A Winter's Reunion

Lily Troye drew in a chilly breath as she made her way through the busy streets of Raindale, a small town on the south of Sington. The snow had started earlier this year and Christmas was not due for another three weeks. Children ran around dressed in layers of clothing, their large hats hiding away their tiny ears from the cold. Lily was on her way to the forest adjacent to the marketplace which was temporarily closed down due to the trading of explicit media which caused quite a furry among residents. The sound of bells faintly reached her ears, announcing midday already. She hurried her steps, seeing the tall trees covered in white powder. She knew the path but still followed the slightly bigger footsteps she could trace out in the snow. Her heart pounded in anticipation. She was pretty sure she'd never get used to this feeling any time soon. That's what happened when you were dating Celia Blossom, the daughter of the town's mayor. Celia and Lily were currently in their senior year in high school and had been secretly dating since they were fifteen. To say that they disliked each other at first was an understatement. In fact, they had hated each other more than anything. Lily, being from the underprivileged in the city, didn't have an ounce of pity for anyone related to that vile politician who profited off the hard working people of the town. Celia, on the other hand, couldn't stand Lily's arrogance and had thought she was part of some gang due to her background. Of course, this all changed when Lily had found Celia alone in the nurse's office, after school hours, tending to some bruises, courtesy of the mayor's wife. They quickly developed a profound affection for each other, which deepened into something more over time. Lily smiled as she recalled the weeks before the start of their relationship. The quick glances. The way Lily's coffee coloured skin complemented Celia's snow white complexion. That electrifying feeling when they were in close proximity. Or even that longing in Lily's eyes every time the other girl would come into view. She cherished those memories so much. She finally found herself in front of the picturesque view of a frozen lake surrounded by the forest, as if Mother nature wanted to keep this magnificent landscape away from prying eyes. Lily's eyes however were focused on a particular figure sitting on the snow, every fibre of her being exploding with joy. The woman with unmistakable red hair did not seem to have heard Lily coming as she gazed into the distance. Lily silently drew closer and hugged the girl from behind, causing her to giggle like a teenage girl. “Lily!” The red haired gasped but embraced the other girl nonetheless. “Celia babe, you have no idea how much I missed you,” Lily said and breathed in the red haired scent. As the mixture of strawberry and cherry perfume hit her nostrils, Lily felt intoxicated. At that precise moment, she realised how much she loved Celia Blossom and the consequences be damned, she'd do absolutely anything for her. Celia broke the hug and gazed at Lily lovingly, as if Lily was the elixir to all her anguish and torment. “I missed you too,” Celia whispered, as if scared to bother the serenity of this moment. “I made some cinnamon rolls,” she gestured towards a small basket that Lily didn't notice. Cinnamon rolls were Lily's favourite sweet dish and Celia never missed the opportunity to prepare them for her girlfriend. They sat in the snow and inspected the food. Lily tasted the still warm bun, the custard dripping from her mouth. She rolled her eyes in pure ecstasy as the silky and soft bread hit her tongue. The forest seemed to be dead silent except for the occasional chirping of birds. It had been a while since they last saw each other. With Celia helping out in end of year events organised by her father and Lily's participation in this season's photography competition, they seemed to barely have had time to spend together. It was agonising to say the least but it also made stolen moments, like this one, more meaningful. “Lily, you have-“ Celia removed her right hand's glove, revealing her bare hand with a ring on her index finger. Lily had its matching necklace under her clothes. Celia moved closer to her, her hand reaching for her face. She placed her thumb on Lily's lips, trying to remove the leftover custard. Lily thought she might pass out any second now and couldn't help but notice the coldness of Celia's finger as it traced her skin. The red-haired eyes softened as they took in Lily's features. They were bare inches from each other, neither of them wanting to take the next step. They were suddenly interrupted by the appearance of a squirrel, rummaging through Celia's basket. "You have got to be kidding me," Lily groaned. Celia, on the other hand, laughed and rested her head on Lily's shoulder. To them, it was another heartwarming memory that they'll look back on later, perhaps in another time and era.

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