So ... here it is ...
Tori gazed out of the window across the shadowy cityscape as the sun blushed the horizon. The misery of the last forty eight hours had taken its toll on her, leaving her eyes red rimmed and puffy. She had a blanket draped around her shoulders and she cupped a hot chocolate in her hands, its warmth and memories of childhood a small comfort in her distress.
Friday night had been special. Friday night was Jim’s surprise night and this Friday he picked her up from work and took her to see a rom-com, much to her delight, particularly as he seemed to enjoy it more than he was prepared to admit. Afterwards they went for a meal and in the soft glow of candlelight he told her that he loved her. Much later, curled up on the sofa in her flat they started to talk tentatively of a future together. When Jim got up to go, Tori asked him to stay.
“I would sweetheart,” he said, as he kissed her, “but I have to be up early in the morning”
“Oh? What are you up to?” she asked him in mock inquisitorial tones.
He grimaced. “Work.”
Then with a hug and a kiss he was gone.
Tori busied herself all day Saturday and wasn’t too worried when her texts to Jim went unanswered. When she called him in the evening his phone was switched off or was out of battery. There was no reply to his home phone, nothing on Twitter or Facebook. Perhaps he had had to work late? What would have stopped him from contacting her?
Sunday morning there was still no response from either of Jim’s phones. She spoke to a couple of mutual friends but they had not heard from him. As the afternoon wore into evening, Tori battled with a rising sense of panic. No-one had heard from Jim, no-one knew where he was. His blog was untouched, his webmail unread. There was no point phoning hospitals, he could have driven anywhere. She began to imagine him lying in a coma, alone, dying, dead. Sleep was out of the question. Over and over she replayed the special Friday night. They had talked of a future together; oh God, had he run from the commitment? In the dark hours before dawn, she was haunted by thoughts that he had vanished into the arms of another.
Now she stood and watched the sun rise on another week, her heart desolate. She could think of no reason why he would not have contacted her that was not heart-wrenching. Her reverie was interrupted by a knock on the door. She flew to the hall and flung it open to find not Jim, but the mailman. He handed her a brown envelope too thick to go through the mail slot. The writing was unmistakably Jim’s cursive script and she could feel through the envelope a small box, a couple of inches to each side. With trembling fingers she opened it.
Yes I am from the UK, and yes I did have to use a UK-US dictionary in a couple of places. I am sure someone will tell me if I got it wrong! I hope you are impressed that this happens to be exactly 500 words long!