I stop by the fence to collect my thoughts. Absently, my fingernail follows the grain, circles the knots. I do this when I'm thinking: trace lines and outlines, doodle new shapes over what's already there.
He doesn't expect me. It's too early on a Sunday morning for him to be dressed. I'm standing on his porch as his confusion slips to happiness and back again. He steps back to let me enter. It's then that I kiss his cheek. Giddy, I walk past him, into the heart of the room. And he follows. His mouth opens, and before the question can spill out, I press my lips against his, stop him, start this new thing. And after a time, when the standing needs to become sitting, we tumble clumsily into his bedroom, onto his bed. This Morse Code Is All Wrong, his fingertips whisper into my hair. Isn't It? To which my only reply is a shifting of our centre of gravity. And then it's no longer a question. Then it's his skin and my skin and the soft of the sheets and the gold of the sun, and the shadow of him clouding over me, over my better judgement. Quickly, it becomes breath and air and oxygen and I feel myself collapsing and falling, over and over and over.
We should sleep but we don't. We are quietly stunned. Smiling. And then not smiling. My skin is singing and is also on fire. His breath, accidental on my shoulder shakes my skin to spring forth its Braille: I Wanted This All Along.
I don't know what to do. Or say. In my head, when this happened, he was the instigator. I had my speeches all planned. But I have no words for walking on a Sunday morning to his house, kissing him and then pulling him into me on his bed. All my speeches were centred around him getting too close, wanting too much. I have no words for this. I want to stay, but instead I find myself slipping back into my clothes. I mumble something and leave. What Have I Done?
I've put too much sugar in my coffee. I wasn't thinking. Linus is opposite me, his hands cupped around his own coffee: black, no sugar. I can't leave the table and make a fresh drink. The recollection comes to me that hot, sweet drinks are good for shock, and this allows me to relax a little. It's only been four hours, and I can still feel him inside me. The sensation kills any regrets.
Linus says we have to talk, and he's right. But I don't know what to say. I want to recite a poem to explain myself, but the only one that comes to mind is that Benjamin Zephaniah one about food, and suddenly I'm hungrier than I've ever been before in my life.
Are We Going To Do This? He asks. And he means give it a shot, see what happens. And I nod, because I've already leapt into that one feet first, so I can hardly play the friendship card now. And I know I should be as happy as he is now. His eyes are shining, but I know it's partly tears, and I also know I caused them. He's been hurt already. Four hours in. I know this is just the tip of the iceberg, too. So I can't be happy. But I'll pretend.
(This is a chapter from a work in progress.)