Once Bitten, Twice Shy

His wife’s expression begins to change. To pity. To disgust. To fear. He doesn’t blame her. He withdraws, avoids eye contact when she speaks to him. They’re like strangers again, divided by his failure.

Changes begin to occur inside him. He knows time is running out when his wife stoops to hand-feed him his lunch and his stomach churns with anticipation— not at the chicken and carrots floating in their broth but at his lover’s pale, fleshy thighs. He can’t bring himself to look at or speak to her again.

One evening, he lunges at her and snaps his jaw when she gets too close. Then she brings in restraints… and a knife. Soon, it’s only silence between them. Slowly, he begins to feel his guilt and shame dissolving away. A raw, unending hunger fills the void, consuming even his love for her.

She enters at nine for breakfast. On this morning, she gasps when she opens the door and finds him looking directly at her. It’s the first time since the accident.

“Babygoose?” she asks.

His stare is his only reply.

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