(continued from part two)
over the next week i had seen you almost everyday. you did not mention that first day's soccer game, and acted as if you barely knew me. we had very casual conversation, very different from the past conversations of our dreams and the
coolest superheroes. i was stunned by your failure to even look me straight in the eye.
was i disappointed? had i expected an explanation for that...first day?
over the next few days i grew increasingly restless, my two female cousins alejandra and linda noticing.
"what's wrong with you? ever since last tuesday you've been acting weird," alejandra pokes me. all three of us lying sprawled on her bed reading magazines.
"i'm fine...i think i just ate something bad."
the two sisters nod in understanding; their mother's food is very different from the food i am accustomed to. that and the fact that sometimes it doesn't sit well.
my mother comes in and tells us to get dressed.
"we're going to your uncle's house today," she says.
"didn't we just go yesterday? and the day before? and the day before that?" linda moans.
"linda you don't have to come, but you have to. no excuses." she eyes me and i roll over into the pillows.
in the car i am dreading this visit. it will be exactly the same as the others; except emerson isn't going, so i will have no one to talk to. i can't very well talk to vanessa, and grazela is too young; tavito won't talk. and i don't even want to face you again. we walk up to the stoop of your very tall house, and i see a few boys playing ball down the street. i recognize your curly shag, and i shove my way up past my mother and aunt and knock on the door.
we all sit down to dinner, and your mother walks to the door to call you in. you come in, your face a little damp, and everyone greets you. you return them with a very open smile; you look in my direction and smile bigger. i don't smile back.
your mother enthusiastically pulls open the empty chair next to me, and plops you down. i sigh and fiddle with the beans on my plate. the dinner goes by with the grownups gossiping about everything; we are the only two children, except for grazela, and we do not talk. vanessa is at a birthday party, and who knows where tavito is. after the meal the plates are cleared and replaced with coffee cups and small dishes for cake. how much coffee does our family drink?
i excuse myself to go to the bathroom when really all i want is to escape the awkward silence between us. i splash some water on my face while i am in there and fix my hair. i actually look decent.
so why wouldn't he talk to me? not that i would want him to...but still.
as i walk down the hallway back to the dining room i see all of the pictures of your family on the wall, and am surprised to see a picture of me as well. two pictures...no three. four? one of them is a current picture of me, a portrait--maybe mom sent it to them? the others fluctuate, one when i was 11, two are younger. gazing at the wall i do not notice you standing in front of me, and i bump into your chest.
"go back down to the dining room. meet me upstairs in 3 minutes."
you stride past me up to the stairs. none of the lights are on upstairs, but i hear a door close. confused, i head back down to the dining room. why are your eyelashes that long?
i sit down and wait. the adults haven't even noticed my return, and i nibble on a small piece of cake. has it been 3 minutes yet? those 180 seconds go by quickly. i rise and casually make my way back up the stairs to the picture hallway.
the hallway is dark now, as is the upstairs where you went. i reach the top of the stairs and wonder where you wanted to meet me; in your room? on the balcony outside?
before my eyes are able to adjust to the dark, a pair of hands grabs me from behind. one covers my mouth and the other crosses my chest, pulling me back. i panic, and my arms thrash, the feeling of a wall pressing against my back. the hand over my mouth disappears and i open my mouth to scream, but am silenced. your lips inhale my scream and your body presses mine against the cold wall. my hands search the wall behind me, frantically searching for something to grasp, as my mind cannot even grasp what is happening. your hands then silence my hands' frantic search as your fingers lace with mine.
that damned tingling is back. now there is no stopping it.
finally, after about forever, you release me from your lip lock and i gasp out of sheer shock and for breath. you place my hands on your shoulders and my stomach churns as i feel your hands skimming across my hips and thighs, feeling every inch of me.
"we can't, this is..." i stutter, your lips burning the very same spot on my collar bone as they did days ago. i feel that we are moving; we have moved closer to a lit doorway. your room.
my fingers grip your curls, and i feel my body surrendering. the wall at my back disappears, and you push me into your room, landing on the bed. the door closes, and the lights fade.
if only i had taken note of the figure sitting in the window in the corridor before you shut the door behind you. perhaps we might have known that we had now damned ourselves; not only in the next world, but in this one.
the final, part four, coming soon