(Art by Brent Lynch)


He almost takes a sip when He hears

Her order. Skeptical of Her class, He

peers at Her, only to be caught by Her

lush glow. She has already made the


first move. One point for Her. He

breaks this trance to make the next.

Confidence seeps through His cigar.

He lights it with a crisp, and draws


Her gaze to His. One point for Him.

The bartender interrupts their game

and hands Her a martini. The smooth,

silk garment slides down Her arm,


shoulder to wrist, like a river effortlessly

flows across ground. He is pulled. Two

points for Her. But somehow His body

resists and anchors itself to His own


glistening drink. The bartender fades,

along with the sound of polishing wine

glasses, and a silent chasm forms

between them. They wait–


He smokes his cigar to fill Himself

with what pride remains, but it

vanishes like the smoke He exhales

into the dying air. He looks at Her

and sees a goddess giving life to His


heart. He sets down His cigar. He pries

His hand from the martini. He takes

the first step into the space between.