Shades of the Moon

He leaned across the bench seat to touch the curl of her damp collar and trace the waved line down to the first fastened button of her blouse. It was a warm night, dusty and moonlit, the opening curtain on summer, and she was married, but that was back in the bar.

“Don’t be shy,” she said.

He wasn’t being shy, he thought, and it wasn’t shyness that drew her to him or that made her firm in the smooth heat of his palm. It was the many blackbird questions set loose and flying away to the moment on the other side of this, their first kiss.

“He doesn’t think about me,” she said. “Don’t you think about him.”

He kissed her sweetly. “Does he own a gun?” he asked.

“I’ve never seen it,” she said.

“How could he be tired of you?”

She looked aside even as his fingertips touched her chin and brought his eyes back to hers.

They kissed again and drew close.

“He travels too much,” he said.

“Tell me.”

“And I bet he’s tired all the time, watches tv every night while you do what—cook, clean, write the checks, raise the kids. Who takes care of mama?”

“You just don’t know.”

“Oh, I think I do.”

The two shadows grew small and rounded in the ascending moonlight.

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