The hallway was dimly lit from the lights placed outside each apartment door. I glanced to the right at the cement staircase and its black ornate handrail. I had been climbing these stairs on fairly regular basis recently. I was standing outside the wooden doorway with my back again the cold bricks waiting for him to lock the door. It had been a few months since this thing had started. I called it a thing still because I wasn't sure exactly what it was, and to call it anything else seemed to make it too real.
I stared at the silhouetted curve of his neck and wanted to reach out, but I was too afraid. I couldn't make his face out as he fumbled with the keys and numerous locks, but I had already learned the set of his mouth and knew what expression he was making. I glanced back down to the mica glittered floor and breathed the cold air in deeply only to feel his lips against mine. They pressed gently against mine and my breath caught in my throat. He pressed me against the cold wall, but I could only feel myself melt in a heap of moist hot breath and longing. Longing to let everything fall away for an instant, this moment of him pressed against me pressed against this wall. And, just when I thought I could, when I could savor the second of loss in tangled mouths and hands in a want that burned he pulled away, looked into my cloudy gaze and said, "Come on," as he clasped my hand and started toward the staircase. The cold breath of winter exhaled out of my mouth like a stream of cigarette smoke. I wasn't sure if it was relief that I hadn't yet lost myself to this thing or that I wanted to.