from the novel

She looks at me as if she really sees me. I’m sure I’m over romanticizing this moment, but it feels like the first time I’ve really been seen in ages. I kiss her.

The taste of him in my mouth. How I missed this – not his taste, but the taste of another person – the taste of cigarettes and last night’s wine and the way his fingers play with my hair.

On film this moment would be oversaturated with light. Her skin would be too pale against the blue sheets, against the white of her pillowcase. The light would pulse and play across her features, across her body wrapped in the soft blanket. He is propped up on one elbow over her, their faces close enough to touch. In the background, something instrumental and nondescript plays, something with a name like “the morning after” – probably piano and something atmospheric. He touches the side of her face, and she turns her mouth to his hand, leaving a lingering kiss on his palm. They are bathed in a warm light – the sort of light that means possibility and not that day has come and the moment is broken.


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