He got up early, as he always does. I laid in bed, and watched the light stream from the bathroom until he closed the door, so only a small line shone through between the bottom of the door and the carpet.
He dressed quietly and kissed me on the forehead before leaving for work.
"See you later," he whispered.
"Mmhmm," I mumbled in response. "Remember, I won't be here tonight. I'll have dinner waiting for you."
"You're the best. I love you, " he said before exiting the bedroom, bringing the door to a close behind him.
I heard him start the car, and listened intently until I could no longer hear his car on our street.I stumbled out of bed and saw a tiny, blinking light coming from my purse.
"Good morning, beautiful. Is he gone yet?" the text read.
"He is, I'll be leaving before he gets back. I miss you."
"I miss you, too. Can't wait to see you."
"Soon." I responded, and put my phone away.
I went through the day almost robot-like, finishing up the laundry, cleaning the bathroom and the kitchen. As my body performed the tasks, my mind wandered-the anticipation of leaving tonight was my guiding light.
I pulled out the chicken and vegetables from the refrigerator and grabbed the crock pot from the cabinet. I chopped the vegetables but couldn't feel the knife in my hands. It rocked back and forth on the cutting board, slicing though celery, then carrots. I stared blankly forward, eyes transfixed on some imaginary point miles and miles away, while the knife continued it's rhythmic motion, apparently propelled by my own hand.
I sliced the chicken breasts, adding them into the mixture of vegetables. It all looked so pretty together, the crisp green and vibrant orange, the spices dusting the top of the ingredients, and the chicken settling at the bottom, a cool, pale pink.
I pulled my eyes away from the meal I had just prepared and began to get ready. As I showered, the scents from the kitchen wafted into my bedroom. It smells to rich and warm, I thought as I inhaled deeply.
I fixed my hair and applied my make up. My black dress called to me from the depths of my closet. I hadn't worn it in so long, but I slipped into it and faced myself in the mirror.
I felt silly, and dangerous, and excited and anxious. I didn't recognize myself. A pair of black heels completed the look that was anything but my own.
Tonight, this is me, I reassured myself.
As I walked out the door, I could smell dinner. At the last minute, I turned around and stepped back into the kitchen. I scribbled a note:
"I hope you had a good day! Enjoy your dinner-love you xoxo"
It soothed my conscious just enough to slip out the door and not have to look back again.
This is in response to a prompt at The Lightening and The Lightening Bug: Hunger.