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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  House: Booksie Classic
A GGP tribute, in response to the White Day prompt.

Submitted: May 22, 2017

A A A | A A A

Submitted: May 22, 2017




I could still hear the clip of his voice long after the line went dead.

Something came up.

It wasn't about the words he said after that, or the excuses he made this time; I had been steeling myself for such a rejection. I needn't have, this one barely stung.

Today, out of all days, I found myself falling out of love with my long-term boyfriend. He always did say that I had terrible timing, that much was true.

I don't quite know how it happened, when or why. I suppose we'd drifted over the years; too tired and busy to notice each other's absence, too reluctant to come home to an empty apartment and wake up to a morning devoid of our familiar sounds. Where did all that time go? How did we manage to fill the holes we dug for each other?

I sipped at my glass, passively admiring the five-hundred dollar view atop this ostentatious hotel. A strange calm settled over me, my shoulders felt so light I thought I'd float away if gravity didn't hold me down. I should be sad, or angry - somewhere, anywhere in between that turbulent spectrum.

The sun slowly dipped behind the towers and skyscrapers, tinting the skyline a dusky tangerine before giving way to the glitter of city lights.

He adored this view, he still does. I remember our first date, how his cheeks flushed as he spoke of architecture and design. Beside this marvel of a man, enraptured by his boyish grin, I forgot how to exist.

How beautiful, I thought, as the lights blurred and everything came into soft focus. In the background, a string quartet began a nocturne. The soft croon of the viola gave me pause: I had to wonder if I was being selfish for feeling this way. How do you return something you no longer have?

Earlier, precisely at 10 o'clock that morning, he'd sent an elaborate bouquet to my office. I didn't dwell too long on the number of roses, nor what it meant: valentine red, picked by his secretary from a best-selling floral catalogue, the same one every year. I tried not to look too disappointed.

How sweet, how thoughtful! My female colleagues positively swooned at the gesture. It was just like him to be so … proper. The flowers had arrived with a note, and in his elegant scrawl, it read: the Ritz-Carlton, Rooftop Garden. 6PM.

And here I am, in a pretty white dress, my love stashed away in another set of ribs, for surely the emptiness I feel now cannot be mine.

As the evening wore on, I toyed with the idea of leaving. If I walked out now, he would surely know, and I would hate to burden him with guilt. Besides, my walk of shame would mean acknowledging those furtive glances people were sending my way. I wasn't sure if I could endure their pity right now. Perhaps, if I called a friend…

A shadow fell across the table, and a whiff of expensive perfume told me it was the regal-looking maitre'd I'd spoken with upon my arrival.

Forcing a smile, I sought to appear unaware of what was to come. The woman and I carried out our lines, routine as clockwork.

"I regret to inform you that Mr. Hanzen won't be joining you this evening," A sympathetic pause. "This one's on the house, dear."

A gleaming flask was propped next to my elbow, the amber liquid within sloshing a little. Whiskey, huh… trust alcohol to fix everything. I don't think I'll need it today, though.

"Thank you." I wondered if my grimace resembled a smile. "As always, my compliments to the cook."

© Copyright 2018 M Kocha. All rights reserved.

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