Biographies & Memoirs

Chapter 32

I haven’t had a working watch since I went swimming at Bondi a month back in my Anne Klein from Filene’s, but I know it’s at least one A.M., maybe closer to two.

Tracy and I went out hard. We saw a band called the One Hit Wonders. They brought the house down with “My Sharona” and “Tainted Love” and the best ever, “867-5309.” Everybody sang along, and it felt like Friday night at Lambda Chi all over again. I’ve been thoroughly overserved.

On my way up the driveway, I grab a stick to swat down all the spiderwebs. It’s automatic now, as though this is actually the house where I live. For all my swinging and swatting in the dark, I’m still draped in silk threads that I can feel but not see.

John left a light on in the kitchen to guide me. Thoughtful. When I lean in to turn it off, there’s Ev, holding a magazine, drinking what smells like coffee. He’s so strange and cute and old.

“No work tonight?” I ask, surprised.

“Naw, new schedule.”

“Oh, well, hi. Is that coffee?”


He never goes out and gets ripped and sings “She Blinded Me with Science” arm in arm with a bunch of strangers.

“Just gonna get some water. Stave off the hangover, you know.” I enter his space and get a glass.

“Where’d you guys go?”

“Epping Hotel.” I lean back on the counter, taking a long drink, standing as close to him as I ever have, made bold by many pints of VB. “You haven’t seen my book, have you? I can’t find it.”

“No, sorry.”

“I think I left it on the train the other day.”

“Too bad,” he says. “All right, well …”

“Well …”

“I guess I better get some sleep.”

“Me, too,” I say, pushing myself away from the counter.

In my room, I stand by my bed, rubbing at traces of spiderweb on my neck, mad with frustration and urges. Maybe he doesn’t like me—after all this.

Of course he likes me. He tried to teach me to play chess!

Before I can think twice, I’m back in the kitchen.

“Forget something?” he asks.

I look at him and say, “Nope.”

And then I stand there, waiting, sure I will ignite if he doesn’t come over, if he doesn’t take four steps forward. But he does.

He crosses the once-enormous-now-tiny kitchen. He puts his arms around my waist and leans in and kisses me and it is so blood-tingling to finally be kissing him that I can’t kiss him enough. I kiss him to make up for every minute we’ve spent together not kissing. I kiss him like he swam the Nile to get to me, like a prisoner released, like it’s his first kiss, like it’s his last, like I can bring him back from the dead. I will do that, Evan, I will kiss you until you feel like yourself again, until you revert to your true age and become just another cheeky bugger—bold, hungry, unstoppable—trying to shag the American girl who’s come to care for your half siblings. I will be that girl, Evan. I will lie down—in this kitchen, on this floor, if that’s what you want—and let you walk over me like a bridge to the rest of your life.

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