Along with the advance there will be advances. She warns me of this as someone who has been here before me. I think she might be my mentor, my rock. We rarely sit down together, but these small wisdoms, exchanged on the run keep me running.
You will be surprised, she tells me, until now no one has been close enough to notice you. When they read your book, when it is a real thing in their hand, they will want to hold you.
I do not imagine that it is true. I have never had that kind of attention. I have desired but I have not been the desired one. I am not certain how I will be with that. Interest. People interested in me. I will be overwhelmed I suppose. I will be flattered if it happens this way.
The possibility of their attentions. The idea that they might see past this brittle exterior and really see me. I cannot entertain the idea that I could be wanted in this way. I build a wall of those I love and who have loved me. I save my own lust for this handful of people who are in my life and who will remain there. I am not quick to trust. It will not be an easy thing to accept the kind of attention that she is hinting at.
I will come with you on your tour he says, and I am grateful. I will call you at 10.30, will you be home? Lets meet for coffee before work. Bring your bike and we will ride and ride and ride. People I love. I love you.