January Night

He pulled into the snow-covered driveway. It was an incredibly bright night. The snow had stopped a couple of hours earlier, and the clouds had cleared off, and the full moon cascaded over the white landscape. He really didn't even need the front porch light that his wife had left burning.

The house, though, was very quiet as he walked inside. He could smell fresh coffee in the kitchen, and there was a cooling cup of it sitting on an end table in the living room. There was a fire burning in the fireplace, and the television was off, but the light on the patio was on.

He slid open the glass door, letting a bit of the night's cool into the house. A line of footprints led from the patio into the garden and he followed them. There was very little sound except for a barking dog in the distance and the muffled noise of his feet walking in the snow as he walked across their yard into the garden.

She stood there, silently, looking up at the sky, standing next to a lilac bush, all snow-trimmed bare branches, wrapped up in one of his old work jackets. The moonlight touched her dark hair with silver as she stood, and her breath fogged in front of her. As he neared, she pulled the jacket close to her and took a deep breath of the night air.

"Isn't it magical?" she said, well aware of his presence.

"What are you doing out here, woman? It's too cold for you," he chided, walking up to her and wrapping his arms around her.

"Watching the moon," she replied, turning to look at him. "Isn't it beautiful? If I look at the garden just right, it feels like it's just us here, and nobody else left in the world. All this magical night, all for us."

He rested his cheek against the side of her head. "That'd make a pretty lonely place."

Tiptoeing up, she gave him a quick kiss, and a playful look that promised a lot more. "But think of all the fun we could have enjoying it."

He lifted a hand to her cheek, and brushed his knuckles across it. "Silly woman. We can do that anyway."

"Yeah, but we have to be quiet. If it were just us, we could be as noisy as we wanted."

He just laughed, and led her back into the house.