Whatever you do, do not take that twenty-minute drive out to Hawaii Kai. You know how it will end up. You knew it was wrong when you met him two months ago at the movie theaters. The first clue was his wife, leaning her pretty little head on his shoulder the entire flick. The second clue was when he tried to talk you up while standing shoulder-to-shoulder with you at the bathroom urinals. You did the right thing a couple weeks ago when you decided not to see him anymore. Why do you now think it was a mistake? He is a married man. What's it with gay men and your lust for the straight guys? Listen to me. You know better than to drive out there for him. Let me tell you what will happen.
You will arrive at the 7-11 station near his house and send him a text message so that he knows you are there. Then comes the waiting, because he always keeps you waiting. The old Japanese couple walking in their matching Adidas jumpsuits will stare at you as you stand outside of your car smoking a cigarette, because people in Hawaii Kai have a way of knowing when someone is from some other, some poorer part of town. It doesn't help that you're leaning against an old Dodge Neon with missing hubcaps, a Cutter Used Auto license plate frame, and an air freshener shaped like a Christmas tree hanging from the rearview mirror. It'll feel like at least ten minutes until you finally see his stocky shadow emerge from the twilight and round the corner. He'll wear blue surf shorts and a black sleeveless muscle tee, which he always wears because he's told his wife that he's going for a run, but really he's running off with you.
You will get in the car and turn the ignition and John Mayer will be on the radio reminding fathers to be good to their daughters. You'll switch the volume down as he opens the door and gets in. He'll smell like cigarettes and possibility and he'll tell you thanks for seeing him at that late hour, he's really missed you. You'll tell him you've missed him too. And you'll want to lean over to kiss him and tell him you haven't been able to shake him from your head but you'll refrain because you're a man and he's a man and a married one at that.
It'll take less than five minutes to reach the spot at Portlock beach where you two always go. You'll park your car on a street with homes that your parents were never able to afford and you will never be able to afford, and you and he will walk in shadows on the sandy pathway that leads down to the ocean. He'll lean against the brick wall just outside of someone's beach-front property and you'll kneel in front of him in the sand like he's Kanaloa, Lono, some kind of god of muscular splendor, and you his boy worshipper. He'll call your name in whispers and tell you that his wife can't do it like you, only a man knows how to please another man. There are houses all along the beach—someone might catch you—but you won't care. You'll be unafraid. This is your moment. You are the lover and he is the beloved.
When it's over you'll both kiss and he'll hold you as you sit in the sand and watch the moon cast its silver magnificence upon the ocean. You won't want the moment to end. You've longed for this, for him. You imagine waking up next to him in bed, tangled in his legs and arms, completely unwilling to separate from his touch. You imagine phone calls that you'll make to each other throughout the day just to hear your voice. You'll imagine falling asleep in his embrace, feeling as if the Rapture has occurred and you two are the only ones who have been left behind.
His touch will draw you back to the moment. We should go, he will say. As you walk to the car you'll ask if he'd like a ride back, but you already know the answer. He'll say no, that he'll run the two miles home so that he can work up a sweat, so his wife will not be suspicious.
You get in the car and drive away, and he will jog in your rearview mirror. The ride home will be empty and lonely. His smell of Benson & Hedges menthol cigarettes and spearmint gum will linger in the car, and it's the only part of him that you will ever get to take home with you. The feeling you will have as you drive, of reality, of being nothing more than a boy on his knees, is the reason you should not meet him at this late hour.
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Recently published in Best Gay Stories 2012, from Lethe Press, and originally appeared in Gertrude, No. 15.