She came to me during the transit of venus.
The world was blue gray at dusk. I went to the beach to dry out, to forget, to find some peace.
I’d been a reporter when the war started. Which war? One of them; they weren’t numbered anymore. Some reaction to some act of horror and we send a thousand boys to a desert somewhere. It wasn’t important anymore.
I was working for the AP, I’d traveled to Kuwait first, then Kutar. During one of the endless rides across the barren plains the world exploded into fire. I saw three kids melt in front of me. Three others were torn apart. I only lost my arm.
A few years later my parents died and left me enough money that I didn’t have to try and act whole enough to fit in with other reporters. I didn’t have to sit on planes and watch as the people next to me tried not to stare at my hook or my plastic hand.
I sold their houses and their cars and their stocks and even my father’s damn horses. I bought a place by the beach. I found solace in the sea. I found comfort in the silence. I found peace under the stars.
Monsieur Desrosiers was, frankly, a curmudgeon. Around fifty, salt and pepper hair, a strong jaw, nearly six feet tall and roguishly handsome I think he was getting fed up with America very quickly.
I could only imagine what he thought of me and my horrible pronunciation.
It was one of those coincidences that happened a lot in the city. A friend of a friend. I’d met him at a party, on a rooftop, one a day much lovelier than the one of which I speak. We’d had too much wine, or I had wine and he had whiskey. We talked about art and the death of certain media. Somehow a conversation about Marina Abramović turned into something about kink and I made some vague comment about my own twisted predilections. He picked it up and and we danced around the subjects of bondage, S&M, roleplay.
Eventually I leaned back against a wall and wanted him to lean into me and he did. He was slightly unshaven and handsome in his glasses and he was very taken with me and it made me feel a little powerful and a little tipsy and I thought it would be nice to kiss him, but he didn’t work up the courage or maybe he just didn’t want to kiss me.