A fine rain fell.
“Do you want to go back inside Auntie Jean?” Gail said, already turning the wheelchair towards the hospice entrance.
Shaking her head slowly, tiny in her dressing gown and pastel pyjamas, Jean tilted her face upwards like a tired flower.
“Lovely drizzle,” she said quietly.
Before coming, Gail had imagined telling Jean that, clearing the house, amongst empty bottles and costume jewellery she’d found her diaries and novel. Delighted, she’d tell Jean that she wrote too and that she was speaking to acquaintances about getting them published.
She’d planned to tell Jean she’d read the bottom drawer love letters and understood: knew Margaret had been more than just a friend for all those years, that she’d seen the photographs they’d taken of each other, naked in fields and on hillsides, bicycles propped against drystone walls.
She’d wanted to tell Jean she’d loved a woman, as well.
Instead, I cannot even say goodbye, Gail thought, knowing now there would be no resolution, no new beginning, just a dying spinster enjoying her last taste of rain.
“Lovely drizzle,” Jean said again, twisted fingers gesturing at the close grey sky.
Nodding, taking her hand, Gail agreed.
“Yes, lovely drizzle.”