#EVERyTuesdayWordplay – Hands

#EVERyTuesdayWordplay – Hands

Prompt: #EVERyTuesdayWordplay

“I was worried I’d never find you again.” Arius averts his gaze, shifting his focus to my wrist, where his thumb still touches the mark. It triggers a shiver, so I pull away and turn toward my desk, hoping he didn’t notice.

“Didn’t realize you were looking.” I hold up the bracelet again. Its heat has faded into a pleasant warmth, pulsating like a slow heartbeat. “When a month passed and I hadn’t heard from you, I just figured our deal was done.” Shrugging, I try not to let him see how that affected me. “Or are you here to pull me into another?”

“I’m not.” His tone is oddly defensive. When I turn to look at him again, he avoids my eyes. Without my wrist to hold, his fingers fidget, tapping out a quick rhythm on his legs before he shoves his hands in his pockets.

He’s nervous, more than he was at the thought of facing his sister, and that gives me a shot of courage.

“Then why are you here? Our deal is done, right?” Is it weird that thought is a little disappointing?

“It is.” Now, his eyes linger on the bracelet, and I realize my hands are playing with it.

“Oh. Of course. I should give this back.” It makes sense he’d come back for it – after all, a magic bracelet can’t just be out in the world. “Was kind of hoping I could keep it as a souvenir, but-”

I move to hand it to him, but he places it on my wrist again. Arius holds my hand with both of his, grip firm but gentle. “I’m not here for that either.”


“I’m here for you.” He says this like it’s obvious, like once again my humanness has found another way to annoy him.

“So I helped you, and I die anyway?” You’d think almost dying before would take the panic out of it, but here we are.

“What? No!” He sighs, his frustration palpable. “I’m not here to take you away…I’m…I’m just here to see you.” Arius’ hand comes up to my face, tentative, as if approaching an animal that might bite. His fingers graze my cheek, and he struggles to say, “I missed you.”

Arius stands close. Too close for this to actually be happening. And yet it is.

Even if I wanted to, I don’t think I could stop myself from closing the distance between us and finally kissing him. When I do, he hums a small sound of surprise before responding, his lips soft and sure against mine. One hand on the small of my back and the other in my hair, his touch doesn’t feel like he’s afraid anymore.

Death rests his forehead to mine when I pull away to catch my breath.

“So…I’m not going to die?”

“Eventually, sure.”

I glare at him, and for the first time, his smile is playful.

Arius places a brief kiss on my hairline. “But not anytime soon.”

So. This is about as happily ever after as it gets for these two right now. Honestly when I started this story I didn’t do it with the intention of taking it very far, but we all know how that goes. Maybe I’ll put up some snippets of semi-domestic bliss for Enid & Arius, but here’s where their story “ends” (and I put that in quotes because there are some loose threads I might come back to – and even if I don’t, they’ll be addressed in the inevitable novel-length rewrite).

Be sure to check out the rest of the responses under the #EVERyTuesdayWordplay tag on Twitter!

As always, think happy thoughts 🙂

2 thoughts on “#EVERyTuesdayWordplay – Hands

  1. Callouses, by Terry Brewer

    There was something about her hands that attracted me. They were delicate with a hint of callouses on the fingers of the left one. The fingers were that length where they feel a little longer than average, and they curved sensuously when I first noticed them, gripping a Starbucks cup while sitting across and a bit over from me at the large conference-room table. The “new girl” was how she identified herself when we met a few weeks ago but I was too busy toting a stack of copies to, in fact, this same conference room for some collating to say anything but “Hi. Nice to meet you.”

    As today’s meeting broke up, neither of us having said a word, I felt her hand on my left bicep.

    “I was told I’m working with you on my new assignment. We were sort of introduced when I got here—”

    “As the ‘new girl.’”

    “Yes, as the new girl. I am Edna Jones.”

    “Edna? That’s an unfortunate name.” It popped out before I could stop.

    “Tell me about it. Look, I have a gig this weekend. Nothing big. Our band gets fifty minutes on some Saturdays at a dive on the Lower East Side.”

    “You play the guitar, right?”

    She held up her left hand. “The callouses?”

    “The callouses. I’d love to come. When and where?”

    And she told me and I went. It’s how I fell in love with my wife.

    Liked by 1 person

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