Letting go in Russia (story by Sarah Leamy)

We took the train from Moscow. A bitter night, we left the city in the dark of a sudden biting blizzard.  Our compartment was at the back, the dining car sat towards the middle and we jumped from carriage to carriage to go eat. We were hungry. For food. Champagne. A celebration of sorts. Matteas went first, and jumped from doorway to doorway in the ice storm. He slipped. His feet fell through the rusted steps; the metal lay twisted and broken. He fell past the guardrail, and I screamed.  No one came. Voices rumbled in time to the thudding of the railroad below. I hung on to him. We held hands, he and I. My love. My love. The snow hit my face.  I held on like never before. Time slowed. Time stopped. Tears froze on my face but  the sweat covered his. Beads dripping slowly off his brow. The train charged through the barren black flatlands. It was silent but for Matt’s breath. Scratching at my heart. The wheels clunked and thudded. The biting air gnawed at my neck. I remember the slippery grate under me. The snowflake on my wrist. And letting go.

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