The Final Moment
The woman is alone in her house, alone in her bathtub. The water was hot and she is in a deep, deep sleep. She has hoarded all of the pain pills after her C-section, and now the pieces are melted in her body. With a seeming patience, they are slowing her down. For the first time in a long, long time, there is some hint of a smile on her lips, and no tears waiting in her eyes. She gave a fleeting worry about the man who loves her and is also sad, but he is away, farther away than just work, and so the thought of him leaves quickly. Instead of a note, she left the dirty, discarded baby bottle on the bathroom counter. Slowly, the water in her tub begins to turn cold.
The man is at work. For a moment he feels a sharp pain in his chest, stealing his breath. He thinks "I'm having a heart attack." But, the pain passes and the moment is gone and his discipline tells him that there is work to be done. He tries to call her at lunch but the phone just rings and rings, and he leaves a message. He worries a bit and calls a neighbor to ask her to check in, but it is the neighbor's grocery day, and she is already in the supermarket gazing at the food labels. She says she will check when she gets home, but, while looking at produce, the school calls and her little boy has fallen off of the monkey bars and needs to go to the emergency room. She is a human being and a parent, and has all of the limits associated with these two titles. She forgets all about the man and the woman and leaves her cart standing as she rushes out of the store. At that moment, she is heroic, but she is the heroine of a different tale. However, he doesn't know this and returns to his work, eats a Snickers bar in the afternoon, and in the evening, gets ready to go home. If this were a time of prophets, maybe he would have had a more concrete warning, but, if this were the time of prophets, he would probably ignore it.
And here I am, still writing this, becoming less optimistic that I can spin this into something happy. I am just a fly on the wall of this story. How is it that when I write, the characters take control of the story and do what they want? I have seem similar questions, and if I have seen the answer, I don't remember it. I wish that there was something sublime to all of this. I do think that there is one more moment that we need to see, a post-moment moment.
written for The Sunday Whirl Wordle 97
This is the third part of a story that I have made from the weekly wordles since I started participating in the prompts. The first one is One Moment in One Day and the second is At Some Point Later. You can go to them from here by clicking on the titles here, or in the side bar. I am glad that I paid attention to the comments from the One Moment in One Day and didn't stop there, although this story makes me sad.