As Deo sat at the table, Shelly cleared the dishes, removing the children’s, then his. He eased back into his chair, as if to allow her sufficient room to reach his plate, and then, just kept looking at her. Shelly could not remember her husband being this quiet, but under the circumstances, she continued doing the same.
After a few more minutes, Deo sluggishly got up from the chair and made his way to a small wooden window in the kitchen; a window he recalled building just before his incarceration. A gentle smile enveloped his face, as the nights air struck him. Reaching into his pocket, he took out a pack of cigarettes and reached over to a box with matches near the kitchen sink. He shook it, listening to the sticks crashing into each other. He then placed a cigarette to his lips, lighted the match and leaned into it. There was a silence, so much so that he could feel it in the air, heavy. He looked from the corner of his eyes at his wife’s piercing gaze. He recognized that much had changed since he was gone. He blew the match out and crumpled the cigarette in his hand, but the pack he returned to his pants pocket. He chewed on his thumb nail for a few seconds. Deo looked at the thumb, while playing around with a piece of the nail in his mouth. Then spitting it through the window, he scratched against his two day old beard.
Copyright © 2017 David Alexian
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