A Very Tiny Lighthouse

“I’m sorry that this won’t work out. I want to like you as much as you like me, but it didn’t happen. I never wanted to hurt you, I just- I’m sorry.”

John heard the words. Julie was breaking up with him. He shouldn’t feel as strongly as he did, they hadn’t been dating that long. Yet, as he watched her get out of the car and walk to her door, a dark albatross settled on him, coming to rest on his shoulders.

She fumbled in her purse looking for her keys, unaware that the torch he carried was slowly dying, strangled by circumstances beyond either’s control.

She did not turn around or wave, but entered alone and closed the door behind her. Forever.

Just before the last embers died, John found a candle and used the embers to set the wick aflame. It was small but it would do. Then he took the candle and locked it into the smallest chamber of his heart, the one reserved for special things.

On some days his heart would be transparent and if Julie ever looked, she might see the light that would lead her home.

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