I walk out of the train and follow the crowd of people streaming across the cement platform. It is 9:46 p.m., and the sky is dark. One by one, they leave my path until I am alone on the sidewalk. I walk back to my friends’ apartment. This is the first time I’ve went this way without her.

I’m returning from J.F.K. Airport where my girlfriend got on a plane to Malaysia. I won’t see her for 3 months.

I feel hollowness in my chest as if my lungs are airless and empty. I’m breathing fast, but it has nothing to do with my physical exertion. I know it’s not a heart attack or something like that. I keep walking.

My hands hang open and later clench into fists because I’m not sure what to do with them. We agree that her hands are warmer than mine.

I walk faster without her, legs cutting across the cement sidewalk. I miss her shorter strides beside me, I miss the way I need to match the rhythm of her steps.

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