I guess this chapter begins with Hammond looking at his hands and saying, “I can't ever give you what you want. I'm not in a good way. This is it for me.”
And me, my heart hardened by a decade of his brokenness, venturing, “What I really want is another baby.”
He speaks so seldom; says so little that the words fall from the air like the resonant notes of a bass guitar; vibrating through every cell. “I can do that. It's the least I can do.”
And whatever chapters may have been sandwiched awkwardly in the intervening two years, I guess this one should come to an end a few months into my pregnancy. Maybe it should end poignantly, as Hammond's path finally diverges from ours and we watch as he walks alone into the metaphorically setting sun. Or maybe it should end more truthfully, with irrational anger, as so many of Hammond's chapters ended. Or perhaps it should just end quietly with an email a few months after the birth of our little girl. “I'm sorry I wasn't there. Is everyone okay?”
Ultimately though, this ending merges, constricts, grows large and then diminishes to nothing as it makes way for a wave of beginnings and chapters that seem to stretch unending.