She opened her legs.
At the same time, I saw that she was struck by doubt. It was in her eyes, her suddenly uncomfortable smile.
It wasn’t a smile, actually; her mouth was frozen into the beginnings of one that she didn’t want to complete. A soundless moan. Her stare was a photograph, and her lids were lenses that had failed to close.
I saw, but I couldn’t go back now.
She had opened her legs, and with a single movement I had simultaneously planted my knees in between hers.
I was hanging over her, my hands beside her shoulders on the bed.
I had seen her face, her lips wasted on a smile that didn’t want to be one. I had a sudden feeling of regret. I felt sorry she hadn’t closed her eyes, for her, naked underneath me, accessible, smelling of femininity and sweat.
The assumption that I would enter her was gone. Her naked flesh, warm gestures, sultriness, proximity – everything seemed to have become pointless.
I couldn’t remain in this position, bent over between her elbow and her knee. What was I waiting for? For what she would do?
She didn’t move.
She had lost all understanding of the concept of free will. I pitied myself for making this decision at such a miserable moment in my life. The woman underneath me had surrendered, not to me, but to what I would do. She had undressed, taken me to this bed, offered me her breasts, her body, and I had caressed her, kissed her. She had embraced me, and we made love, ending up in this position. Nothing was certain anymore. Her eyes, her mouth… Feeling sorry didn’t help.
Her spread-out thighs, the moistness waited for me. I could get off her, perhaps she would be grateful. I tried to gain time by lowering myself onto her. I kissed her shoulder.
When we were done, she picked up a towel, which she’d placed beside the bed, and pressed it against her vulva. She closed her legs. I lay beside her, aware of my own presence, aware of how I’d been where the towel was now.
She draped the sheet over her shoulders and switched off the light.
A man in a bed in a hotel room with no more than a modest wardrobe, a small table with two glasses and a picture of a large African mask on the wall,
one with scary teeth, including several shiny animal ones, or that’s what it looked like.
Beside me was a woman. My cum was inside her. I didn’t know whether she had wanted it. She turned onto her side almost immediately. Perhaps her eyes were open now. I thought of the towel, about where it was, and how I was different from it.
I heard her breathe calmly. Perhaps she was waiting again. The dim light left room for interpretation. I felt the quiet curve of her buttocks against my thigh, and the towel. All I needed to do was to remove it. I saw her hesitate, her eyes, her mouth in the half light. She let her entire body down, seemingly withdrawing into a ridiculously small thought: I’m not here. But she was. The thing that had just happened was repeated. She opened her legs, I squeezed myself in between them, I saw her receding gaze, her glassy eyes, the overwhelming no of her body, and my pitiful yes.
She slept before I withdrew, or she pretended to. I was lying beside a sleeping woman in a bed in an anonymous room. I could smell her nakedness. On what grounds had I entered her? There was great longing for the morning, as if the sun was an eraser that could rub out the night, even if the light had been on. She was asleep, but how serious was her sleep? I was wide awake, my thigh burning from her buttock. Apart from that, there were only the remains of musty air between us. She was resting, her breathing forcing her to be present. A small movement of my thigh would be enough to make her aware of that presence, but what good would it do? In what knowledge was she resting?
I moved my hand, rubbing her nakedness. History reveals itself in what is repeated. Her legs were… I had seen her eyes before she closed them. In between us was the towel, my cum was inside her, while she lay sleeping.
I stretched my fingers, stroking her hips. Her eyes were her only protest, but she had closed them again. She spread her legs, and I climbed on top of her.
There was a woman beside me. She had a mouth, eyes that opened and closed. Now she was asleep, her back turned. I was lying beside her, distanced, worrying in the barrenness of the bed, knowing, not knowing.