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Kissing The Dirt

I should have caught her.

It's just me and my bike

The ice cold wind whips around her face as her numb hands grip the bars, her legs rotating, pedaling quickly. Her breath comes in quick bursts, the cold air making her chest rise and fall with every intake. She feels every rock, bump and imperfect part of the pavement, she feels it through her bike, vibrating through her arms, activating every nerve in her body. 

She's not pedaling anywhere in particular, she's just doing it for the thrill. She feels alive, the faster she goes. Maybe there is a destination but she doesn't know it yet. She doesn't think of anything else while she is on that bike. You can see it in her eyes as she fly's past you. It's just a blank stare of concentration, you can tell the only thing that matters in that moment is the bike and the way it feels beneath her. If ever you got the chance to look into those ice blue eyes while she is doing what she loves, you would understand too.

I smile as I sit and watch her, she doesn't know who I am but she mesmerizes me. I have tried to ignore her, I have tried to look elsewhere as she passes but it is impossible. She's what I imagine heaven to be like. So perfect and at peace. 

Just as I am thinking about the way she positions her body so comfortably over the bike, she slips, she falls to the ground in a heap, her legs tangled in the bike, scraping her elbow along the floor, her head hits and bounces along the road, the crack of her helmet deafening. I gasp and drop my notepad and stand shakily to my feet. Seconds pass and I'm afraid that she wont get up. I am frozen in place out of fear. 

She rolls over groaning and kicks the bike away from her so she can get to her feet freely. She dusts her black skin tight jeans down as she stands. She looks over in my direction. I realise in this moment that I was standing with my mouth hung open and quickly close it and try to regain my composure and I let out a sigh of relief, a breath that I did not realise I had been holding.  

She gives me a half smile and shrugs. It is the first time I think she has ever noticed me. I panic and smile back. Her ice blue eyes rest on my dark brown eyes for what seems like an eternity. I am fixated. She is nothing like anything I have ever seen before. 

Barefaced, blue eyed, dark hair, and an array of scattered freckles spread across her cheeks and nose. She doesn't need make-up; she has a natural beauty that seeps through her olive skin and makes me feel numb. 

I bend down to pick up my notepad and stuff it into my backpack, anything to distract myself from the awkward moment that felt as though it was never going to end. My heart is pounding against my chest and despite the cold my palms are sweaty. 

I feel as though I shouldn't look at her again. I don't want her to think I am weird for staring. I mentally cringe, I'm an idiot, I should have run over to see if she was okay. I should have offered to help her. What kind of fool stands by while the girl of his dreams kisses the dirt? I'm convincing myself not to turn around and look at her but my heart gets the better of me. Just one last look before I leave, maybe I'll even pluck up the courage to walk over and say hello. 

I turn, and there she is, she's picked her bike up off the floor and is checking it over, her helmet is no longer on her head and her hair falls around her face in a tangle of dark waves, snarling in the wind, it reminds me of the sea on a stormy night, dark and angry, but still beautiful.

She's gathering herself now, I can see it, her cheeks are a shade redder than they were before, her shoulders sunk a little lower, she's attempting to be invisible. I know the body language, I'm a master at wanting to disappear. 

Before I can say or do anything she has climbed onto her bike, less confidently than I have witnessed her do before. She doesn't replace the helmet back on her head and I panic, what if she falls and hits her head again? This time without the protection. I use this as fuel to pluck up the courage. The panic and the fear that I feel for her, I trade it in for courage and bravery. Maybe it's too late, maybe I have already ruined it by not saying or doing anything when she fell to the ground, I wasn't there to catch her. If I don't go after her now, how will I ever know?

I sling my backpack onto my shoulder and start to run after her. 

"Hey! Wait!" 

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Kissing The Dirt
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