Ganar

I fell and I landed and the crash mat knocked all the air out of me. I swore and you laughed and dropped down onto your knees next to me and those big blue eyes refuelled my empty lungs. I swore again, although for a rather different reason, and you offered me a hand. You pulled me upright and pulled my head into your chest with both arms as I remembered how to breathe.

The smell of you was chalk and sweat and old rubber shoes and something else uniquely yours, and I counted each dose of it by the metronome inside your ribcage. As my breathing slowed, your grip loosened and your palms stroked my shoulders in a smooth, uninterrupted rhythm.

“Better?”

“Better.”

You pulled me to my feet and turned to face the wall, adorned with a rainbow of little rocks and numbers and scuff marks.

“Well quit slacking, then”, you said with a masterpiece of a grin painted across your face and I said I’d race you, and you gave me a slap on the arse and I gave you a punch in the arm. And you won, but when you looked me in the eye to gloat then I did, too.

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