“This is all that’s left.”
Marshall nodded and surveyed the area, hands clasped behind his back in a show of control that did not quite hide his devastation.
Danielle caught Sandy’s eye and the latter blinked acknowledgement. Marshall’s white-knuckled grip and the way he rocked ever so slightly on the balls of his feet communicated volumes. Danielle didn’t think he trusted his voice.
The moment stretched.
“We did find some items scattered farther on,” Danielle pressed, distressed by his unnamed grief.
“Mostly parts of items,” Sandy clarified. Won’t do to raise hopes when they already knew nothing was salvageable.
Marshall lifted his head and gazed at the path of destruction the freak storm had left on the barrier island. A quietude spread inside him. An ebb and flow of sorrow and release.
“Thank you ladies,” he told the county’s disaster inspectors. “Mother Nature had spoken. I will not rebuild.”