Gibbings by Michael Curtis Houck is our latest great submission for September Short Story Month here on Book Republic’s blogs. Enjoy! - BR
When the end rolled around they could spend hours in a room together and not say a single word; both wondering why it was so damn quiet, but neither making an attempt. Not one attempt in months.
He was putting the last box his in truck.
She was standing in the doorway, hoping he would hurry.
“That’s everything,” he said.
“Are you sure?” she asked.
“What about Gibbings?”
“Shit,” How could I have forgotten about Gibbings? He thought about the dog, and thought about his parents. “You know my mother’s allergic, can’t you watch him for a little?”
She sighed and rolled her eyes. Her head followed. “I guess.”
“If it’s gonna’ be a problem—“
“Are you sure? I’ll take him now if it’s gonna’ be a problem.”
“You’re acting like it is.”
“I mean—he is your dog, David.”
He moved towards the door. She stood her ground.
“I said it’s fine, David, I’ll watch him.” And it was final.
They stood there looking at one another. He knew how cliché it would have been to tell her that he would always love her, no matter how rocky it had gotten and the way it ended, so instead he simply said “Thanks, Lisa,” and turned back to his truck.
“David,” she said softly.
“Yes?” he said, turning back.
She exhaled, rolling her eyes again. “Never mind,” she said, “Just call me before you come over to get Gibb, okay?”
“Yeah,” he said. And with that he got into his truck and drove off. He wasn’t angry with her. He wasn’t angry at all; he thought of how he respected her for doing what he couldn’t. He also thought that this was going to be the longest period of time he’d been away from Gibbings. He’d be okay though, Gibbings that is.