It isn’t that I am a mess of a person, a ghost of my previous self, a victim of my most recent actions. It’s that I did not set out to become the person I am now. Is it no wonder how I can feel vulnerable and yet capable. Drunk almost on the known and the unknown. I am a traveler of time and an appalling person. I am Karl.
I built a pyramid with the unopened envelopes, I stare at them as I try to tie my tie. Four in the hand is surprisingly hard after a few drinks. Giving up I throw the tie at the wreckage of the coffee table. I laugh a little as it flutters around before landing about halfway between the table and me. Smirking I pick up the tiny duffle bag and the stack disappears.
The pink of the neon, the gliding train above, the filthy rain, all of it seemed perfect. Pushing open the door the vending machine of hopes and desires sits down the long hallway. Leaning against it I let her video play. I chuckle each time her eyes look up to the roof of her head for the right words. Feeling like I needed another drink I slide the credits in and the room card plops out. I pick the card from the machine and take the elevator up so many floors it’s not worth counting. A chime follows me as I walk to the room. Another chime and I toss the bag onto the bed. I go to straighten my nonexistent tie, though only buttons I find. The door slides open again, as it has done. She walks in, glitter traces the finer points of her face. I feel the power of me fade to a distant murmur of a light. It pounds in my chest as she takes her time to walk closer to me. The space between us closed, I smell her hair, her perfume, smell her. Pushing her away enough for words to fit I speak “If I asked you now, for anything, what are my chances?” smiling she looks up and meets my eyes. I can say it was then that I realized; I wasn’t doing the saving.
We sit on the bed as she smokes a cigarette, blowing rings into the air she slides her hand down her thigh. I try not to pay attention, but my attention is the one thing she grasps. “I can pay for every night, every night. Let’s go somewhere, somewhere different!” I am standing but don’t even know it. “Somewhere is a lot of places. Let’s try for closer.” she drags her hand back up her legs, it catches a little on her dress to expose more skin. I cough at my discomfort of want. “Where then?” I ask as she blows smoke into my face. Taking my hand she whisks me out of the room.
We sit in the silly mix cultured bar where we shared drinks for the first time months ago. We get two bloody mares and stare at each other. I try to guess how long I could keep my sanity as I sit in front of her. Grinning a little she nibbles on the celery stock. “I want you to know, that I am far worse then the last time you saw me.” she stops smiling at the same point I stop speaking. Stabbing her straw into the bottom the of the celery she decides to respond. “We’re the best type of disasters, we can recall what got us here, but this doesn’t mean we’re not finished fucking things up.” I sit there trying to understand what she said before I notice her hand in mine.
She drags me along the street, we kiss, we dance in the dirty rain. “Can you show me the truth?” I try to yell over the sound of splashes and public transportation. She spins me along like some sort of tango. I spin, maybe twirl, to be honest, I have no idea what the difference is. “I can show you a lot of things, I not sure if the truth is really what you want.” I attempt to stop the spin for a second as I try my best at a gaze. “Truths are the only god damn things I am looking for right now.” I burp as I finish talking. She drags me past the pink neon. I fear the potential and regret it as we make it to the entrance of her apartment building. “Are you ready to see what this dream bought me?” she asks. The rain leaves dark lines against her skin as her dress clings to her. “I am more than prepared to fuck-up.” I say. She smiles and I smile.
The lights feel unbearable as we walk down the hallway to her apartment. She slides the key into the slot, another chime, fuck’en chimes. Tossing her cardigan on the bed she walks off into the kitchen as I stand awkwardly in the doorway. I unbutton my jacket, unsure where to put it I fold it on my arm. Before I was willing to admit that I was still confused, she bends her head from the kitchen wall. “You know it’s not haunted or anything, there are drinks in the cabinet there.” Pointing off into a general direction of her apartment. I take one step, then another, soon I am in her living room, standing there as transparent as a specter.
She looks up from her plate, I watch the two little speckles of me in her eyes. “So?” she asks. Blinking the identity of me disappears. “So, so, this is unbelievable you are an amazing cook!” I say as I try to chew down a bit of cabbage. She smiles again, when I realize, this, how far it may be, is what I have been looking for.
We sway from side to side, dancing to the music in our heads. Carefully and practiced she undoes my belt. I unzip her dress, it falls to the floor as she pushes me onto the bed. I splash down, the ripples happen, and we’re soon as bare as we were born. Her hands slide across my chest as my thumbs glide into the dimples between her hips and torso. Rain taps against the window, nature outside and in. I open her, damp flesh splits. Inside her I feel depths of unfathomable harmony, a sizzling light fills my body as she shifts herself. I lay as she moves up and down like a breath, inhale, exhale, to miss the air when it’s gone and yet its return just as beautiful. The passing train illuminates the room. Her skin glows as her teeth pull at her bottom lip, joie de vivre. Pulling her close I roll our bodies. I exit her for the moment. A peck at her breast, a trail of kisses down the line of her frame. The dew nearly drips as my lips meet hers, my tongue dances along the petals, entering, leaving, a kiss again. Her body shivers as hands squeeze hands. I return into her, I push hard, to reach places untouched, but probably touched before. I try to keep time, 116 bpm, a rhythm, a speed, a becoming, a coming. I knew I loved her before this, I thought I knew myself before this. This- this felt like the only thing I ever knew and could ever know. Dammit.