Saying Goodbye…For Now

“This is goodbye until we see each other again in London,” Max said to Jabulani. They were alone outside of her family’s house. He had come to say goodbye to her parents. He and Avianna were leaving on an early flight in the morning.

“I’m going to miss you,” Jabulani told him. She longed to run over to him and throw her arms around him but she couldn’t because of her parents. She remained where she was. It was true, she was going to miss him like crazy. The weeks apart were going to drag, she was sure of it.

“I’m going to miss you too,” he replied huskily. How he longed to take her in his arms and kiss her. Yesterday evening when they were together in the hotel room, after they finished making love, they lay in the bed, holding each other for a long time. “Two weeks will seem like a long time but hopefully, they will go by very quickly.”

“I hope so.”

“We can text each other everyday.”

“Yes.” It wasn’t the same as seeing him in person but it would have to do for now. “I wish we could talk to each other on the phone or do a ZOOM call so that we can see each other.”

“Do you have What’s APP on your cell phone?”

“Yes.”

“We can stay in touch using What’s APP until you’re in London.”

“All right.”

“I’m going to miss Johannesburg.”

“Me too. I’m going to miss my parents and my friends but I’m really excited about moving to London.”

“The flat will be ready for you when you get there.”

“Will you visit me often?”

“As often as possible.”

“I’d love to cook for you.”

“I’d love that too. Perhaps, one evening, I could take you out for dinner at my favorite restaurant.”

“Are you sure that’s a good idea?”

“You mean because of Avianna?”

“Yes. I met her at the luncheon. She was very warm and friendly.”

“Yes, she’s very a warm and friendly person. She mentioned meeting you.”

“Do you love her?”

“I love her but, I’m not in love with her.”

“Why did you marry her?”

“When I met her, we got along so well, I decided that I would ask her to marry me. She said yes and we got married in front of a Justice of Peace. Very few people were there. We didn’t want a big wedding.”

“You don’t have any children with her.”

“No. She had a daughter from a previous marriage.”

“Yes. She mentioned her at the luncheon and that she had started a scholarship fund in her name.”

“Did she also mention what happened to Ruth?”

“All she said was that she died when she was twenty but didn’t go into the details but I found out from one of the other students how she died. He had watched the interview on Insight Weekly. He said that Ruth was in Pretoria when she was fatally shot.”

“How Avianna managed to speak about it without breaking down on camera, I have no idea. Perhaps, she drew strength from God.”

“The student said that she talked about you in the interview–where you’re from, how you met and why you were offered the job of being personal physician to the Duke of Ruthorham and his family.”

“Yes. I watched the interview.”

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“I’m happy I met you before you were offered that job.”

“Yes, I’m happy about that too. My life changed the day I met you, Jabulani.”

“My life changed too. It changed that night at the hospital when you were looking after my father.”

“Jabulani, I want to kiss you goodbye but I will have to settle for a handshake.”

She nodded. “Yes,” she agreed regretfully.

Rising to his feet, he walked over to her and held out his hand. She placed hers in it. It felt small and soft. He fought the temptation to raise it to his lips. “Goodbye for now, Jabulani.”

“Goodbye for now, Max.”

Reluctantly, he released her hand and walked to his car. He waved before he got in. She watched his car until it disappeared from sight. It would be two weeks before she saw him again and for her, that seemed like an eternity.

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