Point of No Return

He’s behind you, hoping this surprise stops the panic rising like bile, bubbling like wine, fizzing like cheese. Knows that at sixteen he was impressed by the size of things: Snickers, hot dogs, books. Hopes you will be also. It’s taken a while to get to that.

He likes your handwriting, that’s not bored yet, your unpuckered legs, eyes defying skin around them, not ready to crease, unfamiliar with origami. Doesn’t know why he gave you his address, phone number, told you what his favourite meal was, singer. Wishes he could take back days, un-see The Exorcist, understand Deuteronomy, speak Spanish, learn languages, gain stamina, write an entire book.

From inside, you’ll watch the people it’s not illegal to see. You’ll wonder, if you could kiss in public, would you want to, or would you be bored to, the way Mad Men’s not as good now it’s secular, how Brad Pitt being a household name doesn’t mean you want to fuck him. You used to want to. And there are lots of men like that, people.

Letting go of your hand. Dropping you off. Deleting numbers. Blocking email. Ignoring requests and fending comments and stopping photos filtering. Re-reading Codes of Conduct, contracts. Figuring when morality slipped and you created standards for yourself and why you ever thought it right to do this. And her hips parting, the creases at the tops of her legs.

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