“I hope you’re old boyfriends tickled your back for you,” he says and I can hear the pout playing on his lips. I shut my eyes and feel his chest rise and fall slowly, my ear pressed against his chest bone. I feel those first few pinprick tears starting to play around inside of my tear ducts and blink hard to push them away. Keep myself here in this moment, with his hands painting swirls across my back.
“I honestly can’t remember the last time anyone tickled my back,” I whisper towards the darkness in front of me. The dark is pixelated by the city lights peeking behind the blinds. The dark is made softer by the crooning records spinning endlessly and closing us into an insular world.
He pushes his lips softly into my midnight hair and inhales deeply. I inhale too, taking in every molecule of this moment. “That’s a shame,” he speaks, “your skin is so soft.”