I tell myself I won’t be afraid this time. I tell myself I’ll look up and not so quickly away this time. I tell myself I’ll let them see.
My breath catches in my throat, as I dare to meet his gaze, instead of just the hand outstretched in introduction.
And oh … his eyes. They’re not blue. Not exactly. No, they’re more a piece of a cloudless Texas summer sky, burning and brilliant, recklessly set into a kind and weathered expression. They’re bright and wise and focused on me. I can’t even be bothered to mind. And wait, did his breath catch too?
I stand, struck.
So many years spent with downcast eyes watching sidewalks pass by in grays and black and white. So many years seeking refuge in shadows, looking every other place but present. And this, this cloudless, extravagant blue …how could I fear such a color now?