Thunder cracked the sky along the coast, stirring Colin from a fitful nap in the palm shade over the veranda. The sweet smell of rain mixed with the mineral tang of ocean breeze. Colin breathed deep and thought once more of the taste of her mouth.
Rain. His memories of Lily always seemed to coalesce around rain. Thunderstorms were always bittersweet, having met her in one and lost her in another. The weather in his self-imposed place of exile whipsawed his heart like the wind abused the palm trees. Still, it was where his heart wanted to take root in sand and sea.
Colin stood up from the rickety chair in which he had been napping. He shuffled across the porch overlooking the bay below. The horizon to the south was stained with bruise-colored clouds on a fast clip towards the village. He tilted his head back as the first fat drops began to fall. He close his eyes and swayed in the wind, mouth open to catch the rain.
Her lips, he recalled, had always tasted like rain. The first kiss she had bestowed upon him had happened in a sudden storm that had caught them walking up the avenue away from the harbor. He had been talking on some forgotten subject when the wind gusted and the sky went form azure to pewter in seconds. They had drawn close together in a vain attempt to share the newspaper he held over their heads as a shield.
Suddenly, she leaned in and kissed him. They had ended up braced against the ochre-colored wall of a bodeguita, liplocked amongst crates of mangoes and tamarinds. They shop keeper looked on bemusedly, then shrugged and went back to tidying up.
Colin remembered gasping and in his dazed state asking Lily if she wanted to share some fruit. He had picked up the first thing he could find, which to their shared humor turned out to be passion fruit.
He smiled at the memory, rain trickling down his face to mix with the slow tears leaking from eyes he feared to open. The roar of thunder mixed with the hiss of rain and surf. Colin brought his head down, dizzy, and opened his eyes. The sea lay before him, a grand sheet of liquid jade sprinkled with silver. The water swelled and rolled in the wind, and his heart seized up to see it.
Thunder brought rain, and the taste of her mouth. She was gone, he knew, watching the sea in its restless glory become a mirror of her soul.