This is a series of scenes based around awkward moments. Each scene is about anonymous characters who experience something that makes them want to squirm, not so much in a fun way, even if no one else notices. There is humour in awkwardness, especially when you can look back at it from a safe distance.
She remembered the moment clearly, flashed back to it at various moments. The moment when things became awkward, if only in her own mind. It was a moment that she doubted anyone else had noticed unless her cheeks had been stained with a blush. More likely the change had barely been evident, the looks a little longer, a little too much like stares. The flushes slightly more often, the laughter perhaps just a little too bright. Regardless, the moment was long gone and yet it lingered, momentous for her. Momentous primarily for just how awkward she felt.
It was bloody awkward to act normal around a guy after fantasizing about licking his hip.
To start not necessarily at the beginning, but at least with the moment, the day was nothing special. It was simply life as usual although perhaps slightly brighter since he was there. And yet no one watching would have picked it, would have expected something extraordinary. A simple moment of all being present, not just the two of them.
Public or not, it did not matter in those few seconds. Suddenly it was just the two of them, at least for her. He stretched, raising his arms, and the hem of his shirt rose. A peek of pale skin, the shadow of his hip bone creeping into view as the side seam pulled up the point where the shirt was shortest, the front and back tails hiding most of what they meant to hide, only that glimpse bared. It was, of course, enough. Perhaps more tantalizing for being so minimal, so brief. Nothing she hadn't seen in magazines, on television, even in the street. No forbidden view, especially with today's fashions of low-slung pants that seemed to defy gravity to remain where designers had intended them.
And yet, and yet. A view of something that had long held a fascination in her mind. That subtle dip, the shadow just at the edge of the protubance of the bone. An anatomical point of interest. A sight to be seen, a texture to the body that held her in thrall, reminding her of all those moments in the past when she had indulged herself in exploration, those times she had found something unexpected, a gasp, a shudder. All this brought to the fore in her mind in those few seconds of skin glimpsed and most likely unnoted by any others. Afterall, it was no peep show, no eroticism intended. Ending in a momentary flash in her mind of the possibilities of tactile exploration, the wet glide of a tongue over oddly smooth skin. Perhaps the arch of a body, the hitch in the breath. An unknown but anticipated reaction. Dear Lord, she could practically taste it.
How do you look a man in the face after such an inadvertant fantasy?
It was something she puzzled over afterwards. Something that grew within her along pace with the fantasy that began to tinge all her thoughts of him. Admittedly there had already been interest, an appreciation. It was, however, primarily mental. An intellectual crush that had less to do with the body and much more to do with the mind it housed.
The awareness, however, was not to be lost. It had become both, the two entangled. The certainty that he could do for her mind what he could do for her body. A conversation could become as much a parry and thrust as any sexual encounter, the idle question of the possibility of a purely mental orgasm perhaps a little less idle. Someone who could satisfy the mind that had been too long neglected even as her body longed for an expert who could hold a full conversation, not merely an obvious dialogue that wandered no paths that were not well expected. The desire for an amazing cinematographic journey when all one is given is a trite sitcom experience.
They talked, they laughed, they conversed on a level that was theoretical and fascinating while still seemingly remaining impersonal. There were just so many facets she was utterly unaware of. So much about him she did not know, but she felt unable to delve into those things that were personal in a way while still being so mundane. What did he drink? Where did he grow up? Did he like pets?
Then again, she felt a wistful, secret smile when she realized just how many things about her he did not know. The way music wound its way around her spine, threatening to spill from her mouth. The way words tasted to her as she allowed her imagination to spill through her fingers onto a screen or a page. The images she had drawn, her past hopes and dreams. Things she thought might interest him, others she was unsure if he would take an interest in. But still those things a part of her that she wished he wanted to know.
It was all beside the point. Actually, not all of it was. Those things she did not know about him were very much the point. The most important being what he felt. She felt far too unprepared for reading any of the signals that society suggested she should know by now. Friends, yes, that much she could clearly read. But was there more? She just didn't know.
She wanted a written statement. Something obvious. As a friend once said, she would know if he jumped on her. Or a neon sign. That would be good. That she couldn't misread. A big, flashing, glowing sign saying, "Yes, I am interested in you," or, "I have never thought of you as anything but a friend." Shouldn't she be able to interpret catching his eye by now? They were both adults, shouldn't this be more obvious? It always was in the movies. Hah! She should know better. She just didn't want to need to.