In the store on the corner of the block, you pick your poison, and I pick mine. Among the bottles of beers and fine wines, the image of a growling tiger guides my hands, and as my eyes meet yours and we pretend to be innocent, we both know where this is going. In the seconds that pass as I make pleasant conversation with the old man behind the counter, you go outside and light a smoke but it’s so cold you regret the decision almost immediately. I’m 50p short of cash and don’t want to pay by card, but the old man likes me and says it’s okay, I can pay him later. I tell him that the next time I’m in, I’ll buy one of his expensive dirty magazines and he laughs a genuine laugh then makes a knowing gesture in your direction as you stand not far from the door. You with those black tights that show off such devilish legs. You with that solemn look of a girl against the world but unsure of the reasons why. As a sudden gust of wind snatches the cigarette from your fingers, it drops to the ground then rolls into the road much to your surprise. Looking at me with your arms outstretched, you stamp both feet in frustration. Your mouth pursed and lips blue, I join you a few seconds later carrying our alcohol and am about to comfort you when you swing your handbag and hit me with it on the arm. That’s for making me lose my cigarette! I’m not sure how this works, but I accept the blame and apologise nonetheless. Taking you by the hand, we walk back to mine imagining what will happen once we begin drinking later in the evening. You want us to make love, but I can’t help just wanting to fuck. It’s not that I’m without tenderness, but having you at my fingertips makes it too difficult to resist such savagery. It’s so cold, though, and as the wind bites our faces as we wait for the lights to change a good mile from home, the only thing I have energy for is in dragging our bodies closer to the refuge of indoors.

A Journal for Damned Lovers on Amazon.co.uk

A Journal for Damned Lovers on Amazon.com

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