My heart raced as I waited for you on the corner. The breeze picked up the edges of my new dress as it danced with glee. But it, as I, soon wilted under the unforgiving sun. As dark swallowed the day, I fell asleep on top of the suitcase your assistant sent.
I counted the minutes until our next meeting and again, I looked for your car to emerge from the horizon. Another night fell on your broken promise. Flowers and a familiar apology arrived a week later. The card read, “Let’s try again next year.”
Twenty-three expired birthdays have evaporated the small amount of trust I had in you. The suitcase, like my faith, was thrown into the dank corners of the attic.
You said you’d come for me. You never did.
Your new wife contacted me last week and informed me you have cancer. She said you wouldn’t make it to your next birthday. She wanted me to know how much you wanted to see me again.
I stood on the corner, waiting for the cab to take me to the airport. I looked down at the pink suitcase that will finally take its long-awaited trip.
©2021 Yong Takahashi All rights reserved.
Yong Takahashi won the Chattahoochee Valley Writers National Short Story Contest and the Writer’s Digest’s Write It Your Way Contest. She was a finalist in The Restless Books Prize for New Immigrant Writing, Southern Fried Karma Novel Contest, Gemini Magazine Short Story Contest, and Georgia Writers Association Flash Fiction Contest. She was awarded Best Pitch at the Atlanta Writers Club Conference.
The Escape to Candyland, a short story collection, was published in 2020.
To learn more about Yong, visit: yctwriter.com
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