Her hands were starting to look like lobster claws. She said she wasn’t going to go all the way, and wiggled the smaller claw to show it was still opposable. She said she liked the little teeth, though, and squeezed my arm too hard. She laughed at the little indentions in my arm. She almost fell off her chair.

The cappuccino machine hissed behind her. She liked coming to this place because it still had one of the old cappuccino machines. It was a relic, now. But things used to be built to last, and so this hunk of brass and copper still spewed out caffeine and foamed milk. She liked it because it was shiny and noisy. She used to do an impersonation of the machine, bouncing on the bed, hissing and squealing.

We don’t sleep together anymore. Not since she rolled over on me and I caught the business end of one of her new back-spines. I still have the scar.

She started tapping her claws on her forehead. The clack of chitin on chitin made me feel visibly uncomfortable, and she saw that. She stopped, and reached out with her claws at me. I didn’t want to recoil, but I did anyway.

She used to tickle me. She used to run her fingertips down my face. She used rub my stomach for good luck. I looked at the way the track lighting glinted off her enhanced brow-bumps and sickly noticed how similar it was to the glint off the cappuccino machine.

“Things used to be built to last,” I mumbled. She heard me anyway. Small tears slid down her face. They were falling much to fast, not having pores to slow their descent. I reached out to wipe her tears away, an instinctual motion. She was still soft around the eyes. They were still her eyes.

That’s when I knew things would be okay.