She had never worried about tomorrow. She spent money like it grew on trees, and somehow she never ran out of it. She smoked like a chimney, tanned excessively, never bothering to consider things like cancer. She drove a little too fast, partied a little too hard.
And he loved that about her. She had stayed with him longer, perhaps than she had stayed with anyone, ever. She'd even stayed put for him, given up her lifelong nomadic existence which had begun with her insecure, flake of a mother.
He took her to the place they went on their first date. A picnic in the park, it had been her idea, blanket spread underneath the flowering dogwood. He took her there with a longing to make her his forever, he never wanted to be without her.
He asked her, his voice trembling, offering up his gift, a subtle, yet beautiful ring he knew she'd love. But as soon as he said it, he knew by her face what her answer would be. The color drained from her cheeks, her mouth dropped open, eyes wide with fear.
All she could do was shake her head and whisper, “I'm so sorry.”
But he never heard a word. All he could hear was the blood rushing in his ears, the sound of his own heartbeat. He looked up, and she was gone. He knew her things would be gone when he went home, the whole place feeling like the aftermath of a bomb.
He knew she would get in her car and leave. Who knows where this time, but what did it matter? She would stop long enough to make a little money, then move on, leaving more broken hearts in her wake.
But he also realized suddenly how easy it was. Her way, you didn't get hurt, didn't get attached. Little to no risk for the heart. Maybe it would be better that way.
He got in his car, leaving behind the blanket, their picnic, even the ring. He put the gas pedal to the floor, heading to who knows where, but what did it matter anyway?