On Valentine's Day, April had decorated the loft with streamers and flowers and hearts she'd cut out of construction paper. She bought those kid's valentines with Snoopy and Woodstock on them and cheesy little one-liners and set one out for each of them, a little chocolate heart taped to each envelope.
Maureen had squealed and praised April on coming up with such a good idea before dragging Mark off for a pre-dinner quickie. Mark had smiled and filmed the room and various reactions - leaving the camera running on the table when Maureen dragged him off. Collins had given her a hug and proclaimed her the sweetest thing since sugar. Benny had quietly wondered if they really had the money to spend on all this, but Collins shut him up pretty quickly. And Roger had laughed at her - lovingly, of course - and teased her the whole evening.
But that night, after everyone was asleep and they were still up whispering and kissing, she'd slipped out and plucked one of the paper hearts off of the fridge and brought it back in. She kissed the middle of it and then folded the edges in, covering the spot she'd kissed. "Save this kiss for when you really need it," she'd said, pressing the folded paper into his hand.
It was Valentine's Day again, now, and Roger sat on the edge of his bed staring at that piece of folded paper. April's kiss was, theoretically, still trapped in there, because every day he needed it more than the day before. But now... now was the time to take that last kiss and really honestly move on. He unfolded the paper slowly and carefully, then just stared at the heart. There was a tiny smudge of darkness where her lip gloss had stained the paper. Roger swallowed hard, took a shaky breath, and gently pressed his lips to the paper.
"I love you, angel," he whispered, tucking the paper into the nightstand. The pretty hispanic girl behind him shifted a little.
"Go back to sleep baby," he said. She murmured something and rolled over, falling asleep again almost immediately.
Roger didn't sleep that night.