“Mirror, mirror on the wall,” Luke said, enunciating around his toothbrush. He wore a large yellow bath towel slung fetchingly around his lean hips, and a dab of shaving cream under his right ear.
I drew back from the long mirror over the bathroom counter and the double sinks. “I was trying to think if I should shave or not.”
“Why would you want to shave?”
“I don’t know.” I frowned at my reflection. “I look okay, right?”
“You’re asking for an objective opinion? I’m kind of partial to your looks.”
He grinned at me and toothpaste spilled out of his mouth. I laughed. Luke laughed too, rinsed, spat, patted his face with a plushy yellow towel. He straightened, still smiling but serious when he said, “You know, we don’t have to go to this thing tonight.”
“Yeah, we do. It’s New Year’s. Karen will be disappointed if we don’t show up.”
“She’s going to have a houseful of people. She won’t notice if we’re not there.”
“Hey. I’d like to think that’s not true.”
“You know what I mean.”
I did, yeah. And I appreciated that he was, as usual, looking out for me. We’d been together since May. Well, not immediately together together because it had taken Luke a month to leave his job and put his place on the market, but even when we were apart I felt like we were together. It was a first to feel so secure. To know that whatever came at us, we’d be facing it together. I still found that sort of amazing.
“You know what?”
His reflection slanted hazel eyes my way in inquiry.
“I’m looking forward to tonight.”
“Are you?” He looked surprised, and no wonder. For the first two years of my sobriety I’d been afraid to go anywhere, do anything that might put me in proximity with alcohol. Hell, coffee with friends had seemed perilous. Not that I’d had so many friends back then.
“I am. I’m not even sure why exactly. I’m looking forward to the new year. And I like the idea of celebrating with friends. I know for sure I’m not going to drink. Plus I’ll have someone to talk to all night. The best looking guy there.”
“That’s funny,” Luke said. “I was thinking the same thing.”
“That you’re going to be the best looking guy there tonight?” I teased, squeezing past him on my way to the bedroom.
He reached back and caught my arm, pulling me back against him. He was smiling as he pressed a Crest-flavored kiss against my mouth. I smiled a kiss back, reached down and unfastened the towel at his waist.