More Than Enough
She sat in silence, and nothing was heard above the gentle whisper of the wind and her soft intakes of breath. Her fiery hair cascaded down her chest without restraint as she sat in bed, staring out the window.
The table had been set, the dinner had been laid out, and the dinner was soon finished. One spot remained untouched as the clattering of silverware and the running of water resounded throughout the kitchen. One by one the four children were sent off to bed, with loving kisses and tender hugs.
She had gone to her room, prepared herself for sleep, and stopped once she reached the mirror. Leaning close, as if to get a better look, she slowly raised a hand to her face. Lightly caressing it with the back of her fingers, she realized it was indeed true. The line could not have been more prominent.
The years of worry had done this to her, and also the incessant amounts of premature stress, no doubt. Her life had been all but easy. It had been uncertain at the beginning, thrilling at the middle, and pleasantly difficult at the end. The challenges faced in the past fifteen years had indeed each been trying, but not been horrible. She had not faced them alone, after all.
She sighed, suddenly breaking silence and, once broken, the jangle of keys, the turn of the lock, and the quiet creak of the front door reached her ears. Allowing herself a small smile, she rose, tying the sash of her silk robe, and walked gracefully into the kitchen.
Stopping at the doorway, she gazed, smiling, as he sat and ate what had been laid out for him. Leaving him in his few moments of peace, she backed away and returned to the bedroom.
Allowing herself to lay down with a book, she heard the return of his plate to the sink and his tired, dragging footsteps through the hall. At last she saw her husband enter through the door. Her heart fluttered, even after so many years.
His brunette hair hung low in his face, and he did not look up. She never tore her gaze from her book, which had suddenly become enrapturing. He continued over to his armoire, where he removed his shoes slowly and painfully.
The book she continued to read was, of course, notinteresting in the least, so, with a sigh, she set it on her night table with a soft thud.
Realizing a silence she had not noticed before, she glanced up and saw him standing there, watching her intently. She offered a small smile. He returned it. Slowly, she rose and went over to him, placing one hand on his shoulder, using the other to turn his face to her.
His eyes were warm and full of love, despite the tired, dark shadows under his eyes. Her eyes still sparkled, though they held much more than before.
"Anya," he said quietly. She shivered.
"Dimitri," she said softly.
Her hands fell from their places and wrapped tightly around his chest, as she embraced him. He was full of warmth. He was her familiar, safe haven.
"Anya…" he said again, using a single finger to raise her face to his.
Dimitri smiled, and chuckled once, "I love you."
Anya smiled, allowing herself a small chuckle as well. "I love you, too."
His eyes retained their joy as he slowly knelt on one knee. Her brows furrowed. He reached into his coat pocket, and pulled out a small, shiny object. Holding it up to the light, it twinkled. It was a ring.
"For you," he whispered, placing it on her the fourth finger of her right hand. She studied it, wide-eyed, as he ran the tip of his finger over each of the three small diamond, saying "Past, present, future…"
There was a small hint of pride in his face when she looked up at him.
"Oh, Dimitri," she breathed, "Thank you!" and she threw her arms around his neck, tears rolling silently down her face.
"You're welcome," he said against her neck.
She released her hold of him, and went over to the light to admire her ring even more. Amused, Dimitri grinned as he removed his coat and vest and began to unbutton his shirt. A brief moment later, Anya turned to him, gratitude emanating from her delighted expression.
"Is my dear pleased?" Dimitri asked jokingly.
"Very much so," Anya replied.
"So it was enough, then?" he added, his voice taking on an uncertain tone.
"Of course it is—why wouldn't it be?" she asked, confused.
"Well, just a certain gentleman at the jeweler's said something snide, that's all. Nothing to worry about." Dimitri removed his shirt, folding it slowly as he stared distantly off to the side. Anya raised an eyebrow.
"Dimitri…" she said, standing next to him, "It's perfect."
He smirked, and then stripped down to naught but his long johns and an undershirt. Clambering onto the bed, he laid down on his back with a huff. Cross legged, Anya situated herself next to him.
"I'm exhausted," he said with a sigh.
"I know," Anya said consolingly as she smoothed his hair, moving it from his eyes
"I'm old," he said with defeat.
Anya's hand stopped mid-stroke.
"Not that old Dimitri," she said gently.
He closed his eyes, and Anya then ran a finger down his temple.
"Perhaps not," he said a moment later.
"Definitely not," she assured, kissing his forehead.
His eyes opened and he suddenly sat upright, and took her hands in his.
"I have been good to you, haven't I?" he asked seriously.
"Of course, Dimitri. You—"
"No, Anya, tell me straight. Tell me if this is all you wanted. I want to know the truth. Is this life alright? I've never asked you. Was it worth it? Is this enough? Is it—?"
His string of questions was cut off when Anya's lips met his.
Pulling back a brief moment later, she said, "It is more than enough, Dimitri."
He smiled, relieved. "More than enough." It wasn't a question.