I am trying not to think all the wrong things. I am trying not to imagine all of the moments and all of those times of coffee and car rides and things that I should be sharing with Sheldon not with Charles. I should not even be thinking his name. I should not even. At least I am trying. I feel guilty about not feeling guilty. I have visions of the kisses that we must never have juxtaposed against the singular instant, back pressed against the door, and all this movement. I have been waiting all my life for a moment like this a moment of ending and beginning. I think that I should think why did I ever do this, but I am not compelled. I want to live out these images that float in my mind because of all these life is too short clichés. I have been stilted, moments waiting for Sheldon, keeping the potatoes warm on the stove - he is late again! And I can't be mad for he is the provider, and I am here cloistered off, not knowing how I got here because this nothing of a life moved really fast at one point and then I ended up here in this impossible slowness.
The things that I think about when I think about Charles are mostly comfort things. They are moments spent at coffee shops in the dim lights cozy and the cool London rain outside, cars racing by displacing water onto unsuspecting passer-by-ers who shout and hunker down into rain slickers and ponchos in yellow, brown, and black. Cozy in the dim light that lets us not really see each other but see into each other. God, he has the bluest bluest eyes that I have ever seen, the deepest blue that it's almost a teal, almost a cobalt, not the light blue of the clear May sky that most people have. I could fancy him for his eyes alone. He buys me tea, and I protest that I can pay for myself - he doesn't have the money, can't on a teacher's salary. But he is a gentleman. We are here to talk and be comforted. We are here to bounce our uncertainties off of each other in order to not feel alone in the vast expanse. This is not something I can express at home where I am supposed to have it all with the contended Sheldon. Charles wants and I want. We want deeply to make something of our lives, to live with abandon, with reason.
Charles gives measure and certainty to my fear of the future. He does not give me sympathy, knowing that is not what I want. It would not be a help. Help is telling me with a bit of force that I can do it - make my life what I want it to be. He sees my potential in the deep azure and reflects it back at me, creating in me a potential.
He looks at me over our tea, waiting again for another moment we can call ours. It infuriates me. In this situation - the supposed opposite I need - I have almost created a duplicate. I am momentarily frazzled and depart my internal fantasy. (Here, in reality, Sheldon is rolling over in his sleep.) In the dry warmth of the coffee shop where we are drinking tea, I am taking actions I never would. I am saying that the semester is almost over, that soon we will never see each other again, and that I can't bear the thought of it. I imagine slowly gracing my hand against his, covering it over with mine, looking up to the surprise that is his gaze. I wonder if we kiss will his glasses bump my nose. I wonder if it will feel.
I wonder why I need this, not even completely understanding this impulse in myself. When did my need for comfort transform? Why am I attracted to this older man? Clearly I understand the want for recognition, for validation, for attention even. (He flatters me really.) I understand the want for someone other than Sheldon, who I know loves me unconditionally, to say that I am worthy. Yet how did that need erupt into this unkempt sexuality, desiring kisses. No more than that, just kisses.
If, in the coffee shop, I were to lean in would he lean towards me? Would he recognize what I have recognized? And does it matter because how could I have the courage, the fallacious courage, to do it at all?