my Valentine


I walked into the restaurant. The staff whisked by me.
I found my friends waving.
“Busy, this place,” I took my seat.
“It’s Valentine’s Day,” they chuckled.
Couples occupied other tables.
We ordered our food and exchanged our Valentine’s gifts.

“We were over there. A year ago.”
I turned to where my friend was pointing.
They then started to talk about something or somebody, but I fixated.
We had been at the same restaurant with my husband who had been in remission.
Soon, my heart began beating fast.
My fingertips felt cold. I felt a shiver spreading up my shoulders.
My throat was tightening.
I took a long breath, in silence, discreetly.
My friends’ voices grew clear. The scene around our table became steady.
I focused on my plate and the conversation.

After the dinner, I got in the car and headed home alone.
He had left me with two vicious dogs in the jungle. There had to be a reason.


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