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I hate how silent it is. All I can hear is the sound of the engine and the faint whispers of the air working its way through the vents above the radio. We drive past fields, the sun is setting. The day is almost over. I want to glance over at Darcy, just to make sure she’s still there. I don’t.
Even without looking over I see her. Her black hair whisking out the window, that crooked smile, those deep brown eyes; her eyes. They haunt me sometimes. The way they glaze over when I need to talk to her. Then again, maybe they don’t, maybe it’s all just in my head. I don’t know what’s happening.
Everything’s different. All our conversations are one-sided now. I do all the talking and she sits there with that glazed over look that might just be in my head. I’m starting to give up on us.
It’s funny how thinking back a year ago, the very thought of giving in would’ve set me off, making me more determined to keep things the way they were. I guess that’s what happens when the incident comes.
I know it happens to everyone at some point in life, but Darcy and I never thought something like this would come so soon. We had been unprepared for it. We had been unprepared for living with it. I had been unprepared for living it.
It was okay at first. There had been tears, apologies, screaming, but we still had that bond. That love. The kind where no matter where you are; you can still feel their presence hovering near you, protecting you. But now that feeling was drifting. Even with Darcy here next to me, it’s hard to feel her existence anywhere.
I see the street sign up ahead, Manilow Boulevard. As I turn onto the lane I see a fence at the far end of the road. There’s something attached to it, a metal sheet.
“Dead end.” I say out loud without thinking. I shudder and wish that I could shove those words back in my mouth. I turn to look at Darcy.
“That’s what we’re at now isn’t it? A dead end.” I wait, hoping she’ll say something, give me a sign that she wants to keep trying. That she wants to me to stay. Nothing.
“I can’t do this anymore. We’ve been like this for too long, it isn’t fair to either of us.” I pause, still silently pleading her to stop me from saying what needs to be said.
“I love you Darcy. I really do. I’m sorry.” I get out of the car, carrying her with me. Holding her for the last time. I walk down the street, she’s in my arms. I blink slowly and think about that hair again, that smile, those eyes.
I stop in front of a house.
“We’re here,” I say, I can’t tell whether I want to smile or cry, “you remember don’t you? We used to play cops and robbers right here, climb your trees, roll on the grass. Your mom would call us inside for lunch. We had our first kiss here Darcy.”
I hold her tighter, suddenly unsure of what I have to do.
“I need to move on now Darcy. You understand don’t you? This isn’t healthy for me. You’ve moved on, it’s not fair for me to be stuck here while your heart is somewhere else.” I’ve rehearsed this so many times, but my voice still trembles.
I wait one more time for her to give me a sign that I’m making a mistake. That maybe she hasn’t really left me behind. I wait for one more time for that feeling to come back, the feeling of her just being here.
I set her down on the grass, lay her across the memories of our childhood, adolescence and just a tiny bit of our life together as adults. Our first water gun fight, school dances, kisses, engagement rings; all of it flashes in front of my eyes. I can feel her on my fingers, sifting through, falling away with the wind.
Then I turn around and leave. When I’m back in the car I stare out the window for a few minutes, looking at Darcy one more time as she flies away from this world, away from me.
I hate how silent it is.