Denise started crying in public. It could happen to her any time that she was out by herself. One moment she’d be in the queue to buy groceries. The next she’d be shedding quiet rolling tears like spring rain.

She told no one. The only people who knew were checkout attendants and fellow commuters and passers-by. One of the mums from school saw her hunched over near the flexiteller one day but Denise made up a story about her sick father. Said she’d be fine. Thanks

Eventually the crying became her new secret. It replaced John in those parts of her day-to-day life where that’s what he had been.

Pete knew nothing about either. All he knew was she’d started sleeping in the guest room.

She saved her tears for outside the house where the loneliness was greatest. But she couldn’t tell if hers were tears of grief. Did she cry for John or for herself?

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