After almost ten years together, Andy decided that it was time to make their relationship more permanent. They were already living like a married couple with two children, so why not make it official?
He had taken the girls to spend the night with his dad. On the way home, he stopped at Cara’s favorite restaurant and picked up dinner.
“Cara? Are you home?”
When he didn’t get a reply, he searched the house. She wasn’t there. He called her parents who told him that she had left almost an hour ago. He hung up and hurried getting dinner on the table. If she left her parents an hour ago, she would be home any time.
It was three hours later when Cara walked through the door. Andy was sitting on the sofa waiting for her. Dinner had gone cold a long time ago.
“Did you have a nice visit with your parents?”
Cara hadn’t seen him there and jumped.
“Why are you sitting in the dark?”
She turned on the light and saw the dinner that he had waiting.
“Oh, Andy. I’m sorry. I ran into an old friend when I was leaving my parents house. We grabbed something to eat and hung out for awhile. If I had known you had something planned, I would have come home.”
“I was worried that something had happened to you.”
She felt bad about making him worry. “I should have called. I’m sorry.”
Andy wrapped his arms around her. “You are home now. that is what matters.
Cara looked at the food on the table. “What was the special occasion?”
“Nothing too major. I just thought I would give you a romantic night before finally asking you to marry me.”
If he had expected her to be happy and jump into his arms, that wasn’t what happened. Cara moved away from Andy and shook her head.
“No. I’m sorry.”
Andy was confused. They used to talk about getting married when his company was safely established and they no longer had to worry about the bills. “No?”
“No.” She sat down and looked at Andy. “I don’t think this is working any more. I’m not happy.”
He sat in the closest seat. He had not been expecting that. “What happened? What changed?”
“We both changed. You are happy here with your company and the town. I’m not. I miss the city, my family, and my friends. I didn’t realize how much I missed them until today.”
“We can move back to the city if that is what you want.”
She shook her head. “Then you would be unhappy, and things would be the way they were before. That is not what I want our girls to grow up seeing from their parents. I think it is better if we separate as friends.”
They discussed the girls and ended with the girls staying with Cara during the week and with Andy on the weekends. They would split the holidays.
Andy watched Cara take some things to the car. He had expected her to come back inside to say bye. Instead he heard the car start and drive away.
He moved to the window watching the tail lights grow smaller.