Dinner for One

Dining by himself, his loneliness made for a meal that was plentiful enough to be shared with two.

As it was, the leftovers would see him full for days. The aroma of the course, remembered scents of someone else, somewhere. Not hungry for this empty food, yet driven to eat by necessity of his stomach’s incessant screams. Sitting alone, watching the scenery, the other patrons, enjoying each others delicious company. The maitre’d delivered to the man another steaming order of seclusion along with the soup of the day, a bitter nostalgic concoction.

Pulling the waiter aside, he demands to know why this meal could not at least come served with a side of acquaintances. The waiter forcefully tells the man this meal was ordered personally. If he does not enjoy it, the menu is big. He is welcome to try anything.

Refusing to pay for another meal, the man settles for a glass of false hope. On the rocks. Downing the drink in one motion,he gently moans as the hope is shattered against the stones. The drink a sinking ship, dropping to the pit of his stomach. Surviving all alone, marooned… it appears this one man is an island. The glass is empty, the man now Hopeless.

A familiar scent permeates the air. Glancing around, he spots its cause. Her elegant red dress hugs her tightly as she walks onto the stage. The lights dim. The man now seated in darkness.

A lone light directed on the woman. The man’s gaze beaming towards her. He knows her. He loved her, Once. She was his life, his passion, his desires. Until the drink came between them, and he kept falsely hoping for more. Under the light on the stage, her red dress shimmers. Her choice of fashion, evoking the image of fires.

On the stage, She burns. His life gone to hell.

She sings. He cries. During the final song, the remaining piece of him dies. Life seems to have moved on; she sings of love. Not one of sorrow, in an old love lost… but a song of joy, with a new love found. She exits the stage amidst the booming thunderous applause; while off in the past corner the man quietly sobs.

The man is glad for the darkness. His shame kept a secret. He does not notice the figure approach. A tap on his shoulder, he turns around. A red dress; Life sneaks up on you.

Eyes for him alone, she asks if he needs any help.

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