There comes a time where the song you have been listening to for years suddenly sounds like it is being performed only for you. The words seem to make sense outside of fiction, they take on life, they are talking directly to you about life, about your life.
And then I crashed into you,
And I went up in flames.
Could've been the death of me,
But then you breathed your breath in me.
And I crashed into you,
Like a runaway train.
You will consume me,
But I can't walk away
They met each other a little over a year whilst at work, he was new and keen to find a new challenge, she was burned out, disillusioned and cynical. Their working relationship was one of hello and goodbye, she was leaving as he was arriving and yet that was enough.
They both remember the day they met, he would later confess the immediate intensity he felt for her.
Open books are always read, the exposed pages show glimpses of words, some will catch a headline chapter, a key word or two and others will pick up the book and devour the whole lot.
She knew instantly he was different. Everything about him suggested he thought in a different way, he managed to work his personality into his image without it looking manufactured- quirky some might say. He marvelled at surreal moments and read people from more than just their physical and oral cues. She was cut from the same cloth, it hadn’t escaped his notice either.
The rain was heavy, she quickly got into his car and closed the door. The scent was different to her car, it felt comfortable, like safe places usually do. Within a moment she saw more evidence of his quirks, CD’s neatly stacked on the dashboard behind a shrine to a yoga teacher and a random pair of gloves in the footwell beneath the glove box, she appreciated the irony of this. Most of all she felt his presence. He sat at a 90 degree angle, giving her all of his attention. She felt awkward, confused, frustrated her ego was in overdrive “what are you doing here?” She looked up at him, and for the first time she really noticed how blue and sparkly his eyes were, she noticed his glasses in the compartment beneath the radio, she couldn’t remember a time when she had seen his eyes sans glasses. The Clark Kent/Superman irony also struck her. He smiled at her, his kindness allowed her to relax, just enough to step back from her guarded position.
Her ego was getting louder; it affected her ability to think in a straight line. She tried to explain, although she knew explanations were not expected with him, he was happy to allow her just to be. But she needed to explain. The more she dug, the more words crashed into each other allowing her to finally reveal “I’m so very sad right now” and with that her words turned to tears, turned to sobs. He reached out and took her hand. She looked through her tears at his hand on hers, reassuring, cool to the touch. She felt the flow of energy through his hand to hers. She paused, allowing the moment to help her breathe. His empathic nature gave him away “Let me give you a proper hug”, she moved in, grateful for the contact, to hide her face, hide her tears. He gently stroked her back, his breathing was calm, regulated. She pushed the side of her face against his chest, like a cat needing more contact. He held her tighter and she buried deeper still, breathing his aftershave in like the bouquet found in a wine glass. She felt the weight of her body relax into his arms and slowly her breathing matched his.
She pulled back slowly, able to continue their conversation but acutely aware she wanted to be back in his arms. Was it an act of comfort or did he feel it to? She tried again “I know I’m not in a very good place at the moment and I don’t want to drag you into my mess”, she looked up and was immediately lost in his gaze again. He took her hand again, “You want to know the secret for being happy?” she nodded maintaining eye contact, “It is to be completely present in the moment. Allow yourself to be happy, it is a choice”. She nodded, her eyes welling up with warm tears spilling down over her cheeks. She moved back in, back to his chest, that place of comfort, safety. Again she felt herself relent and relax into him.
With every breath, she was acutely aware of the second hand, circling the clock dial, a reminder that the hands of time wait for no one. She sat back up, “You’re going to be late back to the office, I don’t want you to get into any trouble”. His hand gesture and shake of the head reassured her that he wanted to stay in this moment as much as she did. She began to hold direct eye contact now, time would be upon them soon enough, there were no time for nerves, his confidence in calmly staring directly into her eyes electrified her down to the core.
“I’m going to go, really, I don’t want you to get into trouble”. He touched his lips “Just one kiss?” Suddenly there they were there: the deciding moment. Gateway kisses, the first kiss where there are no second attempts, simply choice- do or do not. This was most unlike any previous scenarios, she wondered if that question had ever been asked of her before as opposed to the general taking or giving.
Before she had anytime to think, she was moving, heading towards him, her lips gently coming to a standstill on his. Electricity. She didn’t want to move, and it was clear he wasn’t going to either. As she gently released, she retuned almost immediately and pushed back again, a little harder. This was all the encouragement he needed, in one move his arm snaked around her waist pulling her closer to him, drawing her ever deeper in. He moved quickly deftly working his kisses down her neck giving just the right amount of pressure when needed. The thrill. Natural chemicals, adrenaline, dopamine, oxytocin…addictive…physical. Every time she thought she couldn’t take anymore, she knew she could, she needed this and he knew it too. Fierce. He was a steady, accomplished opponent, he knew his goal and he was going to get it. He pushed back against her stating his place and she felt it, she bit his lip gently, he waited, baiting her and she knew it. She smiled…touché.
She felt a stir deep deep within her soul…she closed her eyes whilst a wave of energy rolled over her and as she breathed both in and then out she was reminded of a time, a woman, a life force. A warrior cry, tribal and strong- she had awakened and now there was nothing she could do but let her come. She breathed deeply in expectancy, there was no choice- just the path ahead, as the oxygen reached her lungs she felt the woman lock into place, possessing the space she had previously owned. Freedom. She breathed out slowly and opened her eyes. Yes: she had returned. She smiled and met his fixed eye contact. She held his face in her hands, and pushed her third eye into his. He never tore his eyes away once, the woman within mused over this liberator, she had waited a lifetime for someone so strong.
He leaned into her neck- her Achilles heel and with his next move this would not only signal intent but also possession. He was going to claim her and she knew it. There would be no protest. She sat straight and exposed her neck “Bite me” she whispered. He paused and devoured her. She melted back into his chest. He held her close with both hands whilst she rested in complete submission. Finally free.