“Do you do this often?” she asked.
“What, sit outside and smoke a cig? All the time.”
“No silly, do you ever walk for the sake of walking?”
“I run for the sake of running,” I responded.
“Try walking. Sometimes you've just got to take life slow.” She took a massive stride and balanced for a moment, with one foot in the snow, one up in the air behind her. She closed her eyes and smiled, then started to shift her weight backward.
“Don't fall,” I instructed her.
“Don't freeze to death,” she retorted as she went tumbling into a snow bank. I was loathe to admit it, but I was starting to feel a faint prickling in my arms. I didn't usually stay out this long. It was too late to go inside now though. What if I never saw her again. What if I never saw those deep green eyes again? I didn't even realize that I had been looking at her eyes until the thought of their disappearance occurred to me. The whites were so white, and the greens so green. The contrast made them stand out like emeralds lit from behind. Lit from inside her skull.
I extended my hand to help her up, but she just planted her hands firmly in the snow and launched herself onto her feet. She laughed as she fell onto my chest. My arms curled around her. I didn't tell them to do it. She was just another plebeian in a stupid jacket, why were my arms doing that? She laughed. This time it wasn't a self-conscious laugh. It was a laugh from deep in her chest. I laughed too, because her face was wet with snowflakes, and I could feel them seeping through my shirt. Or were those tears? Was that a laugh or a whimper? I looked down. Her hands were wrapped in the cloth of my shirt, and she was weeping quietly into my chest. I didn't say anything.