His world was completely indifferent to him. His pains and joys unnoticed by all but one, his wife. Time and time again he asked himself how he could be so lucky as to find the only person on the face of the Earth who understood him. No one else even recognized his existence. At his job at the post office, he went about the daily motions. He sorted and lifted and filed in silent solitude. In his town he was like a ghost. He would meet someone one day only to have to reintroduce himself to them on another. But his wife, his Arina, was always there for him. It was like she could read his mind. He needn't say a word and she already would be doing or saying just what he needed. She was his entire world, his only reason for living. The sun rose in her eyes, and the Earth trembled at her touch.
Their life together was quiet. They chose not to go to concerts and dining halls and dances, but instead basked in the radiance of their eternal affections. To him, Arina's golden, candle-lit face was infinitely more enthralling than any movie or exhibit. Captivated by her pulchritude, they spent their nights talking intensely of their loves, fears, and dreams. It was honest. It was real. It was one of a kind. They willingly, unashamedly bore their souls to each other and after 8 years of marriage, their captivation never waned. Years of nearly unattainable bliss lie in their wake. The world outside had nothing to offer them. The universe began and ended in the space between them.
Each day, they went their separate ways, to their separate jobs. 8 hours a day, 5 days a week, their minds lingered on thoughts of love whilst their bodies went through the unconscious motions required for a hard day's work. At the end of their shifts, they went straight home, met each other at the front door and looked with the same lovesick eyes as on their wedding night. The couple embraced and kissed as passionately as they did the very first time. Life was so fucking perfect. Nothing, no matter how dreadful, could make a dent in their paragon of happiness. Not even the loud ongoing construction going on in front of their quaint little house or the decline of their once peaceful neighborhood could get them to bat an eye.
Love like this is rare. Love so incredibly endless and raw. Yet, once in a while two people get lucky enough to find it, and all that is beautiful smiles upon them always. You would think their neighbors would find them strange or weird, but they were too concerned with falling property values and increasing unemployment. More and more people were leaving. The surrounding area was slowly degrading. Locked in a life of bliss, the couple could not have cared less. They had each other and that is all that mattered.
As another long shift at the post office ended, he picked up his bag and began his daily stroll home. He did not say a word of farewell on his way out and none bothered saying goodbye to him. To his coworkers he was no more than part of the decor. No different or noticeable than the ficus in the corner. His head raised high, he walked with his usual confident stride, with blinders on his eyes and Arina on his mind. He didn't even notice the three men in dark, baggy jackets following him close behind closing the gap a little more with every step. Nor did he see them also turn right up his walkway when he arrived home. It wasn't until he unlocked the door and turned to wait for his beloved, that he noticed them at all. Unfortunately, he didn't have to do anything about it. As soon as he took his post to wait for Arina, they were already hitting him in the face and forcing him inside.
The neighbors paid no attention to the house which in their minds might not have existed at all. The construction crew nearby focused on their job, making a terrible racket as the home of our lovers was torn apart, it's owner brutalized. His screams for help went unheard, even by his wife, who unwittingly walked directly into her own demise. The shot came so suddenly. Her fragile body crumpled to the ground. A painful stillness took her in it's embrace, the last she would ever receive.
The three men hit him repeatedly on the back his head. They took what was valuable and set to burning the entire place down. He finally came to rest beside his beloved. His vision going dark, all he could focus on was Arina's still immaculate face, glowing golden in the firelight.