Breaking up is hard to do

Alright, it’s fine. He’ll be fine. Nothing at all to worry about. He’ll take it well. 

Angela swung away from the mirror. This conversation with herself was getting her nowhere. And besides, who did she think she was kidding? There was definitely something to worry about.

She checked her phone. 7:26. She’d been in the well-appointed restaurant bathroom for a full seven minutes already. Her boyfriend was sure to be worried about her by now. So she took a deep breath, tabled her internal discussion, and pulled open the white paneled door.

Her boyfriend, Tyler, watched her sway her way through the crowded restaurant to their usual table. Angela watched Tyler, looking for any indication he might be worried about how long it had taken for her bathroom break. Nothing seemed out of the ordinary.

“Everything alright, sweets?” The tone of his voice was the same as always. He always missed her company and pretty face when she was away from him. At least, that’s what he always said. In the last few weeks, though, Angela had begun to suspect there was a different reason he missed her. It wasn’t nearly so sweet.

“Oh, fine. Just peachy,” she replied. Now just wasn’t the time to break the news. Not before dessert.

“Awesome. How about we order that double chocolate cheesecake now?” He rubbed his hands together, anticipating the rich dessert.

Angela nodded. She was going over her break-up speech in her head again. She’d been over it so many times, she didn’t need any more practice. She only needed the courage to actually say it to him.

She breathed in, out, in again, holding the breath, steeling herself. She had just opened her mouth to blurt it out when Tyler’s phone buzzed from the front pocket of his designer jeans.

“Yeah?” He wasted no time answering the call. He never did. He was always on edge. No wonder, with his profession. Angela waited. Another few minutes wouldn’t matter anyway.

While she waited, she spooned a bit of the decadent cheesecake into her mouth, savoring the richness. It was delicious. Better than any cheesecake she’d ever had. Of course, Tyler owned the restaurant and had insisted that the chef make this one cheesecake especially for her, with her favorite chocolate and expensive ingredients. The thought her boyfriend had put into this whole anniversary dinner almost made her change her mind about breaking it off with him. Almost.

When Tyler finally ended his call, Angela blurted out, “Tyler, I think we need to break up. I just don’t feel it anymore.”

Tyler smiled. “Of course. Not a problem. In fact, I was going to tell you almost the same thing. Let me walk you outside.”

Angela nodded, her vision suddenly becoming cloudy. She let Tyler take her arm. She didn’t have the strength to protest when he led her to the service door, the one that led to the alley. She couldn’t fight when he shoved her into the waiting car.

Great, she thought. I knew breaking up with a serial killer was a bad idea. Take it well, my ass…


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