His fingers graze your knee like a side conversation as he talks about Vonnegut like he’s the first person to ever talk about Vonnegut and asks, with all the disarming sincerity in the world, if you consider yourself a feminist. You wonder when everyone in your life stopped talking like this – not that anyone in your life ever talked exactly like this – like “cheers – eye contact” and “what are you looking for?” and “are you happy?” – with exactly this mix of eager and guileless and curious and warm. It’s the way he offers his arm before the second round of whiskey that gets you. Or maybe it’s the way he grabs your hand after the third, as if, yes, of course, you must be touching, of course, you must share liquor-fueled kisses in shadowy doorways up and down Milwaukee Avenue. MacCallan on your lips as your make your escape like you can take or leave it. But you can’t quite forget the taste. Contact. You want it.  You want his fingers in your hair and his mouth on your neck.  You want skin on skin. But you’d settle for a text.


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