summer came. for some time, she had followed his zig-zag footsteps. she began to notice little things. things that, at first, didn’t seem to make sense. they would spend days roaming far afield, sometimes the mountains, sometimes the meadow, sometimes a hidden canyon.
but no matter how far they roamed, he insisted they return to the stream each night. only by its cooing rush could he sleep.
she noticed too the patterns, the pre-cursors, the things that signified the onset of the next spasm. sometimes, she forgot and her arms were criss-crossed with his happy reminders. she told herself the trace scars were meaningful, that to carry such markings was an indication of her care.
it didn’t stop them from stinging. or bleeding. but sometimes, if she looked at them just right under the moonlight, they almost seemed like words. she kept telling herself they were some strange language and, if she just looked hard enough, long enough, she would finally understand them… and maybe then, he wouldn’t need to write them on her to help her speak his language… the one he couldn’t set to voice, the one whose only speaking was sudden lunges and deft flickings and metal flashing to meet flesh.
sometimes, she just wanted to leave. but she would remember how he looked sitting there, by the stream, morose and despairing and peering at some invisible something that called him over and over again to that place.
she eventually decided if she could learn how to see what it was he was looking after, yearning for, that perhaps then, she could figure out the way to obtain it, to give it to him, so those laughing cobalt eyes would never again look sad, and instead of looking pensive and pained into the stream, they would look to her.
they spent hours there, gazing into the rushing water. she set her focus on it just as he did…. staring until her eyes watered. but she never saw anything but their reflections.
she wanted to ask him what he was looking for, but she didn’t want to look stupid before him. so she said nothing, and kept vigil, hoping it might reveal itself to her… eventually.