Based on the Biblical account of Samson and the woman Delilah.
A single key contains several ridges and valleys which lift and hold corresponding levers within a single cylinder. If it’s the right one, the door will open, but the wrong key will grind against the lock.
The blue light of dusk filters in through the skinny crack around the door.
Medium shot from inside a sparse, but clean front room. The front door is visible in the background. The blue light of dusk fills the space.
The click of a key opening a lock dislodges the silence.
Two people stand in the door frame.
The woman shifts from foot to foot while the man stands to the side, one hand on the handle, looking away.
She’s wearing a wedding dress. The veil hangs in her hand by her side, a small suitcase in the other.
A harsh street lamp flicks on behind her as the man carefully closes the door behind her.
She looks out at the tidy space for the first time. There’s a small, tan couch against the wall facing a half-empty bookcase rather than a television. She notes how the books resting there stacked haphazardly. Definitely a bachelor pad, she thinks. No curtains on the windows, no rugs across the nude colored floor tiles that cover the small but empty seeming space. Even the bookcase, which could have been stained a darker shade of wood, cherry or walnut, was the color of sand. Everything so pale and colorless, she thought, like the sand dunes out to the east of town. She felt a momentary flutter of sympathy for him, her husband, at that thought. He must miss home. Delilah tried hard not to focus on her own feelings. Far easier to try defining his.
She turned around, hoping to catch his eyes as she hadn’t been able to do all evening during the wedding. A thick patch of hair met her eye-line instead, dark, dark brown. The stark contrast of it against the white background of his unpainted walls both shocked and comforted her. It really did seem like she stood looking out over the dunes watching him, rather than in the middle of a barren apartment.
Yet he still didn’t look up at her. He stood, still, leaning against the back of the door as if gathering breath before a speech. After a pathetically restrained sigh Delilah had expected to be much heavier, Samson spun the ring holding his keys around his index finger and flung them with a well-practiced toss into a dish by the door.
The keys made a discordantly cheerful sound as they landed.
She took a step forward, trying to find something for her eyes to hold onto and finds the books once more. She peers forward, trying to read the titles. Too far away, she decides. As if to see them Delilah takes one step forward. As she does, she hears a scuffle near the door and turns around.
Still sequestered near the door, Samson fumbled his feet, taking off one shoe then the other by placing the tip of one toe on the heel of the other foot to peel off the scuffed up dress shoe. Then he half kicked, half slid them both to the corner by the door where a pile of other even more worn options lay waiting for his feet.
Funny she thought that he could be so fastidious about tracking in undesirable dust, yet he didn’t ask her to do the same. Nor did he seem willing to leave his spot by the door. Perhaps, she thought, he knows that once he moves further inside I’ll be able to go further inside too.
So she stood there, waiting for him to invite her in.
After a few minutes of uncomfortable silent balancing near the doorway, he turned from her and simply walked away, closing a door behind him with a hollow thud.
Delilah stared after him, dumbfounded. After another minute passed she could hear the sound of water running somewhere in the back rooms. And with the rush of plumbing she simply sat down and cried. It wasn’t that the wedding was brusque, thought it was. Or that it hadn’t been a great party. She found, with surprise, that she wasn’t crying at the fact that her father wasn’t there to walk her down the aisle and her mother wasn’t alive to sob cheerfully into a white lace handkerchief like she used to imagine as a little girl. It was just that he hadn’t even asked her to take off her shoes.
When the water stopped pouring in the bathroom, Delilah forced her legs to bend underneath her and rise up to support her. Following Samson’s actions almost exactly she peeled off her sensibly short heeled dress shoes and slid them across the entryway to the corner with the other shoes.
There, she thought, rebelliously, now I’m part of the room. She then bent down to the hard cased luggage dropped beside her and grasped the handle in both hands, lugging it past the couch, and careful not to let it bump into the furniture or walls. She didn’t even know if he rented or bought, and so didn’t know how gentle she would have to be with her surroundings.
wore it in a tight little bun, tucked beneath a hat. But here it lay across the sheets, longer even than hers, looking so soft. She wanted to touch it. She wanted to reach out her fingers to make that single motion of affection. She was filled with this need; so full the air constricted in her lungs. The pressure of her chest pressed in on the air molecules which hung suspended unable to push themselves out and join the slightly dusty air floating peacefully throughout his bedroom. Instead, her fingers hovered, vibrating in the air above his hair. She sat like that, staring intently at this beautiful hair, crying, as she realized she couldn’t bring herself to reach out and feel it’s softness on this, their wedding night.