Bloom

Bloom

A chance glimpse of a flower drives Simon on a hunt to possess the rare bloom. It’s a flower whose beauty lies in the willpower of the owner. Is just having it, enough?

For the man who has it all, the opportunity to land an exclusive flower, is too alluring to pass up for Simon. It will propel his wife to the top of the social ladder if he can possess it. But what is its real cost?

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The distraction of the cracks in the pavement was enough to stop Simon from seeing anyone in the immediate world around him. The rain pattered down on his head and he stepped out of the car, the familiar scent of the mustiness of the foggy city embracing him. The transition from the car to the pavement was one seamless movement, his arm arcing a sweeping motion behind him as he clicked the button on the remote to secure the car.

Gazing down at the grey pavement, ever darkening with the increasing rainfall, his path was stopped as a small wallet lay open in front of him. This wasn’t the kind of day to be stopping for acts of charity, but an old woman stood in a sentinel stance over the wallet. Simon lifted his gaze to meet the eyes of the woman. They were eyes which looked distant and sad, but Simon dismissed it as being the greyness and the coldness of the day creeping into her ageing soul.

The old woman’s eyes were begging the question of him and Simon heard it loud in his mind. This was one of those bracing moments for him where he knew he was being told something to do and that he would have to succumb to it. It was a position of weakness, a far cry from his position in the corporate world where he called the shots, where he would have people around him to do menial tasks. But here he was, being stared down by an old woman in a red-checkered headscarf for false protection against the autumn weather and he was not in control.

Simon leaned down to pick up the wallet, clearly a faux leather with its rusting metal clip, he noted. But Simon’s attention immediately slipped away from the frayed stitching and he locked on a picture that was protected from the elements inside a plastic pocket. Simon grabbed the wallet up and took a closer look at the picture, a flower which was emitting a near-translucent blue hue from its petals as if it was being lit from within.

It was an ethereal sight, something that Simon hadn’t seen before, but then his knowledge of flowers didn’t exist further than ordering the most expensive bouquets that the florist had available on his wedding anniversary. But immediately Simon knew that he was looking at something special, something bigger than what it was. It wasn’t just a flower in the picture it was a beauty that was almost illicit, something that he should not have borne witness too in that moment.

“What is that?” he coldly asked the old lady, rain slipping down his face.

“Just a flower,” replied the old lady in a quiet voice.

“I see that, but what is it? Why is it….glowing?”

“I don’t know what it is, it was given to me a long time ago and I took this picture when I first got it, just for some posterity sake.”

Simon nodded in response and was reluctant to let his grip on the cheap wallet fade as the old lady held out her hand to receive it.

“You don’t know the name of it?”

“I’m not sure anyone remembers,” the old lady said as she collected the wallet and eased her way around Simon, exhibiting a gentle nod of acceptance and thanks as she went. Simon just stood and watched her walk away, mingling with the crowd as he pulled the collar of his coat up around his neck and tried to get a sliver of remembrance about what he had left home for.

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