It was a sword, wielded with energy, rather than grace, slashing through the stubborn layers of curtains, heavy with dust, immobile, old, stoic, forbidding. It was a knobbly wooden stick, creamy and brown and smooth and dented, to be waved over the seas so they would part. It was very old ink on very fine paper, fading sometimes in places, but always writing itself again, over and over, timeless. It was a sheet, just a plain white sheet, drenched in sweat, a sheet of passion, a passionate sheet. It was a lighter, a leaf, it was the smell of the sea, that sharp and salty smell, and the curve of a neck, and the stone coldness of pebbles, and beautiful hands, the sort with narrow wrists and long, steady fingers. It was always beer, but then just one vodka after, just one for the road, journey made in old yellow taxis. It was a face buried in a shoulder under a moon on a terrace, a familiar terrace that had seen it before. It was a new toothbrush sitting in place one month of the year, waiting for the next time. It was a pool of water glistening in sun, and long legs kicking through the surf. It was morning. It was joy. It was comfort. It was laughter. It was.