She was his phantom limb, always, and her absence made him grasp the air around him in a futile attempt to find her.
The amputation had been as painful as expected; the recovery had never ended.
There she was, on his nightstand. There she stayed, in the sock drawer. The pins and needles never went away.
She had stopped taking his calls and he had become invisible. The streets seemed warmer that winter, and his hands itched.
It occurred to him, when he finally saw her again, waiting tables in some dive down by 31st, that the reason he couldn't let her go was the same reason a ghost cannot be killed.