Professor? Is this all real? Or is it just happening inside my head?

Of course it is happening inside your head, Harry, but why on earth should that mean that it is not real?
— J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

I hope you're right, Albus. Last night, I was walking through a pass between some pockmarked red sandstone buttes. It was chilly, in a desert way - there was snow on the ground and a nip in the air, but no clouds blocking the relentless sun.

Also on the ground, some maiden in a dark cloak, either asleep or in distress.

 Perhaps one of these kneeling ladies was lost in Arizona.

Perhaps one of these kneeling ladies was lost in Arizona.

Then we fast forwarded. Whatever the distress might have been, there's no sign of it now. She is definitely woke. She is laying on top of me staring into my eyes. No mask. No anything, except a cloak that is conveniently draped over us both, even though I am still in my rescue damsels in distress wear. 

Then there is that eyes locked, we are on exactly the same page moment. The script from here on out would seem to be pretty predictable and highly personal, except it never is that simple, for me, even when it's all inside my head. Even when the rules are whatever I allow them to be, we usually hit a *record scratch*

It's always something:

  • No protection. Dead Stop.
  • No affirmative, unequivocal consent in advance of any (yes ANY) change or escalation. Thank you, this guy. "Sorry honey, I have to go now."
  • ("If that is OK.")  
  • Some springing moral quandary. I'm not worthy. She's a trainwreck. We have no pre-existing, ongoing relationship leading to this threshold moment. Thanks again, parents. "Nice boys don't." "Don't have sex with someone you aren't prepared to spend the rest of your life with." Kind of tough to get past those without some booze to activate the lizard brain.

That was the other thing. This was no boozy encounter, where someone had some deniability about letting what they wanted to happen happen.

Which brings us back to the show. Things escalated because I made moves without the cascading, notarized licenses like my old professor wanted. The, uh, interested parties had a unilateral contract (accepted by performance, not a promise to perform) with subsequent amendments and addenda.

And it was all good and right and easy like Sunday morning. It didn't matter that words were pretty much not there. It didn't matter that I didn't get her name, or couldn't even expect to see her in about 30 minutes from now. 

Oddly enough, 30 minutes from now was when the alarm outside my head was scheduled to go off. So naturally, just as things got really interesting, I was out of my head and back into the real world, left to extrapolate where this might have gone back on the inside.  That much was same as every other time things get interesting in there, real or otherwise.