An evening in Rome - {SHORT STORIES SERIES} - {Vol. 1} / by Ben Resini

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PAULO & FRANCESCA

The sun came crashing down over the Tiber with a magnificent display of natural beauty and power, closing out the hours of a long hot summer day in Rome. She walked slowly across the cobble-stoned streets, not really there but lost in her own mind about the possibility of the city. How enthralling the city was to her. It captivated her, holding her in a dream-like grasp not soon letting go. She knew she had found her home among the side streets and corridors of the eternal city. She would go by the name Francesca. 

Native to the city, all knowing of its intricacies and secrets, Paulo was a man on the run. Not literally but in his present tense racing towards Termini station to catch his train home. Weaving his way thru tourists and Vespas he found himself breathless and tired trying to get home. The long and steaming mid-August day in Rome had worn him out. He longed for rest and solitude on his journey out of the city. He proclaimed no return would be possible until he was brought back to strength on his families farm just south of Rome about 150 kilometers. 

Ticket in hand he boarded the train and settled in for the long journey home. What happened next changed the course and direction of both himself and the beautiful woman he found sitting next to him grasping her passport. 

Ciao bella, my name is Paulo. 

Ciao, my name is Francesca. 

Fine.