'For Old Time's Sake'

Trace Sheridan

She spends a little extra time in the bathroom, spreads lotion down her long legs, over her feet, pays special attention to her feet, in between each carefully polished toe…

For a moment she forgets herself, sprays a little perfume at her pulse points, smiles because they are all alone in the house, leaves on the hook the gown she was about wear. She wonders if maybe tonight, rather than reaching for a book, he will reach for her instead, or if not, when she reaches for him, not stop her hand in mid-caress with a well-meaning pat.   But when she reaches for more lotion, she catches her own reflection.

She looks over her body, lets her eyes travel along from top to bottom taking in every imperfection. Oh well, she's forty-eight. She pulls the black band from her hair and her hair falls to her shoulders, well at least she had that—beautiful hair.

She walks into the bedroom, the fragrance of jasmine floating in with her. He is already in bed.

“Are you going to be reading much longer?” she asks, pulling back the covers on her side of the bed.

“Oh, no not much,” he says, never looking up from his book.

Sitting naked on her side of the bed, she takes her hair and twists it into a tight ball on top of her head, secures every beautiful strand with the rubber band and pulls a T-shirt from the nightstand. She clicks off the lamp and lays her head onto the pillow.   “I love you darling,” she says, pulling the covers up to her neck.

“I love you too,” he says, patting her on the arm.