Celeste seemed to be asking me what else he could do. I said nothing; I made no gesture of any kind, but it was the first time in my life I ever wanted to kiss a man. (2.3.17)
Meursault’s emotions toward Celeste are surprising, however, the friendship between the two is not. The question is why this offer of condolence makes Meursault happy, whereas others annoyed him. Perhaps it’s because Celeste understands him; he doesn’t have to make a verbal reply which, we all know, can be quite exhausting.