Chapter Thirty-Three: Wasting

“Please, William.”

We were standing in the dark dining room.  Dim light streamed in through the windows, a full moon’s blessing.  The candelabra cast fingerlike shadows across the polished tabletop. I took his hand.

I wanted him to come to me this night. 

“No.  I am sorry.” He stiffened.  “No.”  He shook his head, never making eye contact.  His breathing was heavy, deliberate.

I needed to show him love, to say thank you. It was the only way that I knew how…physically, offering my body to him. It was the one thing I knew that he wanted the most. He had been devoted and steadfast and strong, always my constant.  Even so, I had watched as he had lost weight, seemingly eaten away from the inside as baby Levi had died, the funeral, even now months later.

Please?”  I begged quietly.

“What if it happens again, Evelyn?”

I had no answer.  I could not tell him that Levi was not his, that he could not blame himself.  That Levi was my burden of conscience.  I lacked the courage.  Everything that I had done to this point had lacked courage and this instance was no different. He was afraid to touch me.

We parted ways; he to his room and me to mine. 

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