Looking Back

In the kitchen, there was a dark spot in the corner of one counter. A pan had been placed there directly from the stove, without a hot pad, and left there too long. It had happened during their first dinner party celebrating the new house.

The carpet in the living room had light and dark patches revealing the layout of furniture. The couch – it had been long and deep enough for two people to easily lose themselves in it – had sat across from the television. Many movies had played on that television and been ignored.

On the door frame of the kids’ bedroom were two sets of marks with dates at each one. One set stopped at about three feet several years ago. The other had a few marks later, but it, too, soon gave out. There was some evidence of someone trying – and failing – to sand the marks off.

Finally, in the master bedroom there were several holes in the wall. Something had been thrown against them hard enough to break the dry wall. No effort had been made to repair the wall; it served as one last memorial to what had gone on in this house.

“Where do you want to go?” the driver asked.

He looked out the window. The house he had spent several years of his life in now stood empty except for memories. “I don’t care. Away from here.”

The driver nodded as though such instructions were not uncommon. The car pulled away from the curb and made its way down the street. Slowly at first, it picked up speed as the house receded. He refused to look back.

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