Serendipitous Soul: A Serial Story — Part 3
I Know I’m Losing You
– Your love is fading.
– I can feel your love fading. It’s fading away from me.
– You don’t sound very original, Adam.
– I’m not.
– What is it then?
– I thought you’d know.
– Don’t give me a hard time.
– The Temptations. I played it for you the first time you came over to my apartment, remember.
– That doesn’t sound like a good start. Remind me why I married you?
I met her at a coffee shop around the corner from the office. Her name was Seeley.
– How can I help you?
– Faith thought we should meet, that you could give me some advice.
– What are you looking to do.
– I’m finishing up NYU and want to do something creative, something fun. My old boyfriend was a filmmaker. Faith said you did something really interesting but she didn’t really get it. We would hit it off, she said.
Thick wrist, bracelet scores the flesh. Want to kick at the chair leg. Blond hair. Thin lips.
Miriam — dead flower scent, damp cloth, cold sponge. Hug the edge of the bed. Legs tight. A big motor hums in the mattress coil. Miriam exhales.
Close my eyes. Breath in. Release. Breath.
Faith’s eyes tumble like bounding does.
We only slept together that one time and I want to remember how her cheek felt against my chest.
Eye-wrinkle, lizard whisper. Penny leans over the cafe table.
– You can help me figure out how to write this plan too, Adam.
– You didn’t say we’d have to do work together, you know.
– Funny, Adam. What’s the matter.
– I’m just pissed.
– The girl leave you.
– Not that we were really together.
– You have to keep it uncomplicated, Adam. It’s not about love.
– What was that, Miriam?
– Do you know this place downtown, Mico’s?
It’s like a buck of water spills over me. Ice cold. Sensation lost.
– I don’t know.
– A bunch of us are going down to a trunk show on Water Street and Penny suggested that it would be a good place for lunch. You don’t know it?
Breathe slow, let the jumble crash down — Where is Jessica? Penny? The bracelet still in its case. The kiss. She lowered herself down on me squatting on her heels. Snow caught in the taxi light. A pouty lip at the bar — breathe slow, pin it down.
– I don’t think so.
Fifteen characters. In four hours.
– Miriam, I’m going to have to stay in late tonight to get ready for a meeting tomorrow. If it goes too long I might stay in. Call me back.
I’ve got the night sight now. I can drift through the inky sky. Telescope down into the youngest girl’s room. Miriam bathes in star shadows. Crouch by the bed. Brush her hair.
Snap back, soar away, stretched out on the couch, unfold the image of Faith, watch it stretch and twist, hunt through the air for her elusive shadow.
– I’m so glad we could finally get together.
She’s wearing her makeup stronger, the eyes smokey, the cheeks hollow. Her blouse is silk. She’s not wearing anything under it.
– Maybe we could go back to my hotel to talk a little.
– I’ve got to meet someone later. I just wanted to see how you were.
A humid ring circles the shot glass. I run my finger along it.
– Is it something you have to do?
– What, you want me to stay the night?
What can I say? Yes isn’t an answer.
The black car races like a bullet along the expressway, above shuttered buildings, past giant billboards, into the red trailing river of lights. I grab the arm rest. I want to know what I can know.
You’ve fooled yourself as long as you can, I say out loud.
The driver grunts.
My heart is screaming and I’m the deaf man walking into traffic. Don’t watch what happens to me next.
The kitchen light is on. The dog tilts in the crate, head askew. Put my bag by the door. Slip my shoes off.
White receipt with blue lines on the counter. Miriam’s scribble on a Post-It.
Francesca gave me the receipt for your sister’s 30th birthday gift. You forgot it. Remember?
This story is the second part of a five-part serial that will be published here each Friday for the next month. It is a writing exercise. The plot is inspired by the first five songs that shuffled on my iPod. Each installment is exactly 750 words. You can find Part One here and Part Two here.