Dawn stepped out of Jazmine Wheeler’s back door just as a yellowed maple leaf drifted from the nearby tree. Her eyes skipped over the colorful maple tree, drawn upwards toward the glacier glistening atop White Horse Mountain in the bright autumn sunshine.
With two coffee cups in hand, Jaz walked up next to her. She held one of the cups out. Dawn looked over at her friend, accepted the coffee and smiled before her attention returned to the mountain looming so close she felt as if she could graze her hand over the snow-mantled peak.
“Beautiful, isn’t it?” Jaz murmured then sipped the hot black brew.
“My stepdad used to say he and mom were going to buy a place somewhere in the #Cascadefoothills when he retired.” She sighed as a wave of loss washed gently over her. It had been so long ago that she’d last heard his voice.
Jaz looped an arm over Dawn’s shoulders and gave her a sideways hug. “You’re welcome here any time, you know that don’t you?”
She leaned her head against Jaz for a moment. “Yes, I know, and I really appreciate it.” She shifted away from Jaz’s supportive arm and sipped her coffee. “I think I find fall a melancholy time because it’s like nature is closing in on herself.”
Jaz cleared her throat, but her gaze remained fixed on the mountain. “Alicia loved #autumn. Said it was when Mother Earth reminded us to slow down and breathe in the beauty of each day. She said, it was often when we are on the verge of losing something that we become poignantly aware of each precious, fleeting moment.” She blinked hard. “Sometimes, I think she fought the cancer to try to give me a few more of those fleeting moments.”
Dawn swallowed the last of her coffee. “Amazing people that we’ve loved, and lost.”
Jaz twisted her head so that she looked steadily into Dawn’s eyes. “It took me a long time to understand what Alicia meant when she said, ‘love is never lost. It’s always there in your heart, ready for you to wrap it around yourself like a well-loved cloak, unless you stuff it in a closet, slam the door and try to forget it ever existed.'” She ran a hand through her long chestnut hair as she turned to the cabin door. Forcing a cheery note into her voice, she said, “Hey, I promised you the best omelette on this side of the Cascade Mountains.”
Dawn followed Jaz into the bright interior of the cabin, gently closing the door behind her.
Join Dawn as she delves into the mind of the #serialkiller, The Avenger, in Sketch of a Murder. NOW AVAILABLE at http://www.amazon.com/Sketch-Murder-Special-Crimes-Team-ebook/dp/B00KU6AIPQ
To view more images of Autumn on Jazmine Wheeler’s farm in the Cascade Foothills, go to: http://www.pinterest.com/ayawalksfar