She leaned in near to the mirror, applying coral lipstick and perfecting it with the tip of her finger. She would leave in a minute to watch the boats come in.
In summer, tourists gathered at the docks with their cameras, waiting for husbands and sons to come back from a rousing day at sea. Wobbling on deck, pink and sun stroked, the boys held up trigger fish with bulging eyes and rectums, the pressure of their ascent having killed them from the inside.
Men wanted to be fishermen. That was a truth about life she'd always known.
She didn't crane her neck and shield her eyes against the sun. She wasn't new to the arrival of the boats. Her husband, he had a child somewhere. He left a woman and their home. He bought a boat, now stained green and weathered with time. He was a captain, and didn't love anything but the rock and moan of the inlet, the feathery kiss of sea spray off the bow. And her; he must have loved her.
He hadn't been happy in a home with a fence and a garden. He took pills. He stole from their savings account. He might have been happy, but he was locked in on all sides and it gave him fever. He collapsed on the kitchen floor and broke his nose. His little girl slipped in the blood. He made them cry and that drowned his heart forever.
She put on lipstick because he liked it. It reminded him of the first time they met. She'd been one of those waving women, squealing over the day's catch sliding against the splintery surface of the pier.
He'd taken her out on his boat, telling her to hold on to the railing as they passed through the channel. She reached for him, instead, the tight cord of his forearm. She kissed him, and kissed him, wearing a patch of skin raw on her chin, and lipstick the color of coral.
This is my entry in this week's Trifecta Writing Challenge. The deal is that you have to write a story, using 33-333 words, and using the third definition of a given word. This week's word was new.
I haven't been able to get the idea of fishermen out of my head, even though I learned last week that I get sea sick.