No clue where this one came from....

It was a bitterly cold evening, and the man held his insubstantial jacket closer, shivering slightly, as he navigated the crowds of people, determined to reach his destination on time. His mind went back to that very afternoon, when he had received a letter from a friend he had long since presumed to be dead. The letter had requested his presence at a certain mansion on the outskirts of town, to talk of 'old times'. He was puzzled by it, yet decided to keep the appointment out of curiosity.  He suddenly  paused before an old, rambling building, shaking himself out of his thoughts as he reached his destination,  reading '#56, Garden Road' off the nameplate, before hesitantly pushing the door open. 

Ah, there she was, in all her past glory, a silhouette against the large windows of the mansion. She was looking out, and he could not see her face, but her body told him she did not know that he had entered. He suddenly remembered all the times that they had spent together; it was such a shame that she had vanished one day, never to be seen again. He never told anyone, but he had shed a tear or two in the privacy of his room. Suddenly he felt angered; how could she leave him in that fashion? Was one letter, a simple phone call, such a hard thing to grant him?

He shook all his indignations aside as he called out to her- "Martha". She turned quickly, showing surprise at first, but quickly getting over the shock. "John" she crooned, "I'm so glad you could come. I've missed you greatly these years." He was slightly put off, but restrained from showing his emotions. "Yes Martha, it's good to see you too. You look the very same; your sharp nose, bright eyes and red lips, exactly as I remember them. It seems I am the only one who has aged." She gave a tinkling laugh and said, "I just wanted to tell you, that I am off. I shall be leaving this town, and this country too. In fact, I am leaving tomorrow, very early in the morning. I just wanted to say good bye to you." He was shocked. "Where were you all these years, and what makes you leave suddenly?" "Oh, that is a story for another day", she grinned. "Of course, that is if you meet me again, which I doubt." "Fine, but where will you go?" Martha gave another one of those giggles and said, " Ah, the world is a large place, I am sure I will find a corner suited for me"

John went pale. He struggled to let out the various emotions, questions, coursing through him like molten lead, burning him up from the inside. He had never confessed it, but long ago, he had fallen in love with Martha, her carefree ways, her expressive eyes, her tinkling laughter. After she had vanished all those years ago, he had never looked at another girl again, nor talked to anyone about either Martha or other women; his heart was broken so. And here was the love of his life, standing right before him, telling him that she would be leaving from his life again. He was being killed, bit by bit, with each word of Martha's.

"Kiss me goodbye, Jack" she said suddenly, and Jack bent down as if in a trance. He kissed her lightly on the cheek, inhaling the delicate perfumes she always wore, when he sensed that she was gone. He looked around, but the house was empty, the streets outside deserted, and no sign of Martha. Alarmed, he went to the neighbouring house to enquire.

"Oh no, child, nobody resides in that house", an aged woman informed, ogling at him through her thick spectacles. "It has been deserted for years, since the body of a young girl was found there. The whole affair was hushed up, the police could not find the culprit. Oh, you want her name, child?"as she struggled to remember," Oh yes, I remember-  Martha Agnes".



The End

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