The sky was high crisp clear, arced overhead, limitless, like the highway I was driving down, empty for Los Angeles, six lanes in front and behind, few cars. I loosened my grip on the wheel, relaxing and punching buttons to find a better song. Blink 182, heard too often, but fine. I tapped the wheel along to the beat, arm positioned to accentuate my tattoo, feeling almost sexy, when—
Vroooooooooooooom, a motorcycle, small, chromed, roared up behind. Roar might not be the right word, somewhere between roar and buzz, but not quite. The sound a shivering female giant might make, high-pitched, brrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. More like that.
I glanced in the rearview mirror, as the cycle pulled from behind my van and passed me on the left. Oooh, hotness. That guy. Helmeted, masked, not the kind of helmet that looks too big, too cautious, and not too small either, necessary, self-assured. A casual color, not angry or dramatic. Then again, I couldn’t even see the color, honestly, because: shoulders, arms, that muscle that connects shoulders to side rib across back. Literally lending all the support one might need for leaning, sheltering, climbing. His arms looked strong, lean but strong, tanned, sleeve of his light blue t-shirt, flapping, Check this out! Rippling fabric over tight muscle, jeans the perfect fade, and that back! As the motorcycle pulled in front, back in a perfect—
Wait. On that back, was a young woman. Lithe, her helmet a little too large for her thin neck, borrowed, but that was okay, she kept it tucked against the inside of that back’s perfect V. Ear to spine. Arms around, tight, hugging. Her thin frame wore light cotton shorts connected to a small sleeveless shirt, all the color of the sky. (What is that even called, a onesie? A beach coverup?) The flimsy fabric waved in the off-draft of her boyfriend’s perfect shoulders. Long legs jutted, gracefully—Does grace jut? Hmmmm. Possibly, if grace must be mixed with cycles, and straddling. The skin on her legs was perfect, tanned, exposed.
Wasn’t she cold? And then, What if they fell? Crash, burn slide. Oh. No.
I tightened my grip on the wheel, concentrating on the back wheel of the bike, willing it to remain righted, straight thrust forward. Please don’t fall, Mr. Hotness. Not with young pretty on the—
Slowly he took both hands off the handlebar and wrapped them behind, his hand catching momentarily on her shorts, pulling them higher, briefly. He patted her outer hips.
Her head came up from it’s curl. Chin on his shoulder, she rubbed up his sides, pulling his t-shirt up, exposing skin. Her hands met his just under his shoulders and then stroked down his biceps and together they unfurled, entwining to the side, holding hands, faces to the sky.
Arms outstretched, love and loved, roaring ahead down an almost empty Los Angeles highway.
One of my children said, “Whoa. Did you see that?”