Day in and day out Eden would take her bicycle to meet Bursala down at the bay at the end of Mecox Road. Beneath willow trees, as fate would have it, they fell helplessly and hopelessly in love.
The End. Nope, for it was just the beginning….
One shimmering fall day, he met her as usual. He patted his hand on the sand and she sat beside him. “Do you know what a soul mate is?” he asked.
“Yes, it’s when you find the love of your life….like us!” she replied.
He was enamored by her childlike innocence. “Well, yes, that’s true…but a soul mate can be a relationship between mother and child, or two siblings, or best friends…” he paused “or they can be lovers.” He tucked a strand of her hair behind her ear, lovingly. Eden’s eyes searched his face quizzically.
“Eden”, he took her hand “Soul mates are two people who find themselves together in every lifetime. For example, in one previous life, I was a priest. I fell desperately in love with a woman and in doing so I disobeyed the law of the church. For that I was stoned to death. The woman who loved me was forced to watch me die. Yes, my love, we have been together in every lifetime. And every time we meet again you fall in love with me. You don’t remember me, do you?” Bursala’s eyes looked so sad.
“I am sorry, but, I don’t. Is that bad? What happens to us, Bursala?”
“Well, my dear, it always ends the same way. You watching me die”. He looked straight out toward the bay and then toward her. “My name is Bursala Mecox. This place where we sit is the ancient burial ground of my ancestors. It is also my own burial ground. Somehow, lifetime after life time, we find ourselves exactly here. We meet, we fall in love, and then I leave you here alone.”
Eden shook her head. “No, Bursala. I don’t want to believe this. My poor heart can’t take it. I just met you. I don’t want to let you go.” she said with tears streaming down her face.
“You must. Eden, look”, he squatted down next to the water reeds and fingered them gently. “They will always speak to you for they have seen this story time and time again”. He managed a smile “Then we shall see each other in the next life.”
This clearly did not make her feel better. Then her face brightened. “What if we both go? Together?” Bursala bit his lip and thought for a moment. “Like Romeo and Juliet!” she chided. “Oh please, oh please, I want to go with you this time. Please?” She tilted her head to one side and clasped her fingers together and raised them to her lips.
His heart ached, his love for her was too much for him to bear. It hurt his heart to look at her. There was no other way, so, hand in hand they walked in silence into the water until they were waist deep. He took one last look at her, he digested her.
“Are you ready?” She nodded. He kissed her with his eyes wide opened. Together they let the water submerge them. Long ribbons of their hair danced together under the sea. Embraced, they descended deeper and deeper and deeper until every bit of golden sunlight turned to black.
And then there was nothing.
One golden summer day, a little girl with braids the color of wheat was picking reeds down at the end of Mecox Road. The reeds blew gently across her face. The little boy who was watching, touched his heart and smiled up to the universe.
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