Walking Away..(bridge series #20)

Coral barely registers her customer’s departure, but that which is still human in her smiles. A lost soul has found it’s way home, her job Here is finished on that count.

That which is reptilian in her shows in her eyes, the green is replaced with amber, her pupils have mutated to slits and her hands are mechanically carving, carving the story of Time, that which was and that which will be.

The ancient wooden arc is already covered with symbols of alligators, crocodiles, snakes, all infallible gods to cultures that have faded into the legends of legend, so Coral has no need to add another.

Instead she finds she is filling the top borders of the ancient rectangular object with what appears to be binary codes


and on and on till the borders are full.

She drops the paring knife, her eyes return to her normal green and she casually unties her apron and lets it slip to the floor.

She walks over to the old sign and flips it over to CLOSED, something she rarely does, and looks down into the umbrella stand by the door.

There are many walking sticks, some crude, some so elaborate men would kill for the mere touch of them in their hand. She pulls out a wooden cane, it is two thousand some odd years old, crafted from the cross of the Christian Messiah.

As she holds it in her hands she feels nothing but contempt, and throws it across the tavern where it colides with the lance suspended over the saloon’s old time mirror.

Longinus. What fools men are, they fear all of the wrong things.

The walking stick Coral chooses instead is made from a dark wood found only in truly sacred lands. The hand grip is a simple silver alligator head, and with it in hand she walks away, out into the desert night air.

She doesn’t look back when the wind whispers in her ear, she already knows she will have to return, it’s carved in Time itself below the cash register.

It is printed on the newspaper left abandoned on the bar, headliner reads Gulf Oil Tanker Explosion.

Yes, she knows she must return but for now she closes her eyes and inhales the scent of sage and sand, and continues on into the twilight colored landscape.

Off the coast of Texas a female alligator eats her first turtle that is poisoned with black. The eggs she is soon to lay will never hatch, nor will they ever. She is the first to be rendered infertile.

In Louisiana a large bull gator roars his rage at man’s infallible gods.


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