"Why don't you just call him and say you want the damn shirt back?" Harriet had asked reasonably.
"He knows I want it back," I said savagely. "I have nothing to say. I don't want to talk to him. Maybe never again. But I want that shirt back."
More time passed - days, another week, and another. By now it was clear that our dissolution had entered the dangerous stage. He continued to call, once a week now. I continued to not return his calls. I was smarting, I was bitter. But I wanted that shirt back. Like most material possessions caught in the breakup crossfire, it had taken on talismanic properties.
"Could he be wearing it?" I asked Marco. "Is that why he hasn't sent it back?" I thought of its stretchy silk fabric, the way it exposed my collarbone, its beautiful russet color, like ripe plums. It seemed a little feminine for Sean.
"Jesus, the shirt, the shirt!" Marco groaned. "Just forget about it! Is that so impossible?"
"Maybe that new girlfriend is wearing it," I mused. "I want my shirt back. It is my Calvin Klein shirt and I paid a lot of money for it and I want it back. Why is he holding it hostage?"
But I knew why, and I had a feeling so did Sean. He and I didn't have any mutual friends, so there was no chance of getting information about the other through that channel. And we didn't work near each other, or live in the same neighborhood. The shirt was the last link. Once it was back in my hands, that was...well, it.



July 2008

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