By Joy Pixley
Bernard was off. He turned to wave before the road curved behind the trees, before disappearing around the bend. The others wandered back in twos and threes. Hanna stood alone, staring at the place he’d last been. When she turned around, that would be it. The saying-goodbye would be over and the living-without-him would have to begin. Hanna imagined the village behind her did not exist. Nothing was real but the road. The road that would bring Bernard back to her, if she froze there long enough, unbreathing, unblinking. Hoping.
She inhaled, blinking away the tears, and headed home.