We sat side by side on the bus. All I could hear was the humming of cars, the chit-chat from the couple sitting before us, the screeching of brakes coming in intervals. We were in the still eye of a tornado around us, although she didn’t notice or care. The sun was rising by now and I watched her sleep as she turned pink, purple, then yellow from the sky.
I watched her breathe- up, down – rippling with light, she turned into a painting before me. Images from the night before flash into my mind and I can smell tobacco smoke on her coat. The smell makes my heart lurch and I think of the taste of a cigarette. I think of the taste of her.
A few minutes later, the bus screeches to a stop and she jumps awake. I softly grab her hand, “Is this it?” She turns to look out the window and nods.
Leaves crunch under our boots as we step onto the ground and she immediately reaches into her coat for a cigarette. She lets the smoke travel out of her nose and she is peering at me.
She hands me a cigarette and then quickly lights it for me. I inhale and taste only her. She is staring at me, a look on her face I haven’t deciphered yet.
“Thank you for making sure I got home.”
I take another drag. “I rather would have had you stay.”