There is a gun between us. The realization jolts me to consciousness as though I am waking from a deep sleep. She is as surprised as I, and we stare, first at it, then at each other.
That there is a gun is not a surprise. We bought it years ago, in case of an emergency. That it is not safely locked in the drawer of her study is another matter entirely. We consider each other, silent. The silence is always so maddening.
"Have we really come to this?" I ask, indicating the gun. She stares at me as though she can't decide if the answer is yes or no. Finally she locks eyes with me.
"Have we? I hope not." Her eyes are as icy as ever. I clench my fists a little and she flinches, and we both look at the gun again.
"You hope not? Not yes, or no, but just, 'I hope not.' You really refuse to decide on anything anymore, don't you." My voice is cold and I know it. My fists clench a bit more and she takes an involuntary step forward.
Another look at the gun. "We always said we had this in case of emergency. I suppose this qualifies. No, I don't think we've come to this. I want to work things out."
"Good," I say. The gun goes off, and my vision is lost in a spray of red. She screams, and I know she did still love me after all. I'm smiling as the last light goes out in my eyes.