I’m sorry I was late: short story response to writing prompt

‘I’m sorry, I was late. Something-‘, before he could even finish the sentence, she finished it for him, ‘Came up?’. He did not have any idea to think of an excuse, no right answer to explain. He could see the pain in her eyes. Her disappointment. She was dressed up, red dress, black heels and matching nail polish and lipstick. She was beautiful. Even after ten years together. But instead of complimenting her, he pitied her. This was the second time around yet very different. So instead of saying anything he kept quiet. Which words could he put together to explain to her. Her eyes questioned him, seeking truth in him and each time when he blinked, he looked away. He thought, secretly, how would he deal with life without her, that thought, brought tears to his eyes. ‘Are you crying?’, she asked him, coming around to get a look at him but before she could even get to the front of him, he left.

‘Ann, there is something I need to say. I’m sorry, I’m the one who has to do this but,’ he remembered briefly how cold the body went and eyes shut, how horrifying it was, how confusing everything became. ‘What is it this time?’. Just like that she had already lost interest, as if he would lie to her again. ‘You know, you nor dad answered your phones, I was worried sick and you come with nothing to explain all that? Where were you? My sister will freak if we get late to her wedding. And-‘ he had to do this, ‘Ann! This is important, please listen.’ He had to say it this time, it was now or never but she was too angry and he was hurting through it all, wondering, how would she fell after telling her the news.

In the mist of the conversation, the phone rang and they both looked at it, no one contemplated answering it. Just staring. The message came in and he knew he should have spoken to the other person at the end of the line. Voice-mail went on, ‘Jason, I hope you told Ann that she needs to come sign some documents for her fathers’ funeral. Condolences. ‘ So from that, she knew, her father passed on and her husband knew. She knew he knew because he seemed helpless and guilty. All the anger she had for him being late melted away like dew on grass in the late morning. And her heart stopped. He experienced it all over again.


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