Day 3 approached. The plant seemed to be in full bloom, its out-stretched glossy leaves caught every ounce of sunlight. It was in its prime and seemed to sparkle. A small piece of paper fell from under one of its leaves and pirouetted gracefully to the floor.’What ? has that been there the full time?’ Her fingers the papers slightly curled edge as she grasped it between her thumb and index finger. It read “Day 3 has arrived. Thank you for nurturing the plant appropriately. It was a test of your dedication. You have passed. Lucinda, you are now entitled to 1 wish which will be granted tonight at the stroke of midnight. Write your wish on a paper and tie it to a leaf. Please remember Lucinda, be sensible with your wish. Sometimes our heart can over rule our heads. Please use your head. We cannot raise the dead. -JUNO”

Lucinda was confused, was the nurturing of the plant all a waste of time? Lucinda decided against going to bed. She kept herself busy, she had a pile of clothes to darn. The knees were starting to wear thin on Thomas’s trousers. She sighed as she noticed that she was getting a hole under one of the arms of her dresses.With Jim gone they just couldn’t afford luxuries such as materials for new clothing. Lucinda took out her sewing box. Turning the trousers inside out she neatly stitched the hole. Her mind then turned to thoughts of her potential words. Juno’s wise words rang through her head. ‘We cannot raise the dead’ She had to see Jim again somehow, She scribbled down her wish.

‘I realise that you cannot bring back the dead but I wish to speak to my husband Jim again one last time. Please help me to do this’

She cleverly used her needle to pierce a hole in the paper and threaded a tiny piece of cotton through the hole. She tied the paper to the leaf gently and said a quick prayer. Now all she had to do was wait. She was perished with the cold and huddled closer to the fire to complete her work. Lucinda pulled on a pair of woolen finger-less gloves which gave her some extra warmth. The clock clicked gently synchronizing in time to her soft heart beat as she worked into the night. Her eyes grew heavy but Lucinda was abruptly woken as the clock struck midnight and chimed. There was no way that her wish could possibly come true she thought. The large hand of the clock had nearly reached 5 past when her attention was drawn to the rusty coloured fire flames. A powerful image flashed before her very eyes, the face of a man she had known so well. It was Jim.

“Oh my god Jim! Is that you?” she stated in a shocked whisper. He nodded and smiled.

“Peculiar  way to be sent to you, but yes it’s me. I’ve missed you so much” Lucinda nodded and began to cry.

“Jim I’ve missed you missed you more that I could ever explain. I’m sorry it had to end that way”

Jim sighed “I saw your dream. I don’t recall my death being that awful, how it happened I mean.”

Lucinda felt washed by tidal wave of relief. “Please put me out of my misery. What did you see and feel when it happened?”

Jim hesitated, thinking of the most reassuring answer possible. “I saw vast clouds of dust. It was almost pitch black anyway apart from the dim candle light. I heard people crying out in fear. I saw your face in my mind. It brought me peace and reassurance, I knew I was going to die so I said goodbye to you and Thomas. That was it, I saw nothing more. Don’t fret darling, I didn’t feel any pain the death part was over in the blink of an eye.”

“Oh my god. Thank god!” she exclaimed. “I had the most horrific nightmares. I thought you’d suffered terribly”

Jim shook his head. “Dying wasn’t so bad, except the fact that I had to leave you all. Lucinda I want you to be happy. You need to let go of me as best as you can and find love again. I want you to fill that empty section of your heart once more.”

She nodded “I’m struggling, I really can’t let go. We had everything as a family of 3 and lived a perfect life.”

“I know” he agreed ” Thomas is doing so well at school. I couldn’t be a prouder Father and Husband” he beamed. “You’re a wonderful woman Lucinda, I’ll love and watch over you both always. I have to go now.”

“Please don’t go!” she begged.

“I have to. if you ever need to speak to me I’m all around you. In the air you breathe and the ground you walk upon. Bye my love give Thomas a hug from me.” and with that his face faded away, never to be seen again.

She had helped Juno in her hour of need and in return she had given her the gift of hope. She could let go of all her worries about Jim, her questions answered.“Bye, I’ll always love you” Lucinda whispered and Jim’s face faded away.He was gone forever as was the plant. As Lucinda cast her eyes over to where it stood she noticed it’s stem had snapped and it’s head lay brown and shriveled upon the glossy window sill. Lucinda was washed with relief after being able to tell Jim the words she had longed to say, her head no longer filled with incomplete ideas about his suffering. Lucinda cautiously placed the dead plant into the fire watching it smoulder, she was ready to move on.

Lucinda breathed a deep sigh releasing any tension within her soul. She finally allowed herself to let go.

THE END

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