the book of embraces, chapter Felicity

It was a movie and slumber party at a cousin’s house. So many kids jammed together on the floor that there wasn’t room or enough secrecy for any Planned Parenthood caliber shenanigans. Still, he managed to sneak a kiss and draw his finger gently around her stiff nipple. Studies have show some have touch sensitive enough to discern colors where there is a light source. There was no light. Her areola was Mayan nut brown. A Sephardic color no centuries of feigned Catholicism could dilute.

All she said: “You shit.”

Was it that he’d molested her at her friend’s and she could not stop him without public humiliation or that she was pissed off that the evening had to end with nothing more than the molestation? He could not guess which. Fifteen years later it still bothers him that he will never know and that not knowing was enough to stop him from asking her out, or even ever looking at her again.

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