**SHORT STORY EXCERPT – FICTION**
“Why didn’t you tell me?”
“I didn’t think you cared.”
“Why wouldn’t I care? Seriously? Why would you think that?”
He shrugged ever so slightly, and then he walked away. She watched him go, and she didn’t say a word. But he did not hang his head. His stride was long and purposeful, as though he had made his point, and the sun setting to his right cast an amber glow and long shadow that she would always, always remember.
And then he stopped suddenly and put his right hand up, pointing to the heavens.
“This is over. This is it. We’re not doing this anymore.”
She nodded, affirming agreement to herself but certainly not to him. She watched him shake his head slowly from side-to-side, put his hand down, and stand facing away for three beats before turning full to face her one final time.
“This is what you wanted all along, isn’t it?”
“You meant it to be like this, didn’t you?”
“No, I did not.”
He rushed her now, his face angry and red and twisted, but she stood her ground. For years and years she had feared what might happen, what could be, but she didn’t feel that anymore. She stood her ground and waited, braced and ready.