Paige and Emily are hanging out in Emily’s bedroom trying to be even gayer than the outfit Emily wore today. They squabble some more about which one is the Batman and which one is the Robin and who gets to drive and who has to ride in the sidecar and one time you got yourself bound and gagged in a murderer’s closet and one time you drove your car into a barn and almost died because a doll told you to do it and you’re not telling me the whole story about Mona and you’re not telling me the whole story about Shana, and finally we have arrived at the crux of the problem. Paige explains that she and Shana dated when Emily was grieving Maya and building houses in Haiti, but the day Emily set foot back in Rosewood, the actual minute that Paige heard her laugh two classrooms away, Paige dropped Shana as fast as her fingers could text. Paige is like, “She’s the regional high school meet, you’re the Olympics. A girl’s gotta practice to win the gold medal, right?” She tells Emily she loves her with her words and then she tells Emily she loves her with her lips and then she tells her one more time with a little bit of tongue for good measure.
Emily smiles and kisses her back. Not because they’ve solved the who’s protecting whom conundrum, not because she’s over the whole Shana thing. She smiles because she’s the other side of Keats, the “negative capability” side. The part that knows the death train’s a-comin’, but sometimes the solution is to relax into the uncertainty, to stop that “irritable reaching after fact and reason.”
Negative capability is always the best place to kiss from. “Infinite depth,” Keats said. “Tender-taken breath … swoon to death.”
Also, just for nostalgia’s sake:
Paige: If I say it out loud, if I say, “I’m gay,” the whole world is gonna change.
Emily: Yeah. It will.
Don’t give up, you guys. I feel like I need to say that today. Just keep swimming, OK? Just keep swimming.