I wanted a ticket to the movies. This is the reason I had sex with him. I have to be honest about this. He returned to my bed and I let him because I realised that having sex with him was the worst kind of prostitution, the kind where you do it for a jam doughnut in the playground and the doughnut makes you sick anyway.
Here's how it happened. He won tickets to the movie. The preview of the movie. I imagined sitting in the cinema and my nostrils filled with the scent of popcorn, a comforting chocolate Malteezer kind of smell all childhood and heavy petting and Sunday afternoon all rolled into a plush red seat. I thought about that movie all through dinner. I dreamed it, fantasized the ending. I even found myself wondering about the characters in cultural studies 101. I wanted to go to the movies. I wanted to go to that particular movie. I opened my wallet and counted the money there, almost enough for a bus ticket. I wanted his extra ticket.
I seduced him one afternoon. It was his first time. It crossed my mind that a virginity was probably worth more than the cost of a ticket to the movies. I felt a little guilty, but I liked him. I liked the way he shuddered nervously and became very quiet, looking up at me as if I were an angel, deflowering him in a halo of heavenly light. I liked the way he was made, the compact muscles and the strong curve of his legs. I liked the way he waited for me to show him where and how and the way he listened when I told him what to do and why to do it. I liked his studiousness, his bookishness. I liked the way he came too quickly but was quite prepared to come again before too long.
Afterwards, in the fading afternoon I asked him about the ticket, but he had already promised it to his friend. I felt the wind fading from the sails, but I stuck with it, returning to his room one night after the next.
I watched them leave for the movies together. I stayed at home and drank tea and wondered. They returned home gloriously happy. They showed me the prize that had been hidden under their theatre seat. They were best friends. I liked that he had stuck with his promise to his best friend.
That night I came into his bedroom and taught him about blindfolds and ropes made out of stockings. He smelt a bit like Maltezers, and the damp dark. There was a kernel of popcorn caught in the cuff of his jeans.
I longed for the cinema all through the long slow fucking.
He was a nice man, quiet, and with the kind of eyes that could be cold or blazing if you caught them in a particular light. He was fiercely intelligent. Nice body, and I had flirted with him as I flirted with any of them, intermittently and without much commitment. He was almost my favourite. I liked the short boy with curly hair who used to bang his forehead against the wall whenever his computer wasn't working. There was not much between them, the fire-eyed boy and the boy who was mildly asperges. It could have gone either way.
Except for that ticket to the movies.