In The Clouds

‘Ladies and gentlemen, please fasten your seatbelts. Have a pleasant flight!’,
The service announcement echoes loud and clear inside the cabin,
I dread these journeys,
I yawn sleepily preparing myself for the long six hours before me,
While the stewardess gestures instructions with her elaborate hand movements, I lazily look around,
I’m trapped between two seats on either side,
Cramped and uncomfortable without much leg space to spare.

There’s a rather elderly gentleman next to me at the window seat,
Dressed leisurely in a rather thin and airy shirt and equally loose jeans to match,
I can only assume he’s on vacation judging from his not-a-care-in-the-world demeanor,
He’s already plugged his ears in, presumably listening to music,
I can’t make out his face as he doesn’t look away from the widow,
His eyes are covered behind thick shades anyway.

On the other side of me,
The aisle seat is taken by a girl seemingly in her 20s,
She’s wearing a casual sleeveless white top,
Contrasted by a black leather skirt,
And a yellow belt to complete her aesthetic ensemble,
She has short, brown hair down only to her shoulders and startlingly blue eyes deep as the ocean itself,
It’s quite possible she was returning home like me for the college break.

The first couple of hours were pretty uneventful,
Skies were clear and the flight was smooth,
So smooth, in fact, that the man beside me had already dozed off,
His light snoring was the only thing I could hear in the cabin.
Opening a bag of in-flight salted peanuts, I decided I needed to chew on something to pass the time.
From the corner of my eye, I saw the girl engrossed in her phone,
Watching a movie she’d store beforehand,
Feeling as though my eyes were on her,
She turned sharply to face me.
Embarrassed, I could only look back at her for a brief second,
Flash a sheepish smile and turn away, flustered.

The gentle and occasional rocking of the plane was soothing,
With a yawn, my eyelids started feeling heavy,
I was losing concentration and they closed by themselves.
Just when I was about to drift off,
The sound of the catering trolleys rolling up the aisle stirred me awake,
I got up because for some reason, I really enjoy the in-flight meal,
Something about eating among the clouds makes food taste even better.
And the fact that it’s complimentary only further enhances its taste.

I choose a tall glass of Gimlet to wash it all down with,
And to my mild amusement,
So does the girl beside me.
At least we have a common taste when it comes to cocktails.
She looked at me and smiled,
I took this opportunity to chance up a conversation,
I’m pretty much bored anyway,
Might as well give it a shot and get to know her a bit more,
See if we have anything more in common.

I was immediately fascinated by her voice,
She had an accent that wasn’t too foreign,
And at the same time, really pleasing to hear.
I could imagine her being a good singer,
Or at least, one able to hold a decent note.
It turns out she goes to the university right next to mine,
Currently in the final year,
She’s heading back home in Oman one last time as a student to visit her family before graduating.
From sports to music,
It was amazing how smoothly our conversation flowed,
Partly because we really did have a lot of mutual interests,
Neither of us had to force in something out of the other awkwardly,
I’m only surprised by the fact I hadn’t seen her around town.

Just then,
The man on the other side snores rather loudly as he choked up on his own saliva,
He woke up for a quick second, a look of surprise on his face as he blinked repeatedly,
He cleared his throat rather comically and proceeded to fall right back asleep, leaning against the window.
Watching this,
She looked at me,
Silently at first,
Then she burst out into a pretty laugh,
A really infectious laugh at that,
One that cracked me up too.

She made several jokes after that,
Our talks shifting from one topic to the other,
She’s quite talkative,
I don’t really like too many conversations while traveling but this is different,
I’m fascinated by her for some reason,
I slyly try to determine whether she’s single,
And rejoice inwardly when I hear what I wanted to.

One thing leads to the other,
And we move into a more personal conversation,
She talks about her love life,
After listening to me,
She discloses her raunchy escapades in college,
The different nights and different experiences,
She paused midsentence when we were discussing the most weird place we got hot and close-up at.

Stopping abruptly,
I saw a mischievous glint in her azure eyes,
She looked around,
I could tell she was thinking and contemplating about something.
The way her lips twitched visibly and her tone became hushed,
That’s when it hit me too,
I could read her mind,
Her sensual thoughts,
Those lips twisted in a half grin,
She waited with bated breath,
For me to make the first move.

And in a visible daze,
I reached in closer to her,
Really slowly,
Just so she could stop me midway if I misinterpreted and read her wrong.
Still unsure,
I paused a few inches away from her,
Until I felt her cool breath against me,
She closed the remaining distance herself,
With shut eyes,
She kissed me softly,
Gradually increasing intensity,
I can taste the last few drops of Gimlet off her lips.

Refusing to part,
We held the kiss for a good few minutes more,
Then she whispers something in my ear,
She then gets up non-chalantly,
Looks at me one last time,
And heads towards the washroom.
I recline back in my seat, trying to grasp just what has happened.
Look at my watch,
Wait for a minute or two,
Get up,
And without arising any suspicion, I follow her into the lavatory.

She turned the handle all the way,
Making sure we were locked in,
And picked up where we left off,
Kissing me while her fingers traced along the hem of my shirt,
I pushed her against the stall,
Her belt slipped out and fell noiselessly on the floor.
Even if it is cramped,
Just press into me all you want,
Breathe into me,
Take me higher,
Ascend into unseen Elysium,
The two of us.

I held one of her thighs in my hand,
She used the other foot to balanced herself,
After an intense eye contact,
A light moan escapes her lips and she closes her eyes,
Keeps them shut as her breath gets turbulent and heavier,
She holds on to me even more tightly,
Her nails digging deep into my back,
And her lipstick smeared against my skin.

Still holding her,
I slowly kiss her neck,
She throws back her head in ecstasy,
I bite her gently,
Around the nape,
Leaving a tiny, almost invisible, wound on her skin,
Something for her to remember me by,
She only smiles in response and kisses me again.

After fixing her hair hastily,
And wiping her face with wet tissues,
She slips out back into our seats without a noise.
I wait a while longer before sneaking out.
Two glasses of Martini and a beautiful girl waiting for me.

She smiles with a wicked gleam,
‘The strangest place would have to be on a plane, thousands of feet over the sky,
With a stranger,
One who likes Gimlets too.’,
She laughs as the seatbelt signs light up,
We exchange numbers and with a promise to meet later on,
The flight touches down on the runway of this largely unknown but heavenly paradise,
She kisses me one last time and says goodbye once the Boeing comes to a stop,
I pick my stuff from the overhead bin,
Still light-headed and giddy,
I’ve finally joined the Mile High Club,
I think to myself in glee,
Maybe flying isn’t so bad after all.

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