Dusk

The light was somehow less tangible now, still all there but in some way not as real. It was daylight, at face value, but subdued and sleepy. The valley was quiet.

Songja looked on it peacefully from her porch decking, leaning her elbows on the wooden rail. Sloping white mountainsides and sloping white rooftops painted the soothing view of the valley village. She tried to watch the light change before her eyes but it was just too still, too gradual, as if it had been made that way to trick the human eye into believing the world was static and absolute. She simply relaxed and allowed the scene to change without trying to notice it.

The sun itself had since disappeared behind the mountains but its light seemed to stay the same. The air had gotten cooler, but she was well wrapped up in scarves and a thick coat. The sky was a clean and solid shape, not a wisp of cloud obscured it. A brilliant, clear azure; shifting, calmly, gently, to a pale and cool purple.

Her eyes seemed to play shapes onto the vast flatness of the sky, leading her to look back at the small cottages and huts scattered across the view. The snow glistened in twilight as dusk set in, reminding her of the immaculate glitter of soap suds. She noticed several of the cottage windows were lit, although she couldn’t recall seeing the lights appear.

The snow looked purple, reflecting the twilight sky, punctuated by the shapes of the buildings and their warm window glows. More lights began to appear; lanterns and lamps and every kind of shop light, their colours enriching the kaleidoscope of glowing points amidst silvery sheets. The air was completely still. She became aware of how dark the porch was. The sky was almost navy blue now.

Behind her, a door clicked and opened. Soft warmth spilled from it, accompanied by giddy music and the smell of pastry. She was still watching the valley, but was aware of a presence in the doorway.

“Almost time to eat, Songja. You coming inside?” said the man.

She smiled, drawing a long, deep breath of the cool air, letting it fill her up and refresh her. “Sure. Suppose I’d better catch up on the fun an’ games.” She turned to look at him, then retreated to the door.

“It’s okay.” He told her. “You didn’t miss anything.”

As she reached him, she took one more glance over her shoulder at the scene.

“Mmmn.” She said warmly, scanning the winter horizon. “No I don’t think I did.”

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