It had happened so gradually neither of us had noticed. I suppose when you thought about it, it wasn't much of a surprise. We had always been like that, hadn't we? Every step we took closer to each other was so understated, so subtle, that the moment after it happened, you weren't sure it had. You never really noticed until months afterwards, when you looked at the distance we'd traversed.

Oh, suddenly, I realize, it's all right to hold hands. Suddenly I realize just how many nights I've spent falling asleep on his lap. Suddenly, I realize that for months now, for nearly a year, there has been no resistance.

And now, after nearly a year of gingerly learning each others' limits again, I realize he has voluntarily taken my hand. It was unprompted. He wanted to show me what he was working on, to share with me the inner workings of the world that no other being on earth had ever seen.

And for once, it hit me, in that moment, as it was happening, rather than hours later. I stared. I thought maybe I was imagining his hand, folded tightly around mine with no hesitation. But no, this was real.

"Is something wrong?"

I shook my head. "No." Nothing was wrong. How could it be? Everything was right.

"Good." He squeezed my hand, and we were taken away, suddenly surrounded by darkness.

In the darkness, a single pinpoint of light shone like a beacon, like the lighthouse I watched outside my bedroom window every night, and then a second, and a third, and then my eyes were adjusted and I saw them all, the multitudes of stars swirling into infinity around us, and I realized. We were among them. We were part of them.

I had stopped breathing in awe (surely one needn't breathe in space anyways, my brain kindly reminded me). I looked at him. He was smiling. I had not ever really seen him smile. Perhaps that strange, secret, barely-there half-smile of before, or more recently, a quiet smirk, so sure of himself. But this smile was for me. Just like the stars.

It happened before I knew. I had wrapped my free arm around his shoulder - we were still holding hands, and my lips met his. We were floating in space I had no trouble with the height difference. The moment was infinite, it didn't exist in real time. He didn't push me away. He didn't freeze up. He didn't reject me.


"No words."

No. He was right. Words weren't appropriate. There were none that could even begin to describe it, or what it meant to me - and maybe it even meant something to him. Maybe what I'd been wanting, in the deepest corner of my heart, far down in the darkness of selfish desires that I would not let see the light of day...maybe it was not impossible. Maybe someday, as simple as taking my hand to lead me into a sky filled with stars, maybe someday he would kiss me.