Burial shifted around a little bit, not really sure what to do with his hands. Lily would probably let him hold her hand, he thought, but it would feel wrong somehow. He wondered how often she got clients like him. People who, like him, didn't get therapy covered by insurance, or maybe those who wanted intimacy but not anything physical. He kind of hoped he was special. He almost certainly wasn't.
- BURIAL: you got a boyfriend, lily? or maybe a girlfriend?
- LILY: Nope. I probably wouldn't do this if I did.
- BURIAL: you never know.
- LILY: I suppose there are some relationship structures where that might be permissable, but...
- LILY: To me it seems like open relationships only manage to please one person invovled at most.
- BURIAL: smart lady.
Burial reached up towards the light in the center of the ceiling, making a fist as if he was grabbing it. Lily seemed amused, and reached out to interlace her fingers with his. Burial's arm jerked a little bit like he'd been burned, but he eventually relaxed. Maybe the woman he had paid for her company wasn't out to get him.
He let his arm drop gently, taking Lily's hand with him. He curled up into a fetal position, holding her hand close to his chest.
- BURIAL: i'm a god damn mess, lily.
- LILY: But you're better than most of my clients.
- LILY: Sometimes I'm afraid I'll be attacked, or berated, or something worse, but you feel...
- LILY: You feel like you get it.
- BURIAL: that's a nice thought.
- BURIAL: can I just stay like this? for the rest of our time, anyway.
- LILY: Yeah, of course.
- BURIAL: will it be weird if i request you again, sometime?
- LILY: If you've got the budget.
- BURIAL: i had almost forgotten i paid for this...
Two hours passed. Burial got up, sorted out the wrinkles in his clothes, and left the hotel room wordlessly. He was definitely not going to request Lily again. He didn't deserve anything close to that nice.
The world was darker than it had been. Most of the lights on the street were off, which struck Burial as strange. Even for this part of town, streetlamps were supposed to be on at night. Maybe it was a temporary power issue. Whatever the case, it didn't seem safe. The hair on the back of his neck stood up, and not just because of the cold. He walked briskly, checking his phone for the route to the train station.