"Come back to me."
He ran his fingers across the words stamped into the page. It was only an email, but the words felt alive to his touch.
He sighed, laying back on his bunk and staring at the matress rings above him.
He wanted to go back. Every moment he felt the tug of her love calling to him, pulling him. He squeezed his eyes shut and thought about her face rather than the violence he had seen that day. He wanted to remember the smell of summer in her hair rather than the gritty roar of the convoy trucks, the shrieks of the Afghani people running to hide from the spray of bullets, the tidal wave of fear he had to push aside as he worked with the other medics to save the victims.
He could see her face, smiling at him. Her green eyes looking steady at his. He let his memories of her wash over him like a wave reconciling with the shore. This was his solace.
But even his solace pulled at him...calling him home. He wanted to go, and he wanted to stay. He needed to stay. It was the right place for him to be. If he left now, if they all left now, what about these people? What about their hope for peace, their hope for something different?
Questions he didn't have answers to. Promises he couldn't make. A hard spot for a Canadian soldier to be in.
He picked up the letter and stared at the words, "Come back to me."