'if you stay out here in the cold all night, you'll die.' you said, taking my hand in yours, bringing my fingers to your lips. 'your hands are like ice.' i didn't look up at you because, although my hands may have been cold, your touch made the rest of me catch on fire.
'if i go inside, you'll leave. and i don't want you to leave.' i whispered into the snow, half hoping the words would be swallowed up in all that white. i wasn't sure i really wanted you to stay, but i knew you couldn't go. you let go of my hand, and i felt my breath catch, i thought you were going to run away, that you'd read more than a fear of the cold in my voice. instead, that hand rested on my flushed cheek and guided my eyes to meet yours. they were the brilliant green of spring and your hair was the auburn color fall leaves. winter couldn't take away your brightness.
'i'm not going anywhere' and you kissed my forehead, sending warmth through my body once again. you guided me up from the snow and you held my hand all the way home.
I sat on your bed while you drew up a hot bath for me. everything smelled like you. my feet were warm in pink slippers, trying to fit themselves into the worn places where your toes had sat so many times before. As i wiggled my toes, I wondered how the rest of me would fit with the rest of you.
'it's ready,' you called softly. i slipped slowly of the sheets and focused on the feel of the carpet beneath my feet, feeling the shock as my feet crossed over to the cooler tile of the bathroom floor. you were seated on the counter wearing your fuzzy socks. you'd removed your heavy jacket and had on a tight fitting black long sleeved v-neck. you pulled your up in a pony tail. your freckles looked like reverse stars against the pale of your skin. i removed my coat and listened to the sound of it falling in the floor. in your hand you had a cup tea. the steam curled around your lips, so full and soft.
'thanks,' i looked up at you, seeing that sweet smile on your lips. i reached to take off my shirt, and you slid off the counter.
'i'll give you some privacy' you turned to go and mustering what courage i had, i grabbed your hand.
'please don't go...i'm not ready to be alone.' i saw the concern in your eyes as you seated yourself back on the counter, pulling off off your socks and taking out a bottle of delicate pink nail polish. slowly, shyly, i removed my clothes, letting each article hit the floor before taking off the next. as i slipped off my jeans, i thought i saw you watching me. i blushed and looked down into the water, dipping one foot in to test the temperature, before sliding my whole self into the water. the tub was deep. i arched my neck and sunk lower, coating my hair with the hot liquid. i closed my eyes, sinking still lower into the water, savoring the feeling. i breathed deep and submerged my whole self. the water was free of soap, allowing me to open my eyes with no pain. i stared up at your ceiling, watching it move with the rhythm of the water. lost in the hypnotic sway, i parted my lips and watched as the little silver pearls of breath floated up and disappeared at the surface. they were so simple and beautiful, like little jelly fish, bobbing up, not knowing or caring about the final destination. so lost was i that i didn't even feel the pain in my chest as my lungs begged for air. it was your voice, so soft at first, muffled by the bath, that called me back.
'i brought you inside so you wouldn't die,' you were kneeling right next to the tub. i re-surfaced, gasping and sputtering. you put your hand behind my head to steady it, making sure i didn't smash against the tiled wall. you're face was so perfect, i couldn't believe i'd let the water distort your image enough that i let myself get so close to leaving. i realized i was naked. blushing i covered my breasts with my hands. my labored breathing was not entirely because of my near-drowning experience.
'sorry.' i whispered. you looked at me, curiosity burning behind your green eyes.
and then you kissed me.
at first your lips tasted far away, like the water still somehow seperated us. slowly though, like a diver coming up from the dark depths of the ocean, i broke the barrier between me and you. never before had anything ever felt so right. you pulled your face back, your hands still supporting me. i was breathing hard again. you smiled, your eyes filling with a beautiful satisfaction.
you stood up, and i feared you were leaving, but instead you began to strip your own clothes off. i watched in awe as your black lace bra sliped down over your hips and landed near your half-finished pink toes revealing beautiful peach colored skin i'd never seen before. although the tub was deep, it wasn't terribly large. I sat up to make room for you. i kept my legs pulled in close to my chest, not sure what to do. i felt your toes play with mine and a new kind of smile played at your lips. i streched my legs out a bit and let them tangle with yours. something about that new smile made me feel brave: i forgot all the things i hated about myself, all the ugly, rough, imperfections i saw, and placed one hand on your knee and the other on your flushed cheek, leaned in, and kissed you. gently at first, but then i felt your lips part under mine and your hands found my waist and pulled me closer. i wound my fingers through your hair and kissed your neck. i looked up at your face and saw your eyes filled with something passionate and playful. you bit your lip and i felt my whole body light up. kissing along my jaw you moved to my neck and bit, just hard enough. i threw my head back and you kissed down my collar bone, slowing down, becoming cautious, as if to ask my permision before going further. seeing no sign of protest from me, your lips continued down my chest, then reveresed and travled back up to meet mine. i let my lips wander all over you, not feeling as the water cooled and the steam faded, because i was radiating a wonderful warmth on my own.
you climbed out of the tub first, and i watched the liquid drip down your skin. you grabbed a towel, becan to dry off, then stopped, and simply lay down on the cool tile floor. i smiled at you and you smiled back, all traces of the sadness that'd clogged my insides for so long was gone. i finally had you. i followed your lead and and joined you on the floor, intertwining my fingers with yours. although the floor was cold and hard, it felt like i was on a cloud. you rolled closer to me and rested your head on my chest. your breathiing slowed and soon enough you were fast asleep. streching my leg up carefully so as not to wake you, i flipped the light off and drifted off to find you somewhere in my dreams.