It is a cold November morning,
Dew on the grass and a cool blue light in the sky.
There are bunched wet leaves on the ground and
There is fog in the air as his car idles on the street.
The exhaust breathes a light cloud around it,
Faded and cracked paint adorning its surface.
He kills the engine and steps out, the cool air hitting his face as dawn begins to crawl forward. Up the walk to the front door, he knows she will be there. The front door is still locked, but he knows where the spare key is and retrieves it. As the cuts slide past the strike plate and into the cylinder, the lock clicks and releases, letting him inside.
He slips through the crack, careful to keep the door from creaking.
He sees her on the couch, the television playing late night ads. She snores softly. The cat snuggled in her arms purrs, and raises its eyes at him. The animal has awaited his return.
"Come, thing," he softly coos, and removes the feline, setting it aside to follow him in a few seconds.
She still lays on the couch, sound and secure in her reverie. She's carried into the bedroom in the comfort of his arms, and laid under burgundy sheets as the birds begin to sing their songs. He covers her and then settles himself onto the edge of the bed, waiting for her to wake, but careful not to rouse her from her sleep.
A few hours pass, and although he is tired, he stays awake to see her eyes open. Morning light comes in through the windows and the clock on her nightstand reads 8:23 in bright green numbers.
Finally, she stirs. She breathes out heavily and stretches like a cat, her toes extending beyond the blankets around her. Her eyes slowly open and close, like fluttering butterfly's wings. She turns over to her side, and sees him patiently waiting on the bed. Her eyes widen with happiness and surprise, and then the happiness fades. It is replaced with doubt.
She reaches out, slowly, to touch him, her hand shaking. Her lip begins to quiver and tremble.
"Are you real?"
He takes her hand in his own and kisses across her knuckles, making sure that their eyes meet.
"I am real, darling."
Originally started Feb 22, 2018