late night bruise

I open the door, and she says, “I’m sorry.”

She’s been crying again. She is wearing sweats and an old softball jersey, as well as a fresh new bruise over her left eye. He hit her again. I put on a pot of coffee and she tells me what happened.

He came home very late and drunk again. This time, though, he also came home with lipstick on his collar and a distinctly feminine scent about him

Heated words ensued. A punch was thrown. Hollow apologies were made.

She ran, carrying nothing but the clothes on her back, making sure to wait until he passed out.

And now she was here at my door.

She cries for some time. I hold her and promise that he will never hurt her again. She falls asleep in my bed, still crying.

I sit on the the couch, armed with one of the pistols from the safe. I know it’s just a matter of time before he shows up here; it’s not as if she has a lot of friends.

So I keep watching the television, the pistol in my lap, and I wait.

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