lulling sounds of the tide. We listened to the people around us, the shrieks of laughter, the screams of joy, and the silence of the lovers walking down the shoreline together. But most of all, we listened to each other; we listened to the sounds of each others breathing, of every move we made.
We felt. We felt each other; we felt our soft fingers intertwined in a tight grip, and the occasional tender kisses here and there. We felt the heat rolling off our bodies onto each other. We felt the electricity of love charging the air between the two of us, but the three words were never spoken; they didn’t need to be spoken, we both knew how we felt about each other.
We saw. We saw the sea gulls gliding gracefully through the air, swooping low to the sea, and ascending back into the air in a beautiful dance of nature. We saw the people all scattered across the shore line that went on for miles, and the people on the boardwalk, the adventurous people, looking for a good time, a thrill ride. We saw the sunset in one beautifully cliché moment. We saw the sun dropped down behind the sea, the sky change colors from a light blue, to an orange, to a pink, and to the richest deep blue color. We saw the stars pop out in bursts of little points of light one by one.
And the night ended. Dawn came quicker than expected, and sadness tinted the darkness, the pain lying deep inside of the sadness. The time for last words were now, but little was said.
“I guess this is it.” You said it quietly, trying to keep the pain out of your voice, trying to keep it from quivering.
“Yeah, I guess it is.” I didn’t try to hide the pain from my voice.
You took me up in your arms and rested your forehead against mine with your eyes shut tightly.
“Come back for me. You have to come back for me. You can’t leave me alone here forever. You have to promise?” I begged him.
“Of course. Of course I’m coming back for you. Why wouldn’t I?”
But we both knew why, but the words would never be spoken out loud. Because you could die out there, I wanted to say. Because you could die out there in the middle of nowhere in Afghanistan, and I would have no way of knowing. You would leave me for dead here.
I just shook my head.
“Goodbye.” I said it between quite sobs.
“Goodbye, my love.” You said while wiping away a single tear from my face.
You turned away from me quickly, but not quick enough for me to see your face crumple, and a single tear run down your cheek, one of many.
Two months later, you were MIA.