They wore pajamas with feet even though they were both in their sixties. They didn’t care what anyone thought and they liked to be warm. Besides, nobody was around to see but them.

“Stay away from me!” said Arlene. “You’ll catch my cold!”

Fred climbed under the sheet and comforter and lay down next to her. He propped his head on his hand, elbow depressing the soft mattress.

“Okay, you fool.” said Arlene. “But if you catch my cold, don’t come crying to me.” She smiled back at Fred and then opened her book. She read as Fred stared.

Arlene cleared her throat.

“Would you like a cough drop?” Fred offered.

Arlene looked up from her book, brow furrowed. She saw Fred’s outstretched hand with a Hall’s and broke into a tired grin.

“It’s got menthol,” Fred added, hopefully.

Arlene took the cough drop, unwrapped it, and put the drop in her mouth.

“I’ll take that,” said Fred, gesturing toward the wrapper. He got up, tossed it into the trash and then returned.

“Fred, how long have we been married?” asked Arlene rhetorically.

Fred did some calculations in his head and then gave up. “I dunno,” he said. “Maybe a thousand years?”

Arlene returned to reading. Fred continued to stare.

“You look lovely, Arlene.” said Fred, almost shyly.

Arlene gave a dubious look.

“No, really,” Fred added.

“I’m not even wearing any makeup,” Arlene said.

“Neither am I,” said Fred. “What of it?”

“I’m trying to read,” said Arlene.

“I’m sorry,” said Fred, looking down. He reached out to Arlene, touched her shoulder and said “You’re it!” Then he got up and ran to the other side of the room.

“What’s gotten into you, Fred?” said Arlene.

“Nothing. Just love.” said Fred.

Arlene frowned. “I think you’re entering your second childhood.”

Fred was unfazed. “I don’t think I’ve completed my first childhood yet.” He grinned.

Arlene leapt out of bed. “I’m coming after you Fred! Better run!”

They ran outside. It was raining. They laughed and sat in the wet grass and looked at the ducks on the lake.

Arlene’s joints ached. Fred’s weak old heart was racing.

“Let’s do this again tomorrow.” said Fred.

They kissed and took a nap right there in their wet pajamas.