It was an illusion for her to think that she wanted to see him because she just physically desired him and wanted to see him. She hadn’t seen him for a while. The pandemic situation was not conducive to meeting and reuniting. They had tried to see each other several times after their weekend in the mountains. This was not happening. Perhaps because of a lack of will. But the desire was still there. They did not live in the same city. Perhaps this factor had also contributed to the difficulty of organizing a meeting.
He was very free in the early years of their relationship. Then his children came to live with him. Reunions became rarer. They tried to meet each other somewhere else than where they lived. But this was not always easy. When restaurants reopened between the two lockdowns, they could see each other for dinner, but she could no longer sleep at his place after dinner because of the presence of the children. Then the restaurants closed down again and they had no solution. Those long dinners when they knew they could not spend the night together, when they spent the whole dinner touching each other and kissing.
One day, they took the afternoon off. She had booked a hotel in the center. A nice hotel, yet deserted because of the confinement. He came to join her in the middle of the afternoon. He looked tired. His hair was even longer. He was wearing the same jeans he had at the last meeting. He had called her at the reception and he gave his name. She picked him up at the reception. They were wearing masks and they couldn’t kiss each other. When they got to the room, he hugged her for at least five minutes. She caressed his hair. The same gray, rebellious hair that she loved so much. He looked at the room and its arrangement. He talked about the architecture of the room, the use of concrete and the transparent shower. He thought the room was well decorated. Then he got into bed and undress. He asked her to join him. She undressed too. But she kept her underwear on. They made love for an hour. Their bodies were sweaty. The kisses. The whispers. Moaning. The screams. The caresses. The hugs. The two bodies embraced to become one. The hands grabbed the bodies. Fingers sought the lips. An hour of pleasure. Or can we say one hour of love.
They didn’t talk much. It seemed like they had used all their energy for sex. He had asked her if she was happy. She replied that the sex lasted longer than usual. He protested with a slight sneer, it lasted longer at times. She thought in her head that maybe it was with someone else. Not with her. But she didn’t say anything to him. His body was filled with desire for her for an hour. Tense with desire. As if all his muscles were made to give her pleasure, every part of her body.
She hadn’t asked him anything about his children. She had felt that he didn’t want to talk about them. She hadn’t asked him about anything at all. She had never asked about anything in two years. His wife separated but not divorced. In the same city, not in the same city. Maybe even she was in the same city that afternoon. He didn’t feel like sharing anything. She didn’t feel like asking.
The hotel restaurant was deserted. People don’t travel anymore because of the Covid. They were alone in this hotel. He could not stay the night because the children were waiting for him. He asked her if she was going to stay and enjoy the hotel’s spa and the gym. She answered yes. She had chosen a hotel with a gym because the gyms were closed.
When he was gone, she continued to work a little. It was the first time they had only been in a hotel for a few hours and only for sex. It was the first time she had been in a hotel for only a few hours for sex with a man. It was the first time she didn’t spend the night with him after sex. It was the first time he didn’t cook dinner and they didn’t watch Netflix after sex. It was the first time they spoke so little to each other. It was the first time they made love for so long.
She decided to leave the hotel and go home and not spend the night at the hotel. The idea of eating in a restaurant empty of customers during the Covid depressed her. She wanted to see him, she wanted to have sex with him, it was her idea to meet in a hotel. It was an illusion to think that she only wanted sex with him so much. Their story had never seemed to her to be just “an affair”, even though she was always very certain that he has never been an available man, precisely because they had never seen each other in a hotel just to have sex. It was an experience to understand that she didn’t want to meet him just for sex. She wanted to avoid the idea of an affair with a man who was not available. The meeting in a hotel, the sex in a hotel were symbolic of being in an affair. For a thousand of men and women who are not free. Whatever the situation, she wanted to experience some semblance of a situation that would allow her to believe that he was free. The rest didn’t matter. Whatever form their relationship would take. The idea of being in an affair never pleased her. Lovers. Friends. Mates. But not an affair. She just wanted an illusion of not being an affair.