Katie stood in front of the sketch and stared at it for what felt like hours. The plastic glass of wine she was holding had long been empty but she couldn’t leave this drawing alone long enough to make the 6 foot walk to the makeshift bar in the corner of the room. The birds drew her in--the movement of their wings, the knowing look in their eye.
If it weren’t $2500, she’d totally buy it. Why was it so expensive? So sad.
“Doesn’t staring make you thirsty?” a voice behind her right shoulder asked.
“Yes. But I can’t walk away. I want to hug it and take it home to meet my cat.”
The voice chuckled. She turned. She wished she had dressed for an art show and hadn’t just randomly walked in on her way back from trying to buy sold out Kombucha at Whole Foods...he was eyes and a smile and her cheeks felt warm like an electric blanket.
“Let’s get you some wine, shall we?”
She nodded and followed him to the bar where the bartender smiled in an excessively friendly manner until she noticed Katie and reigned it in a notch.
“Thanks,” he said, sticking $2 in the tip jar.
“So, do you know the artist?” he quizzed while they browsed the walls and pretended not to sneak glances of each other.
“Nope. I was just walking by and thought I’d come in. That bird picture was calling me. Plus there’s wine.” She raised her glass to the sky and took a sip.
Brief sipping silence. Skin tingling.
“I like the way you smell,” he said, “if I close my eyes I feel like I’m at the beach.” He leaned in and brushed his nose against her hair. How a man in hemp Hammer pants managed to say this without creeping her out was a mystery, but he did. Having his breath in her personal space made her mouth water.
“Well it appears one of us has had more than his share of cheap Chardonnay...” Katie smiled at him. The urge to kiss him was strong but she didn’t even know his name. Was this a reason to decline his nonverbal invitation to a more private location? Apparently not...
Once behind the back office door it was as if the starting gun had fired and the race could finally begin. The anticipation had almost broken her, and she loved the feeling of the breeze on her face as she sprinted toward the finish line.
There were hands everywhere. Clothing on the floor. Lips devouring each other as skin warmed to the touch.
When he finally lifted her onto the desk and their bodies fully connected, she sunk her teeth into his bare shoulder to contain her need to call out. With a huge smile on her face, Katie wanted to scream louder than she ever had. If there hadn’t been a room full of stuffy posers on the other side of the wall, caution would have been thrown to the wind.
Finally the dust settled, their bodies finished shuddering, and Katie ran her nose along his neck and took a deep breath. She wanted to remember the smell of his sweat, the satin feel of his skin. Their eyes met, and his endearing expression made her heart melt. This may be the best moment in time that ever there has been. No thoughts, no worries, no tension, no needs...
They dressed in silence, catching each other sneaking peeks from time to time and smiling in return. As she walked to the door he took her hand and kissed it gently, placing her palm on his cheek.
Nothing had changed in the gallery, aside from the song. Yet so much had changed in her.
Turning to say good bye, Katie saw he had pulled a Sharpie from his pocket and was drawing a bird on her hand. It was beautiful and she instantly loved it. Him. It...