I may not have made this clear as of yet, but I absolutely love the Beatles!

If you haven’t heard it, don’t you know that Happiness is a Warm Gun?

—~

She’s not a girl who misses much

She’s well acquainted with the touch of the velvet hand like a lizard on a windowpane

—~

You wouldn’t even notice her, if you had just walked into the mirrored room. There was enough sequin dazzle to flummox the eyes and enough laughter and tinkling of champagne glasses to tempt the ears, and if you weren’t looking for her, you wouldn’t notice her. Not until about thirty minutes in, towards the end of cocktails, when you had drifted deep into the ballroom, pulled by a waterless tide through flowing masses of people, and were just beginning to feel the first flushes of warmth from the champagne; that is when you’d notice her. Basking luxuriously like a lizard on a golden couch in the back of the room, cradling her glass in an elegant black-gloved hand. Her dress would be made of the deepest velvet night, with sequins like stars; and her skin like a pale sunbeam through a morning window. Her dusky hair would shade eyes that were rimmed in night but sparked with solar flares. Your eyes would linger involuntarily on her, but then continue their journey around the room, and you would forget her…

Later that evening, after the dinner was over, the speeches made, the guests thanked, and the coffees served, you would linger in the reception hall, reluctant to leave, and still feeling a little warm and genial from the red wine. And then you would notice her again, as the crowd began to thin, right where she was, on the golden couch. This time she would be looking right at you, and the fiery eyes would seem to be inches from yours, across the room. She knows you: she has seen everything you’ve done and said tonight, everything you’ve thought, everywhere you’ve glanced surreptitiously; she’s read it in the way you held your glass and the way you laughed and clicked your nails on the napkin ring. Her red lips would suggest the sheerest outline of a secret smile, and you would know what to do.

You would excuse yourself for a minute from your conversation, perhaps telling them you needed some fresh air, and then you would start across the room. Multicolored sequin lights from the many chandeliers would reflect off the mirror-lined walls and dazzle you. Your eyes would hunt for hers across the room and your heart would begin to pound. When she finally meets your eyes, your shoes would suddenly turn into heavy hobnailed boots and you cannot walk another step. The room would cease spinning. Something about the heat you feel rolling off of her in waves would remind you that the most beautiful lizards are also the most poisonous.

And then, reading your thoughts, she would actually smile, or smirk; a sound like a gunshot would roar through your belly and blow your hair back and you would have the sensation of wailing in high falsetto. Lights from chandeliers would dance before your eyes and when you finished blinking, your eyes would find the golden couch, and she would not be there.

And you might never see her again, but you would know that she will always be there, basking on the golden couch in the back of your mind, secret, like a gun in a closet, humming and warm.

—~

 

 

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