Ever since their bon chance meeting on the flight to Amsterdam, both Manny and Selma had been relieved and resigned when they realized that there was no mutual need to consummate their relationship with a physical meeting of their minds and bodies. Thus began a long and daily litany of lies they told each other that they wanted to be true. The road to perdition is paved with good intentions.
Being that they had slept in the same bed for several days, it probably could be said that they had slept together, but not in the conventional sense. The stress of travel, being in a strange place, added to their built-in inhibitions, fatigue and just plain personal respect had kept them as the song said, “Strangers in the Night.” They may have exchanged glances but nothing much more was said or done.
With their return flight now just hours away, their perfunctory and until now temporary coalition of mutual needs was about to face a momentous decision. Fusion or Dissolution. They were well beyond the fissionable stage of their relationship.
While Selma was researching the archives at the University of Leiden for Spinoza stuff, she came to the conclusion that in order for her philosophical ramblings to have any authenticity or accuracy, she would need to experience what it meant to have been a mother the hard way.
So the night before the return flight back to Salt Lake City, Selma took charge of their usual disassociation bedtime regimen. Much to Manny’s surprise and chagrin, he became a confused but willing participant in their connubial cavorting long enough to ensure insemination, but not much more.
Since the process of creation is a complex combination of speed, temperature, time, space and matter, this one that began like a shot in the dark was followed in timely but measured succession by incubation and a prolonged and predictable period of gestation.
Without any further discussion, Manny and Selma, both normally talkative persons, silently fell asleep with a mutual understanding that there was no turning back.