This story has been set to a rating of R. Age verification is required to proceed.
Untying the sleaves of my running jacket around my middle I slow down to walking pace and put it on. Spring should be around the corner, but tonight it doesn’t look like that. My accelerated breath forms small clouds of steam in the night air. I ran longer than my standard running playlist lasts so it went over to the next… In bed, the kiss, not entirely accidental I named it after the famous painting by Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec on drizzling Sunday afternoon in bed with Tina. Some of the most affecting moments of lovers are the ones that capture them in the simple day-to-day routines, those moments that make up a life. As the first notes of Time after Time from Eva Cassidy starts playing I round the corner. The wind blows from the Seine and I zip my jacket up as I follow the quay.
Hiding in their winter coats a few fearless tourists, who choose Paris as their winter holiday destination stand packed closely to each other. They are stamping their feet to keep themselves warm, waiting at the pier for the next tourist cruise, that will sail them over the Seine, along the many tourists sightseeing’s, just to return them two hours later at the same pier. And then the next group of people will step in for the same round. It goes from morning till evening, seven days a week, 365 days a year. I saw it countless times from our window. Leaning against the quay wall I stretch my legs and look up at the apartment. In between us there’s a two lane road and a strip of grass with a few birch trees in the middle, that never blocked the view.
Taking my phone I press back and Eva starts to sing all over again about a drum that beats out of time. Tina added this song, next to many others, to our shared playlist after she had given up trying to reach me through all the regular channels. She used songs to communicate. It was after she told me what had happened that night in Texas. I moved out of our house and she tried to reach me in every kind of way. She was relentless. Calling day and night. Begging me to listen on my voicemail. Sending long texts, short texts, when words failed she even resorted to emoticons. I found handwritten letters in the mail, mails in my inbox. She showed up at the gallery. At the Planet. At Kit’s. Wherever she thought I might be. But I just shut her down. Refusing to hear a word she had to say.