It is a winter night in California. It’s one of those nights where the air is cautiously still, waiting to burst into the season’s first downpour (but only if you try walking home without an umbrella).

It wouldn’t have mattered, because I am sitting in my car (my dad’s car), with a girl who so stirs me that years later I would remember her as a ghost momentarily caught in golden streetlight.

We are talking about trivial things (neither of us is well acquainted with the silence), but if she is thinking about something else… She could be thinking about me – God knows I think about her. I feel myself floating deep below the surface of an ocean looking up at her, trying to reach out and touch something.
Christ, just make yourself do it. Whatever it is, do it for once in your god damn life, just don’t wait.
I am now cold, terrified, unsure, and I sweat on the inside of my skin. I can just as easily defuse a bomb with a butterknife. I am close to her now (closer than I’ve ever been to anyone), and she looks at me with an understanding that she had been hiding.
Oh God, please I want this.
And unlike any story, or movie, or cheap words sung from the mouth of a man, I find myself choking on the electricity searing my mind as she touches me. I hear music somewhere. I feel her tongue caressing the wounded insides of my pale soul, and I realize, like all men must realize before they die, how weak I really am.

“Oh shit, you should go. Your parents are going to kill you.”

She opens the door, bids me goodnight with a worried smile which reminds me of a dream, and leaves. I feel myself surfacing; expecting to find happiness, I panic. I look at the time. Christ, her parents are going to kill me. I speed off with nowhere to go, hoping the drive home (wherever that is) will keep this memory preserved perfectly, so I can go to bed with it, dream of it, tell it to my children, and share it with her as we slowly die in each other’s arms.