Drop #6: Filling a Glass

‘Seriously, how many?’ she asks.

‘I don’t know. Seven or eight, I guess.’

‘Since this morning?’

‘Sure.’

‘Without even knowing them?’

‘Uhu.’

‘Or having spoken one word to them?’

‘That’s right.’

‘Wow.’

He dumps three sugars in his espresso and stirs. ‘What about you?’

‘Me?’

‘Yes you. How many?’

‘None.’

‘None? All day?’

‘It’s only noon.’

‘Still, nobody all day?”

‘Not for a while, actually, except you of course.’

‘No urge, no intrigue, no flash of interest?’

‘No. It doesn’t even go there.’ She pauses pensively, watching a waiter pour Pellegrino into a glass, enjoying the aesthetics of the act: one transparency filling another with a neat gurgle. ‘I guess you’re just different,’ she says. ‘I mean, having found eight this morning already.’

‘Nine by now.’

‘What?’ She follows his gaze. ‘The waitress?’

‘Uhu.’

‘I see,’ she says placidly. She is reminded of a kind of sadness she hasn’t felt in years and cannot place. And now, the sudden memory of her high school pool and high diving board, the imprecise fear of being up there, having committing to the jump, the teenage bodies treading water far below, and the chalky scent of shallow overflow baking on the hot cement. ‘Listen,’ she adds, ‘don’t buy that brand of toilet paper again, okay? It’s too soft and it falls apart.’

‘Okay.’

‘I just don’t like it.’

‘Okay. We have a whole twelve pack to get through.’

‘I know that,’ she says, watching another bottle of Pellegrino reach a table nearby. ‘I know that well enough.’

By E.M. Vireo

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About EM Vireo
flooding the world with fiction

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