Chapter 13: Intermission
As the door to his quarters slid open and wished him a pleasant sleep, Chandler reflected that he was really getting to hate going to bed alone.
There were a lot of things he missed about Monica—her gung-ho, aggressive optimism, her smiles (wry, sincere, silly, way too excited, obviously-trying-to-remain-composed-but-still-way-too-excited…and so on), her cooking, her acceptance of his faults and the way she appreciated his sense of humor, for starters—but two of the big ones were going to bed next to her and waking up next to her. He'd gotten used to that reassuring presence that he could always count on to be there, then he'd had it taken away—and now he was having to get used to it being gone.
He sat down on the edge of the bed and looked around his room, at the closet door and the bare walls and the space-age contours of the surfaces.
In Lorz's ship, he'd had a window that looked out into the black of space, and sometimes that helped him get to sleep. Of course, he couldn't make out anything other than blinking clusters of stars and maybe little dots of planets in the void, but he liked to look out in the window and wonder if he wasn't at least looking in the direction of where Monica would be if they were in the same universe. Looking in the direction of where the Earth used to be. He wondered if there had been a Chandler and a Monica in this universe, and if they had gone to London before the Earth had been demolished.
He looked at the windowless cold-white walls of the Heart of Gold and sighed.
He went to bed that night without telling anyone how much it hurt to go to bed alone, without another human presence even in the same room.
If this chapter doesn't have any jokes in it, it's because being separated from your loved ones in a cold uncaring universe isn't funny.