You’ve been dating about seven months. Short enough to realize you still don’t know half of him, but long enough to realize that he’s got 3-4 quirks you’d never go for had you found out about them early on. Getting to the point where you sleeping at his is becoming the norm, so you’re studying him carefully to notice any signs of resistance. Poker face. Seven months in, it’s still a game. Now more than ever.
Cut to a weekend morning. A wild night out leads to a spirited conclusion, and you both wake up in a whirl. Next to each other, but in that way couples a few years your senior do.
It’s then when you get that first glimpse; definitive labeling is scary, but there’s a future here. One where you actually enjoy hearing about how Gary was being a dickhead at work. Or where you could be legitimately excited to do nothing but watch re-runs of whatever terrible show she watches on BRAVO, or he on FX. Or where we attend older cousins weddings and look at each other with that look–both of us with sort of an idea, but also not at all.
It’s a glimpse that lasts a bit longer than you’re both comfortable with. It’s a glimpse that’ll have one of you realize that it’s 11:05 am, and sheath half the day was wasted already. Of course this is part of the allure; it doesn’t work if both of you don’t unintentionally sleep in. For one of you, that’s how this whole relationship started in the first place–terrifically unintentionally.
Saturday clothes are on, and it’s time to hit up the downstairs. You’re given even more evidence to your long-standing theory that his roommates don’t actually move from the couch; last night it was dominos, weed and Saving Private Ryan, now its egg sandwiches and FIFA. They barely acknowledge you and their roomie. Part of this is a passive-aggressive ploy to exhibit disapproval of you taking him away from them. Though most of it is a 1-1 deadlock approaching the 87th minute. Rooney’s threatening.
You reach the door. It’s technically with earshot, but barely. But it’s within earshot, because this is the time. The tipping point. You feel it, they feel it, that DVD of the Justin Timberlake movie In Time feels it. You take a split second to think about why the bleep anyone buy that DVD, let alone a DVD, but the gravity is overwhelming. It’s an awkward shuffle. A stare, a kiss, the final three words. Bold, underlined, all caps. The final three words.
When you say it, you’ve gotta say it loud. With gravitas, with a bold daring that tells the other that you’re in this. But that means the roommates will hear. Once the roommates hear, there’s no going back.