The Explanation

“I…I’m so sorry to have scared you. My girlfriend kicked me out of our house earlier this evening. I had to pack and leave as soon as possible…” the man said.

Melinda slowly lowered the broom.

“I just needed a place to get warm again and I saw that your basement door was open, so I came inside.” He studied Melinda’s still pale-white face intently. “Then I heard you talking on the phone, and you started to cry.”

Melinda, speechless, just stared at the man with her deep blue eyes.

“I wanted to leave, but I couldn’t. Somehow I just couldn’t leave you like that. I…If you want me to go, I will be on my way.” He turned toward the door.

“No,” Melinda said. “Stay. Why don’t I make you a cup of coffee?”

“That sounds really good.”

“Here, have a seat,” Melinda said, pulling out a chair at the table for her guest. She busied herself in the corner of the kitchen, getting out the filters, the coffee can, and two mugs. The room fell silent except for the familiar sound of the coffee percolating.

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