smoke billows lazily from her slightly parted lips. the nervous tap tap tap of her long fingernails on the table draws his eyes, again. her eyes averted, she slouches in her chair; her expression… unreadable.
he wishes she would stop.
he wishes she would stop hiding behind her mechanisms and face him – but how could he force her?! he would never.
the haunting tick tock of the kitchen clock rings in his ears, adding eerie frequencies to her fingernails’ rhythm.
coffee, black. long gone cold, but he clings to the mug, holding on for dear life, needing to feel something solid, and yet fearing it might break in his sweaty palms.

how could she do this to him?
how could she face yet another trial and have nothing to say?
he can see the mockery – purple, taunting, on the side of her neck.
he can smell the cologne on her skin, her clothes.
he can see the color of her lips, just a shade too red… raw, from kissing someone else’s lips.
and yet, she sits there… silent, numb. not offering one word, not even trying to mask her failure.
he watches her put out her cigarette.
he watches her pick at her chipped nail polish.

will this ever end?

the fight, long gone from their postures; only helplessness remains.
to the sound of the judgemental kitchen clock, they endure yet another endless night… with no hope for a brighter tomorrow.

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