He tossed and turned lost to the images only his mind’s eye could see.  Soft sounds escaped his lips, whimpers which suggested pain or at the very least distress.  She reached out to lay a comforting hand upon him, but stopped transfixed. 

What was he thinking of?  Was it a memory or a Freudian sequence that would lose its meaning with the flutter of his lashes?

Her hand retracted of its own accord, and instead she leaned forward as if to whisper in his ear.  “You don’t love me anymore, do you?”  The breathy words sounded so harsh in the quiet pre-dawn hour, he stirs, as if the question has made him uncomfortable even in sleep.  Till she is sure he is still asleep she waits, finally allowing herself the deep exhalation she did not even realize she was holding.  Emboldened by her success she continues her one sided conversation.

“You don’t see me anymore, worse you won’t even look.”

She rests her head back upon her palm and studies him, the perused lips and knit brow suggest he’s listening but to her or his own internal dialogue she cannot be sure.  “I am strong enough you know.”   Without meaning to she has raised her voice.

He mumbles his response as he turns to his other side, leaving her with only his back for further consultation.

“Don’t you worry because it’s fine, I’m fine, I don’t even…”

Her garbled attempt to actually say the words startles her awake blinking she finds herself tangled in the sheets. A bullet train has nothing on the furious pounding of her heart as she swallows a sob forcing herself to take deep ragged breaths. Finally in control of herself she looks wildly side to side but only the imprint of David’s head in his feather pillow remains.

She ventures down the hallway on silent feet stopping at the doorway to the galley kitchen where David stands with his back to her intent on some private conversation with someone who wasn’t her. He ends the call and reaches for his coffee catching a glimpse of her leaning against the door jam.

“Must have been some dream you were having,” he offers to the air near where she is standing, “you almost punched me in the face at one point,” their eyes never meet.

“Want me to tell you about it?”

“I’m never any good with that kind of stuff Lucy, besides you’ve probably forgotten it by now.”

“For a minute I almost did…” she trailed off as he took a text, “do you think I’m strong” Lucy asked.

David turned and for a second he did really look at her, “didn’t I opened that jar for you last week,” his smile never made it to his eyes.

The sound of a gong announced another text. Without deciding what would happen next she took the three steps to stand at his side and place her hand on his phone.

“Luce, what the hell?”

“You have to go, now.”

Her statement was mater of fact her face deadpan, David’s mouth opened and closed but no sound came out. Lucy stepped back giving him room to turn and face her. The calm she had felt at the end of her dream washed over her; “It’s fine David, you don’t love me, but I’m alright…and I don’t even need you to pretend anymore.”

As his car drove out of sight her eyes began to burn and a hollow spot was carved below her navel “goddamn honest dreams,” she sighed as she closed the door, but maybe they were right about more than just David being a dick, and that made her smile.

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