Man In The Kitchen (Part II)

The morning stretched on, the coffee maker shutting off, coffee darkening… thickening. He finished his puzzle; assumed she ran to drop off dry cleaning or do something else before he woke up.

He showered with the door open, inviting her back into their home, into the paces of intimacy only years of marriage can create — like beach glass weathered by years of water and sand – smoothing into its own unique piece of perfection. He dressed quickly, left barefoot to cross the street.

The housekeeper came, saw the scene she always did: an immaculate kitchen with sludge in the coffee maker. She cleaned out the pot, petted the dog. She moved out to the back deck, watering the plants, checking his hothouse flowers (he was so meticulous about caring for them and teaching her about how to raise her own) then sat at the table with his weekly stack of mail and his checkbook paying the bills. Before she left she threw the letters addressed to his wife into the bin in the garage and brought it out to the curb.

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