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I hadn’t slept with Dmitri since before he broke his right arm in a snowboarding accident. In the photo he texted me that night, he’s grinning, a bloody face. It’s still one of the hottest things I’ve seen. In the span of time since we’d last seen each other I’d put my nose ring back in and his bones had knit themselves back together. His hair was overlong, curly in a way that made him look boyish and silly. We sloppily made out in the cab that scooped me up from Crown Heights and carried us out to where he lived.

Under the dim light of his room I ran my fingers along his newly healed arm and felt the metal plate under the thin skin of his wrist. Touching the ridge of it gave me the same itchy visceral scratch I get when I think about the IUD deep in me. I felt inside him and I wondered if that was what it felt like to be inside me.

He held up both forearms for me to inspect. “This one’s smaller,” he said, wiggling the fingers of his right. He had been in a cast for some weeks. I kissed his knuckles. “The skin is cooler,” he said. “I think the blood flow is different. It’s more sensitive.”

I took his right hand and placed it on my chest. The temperature of it felt strange, like it belonged to someone who was neither of us. Like part of him had come inside from the cold. When he pinched my nipple I felt it from a distance, as though I was observing his grasp from somewhere outside myself. I took his other, warmer, hand and put it over my heart, where our blood seemed more compatible. I closed my eyes and felt him touching me with his two hands and the jarring wrongness of it felt exciting, felt bad. His hot alive hand. His dead new one. I was sick with delight.

Right before we fucked, I took Dmitri’s dead new hand and put his cool fingers in my mouth. He was right about the skin being more sensitive; I could hear it, the hoarse change in his breathing as I sucked on his fingertips. The sex was delicious— a fat smear of pleasure, a dripping blue shuddering streak. And with his cock in me and his cold hand in my mouth we became a closed loop, or maybe—he entered me twice. Or maybe there were three presences in his bed that night, Dmitri and me and the hand of his that felt as though it belonged to somebody else.

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