Your Loving Arms
(Published in Phoenix Magazine)

“So, you don’t believe in anything?”

She rolls over, pushes herself up on one elbow and applies that look that means she intends to talk seriously. I hide my sigh and instead let my hand wander to her naked waist, knowing that she will stop me, but wanting to try anyway.

“You know this is important to me.” she says, as I massage her hip. “My faith is a huge part of who I am.”

I try to focus on her mouth, her soft, wet lips, their constant, tiny movements and adjustments. “I just want you to have what I have.” she says with a smile, as her skin turns slowly from pink to pale blue. “The contentment, the sense of belonging…”

I scooch over, push my face into her breasts and reach around to grab her ass. Her jet black hair falls like a crow’s wing over my eyes. “Don’t you want to feel like that?” she asks, stroking my stomach with her long, cyan fingers. “Don’t you want to feel that loved?”

“Of course I do.” I mumble, my mouth around her breast. “But you know I can’t. I’m just not like you.”

She takes my face in two hands and kisses me, while a third hand continues to stroke my stomach. A soft golden glow forms around her, warming my skin.

“You just have to give in to it.” she purrs. “Let the feeling take over. Don’t question everything so much.”

I close my eyes and lay back, as a fourth hand makes its way up my inner thigh. I feel my body on the bed, the air tunneling its way in, out, in, out of my lungs, as a sweet, floral smell blooms in my senses. A cool tendril spirals around my wrist and a soft hiss vibrates in my ear.

Love spreads through me like butter on toast.

When I open my eyes again, she is hovering above me, her red and gold robes floating weightlessly around her, her flawless cyan skin luminous.

I look down at my own pale human body and shame flushes through me in a hot wave. I will my skin to glow, my arms to multiply, my thoughts to crystalize, my body to become weightless, my mind to become infinite.

But still I lie there. Heavy, disgusting, flawed and vulnerable. Degenerating. Failing. Dying.

“Well?” Vishnu asks, a hand on my cheek.

“I love you.” I reply.