3 a.m. I emerge from my bedroom into the apartment, now that company has come and gone, and I am done writing, and absorbing documentaries, and researching mandrakes. It’s not a big apartment, not for five people. Not for all our guests. Three bedrooms. All of us have lovers. All of us like sex.
The living room is silent. The glow of the television blues the walls, a frame from Futurama frozen on Bender’s shiny metal ass.
“Hey, Story?” comes from the couch as I pass by.
“Just ignore me.”
Only the light over the stove, then. I’m not uncomfortable. I don’t rush the copper kettle. But I wonder if they care. Small spaces. While I wait on my ramen, I can hear them in the living room, can hear the sweat in their moans. I’m not really listening, but I’m not really not. I keep as still as possible until the steam roils from the spout, but they’re done before I am, and I fill the styrofoam cup of dehydrated veggies and chicken and noodles, flip the light before I pad softly back to my space.
I don’t think I understand the discomfort. I have none of the tense fidget of Hollywood, none of the snarky prude’s “get-a-room.” What room would they get? Instead, a silent respect. A smile kept to myself. We’re all human. Small spaces, you know?