Emily arrived a few minutes earlier that she should have for their walk. She let herself in and burst into Luke’s study like the sunshine from behind the clouds. He told her that he was nearly at the end of the chapter and asked if she would she mind waiting. She smiled and said “good”, went straight to the bookcase, took a book from the shelf , kicked off her sandals and settled herself on the chaise lounge to read.
Luke continued working until he heard a soft thud, her book had fallen onto the floor, she was asleep. He took this as a chance to really study Emily. He started the journey with her toes; they’d been painted bright pink, the pink of English seaside rock with writing though the middle – peppermint flavoured toes – he smiled. The varnish was slightly chipped. His ex wife would never have tolerated chipped varnish. With Emily it gave the message that she had better things to do than worry about her toe nails.
Next he studied her ankles, slightly bony and tanned. He couldn’t see her legs properly because of her jeans, but he could imagine them. Long and strong and slim, they seemed to got on forever. He wondered why she never wore a short skirt. Perhaps there was a scar?
Luke followed the line of her thigh and hips with his eyes. Her shirt was white and showed off well the start of a tan. He could see the outline of her breast moving gently as she breathed deeply in her sleep. Her long hair surrounded her shoulders almost as if she’d studiously arranged it, a cascade of reflections from the afternoon sun coming through the windows.
He reminded himself that this fascination in her was nonsense, they were supposed to be ‘just friends’. When he’d finished his chapter he started a new document and sketched what he saw in the only way - the best way - he knew, with words. His long slim fingers caressing the keys as if to coax them into producing the best words that they could. Emily stirred in her sleep, her hip gyrated ever so slightly and her toes curled. Her lips parted and as she sighed he could just see the tip of her pink tongue. She opened her eyes and adjusted to her surroundings.
“Sweet dream?” he asked her. She looked sleepy and flushed and smiled, avoiding his eyes.
He wondered if he’d ever know her well enough to ask her who she’d dreamt about that afternoon….