Tuesday, May 22, 2007

During the journey

During the journey Patrick didn't know if Katrina was asleep, and he didn't want to ask in case he woke her, and so he sat beside her quietly, looking past her and out the window. Her chest was rising and falling, so Patrick knew that she was still alive. Outside, the city began to fade, and soon he could see the sky again. The buildings got lower, and farther apart, and the road grew wider. The bus picked up speed. It really was a lovely day, warm with a breeze. The sight of the blue sky from his window that morning had given Patrick his first inclination that maybe things would work out fine with all this. Katrina had agreed to go with him after all, which had to mean something. And now with not a single cloud in the sky, at least one thing was going his way, and Patrick glanced down at Katrina's knees. Any knee was really quite a miraculous construction really, but Katrina's in particular. Emerging so effortlessly from her thigh, her tanned skin pulled taut with some blonde hairs skimming the surface.
At work Katrina's skirts usually fell below her knees, or else she wore pants. Patrick had never even imagined Katrina's knees, either of them, though he'd thought plenty about the rest of her. He was well acquainted with her face, her defined collarbone, the shape of her breasts beneath her blouses and sweaters. With his eyes shut, Patrick knew her narrow shoulders, her arms right down to her slim wrists. He knew her body curved into her hips, and the swell of her backside. Those strong calves, leading tidily to her ankles. Though her feet were as unknown to him as her knees were, but Katrina's feet, he could see now, were uncharacteristically ordinary. Her knees, on the other hand, were lovely, and he might have found an excuse to touch them. But then Katrina was either asleep or awake, and each state would have called for a different approach, and Patrick didn't know which to choose.