Autumn leaves crunched under our feet like parchment. We strode on neither of us taking any notice at the trail left behind us. We had passed this way many times before, normally the air filled with joy and laughter. The sun always had shone, or so it seemed and they had always been happy times. Our walks always joyfully anticipated, and we knew every tree, every bush, every nook and cranny along this well-trodden path.

But this time it was different. The very air seemed to cling to us, the dampness seemingly to weigh heavily on our shoulders, and the piles of multi-colored leaves were like snowfall dragging at our footsteps. The birds which normally joined our joyfull walks, were silent seeming to sense the depression and unhappiness that covered us.

This time is was different, this time something was not quite the same. I looked up gazing with my big brown eyes at the person I had come to love, walking by my side. His face was set; he seemed not to notice the surroundings or me. The eyes normally full of laughter, looked tired and red rimmed.
I tried to think over the last few days and what had happened, how our happy life had changed to this somber depressing state.

We had been three then, each in love with the other. The world had been such a happy place, our lives content. I don't know what happened, but one morning when I went to join him in bed, he was not asleep as normal. He sat in the bed, hair disheveled strange water was coming from his eyes, something I had never seen before. He cuddled me into his arms, and I tried to kiss him letting him know I was there. Instead he let out a noise that seemed come from somewhere deep inside of him, a sobbing sort of cry as animal might make when in pain.
He buried his head against mine and again the strange water came from his eyes, I attempted to help but did not know what to do.

The next couple of days I just did not understand, she never came see us, and all he did was sit and stare out the window, or flick his way through pictures of our time together. I went out. I had to; I could not bear to see him like this. It was tearing my heart apart; I loved this man.

Then yesterday, --was it so short a time ago? I had gone to his bed as normal, to find him already up and dressed in a suit which I had not seen before. It was black, as was the tie he was attempting to knot. He gave me a gentle cuddle, and looked at me with those now red-rimmed eyes.

That was the last I saw of him all day, until he came home late at night. I rushed to meet him, and he gave me a look of such sadness that my heart broke. We sat on his bed, and he tried to explain that she was not going to be with us any more, something about a car and a lorry, something I did not understand. We sat up all night and that strange water would often come to his eyes as he talked to me about her, and about how he loved her, as indeed did I.

Now here we were walking as two, where three had previously filled the woods with laughter. I was still here and loved him, as I know he loved me, but nothing could replace the love he had for her.

Once again I gazed up into his eyes, after I was just a dog, and he was my master. And I though I loved my mistress, I could never have loved her as much as he had loved the woman who was to be his wife.

Barry Eva 1999