Do you remember the night we first met? At the airport, after four years of distance and hope. You couldn’t stop smiling and we almost had our first kiss. I remember the way you looked at me and how it made me feel. Like finally arriving at the shore after years lost at sea.
Do you remember the night you woke me up at 3 in the morning and failing terribly? Asking me to dress up for our road trip. I remember the night we did get up and how every minute that passed you made sure I was okay.
Do you remember the night we fought and wept? When we ran out of places to crash and I fell from the stairs, trying to get away from you. I remember the ride back home, tears running down our cheeks, hurting in silence. You would have left me alone that day if I hadn’t pulled you close in time.
“I don’t want to go back”, I whisper. “Then stay with me”, he says sheepishly. I can see the mischief in his eyes, promising me a night of sorts, tempt and worth. The wind whispered through the branches, rustling leaves, marking the first sign of the changing weather. I shriek, “it’s gonna rain”, but he’s laughing and the sound reduced the ache of every sore spot on my body to the dullest ache. I’m pulled out of my reverie the moment he lays his jacket on me, not bothered covering himself from the downpour yet making sure that I’m. “This is crazy, you’ve gone bonkers”, I say baffled. He takes my hand in his, inches a little closer, kisses my forehead, and I get his reason.
The lights are out. We’re lying in bed. I’m stretched out across his body, my head pillowed on his chest. I sigh, for I am finally home. It is a frightening thought that in one fraction of a moment you can fall in the kind of love that takes a lifetime to get over. I toss and turn, try to keep my emotions at bay but failing miserably.
“Why do you love me”, I ask him to which he only chuckles. I tug on his tee demanding more and he says, “Your strange ways attract me in ways I strangely can’t understand.” I take a step back pondering over his words, when he continues, “I love you because I just do. All these years, the distance and the women, yet I always found myself writing you emails wondering if you still remember me, knowing you have someone else in your life. Telling myself it means nothing though always keeping tabs on your whereabouts. Calling you dark and cynic every time you try to run away from me yet missing your drama the moment you do. I love you because every cell of my body responds to your touch, to the way you move and the way you sound. I love the parts that you’ve tried to throw away, the parts you were convinced no one could ever love.”
The words don’t come easy to me for I’ve lost the ability to form a coherent sentence. I feel my insides melting, overwhelmed by each word he spoke. I close my eyes, a tear rolled down my face. “I love you, too,” I whisper back with my lips pressed to his. He tastes like cheese and pepperoni and the next sixty years of my life. His embrace is gentle and his hair dampened by the rains. I drew a sharp intake of breath as his fingers inches dangerously close to my core. And I’m met with this unbearable ache to surrender and give in to this frenzy. His skin on my skin, his mouth on my neck. I can feel him dissolving into a memory, already.