They sat on her front steps consumed by a loud quieting of emotions as the streets that lied before and beyond buzzed and roared with an excitement that escaped them. Neither of them had uttered a word since leaving the restaurant, but their silence spoke the truth they’d long been afraid to face. Lina always thought this moment would be filled with tears and hugs, along with the inability to let go, but all she felt was peace. It wasn’t unwelcomed, but it also wasn’t expected. She looked over at Dixon to find him gazing at her thoughtfully. Smirking, Lina grabbed his hand and turned away. They both sighed. Her mind travelled back to the start of their relationship and how they met. Closing her eyes, Lina imagined the way his hands used to feel on her back; always warm and always inviting the most vulnerable parts of her to come alive. She remembered how the sound of his laughter made her want to repeat the same joke ten times over again just so he’d make that same lovely sound. So she’d feel his body trembling, his eyes twinkling and ultimate contentment shining through his cracks and edges. Even in that moment, broken and filled with a promised life that would never come to fruition, she still felt an ease and comfortability she feared wouldn’t be found in another person. Right then, Lina desired the taste of his lips. She looked back over at him and squeezed his hand, beckoning his attention. When their eyes met, Lina’s mouth formed a small smile that she hoped would be reciprocated. Instead, Dixon sighed and said, “This is depressing.”
As if containing a mind of their own, Lina’s shoulders slumped and her hands slowly released their hold on Dixon’s. He protested and tried to revive the intimacy in that moment, but with three small words, it had disappeared.