As lights from the Paris night penetrated the sheer curtains to shatter the darkness of her bedroom, the honey slowly dripped down Marla’s perfect breasts. Struggling to catch his breath, he could see the sparkling reflections of the city lights in the honey as it continued its journey. Time seemed halted as he watched the honey sink down into her breath-taking cleavage. The journey down her cleavage toward her belly seemed to take hours. The honey pooled in her navel, then ran down to delta in the heavenly ravine between her firm thighs. His mouth was dry as he struggled to regulate his erratic breathing. The beating of his heart, which pounded loudly in his chest, broke the silence of the moment. Each beat of his heart echoed throughout the depths of his soul.
Marla’s face lay hidden in shadow behind her vibrant brown hair with her back to the window. The reflected light highlighted the range of colors that made up her luxurious dark hair. Her dark brown eyes were barely visible behind her long brown hair which covered her face. Marla slowly rose from the bed and walked toward the window. She stood in front of the window and opened the curtains. The City of Lights twinkled in front of her as she stood naked before it.
Unsure as to his next move, he stood in the middle of the room. Marla’s bedroom was as he had always imagined it; a vaulted ceiling supported by walls covered by velvet fabric; gold filigree softened the angles where each wall met the other. The floor-to-ceiling window consisted of five dozen panes separated by brass mullions. Finally, he was inside, looking out through the panes he had looked up at so often in secret from the street below.
Marla’s naked body, the body of a goddess, stood in silhouette against the cold Paris night. He knew well the feeling of the cold street down below; he had been on that street many times as he looked up at these windows. Now, he was inside, looking out. For decades he had imagined being in Marla’s bedroom with her naked. Now he was in her inner sanctum. A feeling washed over him, a sense that let him know he was not worthy. After a lifetime of yearning and dreaming of being in her bedroom, he realized how ill-prepared he was to be there. Marla stood within reach, yet he felt he was being blown back by her radiant beauty. Each attempt to move forward proved futile. He could not advance one foot in front of the other. Throughout all of history, the beauty of the woman in front of him had been reserved exclusively for gods and kings. He was not a god, not a king; he was but one ordinary man who loved one woman with a passion that defined him since the moment he met her decades earlier.
Marla stood silently at the window. She did not turn her head to face him. Her silence spoke for her as it resounded through his soul. Her silence told him how she was in the perfect place; she was a goddess in the City of Lights. Only a city such as Paris was deserving of a woman of her beauty. Her silence told him how he was nothing but superordinary. It also said to him that he had always been right; her naked body was as magical as he had imagined it to be.
Crossing the floor of Marla’s bedroom, he did not see the Paris cityscape. He saw only Marla. He moved toward her. As he did, he realized this was the story of his life; he had always been moving toward her. His raison d’ être had always been to be moving toward Marla. Marla was the one person who had captured his heart, influenced and starred in his imagination. Thoughts of her were etched in the core of his soul. Since that warm New York City spring evening when he first met her, it had always been Marla. Now, he was at the end of a four-decade journey that took him through many cities across four continents. His mind was reeling as he took another step closer to her. What does one man do when his reality supersedes his dreams? With each step forward, he sensed he was not getting closer to Marla; with each step ahead, the distance to her seemed to increase.
After many minutes, Marla broke the deafening silence between them.
“You have never told me you love me, but I have known it from the day you met me. I have wanted to hear you say those words to me for as long as I can remember. I have seen it in your face, heard it in your voice, observed it in your actions, and I have felt it in your hands. I have always known you loved me. However, I have never heard you say, “I love you.” Do you know how maddening it has been waiting to hear you say those words to me? Please, tell me you love me.”
“I love you, Marla.”