At last. It was a shining, golden hour, like the sun had moved closer to earth. A hyper-real, hyper-luminous glare, light stabbing furiously at earth, plants, trees, grass.
“Maybe this is what happens,” she thought, wiping fog from the painted-shut window, “when the light so suddenly breaks through,” after days and weeks of unwelcome clouds. It was as though her eyes hadn’t had the luxury of languorously stretching to meet this onslaught, her sight so long shaded from it.
July. Mid. Days still long, but husky-voiced with the density of humid air and, until now, unwavering gray.
She turned off the faucet and stepped out of the lukewarm shower. Naked, she had an urge to run straight outside to meet the strange glow in the backyard, but thought better of it. Neighbors. She dried off, taking her time, bathing anew in front of the creaking box fan in the hallway.
He knocked, quietly at first, then louder. The fan made uncertain the rapping at first, but as it escalated, she realized that it must be him.