She woke. Filling her void brain with the sights and sounds of her typical morning. She clothes herself. He fed herself. She entrusted herself with the responsibility of feeding the animals. She forced herself to answer e-mails she didn’t want to answer. She forced herself to keep the book closed so she would not be late to work. She reminded herself that she was important to the world. That her existence mattered. But the only problem was…

She did it all alone. All by herself.

She did not receive affirmation. She didn’t want to feel that she needed it. But she was lonely. Lonely in the way that exiles are lonely. Lonely in that the room was crowded, but there was no one there. Lonely in the way that desolation feels. Stranded on islands of nothing. Having nothing. Wanting nothing. Yet within her festered a desire she would never speak of.

It wasn’t like her though. She was accustomed to being alone. Satisfied with it most days. Alone but never lonely. When did this happen? When did it become never alone, but lonely? Could it be traced? Could it be cured? What did it take to cure it? The tracing? Too many questions. She had been comfortable with the loneliness before. She knew it well. They were old friends and lovers. Why was she no longer satisfied with this independence? What made this freedom so empty?

She didn’t know. All she had known was it was a new feeling. A strange feeling. One that was odd and desperate. Perhaps tomorrow it would be gone, but until then she had to wait. She didn’t know if it would pass, but time tends to heal things, and perhaps something in her decided to break while she slept and it would heal if she slept again.

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