A creaking sound drew his attention away to one of the large wooden doors. “I know you are there.”
Victoria cautiously stepped inside. “What betrayed me?”
A slight laugh escaped Trevor as he responded, “Nothing. I was simply hoping you were there.” He held out his hand for her. As their fingers entwined, he pulled her hand up to his lips and placed a passionate kiss upon it. They shared a smile as they embraced.
“Take me away from here,” Victoria asked, causing Trevor to smile even larger. Trevor climbed a metal stool into the cockpit and was followed by Victoria, who eased in front of him. Together they reached for the throttle, his hand resting over hers.
“So where do you imagine you wish to go?”
“Fly me to Africa,” she responded as she leaned back against him. Victoria then burst out laughing as Trevor made absurd airplane engine sounds with his lips. He leaned this way and that, pulling her with him as he feigned piloting the airplane though the imagined wide-open sky.
“Actually, I know something better,” he whispered in her ear.
Victoria’s smile beamed as she heard him sing the lyrics from the song “Come Josephine, in my Flying Machine.”
“Oh, Trevor, it has been ages since I heard that song.” Tenderly messaging his arm, she added, “I remember when you sang lullabies to Miles. Your voice is so very beautiful.”
He finished his song until the last lyric was sung.
“There it is,” Trevor pointed through his imagination at the wooden doors. “See how Mount Kilimanjaro rises above the African plains. Do you see its snowy peak?”
“And—look at how blue the sky is. Have you ever witnessed a more clear sky?”
“Never,” she breathlessly responded.
“Look, to the right! A heard of zebra and gazelle are stampeding across the plains. I wonder—yes! A cheetah is stalking them, over there hidden in the tall grasses. Do you see it?”
“Yes,” Victoria forced out as her emotions overwhelmed her. Turning her face toward his, Trevor brushed away her tear before kissing her lips. Their unspoken fear was evidently revealed in each other’s eyes.
“Where do you wish to go now?” Trevor asked, his voice slightly trembling.
After softly placing a kiss on her forehead, Trevor nodded and then helped her out of the cockpit. Pulling himself from the airplane, Trevor began draping the tarps over his flying machine.
“I will be along in a few minutes.”
Victoria attempted a forced smile before leaving him alone.
Within a short time, he had covered every inch of the airplane with the tarps. Walking over to the work bench, he reached for the kerosene lamp to extinguish the light. He once more noticed Miles’s drawing and thought for a moment of taking it with him, but instead chose to leave it. There, next to his beloved flying machine was where it was meant to be, there with his memories.
Standing just outside, Trevor gazed one last time on the airplane now hidden in the darkness. Both hands quaked as he held on to the handles of the wooden doors, as there was also tightness in his throat making him unable to swallow. Closing his eyes, Trevor forced the doors closed and slowly walked away.