The turrets loom large above us as we push up the smooth green mound of earth. I can feel under my feet the bones of our past humming with power, they pull at my breath. Stones once firm and strong have cascaded down the slope and lie like a giant’s rockery. Wild flowers grow in nooks and crannies, each snap of colour a beacon against the bleakness of this place.
We pass through the portcullis, the space for the wooden structure, blank now, but scratched with the memories of rising and lowering of days and days of battle and peace. A wind whips against us, the wind tunnelling stones and castellations, pulling at our rugged outdoor wear and wind-proof coats. We pull apart, each of us forcing our own way into the ruins. The separation aches and twists in my chest, my heart pounding trying to break through the waterproofing and catch your heart. We move into the ruins, each at our own pace and rhythm. I catch your eye, you look away, hands tucked into your pockets. I resist the urge to touch you and place my cold hands inside the warm of my own pockets.
Joyce Bingham is a Scottish writer who enjoys writing short fiction and had has pieces published by the National Flash Fiction Day in the Write-in Blog, VirtualZine and Funny Pearls. She lives in the North of England.
Photo of Castillo Roquero in Spain by Joyce Bingham