11 inch edition: She Turned

When he saw her across the bar he knew he was done for. She stood alone, apart from everyone else. It was hard to tell, even, if she knew anyone there, if she had come with anyone, with friends. She stood apart and comfortable with being apart. And he knew he was done for. There was not anything particularly beautiful about her. Average height, slim build, pretty face, hair simple in a bob- a style not quite outdated, but not modern either. It wasn’t anything about her appearance that made him stop and take notice; it was her comfortable defiance in standing apart from the rest. You’re not supposed to be comfortable doing that. You’re supposed to want to fit in, be a part of the group, accepted. It was her willful and easy insistence on being on the outside of things that caught him where he stood, and made him notice her.

She was pleasant to watch. Without seeming to be aware she would tilt this way or that on her hips to find the right stance, the effect of which was a slightly thrusted hip, her back curved slightly in, her neck lengthened, her chin almost up. She was close to observing everyone from the slope of her nose. Perhaps that was what in fact she was doing. He liked her for it, for his assumption of her personality; aloof and purposeful.

She caught him, then, looking at her, watching her. And she let him know it, before she turned to a group of women just behind her, a group he hadn’t noticed before. She looked right at him, blinked slowly, took one more moment, and then turned to join the group behind herm laughing at something that one of her friends said, apparently. It was quite a while before she turned apart from her group again. But he was watching, he saw her again grow tired of the incessant noise of people talking about nothing. He saw her turn into herself once more, and pick up again with an inner dialog he could only imagine at.

It seemed to be as good a time as any to approach her, then. But something stopped him. Something in the satisfaction of her pose, of her rest from it all once more. He thought he would disturb her from her reverie if he would talk to her just then. So instead he watched her, waiting, maybe, for a sign that it was alright to intrude on her throughts, that she perhaps wanted his company. He waited for that indication. She breathed in, out, deliberately, deeply, turned her nearest hip out just slightly and shifted her weight, opening her stance to him. He walked to her and she turned to look directly at him. There was a recognition in her face, and he also felt he had known her.

“I’ve seen you somewhere before,” he said.

“And I’ve seen you,” she replied, and smiled.

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