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Missing Milko

Guest Skykat

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Title: Missing Milko

Type of Story: One Shot

Genre: Angst/Emotion

Main Characters: Sally

Rating: G (D)

Summary: Sally comes to terms with Flynn's death.

As it seems to be what most people do I'm putting my entry in this thread. Please read, review and give me your honest advice/criticisms etc. Thanks.xx


“More wine?”

Without waiting for a reply, or even a glimmer of response, Sally’s glass was filled to the top once more. She opened her mouth to protest but quickly clamped it shut again as Leah, the perfect hostess, turned swiftly away from her to bestow a beaming smile on Dan.

Sally watched as Dan took the bottle from Leah and pulled her closer into his arms. The look that passed between them was so…intense, so loaded, so full of chemistry. It was love. Pure, uncomplicated, genuine love. Sally watched them and the hurt gnawed at the very core of her heart, but like a moth attracted to a light she could not tear her gaze away. She felt childlike again, peeping in through the windows. She could almost feel the cold, wet pane of glass against her face as she watched the happy couple together. They were so close... she could almost touch them, but so far away that they might have been in a different universe. They were a part of something, something Sally was not a part of; something she doubted she would ever be a part of again.

Memories flooded through her mind, like a whirlpool and she felt powerless to stop them. Her first meeting with Flynn, the somersaults in her stomach that came just from looking at him, that lurch when he smiled at her, the feeling of flying when he touched her, the fireworks when he had kissed her. After a series of failed relationships she could still remember that initial gut instinct, that feeling. She had known from the very first instant that he was the one. And she had been right. Sure, they had had their troubles, but they had come through them and they had been stronger for it. They had shared something so powerful, an enduring love, one that had lasted through thick and thin, ‘till death do us part’. But death had parted them, now he was gone.

“That was so your fault!” Martha’s teasing, playful tone intruded into the depths of Sally’s thoughts.

“It was so not!” Jack playfully pushed her aside, planting a fleeting kiss on her lips.

“Was so!” came the response as the kiss was returned.

It was there again, the feeling of being in a parallel universe, of not really being there. The feeling of not belonging, of not fitting in. It reminded her of a time long ago, a time when Milko was real and the world seemed so large and unfriendly. So alone. It reminded her of being in the home, of being in the middle of a million people but not really having anybody to talk to. It reminded her of her first few weeks with the Fletchers, of wanting so desperately to be a part of their loving family but feeling so unloved. It reminded her of school, of being the odd little kid, never worth talking to, never worth worrying about. Always on the outside looking in.

As one of the longest standing residents of the Bay, Sally was a valued part of the community. She was loved, respected, very much involved and she had never imagined that she would ever feel that childhood loneliness again. But she did. She felt it now, in her best friend’s house, amongst people who loved and cared for her.

She felt completely and utterly alone.

“What do you think Milko, am I being a silly Sally?” she asked. Not aloud because you never talked to Milko aloud. He only ever heard you if you spoke inside your head.

But Milko did not respond. Nobody did, not even Sally herself. Milko was a childhood fantasy, the toy of a lonely, unhappy child. That child did not exist anymore, but the adult who stood in her place wished desperately that she did. That child had at least had Milko to turn to. Outsiders they may have been, but at least they had had each other. This adult did not have anyone, no Milko, no Flynn, nobody to share the pain of being left out. Nobody to draw her back in.

“So are we agreed on the big church then?”

“You sure you want to spend your Mum’s money on it?”

“More than anything. It was what she wanted, what I want.”

“Then it’s what I want too.”

Kim’s strong arms pulled Rachel’s head onto his shoulder as he buried his face in her hair, planting gentle kisses on the side of her head. Rachel’s smile was one of pure contentment.

Sally remembered that feeling, she remembered it so well. She remembered Flynn pulling her into his arms just as Kim had done. She remembered him planting little kisses on her head, telling her that he wanted what she wanted. She could almost smell his aftershave, the one he had worn from the first time she had met him, the one she still sprayed on her pillow every night to keep him with her. She could taste his skin on hers, feel it’s softness, see the tenderness that shone from those beautiful eyes of his. She could picture him telling her he loved her, could feel the warmth of his arms. Big, strong arms that had held her and offered safety, security, protection. And Sally had felt safe. In his arms nothing could hurt her but without his arms around her she felt vulnerable, afraid.

The fluttering in her stomach seemed so real it was making her feel dizzy, but for some reason she could not hear him. Flynn’s voice, usually imprinted on her brain, the one she could always call to mind when she needed comfort, was lost to her now, when she needed to hear it more than ever. She watched Kim and Rachel with almost a morbid curiosity, like a bird spying on its prey, but they did not even notice her. They only had time for each other, just like Leah and Dan, like Jack and Martha. As she and Flynn once had.

Sitting at the table had been the worst bit. Place cards neatly arranged in Leah’s tidy handwriting had put all the couples opposite each other. Dan and Leah, Jack and Martha, Rachel and Kim, Tasha and Robbie, Irene and Barry, Beth and Tony...

Sally had been seated at the head of the table. This was because she was the most special, Leah had insisted. Because she was their Queen and ruler, Martha had teased. But Sally knew the truth. It was because she was the only one without another half, the only person not part of a couple. It was because she was the only person with nobody on which to bestow that secret little smile, to share that loving little glance, the only person with nobody to love.

They all loved her, Sally had no doubt of that. She was special but, she was alone. The dinner party had been in her honour. A generous thought by Leah to show her how much people cared, to prove to her that she was loved. And she did feel loved but just not by the one person she most wanted so much to be loved by. In this room full of people, she was the outsider, the one that didn’t fit. Without Flynn she didn’t belong. She would never belong.

Tears threatened at the corner of her eyes. Make-up that had stayed so perfectly intact all night was now threatened by an onslaught of emotions that were emerging in liquid form from beneath the thick, mascara coated lashes. Her bottom lip seemed to have taken on a life of its own, almost as if it was perched, precariously on the edge of a tall building and trying desperately hard not to fall. The sobs were knotted up at the base of her throat begging desperately to be released but she would not cry. Not here. Not in public, not on a night intended for her. She would keep her emotions in check, be strong, the way everyone assumed Sally should be. The way Sally usually was, the way she always had been.

She managed a small, feeble smile. Not that it was for anybody’s benefit. They weren't paying her any attention, they were so wrapped up in themselves. Not that she begrudged them their happiness, they deserved it, each and every one of them. It wasn’t as if Sally had not felt happiness. She had. She had felt love. A love so strong and consuming that it had penetrated every vein of her body, shone through every pore in her skin, been evident in every word she had spoken, every look she had given. That sort of love was rare and genuine, it was the type of everlasting love, which reached between this world and the next. Sally had felt it, she had lived it and death could not break it. She loved Flynn as much now he was gone as she had when he was here and she truly believed that wherever he was now, he was still as much in love with her. The type of love they had shared did not die and Sally knew that this terrible emptiness she felt now was worth it, because she had experienced that kind of love.

And it was that love that had brought her here.

To this place, on this night, this party. Leah may have told everybody, Sally included, that it was just a chance for Sally’s friends to show her how much she meant to them. And it was. But she knew full well that Leah had an alternative motive. They all did. They wanted to sway her decision, change her mind.

Yet, if anything, the party tonight had done the exact opposite. Being here tonight amongst all her friends, all the people who loved her, should have made her feel all warm, fuzzy and loved, but it didn’t. It left her cold. The feeling of isolation, of loneliness, of not belonging had been hammered home to her tonight.

Tonight more than ever she had been convinced that she was making the right decision. Summer Bay was her home, she loved it, she loved the people. It was a part of her, but she couldn’t be here without Flynn. Without him the Bay didn’t seem to have any substance, any meaning. She didn’t have any substance or meaning. She was floating, like part of a bad dream. In the middle of things yet right on the edge, at the heart of the bay but also on the outside. A whole person but missing a half. Without Flynn she wasn’t complete. His loss had made her an outsider even in her own home, her own town, her own life. And that was why she knew she was making the right decision.

Summer Bay had always been a comfort to her, like her own separate universe, a big protective bubble where she was loved, where she belonged. But not anymore. Since losing Flynn she had felt alone in the bubble, like a star in a universe full of stars... but floating aimlessly alone. Isolated, separated. She needed some time away from this place, from these people who knew her and loved her. They were a part of her life, they had been a part of Flynn’s life and that simple factor meant that merely looking at them evoked more memories inside her than she could cope with. They caused more pain than she could deal with. In order to find herself again she had to step outside the bubble, make a fresh start. Leave the Bay.

The plane left at ten the next morning, and Sally and Pippa would be on it. Alf and Morag would be taking over the house and minding Cassie and Ric, so she would always have something to come back to. But not yet. Not until she had found herself again, not until she felt complete again, until she belonged again. Only then when she felt no longer an outsider, would she be able to come back to the Bay.

With the decision finally cemented in her mind, Sally felt almost as if a wave of peace had washed over her body, cleansing her, renewing her. For the first time in months the voice that had been so lost to her could be heard again, singing. “Something old, something new, something simple but it’s true…” and Sally could not help but smile.

Italy. It was another country, another world, another universe. It had a different language, a different culture, a different tradition. It was about as far outside as a person could get.

But Sally was no longer afraid of being the outsider. Flynn had wanted to see Italy. And he would. Away from the Bay, away from the pain, the hurt and the constant reminders, Flynn would live on. He was her memory. His voice, his touch, his kisses still tingling on her lips, his love still pulsating through her veins. Flynn was her heart and in her heart Sally would never truly be alone.

The End.


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