He has stopped talking.
I’m looking into his face, searching. I don’t know what I’m looking for. My gaze settles on his mouth then moves to his nose, his eyes. They are a nice colour. He is a very attractive man, with firm muscles under his blue shirt. I see that he’s shy under my gaze. I sigh. He puts his hand on my face suddenly and I remain still. My bewilderment is laced with fascination. His thumb brushes my mouth, pressing slightly. I grab his wrist and I push his hand away. We are still silent.
I look around. The road is deserted. I cannot believe that he has followed me out into the road. I have tried to tell him in so many ways that I cannot be with him. He started on me in the club, holding me against him very inappropriately. His accent wasn’t very clear, but he kept saying he liked me. I tried to push away from him. I was upset, I didn’t sign up for this. This was just supposed to be about wearing a tight dress, smiling at some people and making the brand look good. No one came to my aid, not even my supervisors.
I tried to hide from him, coming out when I thought he was gone. I realised too late that he wasn’t when I collided into him in the unisex bathroom. He wanted me to go back to his hotel with him, he was refusing to take no for an answer. I was incredibly offended, the fact that I was here like this, didn’t mean I was who he thought. He stopped touching me, he kept his hands to himself and decided to rely on his words. He told me his name was Esau, at least that’s what it sounded like, and that he was from Egypt. I thought absently that it would actually be intriguing, to fuck an Egyptian that is.
His friend came in, he spoke better English. I told him, Please tell Esau, I’m not leaving with him. He says, Esau has been talking about you the whole night. I say, There’s no way I’m going with him. He tells me, Esau is an officer, so you don’t need to be afraid. I shake my head. Please tell him I can’t leave with him. He doesn’t listen, he says, It’s between the two of you, and he leaves me with Esau. Esau is earnest, his eyes are piercing. With his dark hair he looks more like an Italian. He asks for my age and traces twenty on my chest when I tell him. That is a nice age for a woman, he tells me. He is standing too close but there is no alcohol on his breath, he even has a nice smell. It is overpowering my senses. He tells me, Look into my eyes. I tell him, It’s impossible for me to go with you tonight. I do not know you, I don’t do this. He says, Nothing is impossible. I am scared to contradict him. His authoritativeness provides evidence of the officer he is.
Now we are outside. It is past midnight. I had tried to escape through the back, but he has followed me. My friends have left me. We are standing quietly and he must think I’m changing my mind. Esau I’m not going to change my mind, I tell him. I’m exasperated, I’m at a loss. Do you not like me? He asks. I shake my head no. Anything to make him leave me alone. But I like you, I like you very much, his tone is beseeching. This man is harassing me. The thing is though, he isn’t treating me like an object, but like a stubborn lover. We are silent again. He notices something on the road. What is that? He asks and I look. I start but then I relax. It’s a chicken, I say. He laughs and I laugh. He has an adorable laugh. I think again for a second, What if? I look into his face. I can’t. It’s not who I am. I think again though, What if? I would get in a taxi with him. Go to his hotel. We would have sex or make love. Looking at him, I decide the latter is more likely. We would probably lie in bed, trying to overcome the language barrier. When the sun rises, he would leave to catch his flight. I would leave with an unlikely memory. Losing my virginity to an Egyptian.
I shake my head. He must see the conflict in me. I am not helping matters. I have to go now Esau, I tell him. He looks at me. His eyes are sad.