It was early winter, and he had left for another country. The bleakness of winter could only gorge a deeper wound.
A painful grief is never a simple affair. These things usually take a thousand years to heal, and a test of time often one in love rarely ever could endure. She arrived at the airport, and all she could think of was to call upon him, but he had already left without a word. Christmas was an empty page, and the new year suddenly left her void of almost every feeling except that, of loving him. The pain of a natural passing is less torturesome, but that of a broken heart is sometimes, unspeakable. She used to be so full of life, and her eyes shone like the rising sun.
Perhaps she had to learn how to be glacial, inimical … indifferent like a star.
The city would be the perfect stage for such impressions. Everything still looked the same. The chillness of the concrete seemed almost as lifeless as the dolled up girls at the immigration counter. She decided to wait in another queue. It was so much easier to make eye contact with a man.
“Est-ce que vous comptez rester … hmm, vous n’êtes pas Française?” he queried as he flipped through the pages of her passport, and looked into her eyes as puzzled as she was when he asked her. She has always been mistaken for everyone else but herself. She faked a smile for the first time, her heart fluttering barely catching a breath, despite the eighteen hour flight and whispered, as if clearing her throat “J’aimerais bien mais … comment? Française?”.
He slipped something in the passport and stamped it. He returned her smile.
The chauffeur was waiting to take her into the city. Her arrival was kept unbeknownst to those in her past. She didn’t want to meet them, until everything was settled. When her heart has settled. It would take at least two nights to readjust to the time difference, a couple of days to get her in shape enough to meet the lawyers and the accountants in Monaco, the house agents in Paris, and fortunately, time is always an alibi, at least for her. But her heart was already crushed into a million tiny pieces and each time she blinked the tears rolled down her cheeks only to be quickly wiped off with the cachemire handkerchief, as another welled behind the rose-tinted sunglasses.
The Royal Suite on the first floor was as she had expected. She rarely stays for more than four nights in the same hotel. The paparazzi is always keen for a story, whilst she preferred to remain incognito. Perhaps a soufflé at rue Marbeuf or breakfast at L’Avenue would keep the mind spinning in a more optimistic light.
Nobody should know that she had come home.