We Meet At Last

She sits in her rogue blue jeans across the couch, her knees up and her bare feet wedged affectionately underneath my leg… she wiggles her candy-painted toes when she laughs, and snugly pushes them a bit further when I say something charming to which she responds well. She poises a glass of red wine upon one of her knees, its base no doubt cold against the pale kneecap exposed through a tattered hole. Her frail black tank top suggests a casual, lounging elegance, the left shoulder strap having fallen lazily down her arm.

She remains daringly amused, occasionally resting her chin on her hand in a listening pose, even as I pretend to be clever and recite the humorous aspects of my past. Occasionally a playful sarcasm volleys back and forth between us, eventually followed by a sigh and her million dollar question: why did it take you so damn long to get that plane ticket?

She’s accusing me of being shy, when she says things of that nature.

When my failure to concoct a satisfyingly witty answer allows for a pause, she withdraws her toes and clumsily mounts her knees to initiate a prompting stare. “That painting… I love it; where did you get it?” I ask suddenly and point over to the corner of the room. “What painting?” she says with an adorable naivety… then, as soon as she turns her head, I descend into the crook of her shoulder for a taste of her skin and clasp her waist in a subtle ambush.

Her neck is maddeningly warm beneath my lips, but her hair is cool as I cup it gently with a hand behind her head. My fingertips part the ebony waterfall that is her lustrous mane, swimming through the silky strands as she tilts her head to the side and surrenders her balmy nape. Our lips soon find one another’s, entrancing themselves with each other’s motions as they glide wet and stifle our breaths… seemingly forever… and I taste the sticky residue of wine; the burgundy frost upon her lips. Then, at the end of some hiatus in time, her head retracts to reveal awestruck eyes and a mouth that hangs open in the aftermath of a kiss. The radial amber webs of each iris tick back and forth like two strikes of a pendulum as she studies my piercing blue gaze… cool wisps of her hair tickle my face as they flail in the breeze thrown by each pass of an electric fan. There is reflection, but not questioning… bewilderment, but not doubt. Silence serenades us like a tableside minstrel.

Without warning she clears her throat, climbs to her feet and leaves me there, unofficially excusing herself to the bedroom without so much as a word. I review my actions for any errors on my part, but before the air of confusion is allowed to linger I notice the sound of a jewelry box closing… followed by the near-subliminal rustling of garments being changed… and finally the faint, caressing sound of lotion being rubbed into wrists and hands. Expecting her to reenter a transformed woman, I turn to steal a final sip of wine and gather my senses… gazing down smugly into the glass.

She returns from the bedroom in an ebony gown, bringing with her a new aura of perfume that now floods the atmosphere of the den. With a ballroom elegance she drifts over to me like a Victorian era ghost, clasps my free hand in hers and removes the unfinished glass of wine from my other… the corner of her mouth cracks a spike of devilish smile in answer to the bewildered look on my face, all while she abandons the glass on the end table and leads me up and into the bedroom. A shallow pool of wine see-saws in the glass as we fade out of focus – out of sight – into the darkness of the room. There is the stench of a match as a candle is lit, then the desperate sound of more breath-haunted kisses.

…and thus night befalls our first day of love.

© 2014 Brandon Gene Petit

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