She left in the morning and never returned. He didn’t notice her packing her bags. He didn’t hear her angry words. He never heard the slam of the door.
She was there. She was always there and she would always be there for him.
That is what he believed.
They never kissed.
They never talked.
“Baby, you should be grateful that you have someone like me in your life. I’m perfect. I’m everything you need.”
She spoke, but he didn’t hear her words. His words were enough for him.
But they were not enough for her.
They were, once. Maybe twice.
But not anymore.
And never again.
It was around suppertime that he noticed the silence.
It was more than the absence of sound. It was the absence of being.
Something was missing.
He lowered his newspaper and called out her name.
She didn’t call back.
She didn’t enter the room.
He set his newspaper on the side table by his chair and walked into the kitchen.
The room was devoid of life and warmth.
The stove and the oven were off and unheated.
The pots and the pans sat in their cabinet homes.
The humming of the refrigerator was the only sound.
And she wasn’t there.
He walked out into the hallway. The kitchen door fwoomped gently shut.
He took a step towards the stairs.
Only to stop.
“She isn’t here.” Saying it out loud made it true. Made it real. Made it so.
He walked to the stairs and sat on the second step. “I thought we had a good thing going. I thought we were happy. Why would she leave me? I’m awesome. I’m hot. I’m…I’m…”
He set his feet on the first step.”What will I do without her? And what will she do without me? Where will she go? Will she come back? Will I ever see her again?”
There were no answers to his questions.
For there was no one around to answer them.
No one but him.
And, for the first time in his life, he realized that his words weren’t enough for him.
He longed to hear her words too.