Rachel Moore is a staff writer for Public Utilities Fortnightly.
On a cool September day in 1882, Lewis Latimer stood behind the front door of his apartment impatiently. His suit quivered as he tapped his toe on the floor. His tweed morning coat had been buttoned hastily and as such, was one button off. Aside from the resulting uneven hem, his coat was well-fitting and contrasted with his darker skin. He lifted his wristwatch and adjusted his glasses on his face, peering at the time. "Mary! Darling!" he called, "We're going to be late!"
Mrs. Latimer emerged from the next room in a fashionable orange dress and matching feathered hat. She pulled on her gloves with an exasperated huff. "Honey, it's not even one o'clock yet. We will not be late." She smiled at his coat and took to rebuttoning it. "Take a moment to breathe, Lewis."
He took a deep breath and watched her rebutton his coat wordlessly. When she had finished, he leaned forward to kiss her. "Thank you."
"Ready to go?" she asked.
He nodded. He opened the front door and stepped across the threshold, grabbing his wife's hand as he did so. Mr. and Mrs. Latimer ran along the street towards their hired carriage.