I pull her into my arms on impulse, her small sound of pain as her eyebrow brushes against my shoulder making me let go.
“No. It’s okay. I like being close to you.”
We breathe into each other, mouths a few inches apart, her features blurring. An edge lives inside me, vibrant and real, relocating wherever it’s needed. It divides me, making me know the difference between baseline calm and danger.
I want to live in baseline with her.
I want to live with her. Not co-exist.
She turns, somber and achingly present.
“We can’t keep doing this.”
“Not talking about this.”
Instead of asking her what she means, I slide my hands to her waist, palms greedy at her curves. She’s taut and fit, with more muscle than I can see. My hands find it, memorize it.
“Let’s talk, then.”
“We’re breaking every rule.” Her eyes flit to the jammer bar on my wrist again.
“Once you’ve mastered the rules, you know when you have to break them.”
“We were never taught that.”