Elio spent much of his time watching Oliver’s every move. He watched his actions, clothes, and words. He knew what mood Oliver would be in when he wore a particular piece of clothing. The two of them spent a lot of afternoons together that summer. The previous houseguest had liked working alone in his room but Oliver preferred working outdoors with Elio present. He would put a blanket on the ground and have all his essentials with him. Occasionally, in between his working sessions, he would converse with Elio. Elio lived for those moments. He loved the person he was when Oliver was around him.
Despite falling deeper for Oliver every day, Elio was certain Oliver didn’t feel the same way about him. It was hard for Elio to comprehend that anyone could be like him, could want what he wanted, and could desire him in the same way he desired them. That only happened in books or to other people. He couldn’t picture the Oliver who he had come to know so well, who was so self-confident, ever reciprocating his feelings.