“When we’re across the wall,” Hilda started, voice soft, “do you think you’ll look for them?”
Albert covered his arm by instinct, scarlet starbursts peeking out from between his fingers. “I don’t know,” he said. He rubbed his thumb across one of the two names scrawled amidst the placeholder marks, the elegant sweep of Francoise curled around his wrist. “I hadn’t thought about it.”
Albert had better things to think about than his soulmates. Jet and Francoise, whoever they were, weren’t anything more than names in red, and the six stars covering the rest of his arm were less than that. Characters in novels had more substance.
They certainly weren’t as important as the woman standing at the stove, her shoulders slightly hunched and her unmarked arms bare. It was two steps from the table to her, and he curled his arms around her waist and tucked her head under his chin.
“Maybe we’ll look for them,” he said into her hair, “but none of them will ever replace you.”
Hilda twisted a little, her smile warm when she looked up. “It’d be nice to meet them.”
“Yeah. It would.”