Where is he?
Maybe it’s time to accept the possibility he had left in the middle of the night.
Would he do that?
I can’t be sure; I barely know him. My heart tells me that’s not what happened, but maybe I shouldn’t listen to my heart. It has betrayed me in the past. It’s why I’m in this situation to begin with.
What if he’s hurt?
He regularly patrols the woods around the cabin in the early morning hours, long before I get up. He could be injured in the woods and I would never know.
Leaving the relative safety of the cabin, I begin pacing the porch, consumed with worry. I follow it around the length of the three sides, my eyes searching for any sign of him. He had given me strict instructions to never leave the cabin. I wasn’t even supposed to be on the porch without him there to protect me.
But I’d been up for hours and he was gone when I woke up. My concern grew with each passing minute until panic crawled up from my stomach like a vine, twisting and squeezing my insides until I could barely breathe. I had to move.
Turning to retrace my steps to the back of the cabin I try to formulate a plan. In the clutches of fear, my mind remains blank. Think! Think! Think! An image of Winnie the Pooh tapping his forehead crosses my mind making me smile. This is enough to lessen the burden; it eases the tension so that my brain can function.
I can’t just sit here. If my ex has found us he could be behind this disappearance. If he is then I’m in grave danger whether I stay in the cabin or not.
I have two choices, I can search for my protector or I can get in my car and run. For a moment I’m frozen with indecision.
As I pause memories of the past few days flood me. He has been so kind, so selfless. He listened to my story without judgement, even though I am clearly to blame for not seeing the truth sooner. He has offered me strength when I have needed it most, and comfort I would not have expected from someone trained as he is to detach himself emotionally from these situations.
How could I leave if there’s a chance he needs help? I need to find him and be sure he’s not hurt.
I’ve waited long enough.
With determination I leave the false security of the porch and begin walking the perimeter of the woods, trying to figure out where he would have entered them, if indeed that’s where he went. On the north side of the small yard I find a narrow path where the brush has been trampled.
Scanning the woods I see no movement. Without stopping to consider the merit of this plan I step onto the path, unsure of what lies ahead.
This post is in response to the daily writing prompt Possibility and is part of something longer I am working on.