The Funeral

“Hard to believe it’s been twenty years since you walked out on me.”

The voice startled Shane, who was kneeling in front of the casket.

Shane winced.  He wasn’t prepared for Maggie.  “It wasn’t like that.”

“What was it like?”  Maggie wasn’t one to let things go.

“I didn’t expect to see you.”  He blurted as he stood.

“Northampton’s my home”

That surprised him.  “You hated Western Massachusetts.”

“Not anymore.”

“You look amazing.”

“Why’re you here?”

“I’m attending Professor Shacks’ funeral.”

She raised her eyebrows. “You stayed in touch with Graham?”

Why was she annoyed?  “He was my mentor.”

“I was your fiancé, yet all I got was a Dear Jane letter and no forwarding address.”

“Please don’t be bitter, Maggie.  We were kids.”

She sighed.  “I suppose you’re right.  What have you been up to?”

“After grad school, I got my doctorate.  I was involved in a couple of key archeological digs, wrote a few books and was given a slot on the local news.  I’m also curator at the Siegfried Museum of Archeology.”

“You always did fancy yourself to be a real-life Indiana Jones.”

That struck a nerve, and he lashed out.  “At least I actualized my dreams.”

Maggie smile sadly.  “Dreams change.”

“Because you stayed?”

“I married Graham.”

“You’re Graham’s widow?  He’s at least thirty years older than you.”

She smirked.  “From mentor to dirty old man in minutes?  Don’t judge.”

“Why did you marry him?”

“I was alone, abandoned by you.”

“So you married Graham?”

“He was a good man who helped me out of a difficult situation.  You know how strict my parents were.  He was willing to marry me and raise my son.”

His mouth felt dry.  “Your son?”

“Graham was there for his birth, unlike his biological father.”

“I need a scotch.”

  4 comments for “The Funeral

  1. September 20, 2017 at 5:35 pm

    Really well written. Dialogue and reactions felt extremely real.

  2. September 23, 2017 at 8:26 pm

    Whew! That was intense. I think I need a drink too.
    WHEN are you writing a book?!

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