She stood slightly away from where he sat, his fists clenched, his breathing slow and rationed, his head bowed. Her hands trembled as they locked together, wishing she could touch him, but knowing it would break them both. She took a deep breath, closed her eyes, and took another one. She murmured something only she could hear, perhaps something to give her strength to get through the next few minutes. And days. And years and years to come. It broke her heart to see him like this, holding his own storm inside him for her benefit. But maybe it was best this way. Otherwise, they might leave each other permanently scarred.
She tried to speak, and nothing came out. She moaned silently, frustrated at her lack of control. Tears burned at the back of her eyes. Composing herself, she spoke again. And her voice came out, low but steady.
“So… I guess this is goodbye then”.
He raised his head and looked at her. Her breath caught at the misery in his eyes.
“Looks like” he responded, turning his face away again.
She paused, uncertain, not knowing what to say. Her heart ached fiercely for them both. Abandoning caution and logic and all sorts of reasoning, she crossed towards him slowly and touched his hair. He closed his eyes and let out an explosive sigh. Leaning back, he opened his arms for her, she slid into his lap and help him close, both assuming a position that was as familiar to them as breathing. She rested her head against his, and kissed him lightly, her hair falling over to curtain both their faces. Tears slid down her cheeks and wet his face as well. He stroked her hair, gently putting pressure on her head till it rested in the curve of his neck and shoulder. He buried his face in her fragrant hair, inhaling deeply and trying to hold back his own pain and despair, rocking them both, failing to comfort but desperate to try.
So I guess this is goodbye then.