It happens entirely by surprise. The city we live in isn’t big, it’s not unusual to run into an acquaintance unexpectedly. Nevertheless, this catches me off guard, both because I haven’t seen this person in a while, and because of the way I feel about her. It’s one of those intense sexual connections, the likes of which I have experienced but vanishingly rarely. Seriously, I’ve had long-standing relationships that lacked this element, it’s happened to me, perhaps, six times in my life.
Jared and I are showing our local club to friends from out of town. It’s living up to its usual standards, the music is hard, the back bar of the basement is red-lit and smoke-filled. Our friends are here from America, they are delighted with the place, there’s little like this where they live, it certainly seems to be a distinctively European experience.
Many rounds of dancing, trips to the bar later, our friends leave, it’s already 4 am, they’ve put in a respectable effort. Jared and I are far from done; we’ve got a few hours in us still. The basement is a sweat pit and we’re ready to get lost in it, to let time warp around us. This atmosphere touches the deeper levels of the psyche, there is an urge to move en masse, a sense of freedom. Connection and disconnection in the same place.
We’re dancing up front, when suddenly Panther appears like a vision on the dancefloor, out of nowhere. It has been a long time since we saw each other. When I first catch sight of her I can scarcely believe it, it can’t possibly be her. I convince myself it’s not, it must be someone else, it’s someone who looks familiar, whose name I’ve now forgotten…
But no, we lock eyes. It’s her, and I do know her name, and there’s no denying the attraction persists between us. A reeling on both our parts, I feel like we both double-take in unison, in slow motion. A moment of recognition, suspended in time, I’m unsure for a second whether we’re going to say hi or not. She smiles, and I see light in her eyes.
She is tall and ethereally beautiful, a sexy alien. Prominent cheekbones; large brown eyes; wide, full lips, and a big smile with teeth that protrude ever so slightly. Short wavy dark hair stands dramatically off her head, her small nose is slightly upturned at the end. She wears a black turtleneck, black leggings. She moves towards me, it’s like I’m seeing someone in a dream, and I can’t quite put my finger on who they are, I’m so stunned.
Finally, only a second later (but it feels like it’s been an eternity, so many thoughts have passed through my mind since I spotted her), she grabs me as I bounce and jerk amongst the crowd. She kisses me on the lips by way of greeting, there’s feeling in her kiss. We’re dancing as we press close. She is pure drama as she dances, her whole body appears to rise with her shoulders, she has the boldness of a performer. She interacts with people on the dancefloor, almost like she’s having a conversation in movement, such that I’m not sure if she knows them or not. She dances up to a girl much shorter than her, with a head of curls. They sway down, knee in crotch, stopping just short of fully sexual, teetering on the brink of it. The club, with its low basement, is a throbbing thud hole, a blender of bodies and madness tending towards oblivion.
Her dance brings her the few metres back to us, we’re dancing together now, some smatterings of shouted conversation that it’s c…