I didn’t notice the man on the barstool next to me until he interrupted my thoughts. eyes, I also didn’t realize I’d said those words out loud.
I’ve known her for all of three days, but I know she is the one for me. She said so herself.
The man was older. Everything about him smelled of money and lots of it. Even the air around him seems cleaner, better, than the usual stink of a 24-hour bar at three in the afternoon.
I look around me, over my shoulder, eyes, the barstool on the other side from where he sits. We are alone in the bar except for the barkeeper who is busy at the other end, drying glasses.
Being alone was the reason I came in here. This is my hang out, my mid-day sanctuary that no one else seems to know of until later in the day and on into the night when it will be standing room only.
That’s when I met her, right here, or there, about three feet to the left of where I’m sitting right now. She was laughing at something someone else had said which caught my attention. I turned to look and our eyes met. I don’t remember walking over to her, or if she approached me. I just know how the night ended. And how the next morning began.
And I know how I’ve spent the last 48 hours of my life having everything be suddenly different. Clearer. I know what I’m doing now. I’ve found my match, my mate, my soulmate, her words. And until a few seconds ago, I had bought into the same belief, hook, line, and sinker.
Why not? It felt good to be so connected to another human being. But not just any human — connected to her, specifically. Everything about her is perfect. The way she says what she is thinking, as if everything that comes out of her perfect mouth is just as perfect in logic, in reason, in fact, as she is.
He isn’t taking his black eyes off of me. I feel the hair on the back of my neck starting to rise, like a dog sensing danger.
This man is a danger. To me. To this new life, I’ve just discovered.
I sigh. Of course, it’s all too good to be true. And of course, it’s for the best that I am told whatever ugly truth needs to be told sooner rather than later.
The man begins to speak and I focused on his words, the way his lips move to pronounce the syllables and especially punctuation. He likes pointing his finger in my direction for a visual effect that works on me.
He finishes his lecture and stands, finishing off the last of a cocktail I had also missed until this moment. I notice how he holds his little finger away from the stem of the glass. Like it was a part of his breeding.