Monday, November 28, 2011

The Eyes Have it

The first time he saw Brittany, he didn’t know her name. He knew she was beautiful—obviously—and had golden eyes like a spaniel, round dog eyes that followed him from across the room, beckoned him so obviously that he got up and walked over.


She lowered her lashless eyes when she said hello, and he took a step back. He had treated too many girls who pulled out their lashes. He didn’t want one of his old patients sliding into his real life. “I’m Brittany,” she said and extended her hand.

He took it—slender, smooth, cool, no feel of cutting scars or other mutilation. The arms were clean, the shoulders smooth, the dip towards the breasts perfect, but those lashless eyes. He almost said, “Brittany like the spaniel?” but recovered in time to ask if she were British.

No, Irish.

What sort of Irishman names his daughter Brittany? He told her his name, asked how she knew their host—work—what did she do—model.

Without eyelashes? but he didn’t say it. Her voice was melodious, and she sounded amused as if his every word and gesture were laden with wit and innuendo. He kept waiting for her to say, You don’t remember me, do you, doctor? You don’t remember what you said to my mother. You don’t remember calling me obsessive-compulsive, anxious, depressed—you don't remember trotting out your so-called clinical terms—but she didn’t. She watched him with those spaniel eyes, watched his every twitch and swallow, until he was forced to ask for her number, and she gave it.

©2011 Kathleen Coskran

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