“So how are you?” He looks at me hoping to avoid my honest answer while at the same time wondering how I am doing on my own. Without him.
I sit down and take off my jacket. I carefully swing it around and over the chair. I’d hate for it to get stained. They never clean these tables well enough. He knows that and grabs a napkin. “Want me to make this wet so we can wipe the table?” I shake my head.
The coffee shop where we meet is in our old neighbourhood. We used to come here on Fridays. He would work and I’d be writing. He’d have a black regular coffee and I’d have my latte.
I look around to catch the eye of the barista and wave. He remembers me. Suddenly that bothers me. They know me here. They know that I am separated but not yet divorced. They know that we moved away.
My hands form fists and I feel my nails digging into my skin. I look down to avoid his eyes. I try to breathe normally and look down to study my cleavage.
He shifts in his chair and his hand finds his jacket pocket. I see that he is no longer wearing his wedding band. He pulls out his mobile phone and a small envelope. Without looking at me or saying a word, he checks his phone. Scrolling up and down, he sighs and puts the phone away. He grabs his jacket and pushes the envelope across the table.
“In this envelope is the contact information for my lawyer. I think that we should make some decisions.” As he stands up to put on his jacket, the barista walks over with my latte. “One latte with skim milk, an extra napkin, and plastic spoon, no wooden stir stick.” He puts my drink down, places the spoon on the napkin, and smiles.
I take a sip and let the warm coffee sooth the chills I now feel for the man I once adored. It is cruel how things change.
“Can I call you next week to set up a meeting with my lawyers?” He has already turned his body towards the exit door. In a flash I remember how I used to pull him back inside every morning when he’d leave for work. How I gave him one more kiss. And now, it kills me that I have started to loath the man who once made me his bride.
I put my coffee down, sit up straight, and slightly lean forward. My upper body touches the table. I know I just made a stain on my white top but I do not look down. Instead I look him straight in the eye. “No need. Tell your lawyers to start the divorce proceedings.”
I pick up my coffee and pretend to look outside. From the corner of my eye I see him grab the door handle. He hesitates and turns back. I keep looking outside because I am afraid that if I don’t I will try to stop him.
He waits a second or two and then turns towards the door again. This time he pushes it open and leaves. I do not watch him go. I keep looking outside.
I sip my hot latte in hopes that the pain of my burning tongue deafens the crying sounds of my heart.