She enters the room grinning, arms out, ready and demanding hellos and hugs. He’s first in line. She envelopes him in the hug, in her joy, making up for his lack. She pulls back just enough for a kiss, presenting her cheek. When he moves in, smiling now, infected by happiness he doesn’t understand, she changes the angle, unchastening it, giving it a heat and fervor that is unexpected and questionably welcome. But he responds. At only a few inches taller than she, his height is just average for a man. And perfect for kissing someone only a few inches shorter than he.
She pulls back, grinning still into the sudden and profound silence that becomes a dull roar. “I’ve always wanted to do that,” she says for his ears only. She ducks in, kissing his cheek before he can react, then untangles herself from his grasp. He watches dumbly, numbly, as she hugs everyone else and kisses none.