The Finish Line

The elevator was out of order.

THAK. THAK. THAK.

Her footsteps echoed as she climbed up the narrow and deserted staircase. She kept rubbing her sweaty hands against each other, repeating the word “Breathe” to herself over and over again. The irony of it struck her. She knew that her destination was waiting to snatch her breath away.

She paused for a few seconds and closed her eyes to calm down. Her mind was filled with an incessant babble, however hard she tried to quieten it. She could hear his voice ringing in her ears, “I should have never met you!”

As she opened her eyes, a tiny teardrop rolled down her cheek – the cheek that he used to kiss every morning before going to work, and every night before going to bed. Used to…

Remembering that her tears had lost their worth from the first month they’d been together, she wiped them off. “Enough!”, she told herself. “The Finish Line is waiting for you.”

For a fraction of a second, she blamed her parents yet again for her ache, for giving her a loveless childhood, for increasing her hunger for love to such an extent that she found life’s meaning in nothing else. But then, it was all futile. Her marriage was already over. Her faith in love was gone. Her ache would also be gone. Soon.

She dragged her feet along, to ascend the final flight of stairs. She knew that her descent would be quick. She was prepared.

THAK. THAK. THAK.

The terrace. Above the 25th floor. She was scared of heights as ever. “Finis. You HAVE TO do this.”, said the prodding voice in her head. Five. Four. Three. Two. One.

She jumped with her eyes open. She was scared, but for the first time, “good” scared. The fall, the wind, the thrill, the bungee cord tied to her ankle. The bond that freed her.

The Finish Line was only the beginning.

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