I am a liar.
Em, can you help me with this tie?
Didn’t you hear me? I’m a liar.
He leant his forehead on the doorframe. His hair was thick, black, shiny. It was straight, almost spiky and fell over his wonderfully tan forehead. He was outlandishly handsome. There was no denying that.
Don’t you want to know what I am talking about?
He looked at her sideways, and there was tiredness in his hazel eyes, green in the dim haze of the dingy hotel room. Then he walked slowly towards her, slouching, his back a weary hump, and put his head on her shoulder. They stood like that for what seemed like an age.
He didn’t say anything. He just leant on her, and she had to bend her knees slightly to support his weight. He smelled of leather and expensive spice. A hint of manufactured tobacco essence, and cinnamon. She could smell his hair, so human and masculine, clean sweat. She closed her eyes and loved him incredibly in that moment.
I lied to you, Dean. I lied ab-
Shhh. Just – shhhh.
His finger was on her lips. He straightened up, tied his tie, slid his watch on to his wrist and went to the door.
They were silent, walking down the stairs. Her heart was racing, and she glanced sideways at him as they emerged through the dirty glass doors of the hotel. He glanced back at the sign, ‘Hotel Mariano’ the ‘O’s were blacked out marks where the metal letters were welded on once. The orange street lamps gave his face angular shadows. His forehead jutted out at night. It reminded her of a gorilla.
Why won’t you talk to me about it?
Just drop it, Emily, won’t you?
And now we’re just going to the party and pretending everything is normal?
Everything is normal.
You don’t even know what –
Just drop it. Please. I don’t want to know.
Do you even care?
She dropped it.