Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Bridge (07/31/08)
TITLE: Bubble Troubles
By Julie Arduini
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She stood over the railing and watched the last fragment of the Jamison family picture swirl off the Mill Creek Park suspension bridge into the rushing waters. She ran her fingers through her curly auburn hair and realized her locks were soaked.
Ten minutes or two hours, Kellie had no idea how long she stood on the walking deck and tore her past to shreds.
“Want some company?”
Kellie gave a pivot and gasped.
Kellie’s voice was as flat as her stormed on hair. Her fiancé, Eric Bryce, popped open his little sister’s Winnie the Pooh umbrella and held it over Kellie.
“We won’t melt. Wanna talk about it?"
Eric gestured to the wooden bench two feet away. Kellie observed the crusty pigeon droppings and shook her head. They both looked past the railing in silence. Eric gently reached for her hand. She grasped his fingers, her hold tight. She collapsed into his shoulder, his Pooh umbrella bobbing in rhythm to her sobs.
“Dad’s gone. I got…home…and…his stuff was…gone.”
He let her cry, knowing deep down this wasn’t a surprise to her. The Jamison marriage had been rocky at best as long as he knew Kellie. Images of the two arguing during the third grade book fair came to his mind.
“Aw sweetheart, I’m so sorry. Is there anything I can do?”
She sniffled, leaving a wet shirt on his black polo shirt.
“You already have. Coming here. The umbrella. Letting me snot all over your nice shirt.”
“It’ll wash. In fact…”
Eric reached to his back jeans pocket, pulling out a bottle of bubbles.
“You could blow bubbles on my shirt and clean it.”
He winked, letting go of her hand. The rain let up, so he put the umbrella down too.
“You think of everything.”
“I just remember you saying that whenever you were upset as a kid you’d find a hiding place and blow bubbles. I remember when we ran track in high school you said you loved running through this park because this bridge made you feel like Cinderella. I just figured you came here, and maybe you’d still like to blow bubbles.”
Kellie smiled, taking the bottle. She slowly unscrewed the cap, fishing for the wand.
“You know, every time I blew bubbles as a kid, things always seemed better. I used to think that when I blew them, my troubles were trapped in each bubble and they would fly to Jesus.”
She had the wand and started to dip into the solution.
“I hope when we’re married you won’t need to blow bubbles too often.”
Kellie drew the wand to her mouth and blew. A stream of rainbow colored bubbles danced off the wand.
“Maybe it will be a new tradition, a fun thing for the Bryce family.”
Eric nodded, liking the sound of Kellie using his last name. The wedding day could not come fast enough.
“Absolutely. You gonna be okay?”
He asked, watching her blow yet another bubble stream. She dipped the wand again, and put it up to his mouth.
“Absolutely. We’re going to be okay. And for those moments when we’re not…”
Eric interrupted her sentence by ducking the wand and stealing a kiss. He then finished her sentence.
“We’ll just blow our bubble troubles to Jesus.”
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