“You and me, we made a vow
For better or for worse
I can’t believe you let me down
But the proof’s in the way it hurts.” – Sam Smith ‘I’m Not The Only One’.
The table between them felt yards long even though Ashlynn could reach out and touch him if she wanted to. She didn’t. Well, that wasn’t completely true. She wanted to hold his arm, squeeze it tightly and demand he told her what went wrong. Instead, she kept her hands clenched tightly into a fist under the table. There was no going back from this, she realized, and the thought made her sick. Sick for all they had. Sick for all they lost. Sick for all they’d been meant to be. The wedding photo above the mantle mocked her. She’d been so sure on that day, decked out in her designer dress, that they’d had what it took to go the distance. Love wasn’t just blind, she thought, it was dumb, deaf and awfully stupid.
“I want a divorce.”
Ryan paused mid chew, forehead crinkled and lips pursed. Ashlynn supposed she could’ve eased her way into it but some things were like bikini waxes.
“I want a divorce,” she repeated when her husband didn’t respond. She watched him sadly. She knew each line on his handsome face. She knew that the faint scar running through his eyebrow was from falling out of a mango tree when he was seven. She used to kiss the cluster of beauty marks at the side of his nose each night before bed. She knew he fancied the birthmark on his neck, which made his mahogany skin seem two shades lighter, to be in the shape of a shrimp – something his mother couldn’t get enough of during pregnancy. She supposed the other woman knew all those things too. Or his daughter. The unexpected anguish was physical and Ashlynn raised her fist to her mouth to stop it pouring out. The seconds spanned before it hit her that Ryan still hadn’t spoken.
“I guess there’s nothing left to say,” she said softly, pushing her chair back. The creaking against the hardwood floor was thunderous in the silence. With Ashlynn halfway to the kitchen, Ryan finally found his voice, “I’m sorry.”
She spun around so quickly she almost fell to the floor, alongside the shattered pieces of her heart.
“You are sorry when you forget to put the milk back into the fridge or step on my toes,” she said unconcerned with the rising tone of her voice. “Or fart in your sleep. Not when you start yourself another god damned family.”
“I didn’t mean…”
“Finish that sentence and I swear they will be the last words you ever speak.”
Ryan stopped speaking abruptly clearly as shocked at her outburst as she was. She saw the emotions flit across his face. Who was this woman? And what happened to his mild mannered wife?
“You did,” she said softly even though he hadn’t asked her the question. Then, before he could see the tears fall, she walked out leaving him there. The man who promised to forsake all others even as he knew she’d never been the only one.
© Rilzy Adams, 2014
This is the first time the actual video for the song has come so close to what I’ve actually written (even though they are still quite different). I should put the disclaimer here that I never watch the videos until I’m putting the story up on WordPress. I can’t decide if I’m happy that the director and I kinda shared a concept or disappointed. :). I hope you guys liked it.