Part Two: The Hunger
The first time he saw her she was taking out the trash. Her hair was greasy and tangled. That and the fact that she was clad only in a large t-shirt helped him surmise that she had just gotten out of bed. It was about three o’clock on a November afternoon. Morgan had moved in to the yellow house on Yvette’s street the week before. He did so quickly and quietly, moving in all of his belongings on a Tuesday morning, finishing up in time for a late lunch. No new neighbors had greeted him. It occurred to him that perhaps no one had noticed.
It was a dull and sleepy street. He had moved there because he had found a good deal on the one bedroom house and it was closer to his job at the local liquor store. He liked to think of his abodes as “bachelor pads,” although he never had any parties like those associated with the name. His neighbors never had noise complaints and therefore never felt the need to acknowledge his presence. At the small apartment he used to occupy, his only visitors had been his weed dealer and a coworker named Hailey who liked to sleep with him very once in a while. He was settling in to the idea that this place would be just like the last when he saw Yvette and was suddenly in love.
She used her whole body to swing the trash bag into the bin. Morgan noticed her thin, frail looking legs and that they culminated in bare, bluish colored feet.
“It’s fucking freezing out there.” He said it out loud, irate with this waifish, nameless woman. “Why is she outside with no pants? Where are her goddam socks?”
He leaned against the windowsill and studied her as she made her way back inside. Gradually he became aware of a boiling sensation starting at the floor of his abdomen. He thought about the pure bone-ivory color of her skin and it began to climb, scalding his stomach lining. He thought, brimming with compassion, of her weak, beautiful limbs being smitten by the November chill, and the boiling leapt up his esophagus. By the time his thoughts alit upon the magnetism of her unkempt head and the glimpse he caught of a face all luminous eyes and no mouth, the heat was so severely scorching his throat and mouth that he ran coughing into the kitchen to drink water from the sink. Gasping, he raised his streaming face from the tap and rested it in his hands. A quiet and desperate knowledge hovered at the limit of his immediate consciousness. He knew religiously (the way a man knows when he is in love) that his love would destroy him unless he did something. So, with the adrenaline-fueled concentration of a man in dire peril, he began to watch.
… … …
Though she hadn’t seen him since Christmas Eve, Yvette had come to realize that Morgan was miraculous.