Summers in Berlin are magical. The vibe, the humid air, the setting sun, the lakes, and rivers. I love it here.
And I am not the only one.
My friends throw late-night parties by the river, and this time, it’s not only them. There’s you too. A young man. Young and beautiful. All smiles and chuckles.
I’ve never seen you before, and yet I can’t take my eyes off you.
Katherine tagged you along, said she met you on a project. You barely acknowledge me. But I do. Look at you. You are everything I am not, with your dark hair, dark eyes, and tanned complexion. If I had to guess, I’d say you’re about ten years younger than me too.
Sipping on my beer, I listen to you talk. You’re not from here; your accent gives you away. New Zealand. A country so far, far away.
After an hour, you take off your shoes just like the rest of us. There’s sand between my toes, warm sand. And then you look at me. Your eyes are so dark behind your glasses. Glinting like the sky at night.
There’s music. And dancing. Salsa on the beach. Snacks and drinks. I couldn’t be happier. It’s the perfect night with the perfect stranger. I smoke, drink, but never stop watching you. Until you step up next to me, shoulder to shoulder, facing the water. I smell your aftershave.
“I’ve been told to talk to you,” you say with that accent that makes my toes curl into the sand.
“Is that so?” I ask before I take a puff on my cigarette.
For a while we pretend to watch the others dance. “What’s your name?” I ask. I see you smile from the corner of my eye.
“Wouldn’t you like to know.”
“Walk with me.” For a beat, our eyes lock. You feel what I feel. And then … you follow me.