Blue Collar

Blue Collar

A Story by clairvoyantmars

A man, an affair, a death....


She is gentle today. Just like every other day. Her hands gently tug at my collar as she fixes it. I watch her as she buttons my shirt. Her tousled brown hair rippling over her shoulders, her chest rises and falls as she takes each breath. Her lips in a small smile, her long fingers trailing up to my neck. The sunlight from the window reflects on the mirror and shines on her face. Her soft skin glows in the morning light. When she is finished with the buttons, she fixes the sleeves and the collar again, straightens the bottom, and then puts her arms around my neck.

“Have a great day at work today.” She says, smiling at me. She kisses me on my cheek and I breathe in her scent. She brushes her cheek softly on mine. “I love you.”

She puts her arms down and smiles at me, then turns and heads downstairs. A ray of sunlight reflects on the crystal on her ring finger. I look down and stare at the identical ring on my hand.

. . .

Today is different. I feel it. Why is she so rough today? She tugs harshly at my blue collar. Her fingers pinch at my shoulders as she “fixes” the sleeves. She hasn’t spoken to me all morning. Why must she still be so beautiful? Why does her innocent beauty guilt me so? She does not put her arms around my neck, she does not whisper in my ear. Once she is finished she turns and walks away, not even sparing a single glance at me. Again, the sunlight hits the single solitary diamond embedded on her ring. All these years, she doesn’t know that the light hits it. All these years, she doesn’t know the secret I have been hiding.

Yes, I love her. I still do. Till one fateful day, temptation struck. An accident happened, and I have lived with that mistake all my life. I straighten the collar myself and follow her downstairs. She does not look at me. She does not wave at the door. All I do is drive away.

. . .

She is sad this morning. Her fingers slowly trail at the blue collar. Her grace has a sad lilt to it. Her hands rest on my shoulders, and she closes her eyes and rests her forehead on mine.

“Why did you do this to me?” she whispers. “She came over yesterday you know. Your son was with her.”

I stiffen, terrified.

“She didn’t know who I was.” She sighs. “Do you love her?”

I swallow. There was nothing left to hide. I had to tell her the truth. Even if it would hurt her.


She opens her eyes, but doesn’t look at me. Tears are falling.

“How old is he?”


Her shoulders are trembling, but I have no right to touch her. I’ve hurt her enough. This is frightening. I expect her to shout, to throw things at me. I want her to call me names, hurt me physically as much as I had hurt her emotionally. But instead she’s here, holding me, touching me, crying bitter tears.

“Are you that much disappointed in me?” she asks. “Because we can’t have our own child?”

I am silent. I don’t know what to say.

“I have to go.” She says. “I have to clear my mind a bit.”

She puts her hands down and leaves the room, crying in her hands. I hear the front door close and I watch from the upstairs window as she shrugs into her coat. I sit down on the bed, guiltily contemplating on my actions. I cry. Only then do I realize how much I love her.

I write her a letter, hoping against hope she would come back to read it.

I wait…

. . .

I am lonely today. She is not here to fix my collar. She is not here to whisper in my ear. She is gone. I, myself, fix the collar of the dark shirt I am wearing today. Tears spring to my eyes as I look at myself in the mirror. The sorrowful piano music calls me outside. Wiping the tears with the back of my hand, I hold the unread letter in my hand and head out.

My footsteps echo on the marble floor and fifty pairs of eyes follow me. I head up to the podium and unfold the letter in my hand. Taking a deep breath, I read it aloud to the crowd in front of me.

“Scarlet,” I say, but my voice cracks at saying her name. I clear my throat and continue. “I can think of no other way to say just how sorry I am for what I did to you. But let me make you realize just how much I love you, and how blind I was to see it. I’m sorry if I wasn’t that much of a good husband to you. The times when I forgot things, when I hurt you without apologizing. It was the little things that made me love you. But what I failed to realize, was when you fixed my blue collar everyday, you were trying to hold on to our dying love.

“You were trying to seize moments when we would be alone together. And now that you’re gone, I will miss the little things you used to do. The gentle way you used to touch me, the whispers in my ear, the smiles you used to give me, the looks your eyes made. You are the only person in the whole world who can do those small things, and can make me so enchanted with you. I realized it too late. I----.”

A lump comes to my throat and I choke. I cannot continue. So I step down and walk towards her. Her eyes are closed; you would think she was sleeping. She is wearing the most beautiful dress I have ever seen. I bend down to the coffin and whisper in her ear.

“I love you, Scarlet. And I’m sorry.”

Tears come to my eyes as I see her lying in that bed of white satin. My words had come too late.

She was gone…

© 2011 clairvoyantmars

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as soon as i got to the "I bend down to the coffin", i literally took a sharp breath. this is so sad and you're an amazing writer. good job

Posted 6 Years Ago

Sorry, I wasn't meant to post that, I hadn't finished. I love the detail, mostly in the first paragraph, it's like everything is described. And then also, how the actions are repeated in the other paragraphs. This was just perfect.

Posted 7 Years Ago

Oh that's tragic, I love it. I love how the collar is throughout the whole story, and how it's mentioned at the end. And then the fact that it was her coffin... tragic. And I didn't expect her to be dead until I read the word 'coffin.' I love that.

Posted 7 Years Ago

This brought tears to my eyes. What a lovely way to show the change of a marriage with the way she fixes his collar. I feel like I know so much about these characters even though the story was so short. You are a fantastic writer and you have such a way with the little details. Absolutely beautiful.

Posted 7 Years Ago

A sad yet beautiful story, telling us not to waste a moment of our life on such petty things and do nothing about it… A great write.

Posted 8 Years Ago

Totally put a lump in my chest and tears in my eyes. Why do us humans wait until it is too late? Very good write!

Posted 8 Years Ago

Excellent writing. I couldnt stop reading. You are very descriptive without wasting words.

Posted 8 Years Ago

Wow... I have goose bumps all up and down my arms. This was such a truly sad but touching story. Realizing things too late are the worst in the world. Regrets we can never take back. Loosing love with unspoken words. Words that may have changed the course of the day.
You made me cry...brat... xo ;p.

Posted 8 Years Ago

Gorgeously written. I love the way you showed what was happening in their marriage by the way they interacted every morning.

Posted 8 Years Ago

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13 Reviews
Shelved in 2 Libraries
Added on May 12, 2011
Last Updated on May 12, 2011




I've been seriously starting to write my own novels since 2008. So far, I've finished three novels and have a lot of unfinished ones piled up. I also write short stories and poems and the occasional s.. more..

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