Aaaaand, we're back in the room

“Jamie? Jamie!” I swim slowly back into the world. Carla and Jocelyn each have one of my arms and are shaking me none-too-gently. “Whuh?” I utter, blinking in the subdued light of the bar. It is hot in here and I twist gently, trying to get some air to my skin. “What did I miss?” I ask, finally hitting full consciousness.

“She’s here,” says Jocelyn, “and she’s looking at you.”

I follow Jocelyn’s gaze to the other side of the room and BOOM! She’s there. Crisp white shirt, navy suit and a dark tie I can’t quite see from here. Her hair is tied up in an elaborate set of twists, plaits and pins: it must have taken her hours. And she is looking right at me. And smiling.

Carla jabs me in the ribs with her free hand, reminding me to breathe. “Off you go,” she says, releasing her grip on my arm. I sway a little, balancing on my own for the first time in several minutes. I grab them both in a quick hug and make my way across the bar, my dress swishing exquisitely as I move.

“Hey, man,” she says, “let’s dance.”

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