She's sitting at the table, the hours get later
He was supposed to be here
She's sure he would have called
She glances at the clock on the kitchen stove for what must have been the third time in five minutes. Where was he? It wasn't like him to be so late. Usually, he'd have called by now.
She waits a little longer, there's no one in the driveway
No one's said they've seen him
Why, is something wrong?
Maybe give him a few minutes? she asks herself, now a tad worried about him. She calls up a few friends, his brother in the next county, two of his coworkers, even his boss. Everyone she called either saw him about an hour ago, or just hadn't seen him at all. Sighing, she sits down at the small table set for two, watching his food get cold and staring at the driveway, hoping to see the familiar headlight, the other busted, shining in her eyes.
She looks back to the window
Suddenly the phone rings
A voice says something's happened
That she should come right now
At first, her mind doesn't process it.
But then she asks the solemn, cold female voice to repeat the sentence.
-I'm afraid something has happened. Car crash down on Route 67. He isn't in very stable condition. They say he might not make it. He has been asking for you -- ma'am? Ma'am, are you there?-
The voice continues its pertinent questions into silence, for no, she is not there, nor here, her mind gone, flown away, desperate to escape the now soul-consuming worry and pain threatening to engulf her completely.
Her hand goes limp and the phone clatters to the ground as her hands find the edge of the table for support as she tries to stand. The loud crash triggers an involuntary sob from the back of her throat that shatters the temporary silence. The ugly sound seems to reverberate against the walls of the small house whose walls now threaten to crumble around her, taking with them all that she knows and loves.
They say he won't make it.
Her mind goes to December
She thinks of when he asked her
He bent down on his knees first
And he said
I want you forever, forever and always
Through the good and the bad and the ugly
We'll grow old together
Forever and always
She shakes herself out of it. Think of happy things, better times, she chides herself, a coping method of hers. Don't think about the problem and then it won't exist, right? But all she can think of is when, two years ago in December of 1999, he took her out for dinner, later by her favorite river, and there, among the glowing side lights of the beautiful waters, he took her hand, knelt before her, and whispered the words she could still recite today: I want you, forever and always. Please, let me be your forever and always.
She pulls up to the entrance
She walks right to the front desk
They lead her down a million halls, a maze that's never ending