She looked at me with an anesthetized face, and I am sure we fell in love. I mean, I think we fell in love. She was hardened to anything that would give away an impression of who she was. Her eyes looked at me and scanned and digested. Only in little moments when she forgot about the people in nice clothes on Sundays who she shared twenty dollar french toast with, or how she had dated someone who once was famous, would she tell me something that was full of warmth. Her face would turn into a collection of detailed constellations as we sat on the bow of a memory that slid across a silent slab of water. She would tell me about wearing only a decorative mask that hung in the entry hallway and dancing naked across the couches in the living room. She would talk about leaning against the large wooden beam near the kitchen, while cooking breakfast of bacon and toast, and singing a song dedicated to the tree that it came from.
She would talk of these things until the clicking of shoes on hardwood floors, or an eruption of shared empty laughter, brought the heaviness back to her. She would pull the weight onto her face, her mouth, her eyes, and the boat would sink, and the stars would fade in the deepening water, and it would be another night of one too many glasses of wine.
The next time we spoke, we shook hands briefly outside of a small cafe, and she recommended the special for lunch. She told me to take care, waved, and turned around to walk towards her car while pulling her phone out of her purse to check for new text messages.
Somewhere there was air escaping a sunken ship, and the languid motion of bubbles made my mind forget how she and I had first met.