I have to say, I don’t know how to think of him.

Our eyes met in the narrow and cramped backstage passages of the Bridewell theatre in London. He strode past, his brawny arms full, his legs and face streaked with black stage paint. He could have been dressed head to toe in the finest Armani suit and I couldn’t have found him more attractive than I did.

What was it about him?

Was it the broadness of his shoulders?

The manly gait of his walk?

The manly twinkle I thought I saw in his eyes?

Theft that the only other member of this cast I’d even tried dating turned out to be duller than dishwater?

I don’t know. He has something about him. A danger; a darkness. I’m drawn to it. The same way actors are drawn to the bright lights of the stage. He’s authoritative, despite his theatrical twists, he’s manly.

As we striked the set after the final performance on Saturday, I looked overt him as I lugged two cans of paint.

“Look, lifting!” I said, imitating the gym weights he loves so much.

“Please,” He replied. “I could lift both of them and you with one arm.”

And with that he leant down and proceeded to do just that. Lifting me aloft as though I weighed nothing at all. I hid my immediate spike of desire behind a mask of laughter as he placed me back down upon the stage.

We talked. We laughed. I thought his manners rather indifferent, but then when I woke the next day (at 3 pm, it was a long, long night) there was a message making sure I was alright. I simply cannot make him out. He is a mystery and an enigma. I look at him and it’s like I cannot read him. What does he want of me, I wonder? He was undeniably flirtatious, but at the same time I gave him openings which he did not take.

There is indifference and interest in equal measure.

We pencilled in Thursday as a date, he asked if I wanted to go to the theatre, but details are yet to be confirmed. I want him, but I fear trying to get close to him in case he hurts me. I can see something of a mercurial character in him, and yet I want him. I can see that he is far, far more than just the theatrical boor which he often pretends to be. As the nights turn colder and I lie in bed close to shivering, I imagine him there and whisper his name. I imagine those gym-toned arms holding me. I see his sensitive eyes looking at me in their penetrating, unblinking manner through the dark.

He is a Programme Director for a large banking chain by day, deeply successful and brilliant in the quietest and most modest way possible. The most attractive way possible.

What to do, what to say, what to think. I don’t know. Sometimes I would observe him and question why I found him attractive at all. I told myself not to let my mind wander, that he wasn’t right. To forget his mixed advances and move on. So many traits I look for which he does not possess. So many reasons to walk away. But it has been a long time since I felt that piercing thrill of a first desire, is it really so wrong to explore it, even when approaching with reservations?

I think his puzzling nature is one of the reasons I find him so desirable. I don’t think I would ever fathom his full being, there’s simply too much there. His waters run too deep.

I yearn for it to be simple, and yet I’m attracted to complicated men. I want to build something long-term, and yet I am the most impatient of creatures. I want him, and yet a part of me is frightened. I think he wants me too, but it is impossible to tell.

Sometimes I have so little faith in my own judgement and person it’s a wonder I’ve even achieved the modest amount that I have.


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