Explanation | A Short Story

“Just tell me,” she said for the third time. At first Zoey settled for asking but now she was pleading. She wanted answers and was determined to get them from him.

He ran a finger across his nose. “Zoe.”

“Please.” Her grip on his arm tightened. “I need to know. It’ll kill me if you don’t tell me.’

“I can’t.”

The corners of her eyes turned downwards but the intensity in which Zoey looked at Edgar increased. “Can’t or won’t?’

He stepped backwards, putting more distance between them. “It’s better this way. Trust me.”

She couldn’t help but snort at his comment. “Trust you? How am I supposed to trust you, Ed? When you won’t tell me anything.”

Silence descended upon them for a moment.

“I want it back.” He broke the silence with his request.

“What?” Her eyes watched him. Zoey didn’t know where else to look.

Ed didn’t hesitate. “My stuff.” He paused, as if considering whether to say what he said next. “And the stuff I gave you.”

She understood quickly. “Then I guess we should start with this.” Zoey lifted up her left hand.

His eyes watched her take off the red bracelet he gave Zoey on her birthday. Edgar didn’t flinch when she threw it down on the ground as hard as she could.

He stood there, watching her walk away, knowing she deserved an explanation he couldn’t give her.

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