The collection of voices downstairs stirred through the vents and rose up the tower walls. Though they were careful to lower themselves to sotto voce level, the woman could make out a few words, enough to catch on. A fleeting thought of decorum entered her consciousness, and just as quickly flitted away. She was in no state to play the role of hostess.
By the widest window in the high tower, she sat like a stone. Her bright eyes were on the western horizon, fingers rubbing a long, greying curl back and forth between them, thinking of the last and final time she gave her heart and her body away. It wasn’t the memories that haunted her, but the possibilities, all now lost to her forever. There were no more chances. Time had simply run out.
The small pink box in the corner captured her attention. Someone had written in scroll with care: “For Sale. Baby Shoes. Never Worn.” With a scream of anguish, she finally let the tears flow freely into her lap, creating a puddle next to her empty womb.