Just Us

Zahra Kasem

“Hey, I didn’t think I’d get a chance to speak to you tonight.” He pauses, touching my hand softly he squeezes it and leads me into an empty room. I don’t protest. I should; but I don’t.

“Are you having fun?” He smiles. His voice is low and calm, I feel it ripple around the room, as if waves that gently wash onto feet brushing away the sand.

  “Yeah, It’s good, it’s…. Yeah.” I stumble, my voice shakes, unable to concentrate. He laughs and smiles nervously; the room is quiet. The noise of the band’s smooth lustful notes creeps into the room.

  “Do you want to dance?” He asks tenderly, I smile, and he leads me into the middle of the room, he stops and waits as I walk around to face opposite him. He puts my hands on his shoulders and delicately places his hands on my waist. As he touches me, I inhale sharply as I feel his fingers secure my back, and pull me closer towards him. My wrists naturally fall onto his stable biceps as he supports me and begins to move slowly from side to side. I follow his lead as we slowly circle around the room, swaying like a leave in a gentle autumn breeze.

  Shyly I direct my eyes towards the floor, I stare on the old wood which has been varnished, so it shines in the subtle light. I focus on the feeling of his fingertips which lightly press onto my skin, soothingly he strokes me with his thumb. He moves his fingers onto my chin and directs my face up towards his. I feel his gaze as we stare at each other, I look at the ocean blue of his eyes. I imagine exploring the depths of his sea, finding the forgotten treasure which hides below the calmness of his waves.

   “How was the trip?” He asks simply

  “Yeah, it was good.” I pause, losing concentration as he looks at me.

  “I missed you.” He smiles, I watch his pink lips effortlessly move to create his words,

  “You shouldn’t be saying stuff like that to me,” I begin to protest.

  “Why not? It’s the truth and it isn’t like anyone is going to know.” He seamlessly convinces me, I start to speak.

  “It doesn’t leave this room?” I ask knowingly teasing him

  “It doesn’t leave these four walls,” he confirms and spins me under his arm, I can’t help but giggle.

  “If I’m honest, It was a bit lonely. Me and Alex broke up,”

  “What, I noticed he was with some girl, what happened?” His tone changes and I feel his arms tense up.

  “Second day of the holiday, he takes the early train to Paris where he presumably met up with his date for tonight.”

  “But how did he break up with you then?” he asks

  “He left a note on my bag. I travelled around by myself and actually met some pretty nice people.” I explain.

  “He did what?” he speaks angrily, “I should teach him some manners.” He walks away from me, I chase after him and manage to catch his hand.

  “Wait, just think about this, Wait,” He firmly places his hands on my waists and lifts me onto a nearby table.

  “I can’t believe he’d do that and to someone as special as you, doesn’t he realise what he’s done, leaving you. How could he be so stupid.” He moves away from me, but I quickly grab onto his tense shoulders.

  “Wait stop, you don’t want to make a scene. Just wait, look at me,” I catch his soft cheeks which are warmed and filled with fury, His eyes glow as a stormy tidal wave of rage explodes out of them. I stroke his soft hair and pull him into me. His head heavily drops onto my shoulder. I feel his breath begin to steady and his muscles relax gradually. He looks up into my eyes, I feel the softness of his gaze, as the ocean returns to calm and soft waves.

  “It’s okay, honestly don’t worry about me, just enjoy your day.” I speak calmly

  “How can I not worry about you. You are in my head, you’re the first thing I think about in the morning and the last thing I think about at night. Your what I dream about. I create a world of  just us. We’re alone. And it’s perfect. We spend mornings making breakfast and doing crossword puzzles, and days chatting and going on long walks on the beach or in the forest. I look forward to being asleep because it feels so real. I look forward to seeing you. Just being with you.”

  “I know, I know” I reply, my heart aches as I think of the world outside these four walls.

  “How can you? You don’t understand.”

  “I do, I…I understand,” he looks at me and nods his head. He smiles and lets his head rest on me.

  “What do we do now then?” He asks softly into my ear.

  “I don’t know, I honestly don’t know,” I answer quietly,

“We could run away.” He says troublesomely. A grin appears on his face

  I lift up his head and secure it with my hands.

“ Really?”I ask, my mind races with ideas, with pictures of a life of just us.

 He looks into my eyes, we can’t help but laugh. He stops laughing and he looks at me. Studying everything.

  “What, what is it?” I ask

  “You.” he pauses and smiles, “You have a petal in your hair, must be from earlier.”

“Can you get it out please,” I ask. He lifts his hand up to my cheek, he pauses. Leaning closer towards me. I close my eyes. Feeling his soft skin brush up on me. My hands move onto his back.

There is a knock at the door.

We move away from each other.

“Come in.” His low voice speaks.

“There you are, it’s time to cut the cake the bride has been looking for you everywhere,”

“Right…Yeah…Sorry, I’ll be right there,” He walks out the room, pausing at the door, taking in the moment, taking in me.

He then leaves me alone.

I notice he left the door open, letting the outside world in.

{ Zahra Kasem } Bio

Born in Glasgow and love days at the beach and hanging out with friends and family.