Pontaillac, end of october 1985
We’ve waited for so long the guy’s arrival. Diane and I couldn’t sleep after Alban’s phonecall.
We were carried away with speculations, knowing deep in ourselves that they hadn’t moved from La Rochelle at all, and that they were quietly partying at Alban’s with all the girls and bottles around.
Their discomposed faces didn’t deceive us when they finally arrived at home at seven in the evening. Alb, in particular, had sharply drawn looking features, but always the same energy by giving me the best hug in the world.
I had forgotten this perfume of wild mint and bergamot he wore at Val’s birthday.
Then came my brother I was so happy to see again, tired also , but so released.
Effusions before the emotional shock that I caught in the face , when I saw the huge guy who was following them.
“ Hi, I’m Virgile”
Damn. He was beautiful.
Me, who’ve never been very attracted by boys, I had there the biggest glare of my life for a real person.
Everything in him , I felt, was calling me; from his stature and the bouquet of silky hair on top of it, to the tender glow of his brown eyes.
Diane and I looked at each other, and her glance confirmed me well that we were thinking on the same thing.
But at the same time, there was something bitter in this endeavor. He seemed to be perfectly aware of the effect he had on people, and unlike Alb , he usually didn’t make any effort to be kind because he didn’t need that to be loved.
In this first evening I spent where he also was, he seemed to be wandering around with a bored and ironic gaze.
David, who always had this friendly and provocative attitude towards his former teacher ( my dad ) made him slightly laugh.
He and Colin were still eyeing each other, as if the adventure hadn’t managed to build friendship between them.
The only people he seemed to show interest in were Alb and mum.
Alb had gone to help her to bring back the ton of food piled up by Edouard the night before. The boys, them, did not shy away from her efforts; and in a few minutes everything was swallowed up, until the last crumb of tarte tatin, the last cloud of whipped cream in a now glittering bowl.
Daddy ended up finding this bunch of nerds sympathetic, and while he was serving a bourbon to David and Virgil; Alb (who drove back) went upstairs with Colin and us. “ Curious to see our rooms”
Colin played “ Once Upon A Time” from the Simple Minds which was just released, and that he had just brought back from Bordeaux. Alb offered us cigarettes, but I was the only one of the four of us who didn’t know how to smoke.
Laughing, Colin and Alb kissed each other.
Diane was stunned that they did it like that, in front of us, without any complex ; but she liked it, and I liked it too.
Because it was long, applied, tender; because there was fire in there, two hands that turned white as they clasped; two muffled sighs that curled around the billows of smoke, two sparkling eyes that fluttered throughout this brief embrace.
I didn’t know how it had happened, but it could have been the coolest couple of the universe.