Archie’s Ache

…I’m behind. My entry in last week’s Flash Friday contest wherein they provided the theme “man vs. man” and the above photo, courtesy of Hartwig HKD. No more than 210 words. My entry:

Archie had the sense that his innards were an archaic grand piano with an endless array of keys that nobody could find the tune to.

Yet, before his mind’s eye danced a symphony where the world aligned, shape to shape, color to color, line to line, and Archie to Jillian.

Oh, but Jillian. Archie’s pores exuded a miasma of longing that he hoped was masked by the distance to which he kept from her. Fear tethered him like a man in a desert to a tree with shade.

His neck hair danced and shivered in the afternoon’s beating sun at the memory of her perfume kissing the edge of his tongue when she passed him after lunch.

That closeness and the heat which flared up in his stomach and chest, seemed to lift him off the ground; the pushed he needed. No more would their love languish in the what-if, the could-be, and the should-have; the doldrums of his sequestered thoughts.

Floating on fire, Archie stuck his hands in his pockets for dear life and walked to where he knew her locker to be.

Then he saw Travis, a classmate, standing before her, as he said, “Jillian, would you go out with…”

The negative hound in his mind snarled hungrily.

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