It’s a Sunday morning and I’m in the local cafe trying to figure out what to write. On my computer are a few saved files but nothing worth a rewrite. Instead I navigate the internet trying to avoid my words until suddenly, I see inspiration.
He just walked into the cafe and is ordering a bold coffee to go. In the back pocket of his shorts is a Star Wars book, it’s pulling everything into perspective. My eyes follow a slim waist up into a lean chest and broad shoulders. I think about holding his arm close, resting my head on him, turning to him so we can talk.
I listen. His voice has a layer of darkness that sounds like his father’s. It soothes me on rainy nights when there is no thunder. He wants to visit his favorite place, the comic book shop. I ask him why.
He leans in my ear and says, “It’s a surprise.”
Outside the cafe we walk to the car holding hands and coffee in the other. I never imagined finding someone as special as him. The palm that’s holding his is sweating, nerves, but he doesn’t pull away. He makes me feel eager to make him happy so I decide to drive.
Bonk! Bonk! Bonk! I honk the horn three times at the car in front. It’s not moving fast enough so that I can catch the light. We stop at the red. I tell my Baby that it shouldn’t be in the fast lane if it can’t keep up with traffic. He agrees but says next time he’ll drive.
“What’s wrong with my driving?” I say.
“You’re impatient.” He says.
“I am not! I just don’t like people who take their time getting to places. Driving is so boring. Sitting in a car isn’t how I like to spend my time.” I say. He touches my hand and I look to him. The anger in my chest has evaporated into my cheeks, they feel hot. He kisses one of them.
I lean over wanting more. I feel his lips and they taste bitter from the coffee. He pushes my forehead away with his and I sit back down in my seat.
Bonk! Bonk! Bonk! A car honks behind me.
The comic shop is one of the most colorful places I have ever been to. Bright neon towers of books stand in the middle like city buildings. Tiny cartoon faces pear out from their windows. My Babe points to the ceiling and I see a painted night sky.
“I love it when you smile.” He says. He’s smiling too but I say nothing about it. He nods to the back of the shop where I follow him to.
“There’s something I saw last time that I wanted to show you. I think you’ll like it.” He says and then he stops walking. He turns to a wall where there are fantastical illustrations of haunted houses and fairies.
When he stops thumbing through the comics he hands one to me. The cover has a Barbie Doll on it with a dream cloud hanging above it’s head. In the cloud is a real life photo of a woman.
“It’s about a doll that falls in love with a real life woman. You’d like it because you’re kind of like the same thing.” He says. I feel confused. “Always dreaming of how to be controlled by your fantasies. Falling in love with the wrong thing. The wrong reality.”
“I don’t think I do that.” I say, shoving the book back into his hands. He laughs.