Author's Note: Because of this prompt ("If you repeate a lie often enough, it becomes the truth" - Joseph Goebbels) that MatteaAM gave me months ago, and because I woke up at five in the morning, unable to sleep in the heat, and inspiration struck. And when inspiration strikes, you bend to it and get to writing.
It was early in the morning, far too early to be awake, when Jenny Shepard felt the mattress shift in a familiar way as the man lying next to her rose from the bed.
She opened her eyes just slightly, peeking at him through her eyelashes in the harsh, cold light filtering through the curtains. She observed him as he moved with ease around her bedroom, heard the soft rustling of his clothes and watched as he put them on, preparing to leave.
But when he turned around to look at her, she pretended to be asleep. And when he bent down to place a chaste, sweet kiss on her hair, she tried hard not to make a sound, her throat closing up while unshed tears burned behind her eyelids.
She knew that it was pointless, that he knew she was awake.
He always did.
But every time she told herself that maybe, if she kept pretending, he wouldn't notice her shallow breathing, the way her eyelids trembled, the way her hands fisted in the pillow, hoping he wouldn't see.
'There will be no off the job', she had told him, and she tried to convince herself that what they did didn't really matter. It was just physical. Two old friends trying to find a little comfort in each other's arms.
She could put an end to it whenever she liked, couldn't she?
So every time she told herself it was the last. Every time she told herself she didn't need him.
And maybe, just maybe, if she repeated that lie long enough, one day it would be true.