That I night I dreamt about Cassie. I dreamt her face obscured by darkness and then lit up by the flickering flame of her lighter. Then gone again, only the burning end of her cigarette left visible like a buoy on a still ocean.
She drags in like a sailor hauling a catch from the sea then lets a thick ball of smoke rise out of her mouth before inhaling it entirely. She exhales and the branches above us and all their leaves shake.
I’m lying next to her looking at the stars. The grass beneath us is dry yet soft. Her hand wanders over to my face and I take a drag as well. I turn to look at her but her eyes are closed and are focused intensely on something far away.
Her hair cascades behind in a golden waterfall, rivers of yellow and brown snaking through the grass and meandering into my hair. I touch my finger to the ends of one her hairs and follow it upstream up to her forehead then down her nose that stands silhouetted against the sky.
My nail grazes up the the small ridge that drops to a pair of delicate lips wrapped around a cigarette. The ring of fire dances lower and lower in a spiralling red line down to the filter as she drags in. I remove the cigarette. She exhales.
I put the cigarette out then thrust my hand through her hair and catch her shoulder on the other side. Before I make an effort she is already turning in to me and we braid silently under the shaking trees.
She says something but all I hear is the rough sound of gravel scattered onto a road. I drag her in and kiss her. She kisses back again and again until I draw back a little and she kisses nothing and I make her wait before kissing her again. I play this game a few more times until she throws the gravel out of her mouth and bites the bottom of my lip before I get away. She smiles in the darkness and kisses me as she wishes.