The fish that swam behind the plexiglass spanned the entire color spectrum. Their vibrant hues and quick, darting movements were captivating. Howard sat on the bench and serenely stared at them as time melted away. The crowds moved to and fro, like the aquatic residents in the water that they had all come to see. “Just bigger fish in a bigger tank,” thought Howard.
He enjoyed his weekly visits to the Aquarium. It was where he and Eliza had first met, so many years ago. She, a young secretary on her day off and he, a soldier returning from the war with time on his hands had first spotted each other in this very place. In the many years after they were married, the two of them returned here often. It wasn’t just the fish Eliza came to see. It was the children. Unable to conceive, she enjoyed watching their smiling faces.
She’d been gone nearly five years. A stroke had taken her. Now, every Saturday Howard came to visit the fishes. But what he really saw was her.
[This is my entry this week into the Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers challenge. A photo prompt is given and writers are encouraged to create a short story of 150 words or less. In this piece, I did go over the limit just a bit with 180 words, but I couldn’t bear to cut the story back any more than it was.]