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Day 2

October 17, 2012

We didn’t know it was happening until it had already happened. Hundreds of emails, a few phone calls, one meeting in a bar, and suddenly we were on a bench in the middle of a composting display in some sort of living science center, neither of us truly sure what we were doing there. We said some words, but mostly we wanted our faces to be touching. Touching faces, we thought, was probably allowed, though none of it really was. We were both lying. Every second we sat there on the bench we lied: to ourselves; to our spouses; to our friends; to our family; to our employers, even. Breathing in lies and breathing out lies and touching our faces and sitting on a bench.

It was hot. Even though it was late September, we were in Texas, so of course it’d be hot. 91 or 92, possibly. Hot enough to make the navy silk dress I was wearing cling to my skin in a way I felt it probably shouldn’t, which made it an accomplice. Even my dress was lying. And how could it not? I fell and fell, and the very fibers in my dress fell with me, loving and spinning and clinging and sweating and lying and sitting and touching.

It wasn’t just faces touching that we wanted; it was everything touching, with nothing between us but the smallest amount of air possible. My lips found his, or his found mine, or they found each other. There was too much air still, and we couldn’t form a seal. Neither of us had kissed a new person in several years. Our tongues found each other. My breath quickened. Our teeth found each other too, bumping as we struggled to find a way to make our bodies fit. It was too new and too much of a lie. Sweat beaded on my upper lip, and he tasted it.

We heard yelling in the background. I heard yelling in my head, so when I heard the yelling I thought they were condemning us. Screaming, “Hey! You don’t belong here! You’re married to other people! You’re lying!” But the construction workers nearby were yelling about whatever they were building. A bulldozer’s engine roared. Orange plastic wrapped around us. Large pieces of lumber fell and clattered against one another.

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