Sleeves Up

We sit on a fire escape, as if an opera box, on ladder-back chairs with green leather seats. She’s at my left, a woman I don’t know, her left leg crosses over her right, her left ankle rests on my shins, exposed by the slit of my untamed hotel robe. Her right arm drapes across my chair’s back, her left hand lays on my left shoulder, like a Fall leaf.

Her lips lean in close to my left lobe, her whisper tickles the hairs lining my canal. “Do you see what I see? His sleeves are rolled up. No, that can’t be good.”

Across the alley, my hotel room’s window plays on. It’s fabric is drawn aside, exposing my sleeping wife’s silky back, as she dreams of diving sparrows. Our room waiter stands at the bed’s foot, surrounded by an early light as it spills over his brow. In his naked hands, he holds up my robe’s belt, pulling it tight, testing it’s strength.

The handsome figure turns his head, meeting my captor’s gaze, waiting for a nod. She whispers again: “Your hotel serves a wonderful continental breakfast…"

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