The 7th Floor

I leaned my head on his shoulder and peered outside the bus windows. Mostly traffic, some honking car horns and a drab hazy sky. I had lived in this town my whole life, but never taken the bus. We’d bought a bottle of Jack Daniels at Food Value and I was taking little sips, for him big gulps.

“Want a sip?” Sam asked the young busty brunette with an accent sitting across from us.

“Where are you from?” I asked.

“Yes a sip. And Germany.” She said.

“Are you going out downtown?” Yes. Other friends from Germany are visiting.

I liked the fact that I didn’t mind Sam’s eyes on her low cut tank top, breasts, almost corseted, plunging upward.  Usually I was jealous of other women.

The night before, 3 am, my feet swelled and I held my high heels as we walked through a little park hand in hand.

Sam said, “I wish you were the pregnant one.  I love you.”

He also told me, “She broke my heart in this park.  I cried forever.”

We fell asleep at his place.  Candle wax dripped from the window down the
wall.  In the morning I noticed a narrow red waterfall of wax.

I shiver on the bus because I’m cold in my breezy cotton skirt with the polka-dots, but also because I’m afraid, and like an unconscious twitch-my attraction to Sam moved my body closer to him-I couldn’t not be close.

When we got to the college, we went into a classroom that seated about 100. Sam had just graduated from this college that sat on the edge of the sea.

I held the bottle of Jack and used it as a microphone.

“Class. Pay attention. Life is a highway. I want to ride it all night long.”

Sam grabbed my hand and led me toward the library.

It was a stuffy 1970’s style library with orange carpet and brown walls.  We took the elevator up to various floors looking for a place to fuck.  He’d said he’d always wanted to, but it had never worked out.  We kissed in the elevator, trying to keep the kisses quiet as not to get him too ready too soon.

It was the 7th floor where we ended up. Sprawling windows overlooked the bright green grass that led to cliffs that led to sea. A gray bearded man sat on one of the stools in between an aisle reading and a couple aisles down from that another young
brunette with a scrunched brow highlighted a large text book.

We walked down more aisles of books with no people in them, toward some tables that were pushed together.  I put my hands down on the table with my back toward Sam.  He pulled my thong to the side, unzipped his pants and started fucking me wildly, but without sound.  My hot pink sunglasses fell down from the top of my head and sat on my face.  I looked back at him smiling.

There was some sort of movement nearby, some sounds of shuffling.  We didn’t care.  The noise passed and we could finish.

I took a gulp of Jack Daniels; wash wash it down.

We walked past the young brunette and gray bearded man, and they didn’t glance up or look embarrassed so we thought maybe we were quiet enough.

“Next time in the aisles,” Sam said.

The sun had gone down through those large sea side windows and now, smeared water color sky, pinks and blues, a wink of purple.

We took the stairs back down in case security had cameras.  And for some reason we ran down the stairs, wildly as though we were late, wildly as when we were fucking, wildly back into the cold air near the sea.  We had nowhere to go but back on the bus, back home, to his place where he might cook some type of camping food-chicken or sausage or eggs or maybe we’d just drink more Jack and fall asleep.

When we got down the stairs, we saw a homeless man sitting on a bench.

“Can I buy a smoke off you?” Sam asked.

“I can roll you one for free.” The old man said.

Sam smoked the cigarette and we walked toward the bus.  I had the occasional puff.  I tilted my nose to my hair and took a deep breath.  Smoky sea salt, stuffy library books, sex; I needed to shower off.

Back on the bus, I leaned my head on Sam’s shoulder, and held his hand.  He
ran his fingers through my hair.

I had to go back to San Francisco. He had to be a father.

“Maybe one day.” He said.

“Maybe.” I said, nuzzling my face deeper into his shoulder.

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