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The announcement of another flight jolted her back into the present. It wasn’t her flight. She relaxed again into her seat and put her feet up on her carry-on.
In her pocket, her phone buzzed and Liv pulled it out. Seeing the name, she hesitated, but with a sigh swiped it open. The familiar voice that was synonymous with nagging trilled in her ear.
Her mom’s insistent soprano told her, “You don’t have to do this, Olivia.“
“But I do, Mother. You know Dad agrees with my going to Italy. He even set it up.”
“Flying off to another country isn’t going to bring Joel back to you.“
She tried not to shout at her phone. “Why would I want that asshole back!”
But Liv was beyond parsing words. “If Joel comes back, they’ll arrest me for murder. Because I’ll kill him.”
“It’s a good thing you work in an art museum, around all those temperamental artists, where no one will notice your emotionalism.”
“I’m emotional because my almost-husband treated me like a piece of furniture. And my best friend helped him.”
“Olivia, you’re being impulsive.”
Liv realized she was again in danger of murder. Double or triple murder. First Joel, then her mother. Maybe Rita too. Good thing they were on the phone.
“Mom, I need to do something that matters.”
“Your life matters to us.”
It was Liv’s turn to pause. Because it echoed what Joel had said after she threw the ring. “You’ll never have the guts to make your life matter, Liv.”
She was done. “OK, Mom. They’re boarding. Gotta go.“ They weren’t, but this conversation had to end.
“Just remember Liv. Family is everything.”
Liv pretended to have already hung up before hearing that. She sank back into her chair and closed her eyes, letting the airport noise wash over her.
A few minutes later, an amplified voice rose over the hubbub. ”Flight 564 for Florence, Italy, boarding in fifteen minutes through Gate 17.”
Liv had just enough time to pop into the future and see this flight land safely. Florence Airport, 2:30 pm, she whispered. A familiar feeling tingled in her cells as time’s curtains parted. Heat rose from the concrete as Liv stood on the runway watching the plane—the plane she would soon board—as it bounced down and skidded to a stop, then taxied to its gate in the Florence airport.
Reassured, she jumped back, ready to board. Liv called her little trick undoing time.
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