Never Leave Me by Harold Robbins
He came into the room awkwardly. Dad always looked awkward when he walked. The only time he ever looked graceful was when he sat behind the wheel of an automobile. His dark eyes squinted searchingly up at my face. “You heard?” he asked. I nodded. “Paul called me.” “I heard it on the car radio. I came right over,” he said. “Thanks.” I walked over to the liquor cabinet and took out a bottle. “I’ll be all right.” I poured out two drinks and held one out to him. I swallowed mine, but he held his in his hand. “What are you going to do?” he asked. I shook my head. “I don’t know. When I spoke to Paul I thought I’d go down there, but now I don’t know whether I can. I don’t know whether I can face her.” His eyes were still searching mine. “Why?” I stared at him for a moment and then I exploded. “Why? You know as well as I, why. Because I killed her! If I had pointed a gun at her and pulled the trigger I couldn’t have done a better job!” I sank into the chair beside the cabinet and put my hands over my face. He sat down opposite me. “How do you know?” he asked. My eyes burned as I looked at him. “Because I made love to her and lied to her and made promises to her that I knew I’d never keep; because she believed me and loved me and trusted me and never thought I’d leave her. When I did there was nothing left in this world for her because I had become her world.” He sipped his drink slowly and looked at me. At last he spoke. “You really believe that?” I nodded. He thought for a moment. “Then you must go down and make your peace with her, or you’ll never know another day’s rest.” “But how can I, Dad?” I cried. He got to his feet. “Yes, you can,” he said confidently. “Because you’re my son, Bernard. You have many of my weaknesses and all my faults, but you’re not a coward. A difficult thing it may be, but you’ll make your peace with her.” The door closed behind him and I was alone again. I looked toward the window. The dark of winter had already begun to taint the day. It was not so long ago on a day like this that I first met her. Somewhere in the time between then and now I would find the answer.