A day too late

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He staggered to the bench overlooking the lake. The placid waters of the lake and the beautiful surroundings could not give him the peace that they used to give him in his youth. Though it was the same place, it was a lot different without her. But it was special to him as this place resonated with her memories. It was here that he first met her in his youth. She used to come to the lakeside for a walk and so would he. He admired her from the first time he ever saw her. Slowly they began talking and they became good friends. Talking to her every day after work was the best thing for him each. Sharing about the troubles at work, the weather or just anything made him feel better. She always listened what he had to say and she understood. And slowly he realized that he was in love with her.
He was wary of telling her how he felt as he was afraid that it would put an end to their friendship. But as the days passed by, his love for her only grew. And one fine day he just decided to tell her what he felt about her. Those were the days of no telephones or cellphones. They always met at the same time each day. That day he decided to go there a little early as he didn’t want to make any mistakes. He hid the flowers that he had brought for her under the bench. He said a silent prayer for things to go right. But what he never knew was that things would never be right.
He waited long past their usual time but she never came. The sun had set and the stars twinkled and the moon shone bright on the dark night sky. Why hadn’t she come today? She hadn’t told him about not being able to come today. She would have had some work, he thought. Or was something wrong? Did she sense that he loved and she didn’t come today because she didn’t love him? Or was she sick? He never stopped thinking about her as he walked home with a heavy heart.
He didn’t want to do anything. He didn’t want to eat or drink and he directly went to bed. But sleep eluded him. He didn’t know what to do. He saw the newspaper lying on the table unopened. He hadn’t found the time to read it today as he left early for work in order to be able to reach the lake well before time to meet her. He picked it up and started reading just to stop thinking about her. But as he turned the pages, he found her picture staring at him. Her picture in the obituary columns! His whole world came crashing down! Why had life been so cruel? Why hadn’t he told her earlier how he felt?   
He kept going to the lake every day, just to relive her memories!
Word count: 500
This post is written for Three Word Wednesday- 457

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