Christmas wasn’t the best.
But there was new year.
Antoine invited me to spend it with his friends in his small hometown about 2 hours away. I wasn’t sure about it.. I wanted to see him, fuck I wanted to feel him, but I didn’t want to get a train to hang on his arm, to meet a bunch of younger people who wouldn’t believe I just came here on my own and by coincidence found myself right next to him. But my friends had mostly gone home or gone away for the holidays and of course I wanted to see him.
I knew as soon as he invited me, that I’d be there with him at midnight feeling weak and conflicted but that I’d be there.
I made myself consider it, consider my options, mull it over, although the decision was made as soon as he asked.
I took the train on the 31st and a bus after that. I snuck a peek of my face in my hand mirror, embarassed to be checking myself out in public. Because I felt insecure and inadequate, and the other passengers would surely know. I looked tired from all the Christmas drinking, bloated from all the eating, and I had a couple of little spots on my chin because I would be getting my period (hopefully not tooo soon)
I felt pathetic, 25 years old, a marriage behind me, travels and jobs and parties and wilderness and so much trial and error, all leading to this, following a younger guy back to his parents’ town, to spend the new year of my new life in someone else’s world with someone else’s friends.
I got off the bus and my skirt was short for a small town (short for France, even) and a young, attractive black guy at the bus stop looked me over and drew in a whistling breath through his teeth and said Ooh, la la… and something like mon dieu. I looked away embarassed about my skirt but grateful for any kind of boost…
And I saw Antoine in the distance, walking towards me all lazy confidence, limping a bit because he twisted his ankle recently. He kissed me and said I’m so happy you came. I missed you.
He showed me around his town, immune to the clusters of drunk creeps, because he grew up a tall man, so he doesn’t feel the same sense of danger or intimidation that I do. Walked right into a group of these guys to show me the view of the river and the town perched romantically on its banks. The guys started saying stuff to us, he answered, they were clearly very interested in me and if I had been with anyone less tall and French I would have been scared. He answered them and they asked me something and I didn’t really understand so I just said I don’t speak French. They threw a few more jocular comments his way, I think they were complimenting him on his slutty looking foreign acquisition, but maybe I’m just being paranoid-egotistical.
He has no idea of the danger-filter I see the world through.
We left and walked elsewhere, and then drove back to his place.
There was nobody there, the house was empty, everything was built big and tasteful. He showed me his childhood photos on the walls without embarassment. He showed me his brothers and sisters, he poured me a glass of cognac and told me we could drink it up in his bedroom “not to do anything… but because we can smoke there”
I thought the prefix “not to do anything” kind of idiotic, because we have made love so many times and of course we were going to do it again, and again, and again, so I was hardly going to accuse him of moving too fast. But that’s what he’s like. He hates the distasteful, the tacky, the vulgar. I love vulgarity, but I guess I do also appreciate the lack of it in a man.
We went upstairs and drank the cognac and put on some music and then we made love and I thought every time is different, every time it gets somehow better. What I love is that when he comes he doesn’t turn aggressive, not even for a second. He thrusts more violently, faster, harder, sure, but all the while he kisses my neck, my face, so gently and so tenderly. Even if I don’t come too…….. it feels perfect. Afterwards he kisses and kisses me, and I couldn’t imagine any words telling me more about love than those times together.
There was one thing lacking when we were together in Ireland. He wasn’t really comfortable with oral. He tried a few times but I didn’t get a feeling of him actually wanting to do it, so I would pull him back up… I couldn’t relax if I didn’t think it was really an expression of passion or desire. But this time…. well, either he’s had some practice elsewhere (don’t really want to think about that) or else he’s made a conscious decision to do it… or maybe he’s just grown more comfortable with me.
Either way, it was perfect.
He asked me what I was going to wear, which was odd for me because men don’t usually seem to consider or take an interest in the process of getting dressed. They usually watch, bemused, as I fling outfits around scowling and cursing my lack of black high heels or how I just don’t have anything to wear. I showed him one dress, a short one with a sexy lace back. Maybe a bit too slutty for meeting his friends? He ran his hands over my body and kissed me and I sucked in my stomach because that dress is a bit unforgiving. Then I showed him another dress, a more grown up dress, classier. He told me he liked the first, hotter one better but it’s my choice. I wore the first dress.
He brought a big mirror into the room for me to use. His younger brother came home for a while and I was introduced to my first member of his family. Then he left and we made love again and took a shower together. He always wants to shower together, and he wanted to fuck me in the shower which I guess he’s never done so he doesn’t know how disappointing it is. He’s too tall, though, so we couldn’t. There was a plastic step in the bathroom that we considered using but I was afraid it would slip and he might not catch me with his bad ankle. I promised we’ll do it some time…
In the car he told me in his always carefuly chosen words, that he was proud to introduce me to his friends. Of course I couldn’t just take the sentiment, I had to say something stupid. So I said “oh, are they really cool friends?” and then I retracted it and said “sorry.. so you’re proud?” and he said yes, and I kissed his hand.
I felt sad because we both know it’s not going to last. Normally at this stage in a relationship, and actually I’ve never felt so passionately with anyone… not so consistently, anyway, but normally at the intense-passionate honeymoon part, you imagine it lasting forever or wanting it to anyway.
And fuck, I’m in love with his physical presence, with his body, with how he looks at me, with how he gets hard in a split second if I kiss him, how all he has to do is touch me and I want him, how we fit so well… I’m in love with waking up with him, with falling asleep touching as much of my body off as much of his. And then we both know it can’t last, it won’t last, and sooner or later there will be the pain again. If we take it day by day it’s beautiful, utter turmoil turned into complete peace. And then when I think of the day after and the week after and the month and year and where is it going, it hits me hard and I can’t bear it. Feeling like this should come with hope, enough hope to make it light and giddy. But it’s not light, it’s heavy around us. It’s not giddy, it’s serious, it’s finite. I lie on his chest afterwards and his heartbeat counts down to the last time I lie there.
And just when I wind the consequences, the strings of possibilities around in my mind trying to find an end to pull on…. his thumb is there tracing the line of my jaw and his eyes are soft and his lip between my teeth and all I can do is pull him to me, inside me, and there’s the peace again.
What do I do with that?
We spent new year together with his friends and I held my own, I was interesting and nice, I was funny and energetic, I drank champagne and was jealous when he spent so long talking to the girl with the massive cleavage but I held back and let him come to me, let him find me having a good time with other people, living up to his expectations, I hope.
At the end of the night he took my hand and we had our own room and the champagne and the desire from spending hours together but not alone, gave us a wild, brutal session. I woke up so sore and so much in love, and again and again and again. And back in his place we made love and showered and he packed a bag and we took the train together back to my place. My flatmate was gone as it turned out, for the next 3 days, but we didn’t know so we kept to my bedroom.
It was incredible. I had the best time of my life, in that bedroom. I didn’t imagine it could be stronger than before but fuck, I’m lost. He told me he didn’t know how long we would last, but it’s wonderful. I was sad but felt the same. The doom over it all and the openness we have about it, seems to have brought us closer. The sex is never the same, never dull, never boring. Even in my most passionate affairs before, there always came a time when I just wanted to guy to come already because I started to get bored or sore or feel disconnected from the rutting animal who took over from my lover. Or where he’d touch me and I’d feel nothing, and not be in the mood, or when I’d touch him and he’d say not now, we don’t have time before we go to the cinema/party… etc.
But not with Antoine. We spent 5 days together, condom wrappers like confetti in my bedroom. We went to the cinema and restaurant and I took him to my favorite wine bar and we wrote a nonsense story together on a scrap of paper in French and English, and he insisted on paying most of the time.
After 5 days I’m glad he’s gone to visit his friends now, and then back home, I need some time to myself but I wish he was here nonetheless. We didn’t get sick of each other, we didn’t wake up a single morning without being ready for more, we didn’t fall asleep a single night without it being a true collapse from exhaustion. In the 3 days we spent in my place, he lost 1.5 kilos and I lost 2 kilos.
If only he stayed 3 more days I would be back at my ideal weight.
And now I have to find a job, find an apartment… find one with a double bed.
And do something with all these fucking thoughts.