Piece Of Cake

Entry by: writerYNKGHTYLDE

25th September 2015
HER fingers covered his eyes.
She had crept up on him from behind.
Luke was in the student library.
Fiona had just finished her English lecture.
She knew she’d find him there.
He almost leapt out of his seat when she cupped her hands around his eyes.
Luke turned to see the girl he loved.
They laughed. Others frowned. Silence was the order of the day.
Luke gathered up his books and the two of them strode out, past the counter – more frowning – until they reached the exit door.
They broke free.
Luke loved that feeling.
Bouncing down the two flights of stairs to the hall below, they could breathe now, and laugh.
By the main university entrance they queued for the bus in the cold October air, the trees of the campus grounds all oranges and yellows, swaying in the breeze.
Fiona’s favourite time of year.
They chatted and laughed on the bus until it came to their stop.
Stepping out onto the promenade they both embraced the seaside air, the waves of the Atlantic rolling in, white horses crashing onto the rocks.
Luke had never felt so alive.
“Do you want to come back to ours?” he said.
“Aw, I’d love to but I’ve got that assignment to hand in tomorrow,” replied Fiona.
“Are you sure? I’ve got chocolate cake! Your favourite. Mum sent me a food parcel.”
“Really, I’d love to, but I can’t today Luke, I’ve really got to get this work done, we’ve been told there are no extensions this time. Sorry. But tomorrow night, I promise, I’ll come to you.”
They hugged and parted.
As Fiona crossed the promenade and reached the pavement on the other side she turned back and shouted: “Make sure you save me a piece of cake,” smiled, and blew a kiss.
With that they headed off to their respective flats, Fiona with her girl friends, Luke to his lads' place.
They knew they’d see each other the next night.
They never did.
David was Luke’s best mate.
The two of them shared a two-bedroom flat, in a prime location, looking out over the harbour to the islands beyond.
As soon as Luke walked through the door, David greeted him with the news.
Luke’s mum had suddenly been taken seriously ill, back on the mainland – his dad had been on the phone only moments earlier.
Luke went in to his bedroom, there were clothes everywhere, on his bed, on the floor. He gathered up what he needed into a bag as quick as he could, grabbed his sleeping mat, rolled it up, tucked it under his arm, took his coat, shouted goodbye to David, and headed out of the flat, across the road and down to the harbour. He knew he was on time for the ferry. It always left at 5.30pm, always arrived on the mainland at 7am the next day.
Ten days later, Luke turned the key in the lock, and walked back through the flat door.
He walked up the stairs.
There was no-one in the living room.
He dumped his bag on his bed, along with his mat, and threw his coat on the floor.
He went into the kitchen, switched on the kettle and reached for a mug.
As he turned to get the sugar bowl from the kitchen table, he noticed his mum’s cake tin.
He lifted the lid, and saw all the cake gone, crumbs all that was left next to the dirty knife all smeared with chocolate where it had sliced it into pieces.
At that moment, the silence was broken.
He heard the radio alarm blurting out from David’s room.
He got another mug out and made David a tea at the same time as his own coffee.
Putting his fingers through both handles and gripping both mugs in one hand, trying carefully not to spill them, he crossed the landing and kicked open David’s door.
He couldn’t believe what he saw.
It didn’t sink in for a few seconds.
Then it did.
Fiona there, lying there, in the bed with David.
The same bed.
His two best friends.
He was speechless.
They both burst out laughing, Fiona and David. All noise, and laughter, and movement.
Luke couldn’t move, couldn’t speak.
He lost his senses.
The mugs dropped from his grasp, bouncing off the carpet, spraying coffee and tea all over the discarded clothes on the floor. Her discarded clothes. Fiona’s.
That’s when he turned for the door.
Life as Luke knew it was over. His mum, and Fiona, both gone.
In that moment, he felt he would never live, or love, again.
And as he exited the scene, there was one final, utter humiliation.
He kicked a plate on the floor, scattering chocolate cake crumbs everywhere. Cue more laughter from Fiona.
His dead mum’s chocolate cake.
The rest of his piece.
Rest in Peace.