He sits in bed upstairs in the dark thinking about his new life, the other side of the bed empty. The park across the street looms dark and silent. Traffic has gone. He is alone in the house.
May has spent the month down at their farm; he drives down on the weekends. After the election, she said she wanted to think about things, about what the future holds but he knows she has left because of what is happening to him, letting him work it out at last. Dahlia, their dog, went with May.
He goes over his trip to Boston, the day before, once again. Since the election and his party's loss he has had several phone calls but none even vaguely interested him except one from a major foundation.
The head of the foundation was an old friend; they were together at medical school. The offices were sumptuous, filled with dark paneling. Yet he confessed to his friend that he wasn't sure that he wanted to take up arms again.
"Charlie," his friend said, "You don't want to go into the private sector. You've been commissioner for over a decade. You've spent your life trying to do the right thing. You can continue that here. Sooner or later this will all be over. We can actually pay you what you're worth. And you know how much May loves Boston."
His friend adds, "I know how you must feel. For the first time in your life, you must be worried about the future."
Charlie remembers flinching at these words but keeping it inside, as always. Charlie had stopped worrying about the future years ago, but now....