You screamed don’t go when he made to leave. But he sat up and left. He didn’t hear you. No one heard you; thanked god they didn’t. The scream happened in your head: a psychic eruption to force the will of another, only to be stopped by a fear that doing so would be to reveal more than was allowed.
You loved the way he smiled. You wanted to tell him, but you didn’t. You wouldn’t. How could you? Him, in all his manness… His chest and arms built like armor, thick with the bends that came from flexing them in a gym. His confidence piercing in the way it celebrated his lack of insecurity, as if he it never occurred to him that people struggled to fit themselves into the contours of the world.
“I flirt.” he said, “It’s just what I do.”
He sat on a table across you, so close your thighs touched. You were taken aback. Because in his eyes you saw you were the center of his now ongoing flirting session. Were you? Or had you just seen what you wished would be. You began to laugh, for reasons unknown. Maybe it was the gold metallic line that circled his fourth finger or it was the fact that, even for a moment, you had nursed an impossible possibility: seen a world where he was actually flirting with you. But there you were, laughing – scurrying to get away from the lens of man focus that bore into you. You recovered to still find him focused on you, smiling. You wished he wouldn’t leave.
His cologne still hugged in the air now that you sat alone. A blend of lavender and something else.
You left for home feeling like a pile of rubbish. How could you let yourself go through such emotional turmoil over a married man? Yes, he had said a few nice words to you. He had touched you in subtle ways that made you think of peace. So what? Slides of memory ran across your mind: his shirt, his voice, his essence. It was pointless to subject yourself to flagellation. You could do anything to have all of him with you on your bed.
An image of you two came across your phone screen with the description incoming call tagged upon it. You became filled with a unique kind of joy. You answered the call and spoke trying your best to ensure your joy didn’t spill through your words. He was thinking about you. He wanted you to spend time with him. He wanted you to be his. For a moment you felt immersed in a pool of bliss. But an image of his wife as it sat on his office desk flashed across your mind and bitterness came over your tongue. It seemed unjust to be at his mercy. It seemed unfair that he was caught up behind the bars of matrimony. It seemed regrettable: all was going well when he lingered far off in the land of impossible possibilities. Now that he offered you what you desired you wondered: Would you be able to give the love you felt? Be his knight in shining armor to save him from high marital castle walls, where his wife stood guard as a dragon guarding him from being awoken by true love’s kiss? Was it true love you felt? Was what you felt enough to live a deceitful truth? Was what you felt enough to help him live his gay inclinations while he maintained a straight life with his wife?
Your friends said you were overthinking things. It wasn’t his fault he was trapped in the sacrament of matrimony. Also, he was too good of a catch: rich, gorgeous and, most importantly, he dwelt within your space of requited love.
But he was married. Why couldn’t they see that he was married?
He could get a divorce, they said. This is the modern world. Marriage is a big fat lie.
Everything had been a lie since you turned thirteen, when Dubem made you feel hot flashes of what you failed to recognize then as love. When you found out it was love you felt betrayed. You felt lied to. You thought girls would catch your fancy. It’s what you were told. Then, in your early twenties, you nursed a hope that people truly married because of love. And stayed in them to see happy ever after. But life was much more complex. If it wasn’t, someone would not risk his marital happy-ever-after in pursuit of you. And you wouldn’t have trouble living your own happy-ever-after with him.
He waited out your resolve to avoid him. You knew, felt, it was the right thing to do. But the distance you created to keep him away brought on the constant need to have him close. It left you sleepless nights. The craving to be with the one you loved. When he stood before you in the male restroom at the office and asked, have you been avoiding me, it became an ordeal to look him in the eyes. But look him in the eyes you did. You two were alone. The white lights hummed a quiet buzz and all their brightness seemed to bounce off the wall tiles to land on his face. You saw just his face. His lips. Pink. It happened quickly after he led you into one of the cubicles. You had done it, and now there was no going back. You had seduced the will of another but now feared that doing so put you deeper into wrong, placed you in the middle of the circle of people who did things that was not allowed.
You are Awesome