Bashiru had the most beautiful skin, as dark as coffee, and his body was composed of long stretches of lean muscle. Whenever we stood in close proximity my hands inevitably found their way underneath his shirt to make their way over the satin ridges of his abs. He smelled of shea butter and laundry soap, and when we kissed his thin dreads tickled my cheek.
We met my freshman year of college through mutual friends. He studied business and took English Literature classes for fun. The first time he visited my room we sat on my decrepit couch and discussed Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness. Bash was articulate, intelligent and completely off limits sexually. Not only was he a devout Muslim, but his parents had sent him to the US for an education; he was not to be seduced by an alcohol-consuming, sexually active, American blonde girl of questionable morals. He was a man on a mission, and he devoured textbooks and intellectual debate with a fervor that I admired. He possessed the academic discipline that I did not, and it was his good example that inspired me to finally settle into my studies. (My mother still thanks him.)
I first noticed a change in my feelings during one of our college soccer matches. I was bundled up against the fall air, perched on the edge of frozen metal bleachers as I watched the players sweep up and down the field. Bash ran the entire game, every step fluid yet calculated. It appeared effortless to me, and I found my gaze focusing on him more and more. I recognized the signs, those feelings stirring deep within my gut. I wanted Bash, but I immediately pushed the thought away. He was too innocent. Too pure.
I must confess that Bash has been the only man that I have ever tried to resist. Oh, in my dating life I’ve questioned whether or not it was a smart move to have sex with someone. But my attitude has always been that once I decide to have sex with a person, then I’m going to fuck them. Skip the coy games and let’s get to it is my motto. I’ve also never had sex with anyone I didn’t desire except for my ex-husband. How about that for some irony?
While I had been tossing and turning over Bash, fighting my feelings, he had made his own plans. He kissed me one random night as we were studying, his lips full and warm against mine. I didn’t hide my surprise. I gave him a moment to flash a self-conscious smile, and then I literally jumped on the man. Books slid to the floor and shoes were kicked off as we got horizontal. As I stroked and teased him with my hands and kissed my way over every inch of exposed skin, I silently wondered when he was going ask me to stop. He returned my kisses with enthusiasm and ran his hands over my breasts, but not once did they wander below my waist. We spent an interminable amount of time kissing and caressing until I was a throbbing, needful mess. I was ready to scream with frustration.
“We need to stop or I’m going to take your virginity,” I said and pulled away, panting.
“Take it. I love you.”
I didn’t give him a chance to reconsider, and I never regretted it.
We dated for a year and a half until I left to study abroad. We had a terrible breakup preceding that, and it still makes me cringe when I think about it. Enough time has passed that we’re able to be friends on Facebook. I can’t help but wonder how he thinks of me. Does he remember that night with fondness or regret? Is he happy with the things I showed him or does he wish he had waited for someone else? I’ll never know for certain, so I try to focus on the positive aspects of our shared past. I’m honored that he chose me to be his first, and a part of me will always love him for it.