BTS Book Reviews Issue 18 - Page 107

took off my tights. Kevin laughed. The sound was robust and captivating. “Don’t worry. I was a perfect gentleman.” I arched a brow. “Says you.” was white and cream and light blue. So much whiter than my scarf but the same. I was sure of it. All of those stitches had distracted me from the spikes of pain that coursed through my blood on those long, dark nights. I traced my forefinger over a knot where I had pulled the skein too tightly as a spasm had taken hold of me. Kevin laughed again, a deep, rich laugh that vibrated into my chest and turned into sparks that traveled to the tips of my toes. Somewhere in the back of my mind, I knew that I should be uneasy with the way I ended up in the apartment of a boy I hadn’t seen in years. And now, he was a man. But one look at the solid line of his chest as he stood before me and the adorable tilt of his head and I didn’t care. How was this possible? This was my scarf, but it was huge now, the size of a blanket. There were so many more stitches woven into the pattern that I had created. My gaze jerked to Kevin’s face. He watched me steadily, a hint of concern tightening his brow. He moved to perch on the arm of the sofa. Our gazes held. I had the sudden sense of being wellliked by this man. The wonder of it infused my chest with warmth. I didn’t even care about the boots anymore. “You remembered me.” I turned to face him. His hand moved reflexively to settle on my shoulder. Warmth flooded my neck and chest. I whispered, “What happened?” “Of course. You’re still the same Maggie I always knew.” I held his gaze as though in a trance. “Where’ve you been all these years? And why are you back? Are you studying at the University of Pennsylvania?” For just an instant, his smile fell away, and I spied a flash of wistfulness. He stretched his arm toward me, and I thought he was going to touch my leg. My heart rate ratcheted. But he kept bending till he grabbed the blanket from the floor. With a swoosh of his arms, he stretched out the blanket so that it drifted over my legs. A strange lightness coursed through me, as though I were a windsock filling with the night breeze. The fabric of the blanket was soft, like marshmallows in hot cocoa. I was vaguely aware that I shook my head even as I rubbed the woven knit between my thumb and forefinger. The color “It’s okay, Maggie.” He lowered himself to sit on the couch next to me. “Maggie.” So patient and gentle, the same as when he was nine years old. “You already know.” “Tell me, Kevin.” The words were a sob. “You died.” A cavalcade of emotion erupted in my chest and rose inside me until it pushed tears from my eyes. I found it difficult to breathe. Absurdly, I scanned the apartment, picking out the things I hadn’t noticed before, mesmerized by the glamour. The expanse between this apartment and the lights below could only be accommodated by a building some sixty stories up. There were no buildings like that overlooking the river. The haze of beautiful blue light that suffused the room, cerulean and soothing, came from some unseen source. There were no chandeliers, floor lamps, or bulbs of any kind in the room. Paintings hung on the wall that might have been priceless French impressionists but were three-dimensional masterpieces seen without special glasses. It was January 2014 | 107