Harley adored Veronica, it was easy enough for her to see that. But she was not used to being adored. It was not that Max had not adored her, but it was as it was in all relationships as far as she knew…one person loved the other person more. She knew that she loved Max more, but she also knew that he loved her as much as he could have loved her or anyone.
But with Harley, she was the one who was loved more. She knew it the first time he kissed her. He had revered her lips, right in the middle of one of Gwennie’s performances.
Veronica was not sure if she had not wanted to be in another relationship. She was afraid that she would change things for Gwennie if she a bad relationship with Max, but she knew that that was not entirely it.
“Mom, I just want you to be happy, I want you to be as happy as I am with Nic with someone.” Gwennie had said hugging her, beaming about love.
It made Veronica so happy that she had such a beautiful and loving daughter, and it made her realize that she and Max had done something wonderful.
Now was her time.
Harley was so new to her, she had forgotten what the buzz was like when you first met someone. The just being close to him, and even though they had never had sex, the complete consumption that took place. The warmth of his skin was seductive, the way that he looked at her that made her shiver with excitement and anticipation. Learning things about him that she did not immediately suspect, like there was a bit of an artist in him and that he loved to take pictures.
He took a picture of her with his phone when they were out for dinner, and the joy on her face was something she had not seen in such a long time that she knew that he was special.
That he was resurrecting her.
She really had been dead in the time between him and Max.
So she invited him to go to the ballet, where she knew that Max would be, but she did not care. It was okay, because she was not going to hide that she was trying to move on with her life and she was honest with Harley.
“I will always love Max, but I don’t feel about him the way that I could feel about you now,” she said hoping to sober him because he was looking at her in her new dress like she wasn’t real.
She was wearing a dress that he said that he saw in a vintage shop that had reminded him of her.
“This dress reminded me of you. Looked like something you would wear and it looks like it would fit you like a glove.”
At that point, Veronica knew she was not wrong about him, because this was a dress that she had put on consignment. She did not tell him because she did not want to take the fantasy away.
When his hands caressed the sequins on her dress, he moved his lips over hers the same way that he caressed her hips. Like worship, like she was something very precious and he wanted to savor her. He kissed her when they were out of the sight of others, which she loved because she knew he was not showing off for Max. He kissed her with his mouth and his hands, and she really felt like she saw stars when they pulled apart.
They looked at each other and Veronica grinned first, and he grinned back at her even harder. He squeezed her hand and they went back to their seats. It was the first time that Veronica was distracted watching a ballet performance. She was not recalling the steps of the dance in her head, but Harley kissing her during the intermission on the steps.
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