Ray says goodbye to someone who once meant the world to him.
An established relationship story.
Written: March 2007. Word count: 300.
Ray stood in the cold, his hands pushed into the pockets of his overcoat, looking down at the ground.
The turf was still partly raised, and the brand new headstone seemed to glint in the winter sun, its chiseled out letters fresh and new.
Beneath the ground, taken far too soon, was part of his past.
A person he had loved. Had been in love with. Had wanted. Needed.
A person who was now gone.
A person whom he would never, could never, forget.
A person who had helped to shape him. Helped to make him the person he was today.
A person who, despite his career choice, despite what he did for a living, he had been unable to save.
A person he had never really known, not truly. Not in the way he knew his now lover.
A person who wouldn't want him to grieve any longer.
A person who would want him to remember the past and smile, not cry.
A person who was far better than Ray was. A good person. Only the good die young. He couldn't remember who had said that. He wasn't even sure he believed it. Not really.
A strong arm slipped around his shoulders. "Come along, Ray. It is time to go. Time to say goodbye."
For a moment Ray let his eyes fill with tears. Then he bowed his head, swallowed around the lump in his throat, leaned against his lover, and said softly, "Goodbye, Irene. Rest in peace." And with those words he allowed Benny to turn him and lead him away.
Lead him away from his past, into his future.
And as they left the quiet graveyard and joined the busy street, Ray knew that he had said his last goodbye to the girl he had once loved.
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