He was my summertime fairytale prince, cigarette pressed between his slim piano playing fingers. The smell of smoke mixing with the scent of that tangerine tree where he first pressed his exquisitely shaped lips to my neck and where we intertwined grandeur dreams of forever. We played dumb, like we forgot I had a scholarship to a mid-western university with decent academics and a stellar basketball team. Like he didn’t have a demo tape and a bus ticket to L.A. I surrendered my virginity to him under that stuffed elk head in your grandfather’s study one Sunday afternoon when everyone was at the church picnic. I weaved my fingers through that glorious hair he was too cool to comb, looked him right in the eyes and told him it was perfect. He believed me.
The last time I saw him, he drew on his cigarette long and hard and didn’t say much. I could tell he wanted to drag out our goodbye. His eyes shadowed under that newsboy hat he wore. Silence built up and closed us in a beautiful dream. We didn’t need words or promises. I could have woken us both up, but there was no need for him to know I was late. He would have offered to help. Maybe even offered to marry me. But I loved him too much to stop him from getting on that bus.
At least, that’s the way I remember it.
Diane D. Gillette has a couple master degrees, two demanding cats, and lives with the love of her life in Chicago. When she isn’t too busy reading, writing, or appeasing her cats, she blogs about writing at www.digillette.com. You can find more of her published work there.