The Greatest Longing
He was away for a few days, the first time in nearly a year that they were apart for more than a few hours. On the morning he left she drove him to the airport: “I’ll be back in a sec…” he said to her, holding her high in his arms, his eyes locked into hers. Then he was gone, she got back to their place, suddenly silent.
In their study her pictures were everywhere, they had been editing the book they wanted to publish, soon. He was adamant they should do it, immortalise those precious forms, their intimacy. Her eyes were damp. She walked upstairs to their room, looking at the large bed, still undone, his books left open on the rug, a shirt of his on their chair, and… yes… his collar and hers on the little table. Slowly she showered, without him, on her own, the first time in months. Then she dressed, soberly, jeans, a black T-shirt, her hair in a bun.
Downstairs she got on with cleaning the kitchen, then the lounge. On the terrace she watered their “garden”. She made coffee, and nearly choked in her mug, as she started crying, finally giving in. How will she cope tonight? Who would he meet at that conference? Will he call her? She thought of timezones, Japan was so far away…
In the evening she knew she would stay awake, waiting for his call. She got a text: turn on the Mac and the camera. He was calling her from his hotel room, on a video link. His face appeared on the large screen, smiling to her, incredibly clear: “First the good news”, he said charmingly, “I am back tomorrow, and expect you there on the dot!” She was now wet with tears and a little aroused. “And now for the very bad news: look at what I found in Tokyo!” He was showing her a little dildo, marvellously chiselled, in a beautiful wooden box covered with Kanji characters. Then his face came closer, his lips so clear, and she embraced the screen, her face flooded with tears of joy.