Each rap on the door made his heart beat faster. He didn’t bother to look through the peephole. He knew the sound of Miranda’s knock and that she was standing there in her blue woolen coat, purple and white scarf and a knit hat with her cheeks flush from the winter chill. She was the only person he wanted to see in those miserable snowy days when there wasn’t much to make him happy.
She would never call ahead of time. She surprised Aiden and would always wear her knee-high red boots. Those boots were etched in his mind forever. He helped pull them off and placed them on the mat so the heat from the fireplace could dry them. He never wanted her to put them back on. He wished she wouldn’t leave, just engulf his boring life with her love and excitement and make him forget about the accident that left his mind in a lonely, dark haze.
That winter Miranda came over Aiden’s apartment almost every night. They talked for a while and then lay on the soft shag carpet and made love. Aiden would see her knee-high red suede boots by the doorway and be reminded that she was indeed real and that she was sharing the night with him.
She was like a bird that you couldn’t keep in a cage, a free spirit who never made any commitments. At the end of each night, Aiden didn’t know if there ever would be a next time. To Miranda, their relationship was nothing more than a temporary fling. And Aiden knew that if he pushed her, she’d never come back. He told himself to enjoy the time with Miranda however long it lasted.
But when the visits stopped, Aiden’s heart grew cold again, and he felt like his life wasn’t worth living. He kept hoping to see her red boots by the door. In the winters to come, he would dream of her on the cold, snowy nights, prepare the fireplace and wait for the knock on the door.