"Wake up. You need to eat something."
"I'm not hungry."
"I know...but you need to eat something in case you don't eat all day while I'm gone."
She pulls herself up a bit and he puts a pillow behind her, kissing her on the forehead and he does so.
"Good morning. How are you feeling?" His voice is so gentle so as to not startle her into thought. Into thinking about what she didn't want to think about. Again.
"Leave me aloooooone..." she whines even though she doesn't want to upset him. Even though what she feels she doesn't want him to know because the only reason she tries is because of him.
"Come on. Eat something for me. Please."
She looks up at an angle at his beautiful smile and inhales his intoxicating smell. She picks up the piece of toast and takes a bite. A small one...but a bite nonetheless. He smiles. Sits on the edge of the bed and rubs her thigh while she eats.
"Do you want some coffee?"
She nods and he leaves the room to get her some. She uses his absence to give the dogs her Canadian bacon, eggs and the second piece of toast. No matter what he thinks she should do...she simply can't do what she can't do but he's important enough to fake it for him so that he doesn't worry so much about her. So that he can have a productive day without worrying as much as he does about her.
That's how much she loves him.
Enough to create a lie.
He returns with coffee and creamer because he knows she's particular about the color of her coffee and he wants her to have it as she wants it. He takes his job as husband seriously. He takes care of her and, in her broken state, he has his work cut out for him.
"What are you going to do today?" he asks looking down at her plate with a pleased smile on his face.
"Are you working on anything special or just writing?"
"You should go to the gym today."
"I don't feel like it."
"You should try honey. All I'm asking is that you'll try."
"Okay. I'll try."
"I took your truck to the gym this morning so I could fill it up with gas for you. You haven't driven it in a long time."
"I don't have anywhere to go."
"It's Fall. You're usually boot shopping or something this time of year."
"I have enough boots."
He turns slightly so she doesn't see the frustration and concern in his eyes but she notices. Just because she wishes she was dead sometimes doesn't mean she misses anything. It doesn't mean she isn't as connected to him as she's always been. It just means that she expresses it less. Oh...but she feels. Lord knows she feels.
She wants him to worry less...to feel better so she says hurriedly, "I like that tie with that shirt. I don't believe you've ever worn those two together."
"Thanks. I was worried."
"You smell good." And he did. He smelled amazing. Like complete freshness. Like the color blue would smell. Calming and soothing. Intoxicating.
He leaned over and munched her on her cheek the way he used to before the overwhelming sadness came into their lives. Before she decided she wasn't worthy of him. Before she wished he would leave her for a woman who could have a baby. Who could make him a father.
She used to laugh.
Instead she turned to him and kissed his cheek with her eyes open and he kissed her back on both cheeks and then her lips. "I love you so much baby. Please try and get out of bed today."
And she had every intention of doing so. She had every intention of attempting to make him proud.
She picked up the tray and held it out to him. "Put this over there so I can get up please." And he took the tray from her hands and put it on the dresser quickly so he could help her get out of bed.
She only wore underwear as other clothing made her hot when she was sleeping. Her black cotton bikini underwear looked 4 sizes too big. Drooping along the front and back and in the middle. Her ribs were clearly showing and her body looked gaunt and sharp. She looked down, shaky, and then back up to him, embarrassed. She reached for her robe and put it on with his help.
"I look horrible."
"You look beautiful."
"You are such a liar."
"Well...maybe you can go to the salon today. You know...get your hair done or something."
"You're saying I look a mess by the head?"
"Well damn. I thought I was beautiful."
"You're always beautiful to me no matter what but yeah...you should get your hair done."
She smiled. "If I leave the house today I will."
"Do you want me to stay home and take you?"
"No baby. You can't keep staying with me. I'm good."
"I'm sure. Now...get out of here."
"I'll wait until you get out of the shower."
"What? You think I'll fall? I'll be fine. Stop hovering." A bit of the flash and fire he was used to was in her eyes for a second...but only for a second.
And he wanted to say a lot but he didn't say anything next to near. "Okay. I'll call you when I get to the office."
He kissed her and held her. Tight. She put her arms around him and wanted to be better do better.
For him. Always for him.
And he walked out the bedroom with an "I love you." and then he was gone.
But his smell lingered. On her, in their room, in their bathroom. He was everywhere.
And she wanted to be better for him.
She took a shower and washed her hair and then conditioned it. She left the conditioner on and put on a plastic shower cap, got out of the shower and finished getting ready for the day. She walked past the bed as it was calling her to get back in and she decided she wasn't going to succumb. She was going to get better.
For him she'd try.
A little harder.
So yeah...she got out of the house and went to the salon. She got her hair done and was feeling a bit more like herself so she went to buy groceries and fresh flowers. Pink and orange. Her favorite combinations. And she bought him a fillet mignon because she decided she'd do a special meal for him to show she really was trying.
But she didn't eat. Couldn't eat. It just didn't seem fittin'.
So she didn't even though she was trying to work through the pain.
When she pulled up to her home she was surprised to find Miranda parked out front waiting for her but she figured it was time she faced the music. She hadn't talked to her in over a month because of the pain. She figured he'd called her and told her to come over and see about her. She got out of the truck slowly with a smile on her face and was startled to find that Miranda was crying.
For years people would speculate about their love. About how very much in tune to the other they were. For years people would speak of them in a way usually reserved only for fairy tales that people knew weren't real. For years they would romanticize what actually, factually happened.
You see...Miranda came to tell her that he was killed in a freak tractor trailer accident 5 minutes from their home. Miranda would then call their family members to inform them as she went to their bedroom and locked the door...took the bottle of Vimovo and the bottle of Cyclobenzaprin that was in the medicine cabinet and washed the entire bottles down with the cold coffee he'd brought her that morning before he left.
People would wonder at the Dove liquid men's soap smeared on her face and no one would figure out that it was the smell of him she wished to be the last thing she smelled.
For years to come they'd speak of their love and dedication to each other.
For years to come they'd mourn their love and wish they had what they had.
And even those that didn't believe would hope they were together in the afterlife and that the love they shared continued to be eternal.
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