I sat across from David on the garden patio of the restaurant he took me. It was lush with green and bursting with freshly bloomed flowers. Jasmine perfumed the air. I met the gaze of the man over his shoulder and my pulse beat a little faster.
“Kitten, are you all right?” David’s voice jolted me back to reality. “You had the most intense look on your face just now, anything you ‘d like to share?”
I smiled at him. “I was thinking of a woman I used to know,” I said.
“What happened to her? Did she pass away?” he asked looking soulfully at me and taking my hand.
“No. She fell in love," I said. "She’s been silent for a while,”
“Married life does that to you,”
“She didn’t get married,” I said. “Her partner, he died,”
If he figured out that I was talking about myself he didn’t let on, and he didn’t let go of my hand. He is a nice man. Conversation flows easily between us. He holds a PhD in global studies and we had great conversations discussing world events. I caught him staring at me several times the way a man looks at a woman he wants to bed, but drops his eyes when I caught him.
I felt nothing.
Getting dressed for dinner, I contemplated dressing like a sixty-year old librarian to smother any romantic notions that he may have, but the evening was warm and with outside seating reserved, I opted instead for a summer dress that left bare my back and shoulders and had my c-cups straining against the thin material.
I glanced over David's shoulder again at the man who was still staring at me. I had met him over a year ago at a business conference. We were introduced by a mutual acquaintance. I don’t remember his name. I was dating Kenny at the time and my heart was bursting with something new that I didn’t quite understand…love. I was committed and fulfilled.
I rejected him. But even then I knew, that had I been the woman I was before Nick and Kenny, I would have made him my lover.
Unlike David, he didn’t look away. His was a look of pure lust…the desire of a man to spread open a woman and bury himself so deep inside her that he is lost, to squeeze her instead of hold her, to bruise her, and he wasn’t afraid to show it.
I felt again the racing of my pulse, and the subtle throb and ache between my legs where for almost a year I have not even the desire to touch myself. A smile tugged the left corner of my lips. Losing Kenny had left me shattered, numb, and empty I feared that I would never feel anything ever again.
But there I was—the woman I tried to bury— the one I was told I couldn’t and shouldn’t be-The flawed one—the one who didn’t make promises and didn’t believe in forever—who live and love for the moment.
For the briefest moment... it was her sitting there.