Hope is what she reverted to every morning. Every morning that the tears had dried from her face, and he’d left for his work, and the memories of better times would return to her being: the being she felt – even then – to be the human she so desired to return to, recall and remember her experiencing of; her sensing of; her touching of; her playing with; her laughing around.
All that daft stuff you read about, you know? All that daft stuff you imagine one day could happen.
And hope was a curiously distant cousin of true love. But in the absence of true love’s expression, hope – whilst never second best (instead, something different) – was neither a first-hand substitute.
And nothing had ever compared with the first-hand “then” she’d recalled, remembered, sensed, touched, played with and laughed around. Nothing in her life had ever matched those moments. That she had to admit.
Only admitting was so painful: admitting was so hard: the colour of her existence so modernly undefinedly pastel-ways soft.
So every morning, whilst living off love’s distant cousin, she hoped her tears into invisible acquiescence. And it had got to the point where it felt as if love didn’t matter; or maybe didn’t care; almost, maybe, as if the universe’s quota of love for her had ended up quite complete, like some sold-by dated supermarketed loss leader of cheaply basic produce.
In the grand scheme of her life, a life of hardly grand things, the tears she cried were quite private and quite inside.
But if hope’s cousin were ever to return to her present, she knew that kind of love would never escape her again.