“I shouldn’t have come here. I’m sorry.”
He reached across the table and put his hand on hers. She pulled away.
“I need to go.”
“Can’t you stay a little longer?”
There was no guile in his expression. His eyes had turned soft and pleading, his smile gentle and nervous. He was seventeen again, unsure of himself, captivated by the girl with the flaming red hair who could persuade him to do her bidding with her own teasing, alluring smile. He looked at her, a strand of his brown hair in front of his eyes, enticing her to brush it away, to touch his face, to feel his shoulders through his white t-shirt, tempting her to stay, to finish dinner, to find the bottle he had hidden behind the cereal in the cabinet above the refrigerator, to sip and smell the sweet liquor on his breath, and let the evening take them back in time to their wonderful and terrible lives of so many years ago, that would delight the flesh, break the heart, and leave them in ruin.
“I have to go.”
He stayed at the table as she got up and walked out. As she opened the front door, she heard him from the kitchen.
She closed the door behind her.
Copyright 2018, joseph e bird, from the novel Heather Girl.