Welkin – the vault of the sky: firmament

The welkin rang…
and rang, and rang,
But she did not pick up the phone
that time either.

Aught – All, everything

His inwardness exasperated her, his disorganization made her vent in hours-long phone calls while the listener stirred on a chicken soup – i.e., her mother living in Long Island.

But every time she heard him sliding under the duvet at night, trying not to wake her up even if he still smelled like walnuts and pecans, she knew there was nothing she wouldn’t do for him.

Bon Vivant – a sociable person who has cultivated and refined tastes especially with respect to food and drink

It had never occurred to her before.
She watched her father carelessly polish the buttery crab meat from the corners of his mouth – 40% of which had remained in the shells, the wine he would try and pour in his glass only to notice it was closed and thus beckoning the assistance of Amelia just to uncork the bottle.
Her father kept moving with the same pattern she’d seen every dinner time despite the words of the magistrate, whose baritone voice much resembled her father’s:
“You should have accepted that” – to that her father kept on gulping wine and seafood, but with the trepidation, now she noticed, of someone consuming his last supper.

Armistice: temporary stopping of open acts of warfare by agreement between the opponents

He glimpsed her figure from the canape side of the table. He had been stopped by the new Associate professor to discuss the lecture notes for History on Medieval Literature.

But he was looking at the red dress she was wearing. They bought it together a couple of years back in Panama, it had a deep neckline encrusted with irregular pearls. It slid slightly across her small breasts as she told a story to a gathering around her, who burst into laughter at the end of it.

She caught his sight – he stood next to the professor with his fists descending along his suite, recalling her mouth screaming, her watery eyes from earlier that afternoon.

She smiled at him. And it took a couple of seconds to him to smile back.