The Red Shoe
The door was ajar and the radio blaring; a slow love ballad that pulsed in time with the tic below her left eye.
Sandra pushed the door open. It swung half way then stopped with a thud. No matter how she pushed it wouldn't move. Not one more inch.
She swallowed and stepped closer, peering down at her feet, steeling herself for what she knew she'd see.
One red shoe, the patent leather glowing under the fluorescent light like the shell of a beetle. Her eyes travelled past it to the soft pale shape of a foot, toenails painted to perfectly match the abandoned stiletto.
She backed away, music crawling inside her head like a moth, fluttering its wings inside her skull, causing the tic to match its incessant beat.
Fumbling for her cell phone, she resorted to turning her expensive leather handbag upside down, manicured fingernails raking at the soft interior.
Scrambling amongst the dumped detritus of her life, she knelt on the filthy pavement, ignoring the dirt that ground into her expensive trousers. Still the music played and the singer crooned. Love found, love lost. A life in ruins.
Finally, the glow of the screen drew her shaking hands and she'd pressed the numbers before she was aware she'd done it.
Before long the sound of sirens drowned out the music and the flash of lights tempered the rhythm pounding in her skull.
Soft hands drew her to her feet and kind faces smiled at her through the haze. But still she saw the red shoe, laying abandoned and forlorn, separated forever.