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Topic: Sizzle (05/02/13)
By Sarah Dirk
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That was what their love was. Exciting. Youthful. Full of dreams and a perfect future.
Edith absently ran her finger along the edge of her coffee cup as she stared dreamily out of the window. Her finger caught on the crack part way around the rim, and she scowled down at it.
At least, that is what their love used to be. But ever since John had decided that he wanted to move west, and take over his brother's General Store, their love had distanced. She had fought hard to stay in the East, but in the end she grudgingly packed her bags and climbed into the wagon beside her husband.
And what had they got out of it? Hard work, that's what. Nothing else, really.
But John insisted that he loved it here, and so Edith remained. Hating every moment of it, for sure, but what could she do? She couldn't just leave him.
With a sigh, Edith turned away from the window and put her coffee on the rough, wooden table. Crossing over to the old stove, she huffed away for a few moments, until gentle flames started to kindle. John would need an early breakfast so he could open the store on time. Greg, their neighbor, was out visiting a sick sister and couldn't do the morning hours like he normally did.
Once the flames were burning steadily, Edith pulled a old pan onto the heat and turned to grab some bacon. Slapping a few slabs on, Edith moodily pushed them around, watching them sizzle in the heat.
That was what their love was lately. It had gone to bright fireworks and star-struck gazes, to an occasional sizzle.
As she cut a few slices of homemade bread and reached for the jam, she wondered if John would remember that today was their fortieth anniversary of the day that they had met. It had been at the New Years party at church. There had been fireworks.
He probably wouldn't remember. He had forgotten her birthday for the past two years.
Movement came from the other end of the house, and Edith tucked up a grey strand of hair, and nervously straightened her best skirt.
Maybe he would remember.
She moved the bacon off the stove and flipped them out of the sizzling oil. John's favorite.
His footsteps came nearer, and Edith put the bread on the table, setting the last jar of strawberry jam next to his plate.
“Good morning, John.”
“Morning, Edith.” He pulled out his chair, sat down and muffled a yawn.
Sitting across from each other, they prayed routinely for the day, and John bit into the bacon.
“Pass the salt, please, dear.”
She passed the salt. What man liked salt on his bacon?
He finished his food. “It's a special day, Edith.” Sliding his chair back, John stood.
“Greg needs me to open up early for him. Yes ma'am, that makes the day special.”
Edith slumped as he turned away and reached for his coat.
“Oh, and Edith?”
“There is something in the barn for you. For tonight.”
“What is it?” She lifted her head, curious.
A sparkled lit his eye as he left.
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