Becomes One Hundred Stories #31: Sits and Waits

This is a piece of short fiction in the style and universe of three of my novels: Becomes the Happy Man, Becomes God’s Silent Prophet, and Becomes the Meaning Blossom.

Sits and Waits

The loneliest woman in the world sat alone. She sat alone in the place where she lived, and she waited. She waited for something to happen in her lonely life.

The loneliest woman in the world waited. She waited for her husband to return to the place where they lived. She waited for her husband to return from his journey. From his pilgrimage. From his service to their supreme being. The loneliest woman in the world was not as lonely when her husband was gone as she was when he was at the place where they lived. She was not as lonely, but she was still the loneliest woman in the world. Just not as much the loneliest woman in the world as when her husband was with her in the place where they lived.

The loneliest woman in the world sat in the place where she lived, and she waited. She waited for her husband to return to the place where they lived when she would be even more of the loneliest woman in the world than she was when he was away from the place where they lived.

The loneliest woman in the world waited instead of doing something to enjoy the time while her husband was away and to make her less lonely but still the loneliest woman in the world. If she enjoyed too much being less lonely, then it would hurt too much when her husband would return and when she would become more lonely again.

So the loneliest woman in the world waited for her husband and she waited to become more lonely again. She sat in the place where she lived while she waited.

The loneliest woman in the world did not think about being the loneliest woman in the world while she waited and was less lonely. She did not even know she was the loneliest woman in the world. She did not know enough people—enough women—to know that she was the loneliest woman in the world. But she was. She was the loneliest woman in the world even if she did not know it. But she did know she would become more lonely when her husband returned from his journey, his pilgrimage, his service to their supreme being. That was why she did nothing to enjoy being less lonely. Because she knew she would only become more lonely when her husband returned. So instead of enjoying being less lonely, the loneliest woman in the world sat and waited to become more lonely again.

A knock came from the entrance to the place where she lived. A knock came, but the loneliest woman in the world did not respond to the knock. She did not rise to answer the knock, and she did not call out for the knocker to enter. She did not even move a muscle. She heard the knock, but she did not respond to it. She just sat and waited to become more lonely again.

The knock came a second time, and again the loneliest woman in the world did not respond to it.

The knock came a third time, and again the loneliest woman in the world did not respond to it.

The knocking ceased.

The loneliest woman in the world was left in peace to be less lonely while she sat and waited in the place where she lived to become more lonely when her husband returned from his journey, from his pilgrimage, from his service to their supreme being.

The loneliest woman in the world tried to think about what she had been thinking about, but she could not remember, so she stopped thinking. She did not think about being the loneliest woman in the world because she did not know she was the loneliest woman in the world. But she could think about being less lonely while her husband was away, and she could think about being more lonely when he returned, but the loneliest woman in the world did not think about being less lonely or more lonely—she did not think about anything at all.

But even though she did not think about being less lonely or more lonely, she was still the loneliest woman in the world.

It was all too distant. The past. The past was all too distant, and so was the future. All too distant to experience again. Trapped in the present with no way out, with no hope for the future. With no promise for the future except that she would become more lonely when her husband returned. No promise except she would be more lonely and that she would one day die.

But becoming more lonely and dying were in the future and much too distant. Much too distant in the distant future.

So the loneliest woman in the world sat and waited. She sat and waited for the distant future to become present. But it did not. The distant future did not become present. It never did. It always remained distant and the present could never catch up. So the loneliest woman in the world could do nothing but sit and wait for the distant future that would never happen.

But the present could change. The present always changed. The present always changed, and the loneliest woman in the world became more and less lonely as the present changed. But no matter how much the present changed, she was always the loneliest woman in the world.

Her past was not worth remembering, and it was too distant and it never returned, so she forgot about the past while she sat and waited to become more lonely.

She could sit and wait. If she was good at nothing else, the loneliest woman in the world was good at sitting and waiting. She was good at it, and she did it. She did it well.

She had always sat and waited well. She had had much practice. She had had much practice since she had been a girl and a young woman. She had not specifically trained for it, but it came naturally to her. Sitting and waiting and being the loneliest woman in the world was her best talent.

And she did it well. She did it well and she did it long.

The loneliest woman in the world sat and waited for a long time. She sat and waited until the time came for her to prepare for her husband to return from his journey, from his pilgrimage, from his service to their supreme being. She sat and waited until the time came for her to prepare to become more lonely.

When the time came for her to prepare for her husband to return and for her to become more lonely, the loneliest woman in the world went to the place where she prepared food for herself and her husband, and she prepared a meal for herself and her husband. She prepared a meal for her husband to eat when he returned from his journey, from his pilgrimage, from his service to their supreme being, and she prepared a meal for her to eat while she became more lonely.

When she had prepared the meal, she sat and waited again. The loneliest woman in the world sat and waited for her husband to return and for her to become more lonely. She sat and waited while the meal she had prepared became cold. Her husband did not return at the appointed time. He seldom returned at the appointed time, but the loneliest woman in the world always had a meal prepared at the appointed time.

So the loneliest woman in the world sat and waited and was less lonely. She was less lonely but she would be more lonely. She was less lonely, but she was still the loneliest woman in the world.

To read more stories in the series, see the Becomes One Hundred Stories page.