You walk back from the bar, a drink in each hand. You smile, a grin that slips sideways as you get closer. For a second the air shimmers and flares, a bright magnesium glow around you, and I have to look away.
The world has always looked different with you in it. When I saw you walking up the stairs, when you looked up from your phone – I’m here. At the rooftop bar. In the corner – and found me, it was that same sudden, silver glow. Clouds blocking the sun, and every particle of light directed at me.
I forgot, for a second, how to breathe.
And now you are here. Awkward hellos out of the way – our first hug all angle and impact – and the first few minutes of conversation navigated. It’s nice see you. It’s nice to see you, too. You look good. So do you – nice glasses, by the way. Yeah, I finally gave in and admitted I’m getting old. Ah – me too. Empty wine glass lifted in a toast to that, and you jumped up then – Let me get you a drink. I’m dying for a beer.
Both forgetting we said we’d meet for coffee. In the sterile safety of afternoon.