I was walking more quickly than normal on that cool, foggy morning. It was not yet noon and I'd already finished all my duties for the day. My proof; a small, tin package, was pinched tightly between my arm and chest. However my tight grip did not stop the contents; three long-forgotten fountain pens, from rattling shiftlessly and tapping impatiently against their ornate jail. They weren't struggling for freedom of course, their tapping was just the result of restlessness and boredom.
The pens wanted to feel the rush of being pressed to paper, a brief embrace of thought and tangibility. Nothing would please them more than to produce an accurate account of the fog's spectral daze. They knew that soon the moment would vanish into the ether; swept away by the same clement wind which provoked my cheeks' florid blushing. However, I had to deny the willful instruments their gratification, for the moment at least.
Rather than becoming irritated by the clamor coming from the tin pressed against my rib-cage, I saw opportunity. I let the tin slide down my side into my waiting hand. The metal was cold against my warm palm, but it wasn't the least bit unbearable. I pursed my lips and began to whistle a tune I'd heard earlier that morning as I'd stepped out from the shower.
I could hear the sound in the adjoining bedroom where I slept on most occasions. I peaked out into the room; leaning out from the doorway stealthily so as not to expose myself. The music was slow and quiet, and it reminded me very much of the shoreline on a cloudy day; the wind producing tall, rolling waves on the sea which unite then melt into foam as they approach the shore. It was coming from an unfamiliar radio which was slung under the arm of the tall, naked woman who'd spent the night with me. She stepped over to the cheap, wooden dresser in the corner of the room; her barely clothed body silhouetted against the wide window at chest-level. She sat the radio beside a near-empty glass bottle of rum atop my bureau, and without noticing me sat back down on the tousled bed where only a few minutes ago we'd been sleeping.
I was able to leave objects such as liquor and radios perched atop my dressed because a week prior I'd torn up the majority of the carpeting in my bedroom; an act provoked by a particularly deep intoxication. It wouldn't matter if I smashed a vineyard on the floor, so long as there wasn't enough wine to touch the electrical outlets. I found the lack of carpet very liberating and frequently indulged in the act of dancing bare-foot around the bed, between the nails and carpet staples which jutted unevenly out of the exposed wood.
The woman, whose name is Angela Houston, began to whistle the tune to herself; a sweet sound devoid of conscience or shame. Perhaps I should feel some disgrace for watching her there; her underwear barely covering her, but we had spent the night together after-all. She wasn't the type to feel shame or embarrassment towards her naked body. You could tell by her choice of clothing. She'd often wear shirts and dresses which exposed her underarms, both of which were made dignified by the presence of sleek, dark hair. She'd confided in me earlier that many men found her 'hirsute' body repellant, but I assured her that I found it beautiful and natural. Later that night we shared our first passionate kiss before she returned to her bedroom down the hall from mine.
I watched her from my voyeuristic vantage point, marveling at the firm grace with which Angela's capable hands slowly worked her stocking up her left calf. The roll of nylon at the top gradually ran out as it climbed further towards her thigh. She would later explain to me the reason she wears nylon stockings every day. She'd be sitting on the same bed as the one that we shared that morning, and using a ragged pair of nylons to demonstrate, she'd explain:
"Despite popular theory, I don't do it because they make me feel sexy. It's really a shame that we have to see them as such a tool of seduction, you know? Really the reason I wear them is because I like putting them on. It sounds stupid, but really no other time in the day when I can feel as 'at peace,' as I do when I am rolling a stocking up my legs and listening to the morning radio."
Angela stopped whistling as she finished the first leg and began to sing the lyrics to herself. She swept along with the slow tune, crooning softly the words "when the wind was fresh on the hills and the stars were new in the sky". The voice on the radio was climbing into an exquisite crescendo, but she let hers remain quiet; understated against the steady, emotive cry. As she rolled the second stocking past her right knee the voices somehow melded perfectly together as one spoke and the other cried "Where was I?" They repeated themselves, the second time slightly out of synch; one came shortly after the others as though the radio was merely echoing Angela's words.