A thin sheet was all that covered Robert, and, for the most part, even that had been cast aside. Sometime during her sleep, Rene had kicked the covers away entirely, and, as she lay uncovered, her breasts rose evenly, peacefully – her quiet breath fluttering from her lips. Her blonde hair was splashed across the silk pillows, platinum-white in the darkness. She had not a care, enjoying the deepest rest, a child’s rest. Robert, on the other hand, found no sleep, but he knew why. It was time to take the relationship all the way.
Robert was captivated just watching Rene, thinking about the past, the future, as he had every single night since they met, many nights before. He thought about the trips they had taken to Venice, to Vegas, and the night the two of them spent in her childhood bedroom in her parents’ plantation house, shoved unceremoniously into a twin bed. The sex that night had been ridiculous.
He sat up a little, his excitement making his head ache a little. Her dog, Chewbacca she called him, groaned softly from the carpet, dreaming about rabbits or Beggin’ Strips or that cute poodle down the street. The whole world seemed to be in a great mood, and why not?
The fan traced lazy, uneven circles on the ceiling, its base loose and creaking, a bit out of balance. Robert realized they had forgotten to tell Jorge about it, so it had never gotten fixed. Not that it even bothered him now – everything would be different tomorrow, and such mundane things wouldn’t bother him anymore. The dog picked its head up, looked sleepily at the fan noise, and yawned. One of his great mop ears twitched and chased a fly away, and he went back to sleep. Chewie wasn’t the world’s best guard dog.
Headlights went by outside and down the boulevard, flashing through the bars of the gates outside, ghostly through the sheer curtains. It had rained, and the sizzle of tires on the road made the hot night feel even more like a frying pan. He couldn’t wait to go north again, away from the heat and the glare.
He again looked down at her, sleeping. So lovely, so successful. Bred from a long line of success. Robert couldn’t believe his luck. He remembered the first time he saw her – he was on his phone in the lobby of the Regency, feeling more than a little desperate. His phone had buzzed and he had just glanced up and away, too nervous to even look to see who was calling. There she was, climbing the staircase, her back to him. It didn’t matter – something about the way she carried herself, the way she was dressed, even the bag she had slung from her shoulder. He knew right away that she was perfect, that she would be his. He had been there waiting – watching, it turned out, for her.
“Sure, I’d love to have dinner,” she had said, and dinner led to breakfast, and breakfast led to a movie, and they’d seen each other almost every day since then. She was his angel, and she would make everything in his life ok again. He truly believed that, and she did too, in a different way.
It was almost too good to be true.
Sometimes things just work out – maybe someone up there has got an eye out for him. He laughed at the thought, but choked it back so he wouldn’t wake her up. Too late, though. Her eyelids fluttered, and she squinted even in the low light.
“You ok, baby?” she purred.
“Never better,” he told the truth. “I just still can’t believe I found you.”
She smiled out of one side of her mouth. “So whatcha doin?”
“See anything you like?”
“You know I do,” Robert said.
She propped herself up on her elbow then, and Robert got a bit anxious, in spite of himself.
“Care to do something about it?” Sure, he thought, she picks tonight to be horny.
“Just go back to sleep, kiddo,” he said. She was supposed to be sleeping.
Chewbacca got up, and made his way out the bedroom door, which stood slightly ajar. The dog was off for one of his trips to the kitchen, to get a drink or a few morsels of food. After a minute, Rene drifted back off to wherever women go during sleep.
With a smile, he ran one hand, his fingers, through her feathery blonde locks. He grabbed, close to her scalp. Rene was startled awake, looking at him, not understanding, which was probably for the best. “Mike,” she whimpered, “Mikey, what are you doing?” He thought of the jaunts to every fucking tourist-ridden city she set her mind to, and of putting up with her cow of a mother and the rest of her redneck family.
“It’s time,” Robert mused, as another car ambled by, its lights catching the recent wedding portrait propped proudly on Robert’s dressing table. Robert pulled his pillow close on his lap, looking over at the picture. Michael and Rene 7/8/16 read the frame, one of the happiest days he could remember. Man and his new wife, smiles from New York to California, where their honeymoon was spent. “I think I’ll grow a beard,” he thought to himself, “Maybe darken my hair. It’s time for another look. No choice in the matter, really.” He could feel his heart start to pump a bit fast. Everything he had ever done had led up to this.
With his other hand, Robert picked up his expensive pillow, and covered her face. Rene made a strange mewing sound, and kicked her legs. Robert didn’t look at her, he averted his eyes, and thought again about he climbing those stairs at the Regency, and their first dinner and when he truly decided she was the one. She thrashed a little, trying to catch her breath, though not as much as he thought she would, as the others had. She clawed at him, too, but he had come to expect that. They all did it. Chewie came back in, looking at the happy couple from behind his shaggy bangs, and huffed. His head then dropped out of sight as he searched for the perfect spot to spend the rest of the night.
Chewie slept, and soon Rene was quiet, too. Robert sat alone in the dark, and he bent close to her perfumed neck.
“Thank you so much,” he whispered in her ear. He kissed her on the cheek, and thought again how lucky he was to have found the woman of his dreams.