Let’s talk about my love life, these days, shall we?
My nails bite into his back, but he takes them, sharp as they are, and he is unbreakable. His skin in thick, the muscle underneath taut to the point of hardness. I stab and press and nothing makes him yield, but gradually, with my strength into it, I feel the start of a pliancy. He’s tough, and there’s a challenge there, beyond simply getting a reaction, to help melt away the wiry solidity into something completely supple.
I’m white as a snowdrop against the sallow-sand colour of his skin, my body soft where he is hard and rough. Our bodies slide together in a way that meets and balances, although he is taller, I can lift him without excessive effort, not just because of his lightness but because I’ve always been fairly strong for a woman. My head fits well against his chest, nestled against his shoulder, and my arms around him, seatbelt-safe. His hands, casually playing around my waist, find the exact place on my spine where the muscles and bone carry things too heavily, pressing until the always-ache I’ve learned to ignore lets go.
I lean over the foot of his bed, stretching, and watch his slender, straight legs, upside down. I like to look at the ratio between the spareness of his body and the breadth of his shoulders. I like the way his eyes are hooded and long lashed, and the delicate sculpting of his nose. I like the gravel in his voice, and the way he looks at me, sometimes wanting, sometimes with a hesitant vulnerability like he’s not sure quite what he’s doing, but most times just hard to read as he’s usually pretty closed off. That, in itself, is a challenge, since I’m used to being the one knocking reactions out of people.
We try little bedroom games, what works and what doesn’t, but just as much, we talk about all the things that tell who you are, a few pieces every time, and twine up together, in a lock-knot of limbs.
I am happy, although it’s very much a situation built on shifting silt, as mercurial as one might expect given the circumstances. It’s not a safe and stable meeting, and I don’t feel sure footed with him, at once sharing myself with as much flayed honesty as I can and on the other hand, keeping some restrictions on the impulsivity and carnal impishness that defines me. We are not sure what we are doing, not sure what I am, other than that I am there and present at this moment, where I can help.
So I make myself into the safe, accepting stillness that I learned how to be a long time ago, and I tell him that for now, I’m in charge, until the storm has passed us by. On the balance, the trade off is knowing him with nothing in the way of illusions, in the rawness of a crisis, and finding nothing lacking in him or his response to it. So there’s that.