She was entranced with the sound of his voice; the way he looked at her from across the table kept her frozen in one spot. He seemed so relaxed, leaning into the back of his chair as the others continued to speak. It was when the others spoke did they communicate through stares and subtle smiles. She felt her breathing become more relaxed—progressively slower—as she lit another cigarette. Her small fingers spun the lighter around as she interjected their conversation with a few good words. Time passed by with each lit cigarette and growing number of pint glasses. Her interest for the man sitting across from her continued to grow as he sat there listening intently. And when she passed something to him, their hands ever so gently touched and she shivered deep within.
The gentlemen slowly dispersed and they migrated over to another foreign table. They sat next to each other, like partners in crime. She listened closely as the group conversed over beer, mixed nuts and more cigarettes. It was then did he turn to her quite suddenly, initiating their own private conversation amidst the loud chatter around them. She noticed the full turn of his body as he brought up the topic of nanotechnology which led into their thoughts on life and death. He was a strong believer in living; she was a firm believer in enjoying the process of dying. He talked with ease as he used his hands to help get his point across. They slowly forgot about the people around them, becoming fully immersed in their own thoughts. At that point into the night, she had relaxed with him; her shoulders had dropped, her back slightly slouched and she made full eye contact—very unsual for her.
Their departure from the bar was quiet as she slipped past him, unsure of the next move. She opened the door to clear skies, a quiet street with only a few taxis zooming along the road. She felt glorious in that moment. Like she had released a new part of herself; one she had built herself that very night and she could not help but smile as she slowly walked away. She was at the corner of the street when she turned around, pivoting on her boot heel and she saw him walk out and look around. She knew what—or who—he was searching for. She smiled again as she took a step towards his direction. Instinctively, he turned his head to the left and she felt his radiating smile as they walked towards each other.
Standing in front of him, she took careful note of the laugh lines peeking through his ginger facial hair. And the moonlight only highlighted his lively eyes. Little words were exchanged and she sensed what was to come. But he pulled a surprise on her: he leaned forward and kissed her gently on the cheek. He pulled away and stood there unsure of her reaction. Her, in her old sweater, with her scarf dangling off her neck and eyes transfixed on his face. She heard her soft breathing, felt her heart give a flutter, as she gave her approval in the form of a small smile.
She did not know what else to do that night. All she was capable of doing was smile and head home. She knew nothing else. Walking, she felt lighter, the air smelled cleaner and the streetlights seemed to be more dim, unveiling the stars which led her home.