She climbed the stairs to the roof. It could have been her imagination but there seemed to be very many more steps than there used to be. Out of the familiar blue painted door, it was actually a vivid yellow but in her head it was still sky blue.
Under the starlight with the acid glow of the city far below her she felt she could breathe a little. She sat on a broken chimney stack and waited. He wasn't long. She could see him on the roof opposite.
She waved to him as usual and he waved back, then he leapt the small gap like he had done very many years before. He gave her a flower, just a wild thing plucked from the brickwork.
She put it in her hair, then she took his hand and they began to dance long and slow under the moon. He held her tight and she whispered I told you I would come, I kept my promise. They won't keep us apart any more my love, not now he whispered back.
He wasn't handsome and she wasn't pretty. They had each other. It was all that mattered.
After a change of shift they noticed she had gone. Slipped gently away with no fuss. A student nurse found her slumped in a chair and closed her eyes before they did what was necessary. The student was new, so she asked someone who she could call.
Nobody came the reply. She had no family left to speak of. It was a tragedy when she was young. She fell in love. He was Jewish she was Catholic and it wasn't allowed. You know young people, love will find a way. They used to meet on the roof and jump the gap between their two buildings to be together.
They were planning to run away, but one night he slipped and fell. She made herself a promise that there would be nobody else and she meant it. She's at peace now, lets hope that they are together again said an old man who had known her in her youth.
The student nurse nodded. She knew. After all, she had taken the flower from Miss O'Brien's hair. It was fresh not faded with the years. It looked for all the world as if someone she loved had just picked it for her.