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White Rabbit

For Andy and Juliet

She sat at the piano and rested the fingertips of her left hand on the smooth white keys; the other tapped the ash of her cigarette into her coffee. The house was silent and the only sound that entered the house was the gentle pitter-patter of the rain outside. The water dotted the cracked open window and collected on the window seat, wetting the cream colored cushions planted upon it.

As she stared at the blank white keys resting under her fingertips, she began to remember the bar they first met in. The piano in that dark bar was worn down, so much so that a few of the keys were missing. She remembered playing the F and A keys and holding them down until no sound came out of the piano anymore. She remembered a deep, rugged voice talking about the new song he and his bandmates had just written in their grimy apartment a couple blocks down and how he didn’t want to give too much away but he knew it was going to be great. She remembered looking up and seeing this pale-skinned, blue-eyed angel and thinking this is my white rabbit.

Snapping back into reality, she looked at her right hand holding the halfway burned down cigarette and the white rabbit tattoo sunk into her skin so deeply. She dropped the cigarette into her mug of cold coffee that she was never going to drink in the first place and held down the F and A keys until no sound came out of the piano anymore. She missed him dearly. He had been gone for two months and he was to return in four days. Her fingers shifted to G and B and she held them down until no sound came out of the piano anymore. She thought about her childhood in this moment of melodious silence. She had moved to Florida when she was seven years old and she all she wanted was a white rabbit. One day, she was out playing in the yard and in came hopping a white rabbit. That summer that she met him in the bar; all she wanted was true love and she wanted it so badly that it came to her, just as the white rabbit had that day she was playing in the yard.

She stood up from the piano and walked over to sit on the eggshell couch at the right of the room. She touched her necklace that hung over her heart and felt the guitar pick at the end of the chain. She picked it up ever so gently and looked at the engraving: for my dragonfly.

She laid her head back and closed her eyes. Her eyelids played the movie of October 14th just two years back. He had taken her to favorite place to be alone, just outside the bright lights of the city. They walked in the barren aqueduct and there was very low light because the street lights were on the street and not the aqueduct and they were facing away from the aqueduct. They could hear the earth-trembling music of a teenager in his “rebellious” phase; it echoed in the aqueduct. They could hear a couple that had been married for seventeen years fighting about how they were going to finish paying for the enormous house they had had for years before the husband lost his job; it echoed in the aqueduct. And they could hear the buzzing of the dragonflies that had been following her since they arrived; it echoed in the aqueduct.

The dragonflies were flying above her head and they moved with her with every step she took. He asked her to hold out one hand and when she did, a single dragonfly landed in the center of her palm. It fluttered its wings that tickled her fingers and bounced in centimeters around her hand before taking flight above her once more. He looked up at them and said you’re much like a dragonfly yourself, honey; they follow the currents of the rushing water without even thinking twice about where they might end up but, in the end, they always end up okay.

She smiled as she opened her eyes from this short film of a fond memory. She walked over to the bedroom and stood in the doorway and stared at her reflection in the mirror across the room. Her long auburn hair covered fell over her shoulders and over her elbows. She flipped her hair over and combed through it with her fingers. She collected it all and put it up in a ponytail at the top of her head. She pulled out a few strands on the sides so her face wouldn’t look so round. There was knock at the door that startled her. As she turned to the left to go answer the door she caught a glimpse of his name on her shoulder. She smiled to herself and walked towards the door. She followed the dark hardwood floor until she reached the Welcome mat they had bought as a joke to ridicule the people that truly like those mats. She reached for the brass doorknob and turned it. A gush of cold air ran through her as the door opened.

She examined the man foot to head. She looked at the shoes: black boots. She looked at the pants: black and tight: She looked at the shirt: black and drenched. She looked at the hands: dragonfly tattooed on the pale left hand. She looked at the eyes: celestial blue. The man came in, dripping water on the dark floor. He picked her up and held her tight, happy to be home four days early. Enamored by the embrace of the soaking wet pale-skinned, blue-eyed angel, she thought this is my white rabbit and I love him.