“Yeah, usually I get some sort of response from you.” My fingers hesitantly went up to the lock on the door, stopping part of the way before finally undoing it. I opened the door only far enough so that I could see the sleeve of his shirt. He must have heard me but he didn’t turn around, he just continued staring out into the hallway. My finger gently traced down one of the stripes on the shirt.
“Do you want to come in?”
I had to order an ashtray to leave out for him during his visits and started to keep a well stocked wine collection. He was observant, quiet, but it wasn’t uncomfortable. You would think that spending time with a stranger in silence would be, but his very presence was calming, peaceful. Somehow I knew that despite what I had seen that night he would never hurt me. On our second lunch…date? Could you call them dates? I wouldn’t call them that, it just seems weird. Anyway, the second time he showed up for lunch he was wearing a ripped up pair of jeans that seemed as out of place on him as they did completely natural. He wasn’t the cool sleek professional that he appeared, but just a regular guy that wanted to eat with me.
“I don’t even know your name,” I whispered absent mindedly while I waited for the water to boil for my tea. He was sitting at my small kitchen table, a cigarette between his fingers and a glass of wine in front of him.
“I don’t know your name either,” he replied. He was right, neither of us had willingly offered up this information until this very moment, a month after that first time. Anonymity was such a big part of our meetings that it had never seemed important to find out. Why should I pester him about a name when I’ve already shared more with him by letting him into my apartment in the first place? What more could he possibly find out about me from my name than by snooping around in my bathroom? Was knowing a person’s name really that important in creating a bond with them?