The skin of her face is soft, her mouth tastes like nothing, like cold lips and a warm tongue. At first, I think how long it's been since I've kissed so slowly, let a person guide me along with her mouth, her teeth, but then I remember Kate. I smile, so much that my front teeth clash with Marianne's, and our heads jerk back slightly at the noise this makes. But I am still thinking of Kate, thinking of what's worse: forgetting or denying.
With Marianne it is different. There is heat and expectancy, a focused and heavy desire. Voicemails and emails with closings that have progressed from "Later" to "Love." There are side glances and hesistancy, and there are kisses with fingers on my cheek.
With Kate there is none of this. There is guilt, jealousy maybe. There is no satisfaction in having her hands on me, but instead in the moments when she tells me no and then asks for it only minutes later. She asks directly, hands tight around my wrists, the smell of her hair, flowers and cigarettes. I turn away and then her lips against my skin, light and just barely there, saying, "I'm sorry. I'm so sorry."