John stood there, greeted every mourner with a clasp of both of his thick, gnarled hands and a short phrase or two. He looked smaller than she remembered, but there was still that measure of majesty to him. A divinity that he would reject at every turn. His blonde hair had gone white, then had been shaved down to stubble and he had cultivated a thin scrub of white beard. The skin at his throat sagged whenever he swallowed and there was a papery fragility to the skin around his eyes. His eyes met with hers and the corners of his mouth flickered upward.
His hands clasped hers and her breath caught in her throat at this, the first contact in forever.
‘John, I’m so sorry for your loss.’
He gave a short nod, and had she imagined that he clasped her hand a little harder than he had…
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