At point A you crushed on me, and I crushed on you—it was mutual.
Everything between points A and B was always the trickiest part, the sketchy “getting there”.
Point B is where I saw myself with you, but perhaps you didn’t—the end point, the part where the GPS robotically said, “You have arrived at your destination”.
The first time we met after exchanging details on a crowded train, we talked for hours in some hipster café with pricey coffee and tattooed baristas.
I remember before stepping inside the café I discreetly observed you from the window. You were fiddling on your phone and wearing your buttoned denim shirt, leaning on your elbow, hand through your brown hair. You sported the effortlessly rough, ‘I’m-hot’ kind of look.
I groomed myself nervously in my blue sun dress, hoping my butterfly feelings would disappear. I finally stepped inside and telepathically you looked at me and smiled.
I sat down and admired you briefly and you cheekily said, “There’s finally some sunshine in this place.”
I laughed at the comment, and you already knew that you had me hooked. We flirted with words and meaningless conversation—food distastes, book characters, the strange behaviours on trains, art, water bottles and penmanship. I even made you write out a quote from one of my favourite books, Vanity Fair.
“Vanity Fair is a very vain, wicked, foolish place, full of all sorts of humbugs and falsenesses and pretensions.”
Somehow we talked in essays about that quote, until the barista sneakily slipped the bill on our table so that they could close up.
On the way out you said you were impressed by my intelligence, tastes and cheekiness. I rarely accepted compliments, but yours I took to heart.
We hugged and kissed on the cheek, because that’s how the modern dating game apparently works. But I felt you lean in, your mouth so close to mine.
“I’ll be seeing you again”, you teased, your words on my lips.
How did you pull my strings and twist them, without even laying a hand?
We met a few more times after that, but there’s one intense moment that stood out.
You took me to a local art exhibition; it was a quiet day for the gallery. There were maybe five or so aficionados—hands behind their back, meticulously observing sculptures and abstracts stuck onto the white walls in silence.
We walked around interpreting artists’ work, quietly debating this and that.
“The lines painted around the woman’s neck seem to choke her, but yet she looks like she’s tranced with desire.” I said.
“Desire isn’t always painful” you said, brushing behind me.
“The artist is actually suggesting that the woman is drowning in her own expectations—a loved one, who took her own life. You can read it on the card here”, a bystander commented.
“Oh,” we both said, and suddenly felt guilty that we attached sly innuendoes to an art piece of mourning. But when the bystander disappeared we couldn’t help giggle to ourselves like school children.
Then you took my hand and whispered, “Come with me”.
Of course I followed you, because like the woman in the painting I was drowning in desire.
We snuck into some dark unoccupied part of the gallery, and you ran your hand through my hair. We were both breathing sharply. Before I knew it you pinned me to the wall. Your kisses were slow and deep on my lips, your hands low on my waist. I drew you in closer so I could take in all of you, drink all of you. We both wanted more.
But my back accidentally hit the light switch on, your hand had just made its way under my shirt.
We both grinned, and you turned the light switch off.