1999
Francine Witte
He takes her hand like always. Local warming from the sunball in the sky.  He promises the next thousand years will be better.

She sips her Marguerita, the one he bought her to forget. You know you love me, he reminds her. The air goes yellow and hot around them. She licks the glassrim, and saltstars burst on her tongue.

She thinks about Y2K, the bug that will crash their computers. In her head, she is backing up memories of their scarred romance. Storing them on a mental floppy disk.

The first memory is that sweltering night she sat there alone, trying to sweat him out of herself. How she called and called, and he didn’t pick up, and she knew the truth before it was the truth. And her driving over to find him in bed with the other one. That memory she will back up twice.

And then, when the millennium dings its shivery bell, and all his promises explode into confetti boom, and he leans in to midnight kiss her, her suddenly vacant brain will refill with memories pouring in like water, and her now perfect heart will start rebreaking itself.



First published: August 2016
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