My lips feel chapped against the grain of my multi-colored scarf. You had given it to me so long ago, I forgot if it was for my birthday or for Christmas. I muddle through the crowded street and pushed my way to our apartment.
Stamping my feet and shaking off the snow, I enter our warm home. Your cat sits on the chair in the corner and I say.
I always wondered why you named your cat Arnold. It reminds me of that character from that one tv show we both watched as kids. I don’t remember the title any more. Was it really just called “Hey Arnold”?
I hang my coat in the coat closet where it belongs and pick up the mail that you left in the entryway. You never want to look at all the junk mail so you make me do it. For some reason, you always feel the necessity to open up every letter even when it is clearly just junk mail. I remember coming home once to find scattered papers everywhere with you sitting in the middle carefully reading a credit card promotion. It was this way with you sometimes. You would get so fixated as if you didn’t mind that you distracted yourself with something really tedious. I smile at the memory.
“Kerry?” I hear you call. “Is that you?”
“Hey babe” I say as I walk to the kitchen. I see you are by the stove cooking a delicious smelling dish. It always surprises me how much you like to cook. I mean, I love cooking but in my experience I hadn’t met someone who loved it more than me. Well, that is to say before I met you. You turn to face me and smile.
“My sweet.” You say as you catch me in your arms. I am still surprised at being able to hug you so freely and being near you so often. I squeeze back and enjoy your warm embrace. My arms start to pull away but you tighten your grip.
“Gotta catch’em all” you say in my ear. It’s so ridiculous I just laugh. My body is buzzing against your chest. We stand still for a few moments and I hear the hissing of water boiling on the stove.
“The pasta!” You suddenly pull away. I am still smiling.
“Can’t let the pasta boil over, Chef Tegan.” I peek around you to see the water has indeed started to boil over the pot. I grab a checkered towel from the counter and start to wipe around the pot.
“No no!”, You shoo me away. “Back, back. Milady does not need to assist the poor peasant boy in the kitchen.”
“But what if I want to help my farm boy?” I say, slightly pouting.
Your eyes twinkle and you wink at me. I think it’s both charming and hilarious how you wink at me even when we are alone in the house. As if there is some ghost that might be listening and we need them not to catch our inside joke.
“Ahh but even the farm boy must do as you wish and this morning you wished for delicious pasta primavera. I must continue for milady.” You say.
“Then I bid you A-Dieu” I say and turn to leave the kitchen. Picking up the mail, I put all of it in the trash and I grab a cup of water. I turn to leave.
“No parting kiss for your farm boy?” You say while stirring the pasta on the stove. You are so funny, it’s one of the many reasons we are in love.
“As you wish,” I lean into your expecting lips. “You are ridiculous and it’s everything I love about you” I whisper into your ear. As I pull back, I see the blush on your cheeks. It makes my heart jump. How you manage to make me feel so alive is still a mystery to me. But it’s a mystery I don’t mind never solving, as long as you are by my side.