A Man in Thrall
She clung to him as if she wanted their cells to merge, and she keened—because it seemed like the end, and tragic; or, more tragic, still more tragic, not the end.
If I can’t live with you, I’ll die. It’s all I care about. That night, in the midst of it, shocking both of them, he giggled. She lifted her face from his face to see why—could he be making fun of her? Hurt before she looked, looking she saw, no, that wasn’t it at all and kissed his face, and he whispered, “Just listen to me groan!” but didn’t say, Oh, so this is what it’s like, “romance.” This is romance! Well, what a goddamn awful, goddamn foolish thing. Then he turned his face and looked into her eyes again, and tears came to his eyes. “Oh my God, Deborah.”
And she: “I know.” Her mantra. “I know.”
About the Author
John J. Clayton is the autor most recently of Kuperman’s Fire (Parmanent Press), a novel, and Wrestling with Angels (Toby Press), a collection of stories, several of which first appeared in COMMENTARY.